May 2010


Last night, a sweet, cute 22-year-old told me I was beautiful and offered to rip off all my clothes and do to me whatever it was I desired.

Sometimes, it’s nice being me.

He was drunk, of course, but in a really adorable way.  He had this bravado that I loved and this total need for everyone to have fun and enjoy each other’s company.  He was always smiling.  In the late hours, I deduced rather easily that despite his exterior, he was lonely.   He started aiming conversation my way.  People dropped away until it was only him and me talking.   He told me I was pretty.  Beautiful.  Sexy.  That he had noticed me the moment he arrived.  He was so self-conscious that he apologized profusely for everything nice that he said.  I told him to stop assuming what he said was unwelcome.  He said he wasn’t expecting anything that night, but that he would pursue me as long as he knew he could have me someday.  He offered to walk me to my door, to my room, to my bed.

A little piece of me was tempted.  It had been a long time since I’d been called beautiful – by a date or a lover or even a friend.  And the last time someone was hopeful about me, even if it was just for sex, was years ago.  I thought, this boy, A—-, would be my lover, my pet, my boyfriend, my anything if I let him. 

I couldn’t help thinking that if  only S—- (my favorite liquor store employee and date) had desired me the way that A—- did, that I might be the happiest woman alive.  And I wondered if the only way to get both would be separately – if it was even possible to be wanted desperately by a man who truly complemented me.   In younger years, I would have simply taken the boy as a lover and the man as a friend.  It wasn’t until that moment last night, sitting on a folding chair in front of a bonfire, blushing in the dark as salacious dreams were whispered to me, that I it truly hit me that being with A—- wouldn’t have satisfied me at all anymore.  My dream of a partner has become a tangled mess of love and lust and comraderie that I can no longer temporarily separate.

I wanted to apologize to him then, for willingly keeping from him something that in the past was so easy to give away.  Instead, I said good night.  I didn’t ask him to walk me to my door.  I didn’t kiss him.  As I got ready for bed at home a little later, I did what I sometimes do when I’m frustrated with men.  I scolded my imaginary husband for taking so long, and for making me go through this, wondering if I’d ever find him.  I hope, somewhere, he flinched.

It’s been a long time since I blogged, and so much has happened.  Unfortunately, I’ve only had one glass of wine tonight, so you will only get one topic in this post.

No, I don’t know how that logic works either.

I am out of wine, and I’m not sure I want to go back to the package store where I usually get my favorite organic Merlot.  At least not this weekend.  You see, it all started a couple of months ago when I guy who works there caught my eye.  He was wicked cute, but not in a way I’d been attracted to before.  I was intrigued.

I started going there about once a week for a bottle of wine here, a six-pack of hard lemonade there.  One day, I even stood in front of the cooler for a whole minute pretending I didn’t know what I wanted, chatting him up.  Sometimes, it would be a normal, mundane check-out, although he could have charged me anything and I’d have signed the slip, I was so distracted.  But sometimes we’d have a brief conversation.

At some point a few weeks in, though, I realized that I was in danger of becoming an alcoholic.  Or, at the very least, running out of storage space for my wine.  (“Um, thanks for the Christmas gift, but seriously, wine again?”)  So I decided to take the plunge.  Do something daring!  Put it all on the line.

Yes, I friended him on Facebook.

(Yes, I know that’s not a verb.  *sob*)

He accepted (yay!) and I went to work doing what Facebook enables best: reading his profile about 10 times a day.  It was actually quite cool how much we had in common.  But I couldn’t help but feel awful.  I felt like a cyber stalker.  Seriously, I hated it.  It was so strange juxtaposing the vast encyclopedia of information about him from his social networking page, and our all-too-brief exchanges over my purchases.

Of course, I did actually manage to e-mail him in the next few weeks, and found out that he and I had clubbed at the same freaky clubs 10 years ago, when we were young and beautiful and horny and should have tripped over each other 50 times.  But I was also naive and cliquey and uber-cool, so I may have literally tripped over him in my stilettos and yet completely dismissed him.

But this is now!  And we were older.  And wiser.  And stuck in the sticks.  Somehow.  Stuck somewhere completely unpretentious, guided by a path strewn with unsuccessful relationships, cities, and jobs.  Surely this meant something.  I didn’t believe in fate or God, but Jesus fucking Christ on a pogo stick, couldn’t this be destiny?

(Okay, I know you haven’t had any wine, and my buzz is wearing off rapidly, but stay with me here.)

One morning, while pondering my own mortality over tea (what, you don’t?), I sent him an e-mail asking him if he wanted to hang out together sometime.  And yes, I phrased it like that, in a completely “It’s not a date unless you’d like to interpret it that way” way.  A few hours later, much to my relief, he wrote back and accepted.

So the next weekend I found myself out for a drink with him.  I was nervous.  I started my makeup an hour before I had to leave.  Okay, 90 minutes.  I wore fucking Spanx.  I hoped desperately that his last girlfriend was homely and/or chubbier than me.  I tried talking myself out of my excitement by reminding myself of all the bad dates I’d had in the past.  I attempted to put it in perspective by telling myself that there was no sense in the idea that I’d get along with this random stranger.  No sense at all.

And yet, in the end, he was awesome.  He was still cute.  Cuter.  And his hair was goddamned perfect.  I wanted to touch it.  BUT I was playing it cool.  Very cool.  But not so cool he couldn’t tell I was interested.  I leaned in while he talked.  I touched his shoulder when I returned to my seat from the ladies room.  I smiled a lot.  I couldn’t help it.  We were having such a good conversation. Interesting conversation.  No pauses, no awkward moments, so animated we jumped from topic to topic without really exhausting the one before.   It was the kind of date I hope for when I go out on a date, and never the kind I get.  I was psyched.

By his third drink, though, I wasn’t sure how I felt anymore.  He was, like many men I’ve dated in their mid-to-late thirties, lost and looking to find himself after realizing his dreams of rock stardom (or insert-other-ambitions-here) hadn’t come true.  I found myself reluctantly playing therapist when all I really wanted to do was yell, “You are sitting across from a girl who thinks you are cute and smart and just the right amount of geeky, and who had the guts to ask you out even if it was over e-mail.  Can you please, please stop thinking and just start flirting?”  I have to admit, that would be the point in any date when I chalked it up and headed home, but I couldn’t bring myself to.

I dropped him off at his apartment a little after midnight (he doesn’t have a car at the moment).  In a last-ditch effort, I jokingly asked him if he wanted me to walk him to his door.  He responded with an oh-so buzzed, puzzled smile and said, “You can if you want.  But it’s right over there…”  And then he said some nice goodbye-y things that I don’t remember in my devastation of his having shot down my goodnight kiss plot, and left.

The next morning, he sent me a note saying he’d had a good time and giving me his cell phone number.  I can’t remember the last time a guy did that.  I can’t remember the last time I wanted a guy to do that.

A lot has changed in the last week, and I’m sure I’ll write more about it in the next few days.  I quit Facebook.  I got my promotion.  I took a business trip that was an incredible way to refresh my perspective.  I’m feeling more self-confident.  I’m feeling good about the direction of my life.  All things considered, I shouldn’t be spending my time hoping he’ll call.  I shouldn’t be wondering if I’m wrong about him – if maybe he was just nervous or shy.   (If maybe he’s not calling because he was abducted by aliens?)

I’ll give it another week, then I’ll go back for my wine.

And not for him.

“Gary was not a fighter.  Although his doctor had pronounced him “healthy as an ox” (a phrase he hated, considering he had been reduced to such a small man by the age of 80), the infection he had acquired minutes before in the doctor’s waiting room swiftly made an end of him.  Without even calling his children from his hospital room, he died easily, as if relieved to be done after all those pesky years of living.”

Yesterday, I sat outside on the front lawn and watched my son play with the neighborhood kids a few houses down while I pretended to be reading.  A couple walking by told them to be careful riding their bikes in the street (my son wasn’t allowed to, and was away from them in the driveway).  The boys waited until they had walked away, and then yelled things like, “You’re not my parents!” and “Jerks!”  My son didn’t participate, nor did he come home.  I told him later I was unimpressed with the boys, and explained to him what it meant to be “judged by the company you keep”.  I felt like it was more important for him to learn that these unsupervised children were poor company than for me to go over and discipline kids who weren’t mine (and who would most likely later futilely yell “you’re not my mom!” and “jerk” at my house).  I can’t wait to move. 

I wish I could trade in good karma for a nice apartment cheap.  Karmic Monopoly.  Sounds like a band name.

Sunday I gave blood and it made me feel so tired I took a nap, which I never do.  When I woke up, I made a dinner of steak and corn on the cob and macaroni and cheese (it was too hot for baked potatoes, unfortunately).  I never had steak for dinner when I was a kid, but only being a two-person family (as opposed to a seven-person family) makes it a luxury I can afford sometimes.  I’m glad I can do that.

Pandora.com thinks I love Morrissey far more than I do, although I do love him.  Which seems like some thing for which I should be teased.  Tease away.

I haven’t had to talk the last 2-1/2 hours at work.  I might not have to talk to anyone for hours more.  It really sucks.  I’m supposed to talk to my boss about the promotion Friday.  I may just be a whore and accept the job if it pays more money.  Or I may spend the rest of the day perusing job postings.  I’m just tricky like that. 

I’m so much less interested in Facebook lately.  I wonder what a social networking site’s lifetime is.  Remember Friendster?  Does anyone actually pay for classmates.com anymore?  Maybe I’m just turned on by the sunshine and the real world.

Mmm…I like that.  Turned on by sunshine and the real world.

Back to work.

One of my cats is watching bugs flying outside the living room window; his head is darting frantically around, eyes wide and desperate.  My other cat is curled up on my bed, and he’s not even supposed to be in my room.  Sometimes, knowing how nice it is to burrow in my down comforter, I just let him stay.  (Then I squirt him with the water bottle after he wakes up.)  My son is playing DS in his bedroom, far longer than I usually let him play.

Yes, it’s Sunday.

I wish I could say that my life has been so exciting that I haven’t had time to post.  It’s not.  More than anything, I feel like I’m in limbo.  I’m waiting to hear about a promotion at work.  Whether it will include additional money is up in the air, and my indignation at this possibility is at critical levels.  Speaking of money, I haven’t been out anywhere in months because I simply don’t have any.   I miss it.  I miss my friends.  Unfortunately, I’m not sure it’s going to rectify itself soon.  You see, I desperately want to move out of my apartment.  It’s stressing me out.  The kids in the neighborhood have been running hot and cold on my son (and the cold just breaks his heart) and I haven’t been impressed with the manners of folks around here either (I’d kill to see some dogs leashed).  Plus, I’m feeling claustrophobic in this little place.

So I’m keeping busy doing things that don’t require a babysitter.  I helped a friend landscape her lawn last weekend (she showed me what to do) and used what I learned to do it to my mom’s front yard yesterday.   I’m riding bikes with my son.  We hit the town tag sale and got him a pair of roller blades for $5.  I’ve also been hitting up the town liquor store lately, trying to see if I can get the attention of the cute guy who works there, but instead have hit up something of a friendship with the (female) owner, which is very cool.

Sometimes I forget how much I need people.  I need to live in a neighborhood with people who can be friends – or at least friendly.  I need to work at a job where I interact with people and don’t just stay isolated all day.  I need to walk in to a room and have someone say an enthusiastic “hi!”.  I’m just programmed that way.  I will go out and socialize at night again – I know I will.  In the meantime, I’m getting by.

Although you’re always welcome to come visit.