Also, hi, I’m making a ton of progress on my novel. I got a lot of work done in New York, but I’ve decided to ‘white whale’ it, which means I have to add some more heroin and fist fights, so when I’m done with that I’ll let you guys know. It’s the main reason why I post way less frequently on here – blogging can really detract from the novel writing process, but I’m PMSing tonight so I thought I’d spew some swill here before hitting the book hard again tomorrow.
We were going to Motown Monday.
“Are you trying to be romantic with me?!” I asked with a grin as we drove over to the bar.
Ugh, my joke was lost on him. Or, it wasn’t a joke, it was more of a desire wrapped up in a light hearted tone just in case he thought that the implication was ridiculous. The implication being: let’s fuck in the bathroom.
Clearly, he wasn’t picking up what I was putting down. Which made me feel slightly sour because our fifth fuckiversary is coming up at the end of this month or some time in the next month (I’ll have to check the logs to know for sure) – did he completely forget? Is it just a coincidence that he’s taking me to Motown Monday circa our 5th fuckiversary? Or is he just playing it cool because he’s going to surprise me with some bathroom dick in the very same bathroom where we first had sex five years ago?
We sat at the bar, and he pulled out his phone and scrolled through Amazon in search of new work out equipment. I sat there next to him, drinking my whiskey with my tits popping out, feeling too pretty for a dive like this. It felt like a pretty authentic recreation of our original dynamic five years ago: me being thirsty and overdone, him ignoring me. I slid my hand onto his thigh and said, “Hey.”
“I’m looking at this right now,” he said. Oh, god, this is getting cruelly authentic. Five years ago I tried to pull the same move, vying for his attention, and he had shut me down pretty hard. But I’m a motivated woman, so when he went upstairs, I followed him, this time as well as that first time, and into the bathroom. Where he talked to his friend for twenty minutes.
He didn’t even try to fuck me in the bathroom!
I mean, I guess we did go home together, so at least I got that going for me. But we didn’t even fuck because ‘somebody’ chafed their frenulum.
“If we have sex, I could tear my frenulum, and apparently that’s really painful, so probably best to just wait it out.”
“Oh, so I might break your dick?”
“Yeah, and apparently it can get really bloody, too.”
“Really! That’s so cool! Wait – is that a come on? Cuz fucking you til your dick bleeds sounds…pretty fucking hot to me.”
“No, I’m serious, it’s gonna be a couple days.”
“Wow, so you’re just going to rob me of the chance to break your dick and have it shoot blood all over the place? This is my one opportunity to hop off and know that I’m not the one bleeding everywhere.”
After lengthy conversation, I realized that this wasn’t a come on or his attempt at upper level kink. Heart breaking! It was actually a legitimate medical condition. So I tried not to be an asshole about it, and I respected his boundaries. But we fought every day after that because we are not fun to be around when we’re not getting laid.
I was at a work event, day lighting as the normal person that I am all the time, when a well respected colleague of mine approached me.
“A********” she said. (That’s someone’s name.) “I’ve been meaning to talk to you about her.”
Ugh. Her. It hadn’t occurred to me that they knew each other, but they do, so, fine, let’s do this.
My colleague wanted to talk about an altercation I got into with that person eight years ago. Yeah, eight years ago. I mean, I get that we’re all “cancel culture” nowadays, and we’re having all these heavy, pop-philosophical conversations about “to cancel or not to cancel – that is the question.” As someone who had a great time during the early days of local Internet cancel culture, I would just like to assure everybody that the point of cancelling people was to root out people who were racist or sexist and remove them from positions of power in our society. No more secret nazis pumping coded racist messages into our news casts, no more closet rapists leveraging power to coerce sex from us, no more heroes who only save themselves. Sure, the conversation has become deeply nuanced to the point where we’re splitting moral hairs, but I’m trying to keep my ‘cancel culture’ commentary brief so let’s just stop there.
I was standing there, wondering, ‘Is this bitch trynna cancel me because I did some unfeministy things eight years ago?’ There was that deep, narcissistic part of me that knew, ‘If I’m about to get cancelled, I probably gotta take it lying down,’ but then the self effacing part of me replied, ‘I’m not important enough to get cancelled.’ It’s a complicated mixture of self loathing and low self esteem.
Sure, I’ve done some things in the past that don’t align with my current ‘woke’ persona. But I grew up Catholic, so I know how this game gets played: I confess my sins to Jesus, get absolved, and live a good life and let everyone know that “I’ve found Jesus.” Born again Christians do this shit all the time – they act like they’ve been absolved of all responsibility for their sinful, pre-Jesus ways and everything’s fine now. So, is there a feminist equivalence for that? Can’t I say, “I converted to feminism on May 8th, 2013, look, here’s my stamped card to prove it” and we can all move on. Although, I guess there’s all those not-so-feministy things I did after May 8th, 2013, but if we’re not talking about those things right now, I won’t bring them up.
Now, I know what you’re thinking: why are you dancing in circles trying to avoid cancellation when you have danced in glee at other people’s cancellation parties? Well, let me tell you, the sin of self preservation is pretty inexplicable. But, what can I say, don’t we all enjoy the tire fire sideshow of watching someone else’s life burn to the ground? I’ll admit it. I love to see it. On the other hand, self immolation? No, I’ll pass on that one. Or, to put it lightly, you are correct, this is entirely self serving.
So, I brushed it off, said something like, “Oh, man that was so long ago, I’ve changed so much since then,” ran out the bar, called bae, and said, “Why do I have to deal with consequences for my actions! It’s not fair!”
“What are you talking about?” he said.
“I’m not that person anymore!” I whined.
“You were never that person.”
“You’re right. I was never very tough. That’s why I bought that gun.”
Then I went home, had a bunch of controversial opinions about a variety of hot button topics, kept them to myself, and the next day I slunk back into society and pretended like I belonged there.
It felt familiar at first. I was wrested from sleep in a forcible moment of yet another nightmare when I saw him there, next to me, sleeping silently. I felt safe in the darkness with the TV still blinking in the background. I wrapped his arms around me so I could drift back into slumber, but as we lay there together, a new anxiety washed over me. I had thought that I had the resolve to not find myself here again, but here I am. Something about it always feels so good – but if it felt so good, why did I break up with him? God, I am not going to fall back asleep very quickly, am I. I’m going to have to battle the demons that mete out the balance of: do the things that make me feel good in the moment outweigh how unhappy he makes me? Ugh. I am not going to be fully rested tomorrow morning, which means I will not have a good day at work, and I also know that no matter how much time I spend lying here thinking about these questions, I still will never know. I find this paradox to be particularly obnoxious because of course I consider myself to be a strong woman, but the creature comforts of skin and skin contact with someone you love just cannot be imitated. I can’t order that feeling off Amazon. I can’t mimic it with someone new.
We never talked about why I’m unhappy, which I know is my fault. We’re just here, again, and now that we both know I’m unhappy it feels like a pittance. A consolation prize. An imitation of something that used to make sense but now just makes me feel okay from time to time. I love him, but if I love him, why do I feel like this? Conflicted. I’m so conflicted. Like I should kick him out of bed and scream until he leaves, or I should hold on tighter and make sure he stays forever. What a battle. What a horrible, irrelevant, empty battle.
I’m afraid to tell him why he makes me unhappy because I’m afraid he won’t care, and he won’t change, and he won’t try, and that I’ll still be with him afterwards. It’s easier for me to not tell him why I’m unhappy, and not know that he doesn’t care, and still fuck him, than to face the defeat of knowing that I will probably definitely still keep doing this even after I know that he doesn’t give a shit about my happiness. Ignorance is bliss, and this isn’t bliss but it’s a good enough knock off. For now. I would like the real thing, but how do I navigate the chasm between where I am now and where I would like to be. I thought that we would be sailing off into our mutual bliss by now, but instead there are storms ahead, and I am looking over the edge at that little dinghy, knowing full well I could hop in it right now and row myself back towards the sunshine. I could jump ship with nothing but my faith in myself and – and, what? Starve in the middle of the ocean by myself? I can’t row a boat for days on end, my arms will fall off. I don’t want to die of dehydration in the middle of the ocean. I don’t want to die here with him, either. I have to take control. Why is he the captain of this ship? Why isn’t he the disgruntled crew, looking for an escape? Why haven’t I committed mutiny yet? I could steer this boat into something better, if only I knew how. Why don’t I know how?
I have to wake up in three hours. I can’t sleep at all. It’s going to be a bad day at work tomorrow. Maybe I should just drown myself. I know I’m no pirate, but I’ll get drunk nonetheless, and wait here forever until I can put my feet back on solid ground. Then – I’ll run away.
Part of me likes to think that if things had worked out differently, we would have been together forever. But I never told him that, and we had talked about me not saying things on the Internet that I can’t say to his face. Although, I didn’t really say anything to his face. All I said was, “I’m unhappy.” And he told me, “I know I can’t make you happy, so I’m not going to hold you hostage in this relationship.” Which felt generous, but, damn, after everything’s that happened I think I was hoping for a more scintillating conversation on the demise of our romantic endeavors. No, “I’m sorry, I want to make you happy” or “Fuck you, I’ve tried so hard.” Just: “Okay.” Which feels so unfair. After all the highs and lows – to just peter out with a whimper? No negotiation, no effort. Just: “Okay.”
I know that there are extenuating circumstances that contribute to these conditions, but as I speed away from everything that happened and glance at it in the rear view mirror, I can’t help but thinking, huh, that really wasn’t worth fighting for. Or fighting over. Just left it on the side of the road to die in silence and darkness.
That is so fucking frustrating and disappointing and boring. How is he one of the most exciting, interesting people I have ever met, yet we are letting each other go without a second thought. Don’t we believe in romance? And love?
The last break up I went through lasted ten months. This one lasted one hour. I was prepared to go down in flames together, but instead I’m here, alone, on fire, and feeling like this is less the spectacle that I got dressed up for and more like something that will die in the wind momentarily.
I guess there’s something merciful about it. But I don’t want mercy. I want rage.
So I’ll take my rage somewhere else, and burn down something beautiful with someone else. You will hear me screaming in the streets soon enough.
“You need to put more effort into our sex life,” he tells me.
“I drank your piss two days ago, how much more effort do you want?” I ask.
Threeways. He wants me to set up threeways for us. As in, he wants me to fetch other pussy for him to fuck. That kind of effort.
This confuses me. He can get his own pussy. I’m pretty sure he does get his own pussy. He’s probably just getting greedy. And lazy. If I’m going to find someone new to fuck, it’s not going to be some woman that I’m going to offer up on a platter for him. I’ll find myself someone to fuck.
This is where the relationship is. This bores me. This non-commital, semi-loving, disconnected relationship. We are, as he loves to remind me, ‘just friends.’ Then why does he take up all of my time? He has told me over and over again that this relationship has no future. So why are we here? In the future? We’re not supposed to be here. He’s supposed to be gone, and I’m supposed to be on to the next one, which I am, but he’s still here.
This isn’t even a real relationship, but it has all the hallmarks of a toxic relationship. None of the benefits, all of the pitfalls. Yet I still haven’t left. What an uninteresting way for me to live my life. I am disappointed in myself for falling into this half-set, lazy trap and not having enough resolve to leave something that is so easy to leave.