Monday, February 14, 2011

To Think I Held You Yesterday...

Yes, it's been a long time. Life has just been happening and I've had some projects I've been busy completing so writing just wasn't in the cards for me. Anyway, life is just so strange sometimes.

I actually went out on a date -- if you can call it that. I met a man for coffee out at a Starbuck's after he gave me his number. It was a disaster from the get-go. I barely knew his last name (and that only from his voicemail) and the man comes up to me and swoops in with the hands and the kiss? Of course I back off and hope he gets the message. You think he did? Oh no. Did he ask my my last name? No to that as well. Mr. Handsy was rubbing my shoulders, telling me he wanted to "feel my hair" and other creepy shit. He didn't care who I was. I could have had a bag over my head and been as dumb as a stump and he still would have wanted to feel my tits.

I told him a few times to stop and he would for a while and then try to move in again. I was thisclose to done by that time anyway and was looking for a graceful exit but then he uttered the line that helped me get there faster. It was the line that I hate most to hear from men, which is, "You just haven't met the right man yet."

Ah, let me count the ways why I hate this line so much. I'm a mature woman. Don't treat me like I'm an inexperienced idiot. Don't condescend or patronize me. Don't imply that I'm not capable of the critical thinking required to extract exactly how I feel and why from the totality of my experiences and my reactions to them. Don't dare insinuate that I don't know my own effing mind. That turns me off like a light switch.

Jesus! You can guess it didn't take me long to exit. See ya 'round. Next!

Later on the same week I took a fellow co-worker (not in my department but on the same floor I work) out for dinner to pay him back for the mechanic work he'd volunteered to do on my car. Now this guy -- this guy is just plain hot. He's got a cyclist's body and a gentle manner. He's all man, don't get me wrong, but he's got layers and he's got a genuine respect for women. He works two jobs and he's a single dad and he's got it going on. I've thought he was attractive for over a year now. Anyway, the problem with this was always my intent not to shit where I eat, ya know?

So yeah, about that....

He stopped by my place, we sat down for a drink or two to unwind before dinner. We got back after a great meal and had another nightcap. Well, I had a nightcap. I wasn't ever even drunk at all. He had four or five straight shots. I didn't mind because I knew that he wanted to unwind a bit and that was his only real night off away from being a full time parent and an employee. I figured he was a big boy and knew how to handle his liquor. In retrospect, he was nervous. He was drunk and sweet and definitely moving into my personal space zone, not that I minded in the least. After it got late I told him he wasn't driving home and rolled out the sleepaway bed....not that we used it.

Wait, though. That sounds a lot worse than it actually was. I mean I knew that I wanted him but I also knew that -- if he knew about what I wasn't capable of -- he'd choose to turn and run. I didn't want him to but I didn't want to start implying promises that I couldn't keep. I was nervous and antsy, not sure when I needed to 'come clean' about that. I felt like I was walking an uncomfortable line. Honestly? I wanted him to know before anything began but I realized he was so drunk -- sick drunk, it ended up -- that it wasn't the right time to talk about it. I thought maybe he wouldn't remember the talk even if we had it, besides being so drunk I figured he probably couldn't make any serious inroads anyway! I'm not so sure about that now, but I was then.

So we ended up sleeping together, but (for the most part, with just a few overtures here and there) we did just that.....sleep. He felt nice curled beside me, I admit, but he felt so miserable that we couldn't really enjoy that, even. Ah well.

So fast forward to the next morning. We woke up, we started talking, I told him all about it and tried to be as matter of fact as I could. I figured that was the end of that so I got up to go to work. He was still a little drunk -- that horrid morning-after sorta sworl -- and he kept telling me over and over to come back to bed. I could tell he wanted me to and as for me? I wanted to but I didn't want to, if that makes sense. He did finally convince me of one thing, though. I was getting changed and he said, "You come up to my desk, lean over, and I'm getting an eyeful. I know you do it on purpose, so come on, show me?" with that twinkle in his voice that just made me smile and want to indulge him. Needless to say, he was impressed. He'd better be. 34FF, baby!

Long story short, I told him to sleep it off in my apartment, lock up, and give me the key later. He chose not to and got up. I truly enjoyed watching him dress. We went to work but he ended up going home within 30 minutes.

So.....I've had a few days to be all retrospect-y. I go back and forth between regretting the chance I didn't take, to being happy I didn't take it and waste it on a drunken muddle, to being all angsty that I won't get another chance, to not wanting that other chance for fear I'll be a disappointment.

I found myself today at work looking over at him and wondering what he was thinking. Is he chagrined that he got that drunk? Embarrassed about it enough to avoid me in the future? I chose to give him some space today but was he thankful, or worried that I was regretting the time we'd spent together? Was HE regretting it?

I have all these questions but no answers yet. I'm adult enough to ask the questions eventually, if they don't get answered on their own.

Maybe next time I need to be a bit more aggressive (even drunk he was rather shy and certainly not pushy, something I liked) and make it so impressive that he wont miss the other part. Then again, after a few months and the newness wears off and it's just sex and obligation and blah blah blah, am I really ready to act a part again like I did with the Ex?

I'm getting ahead of myself. Will there even be a next time?

Jesus, I hate these sorts of thoughts. I wouldn't even give a rat's royal ass if I didn't actually LIKE the guy.


((Song: "Never There" by Cake. Lyrics here: ))

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Could You Help Me Place This Call?

After drinks with a friend a few nights ago I came home and sat for a while until the tipsy had all but drained out of me, leaving just an edge of loosened inhibition. I had checked to see if BiB had responded to me and he hadn't. That edge started in on me, poking at me to go ahead and pick up the phone. So....I did. He answered within the first few rings and we chatted for over an hour. It was the first time I'd heard his voice in over four years.

It was a nice call.

His accent was even thicker than I'd remembered. He seemed nervous to begin with, as was I, but he and I both loosened up over the course of the conversation. It wasn't long before I learned that I'd been right about some of the things I'd been contemplating for the last year -- he'd went on vacation where I thought he'd went, and he was with the girl I'd guessed a year ago that he was with. These things reassured me. Whether I liked knowing them or not (and the jury is still deadlocked on that!) it reassured me to know that when we'd went our separate ways the things I told him would happen, happened. I'd been right all those years ago. The MO that I'd predicted he'd follow? He did. The end result? I'd predicted that as well.

Small comfort. But a sweet taste just the same.

The rest of the call was reminiscent without delving in the past hardly at all. We spoke of what we were doing, not what we had done. I let him know that I thought of him as a good man (I do, especially with the benefits of hindsight, time, and emotional distance) and that I was glad to hear that he was happy. I even meant it.


HD told me soon after the call ended that he was surprised, that he'd believed that the fact that BiB "got away" was the thing that had kept him in my heart all these years, and that finding out he'd finally moved on would make it even deeper. I thought about that and to an extent he was right. Being let go isn't something I like and it tends to keep me hooked but I'm also old enough to see that desiring something and actually having it are different things. BiB and I had our moment and it was wonderful, and that moment is gone. That's just the way it is. I'm surprisingly close to being at peace with that.

One thing we discussed was a sweet bit of justice for me though. I made sure that he knew that I had not dated since my divorce. I could tell he was genuinely surprised. I recalled how he had decided to sever our friendship -- and why -- and telling him this was designed to remind him of what he'd thought would happen (I would datedatedate) and what has actually happened. It was pleasing to let him know that, contrary to his belief that he knew me very well, he didn't know me or could predict my later actions half as much as I knew him and his.

I imagine that I will see BiB and his girl come spring at the meet of our video game. I am hopeful that 30b will also attend. But I will enjoy seeing BiB's reaction to my tattoo.

I told BiB during the course of the call that I was tired of acting awkward and uncomfortable around him and that we needed to just stop it already. He agreed. Time will tell on this, though. He did ask me to call him again. I imagine I will.

Hm. I wonder if he told her I called?

Song: "Operator (That's Not the Way It Feels)" by Jim Croce. Lyrics here: ))

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

If We Had The Chance To Do It All Again, Tell Me, Would We?

Very few people in my life can stir my pot like Grey can. I know he doesn't mean to do it and he'd probably make a concerted effort not to if he realized that he was; he's the type that prefers things stay on an even, steady keel. I know that and so I try to serve him up as little of it as I can, mostly because I don't want him to make that effort. And why? Well, if I'm honest it's because it. Yeah. I'm the one that likes it. I'm the one that wants it and needs it so that I can feel a spark of life flicker in an otherwise muted existence. I'm the one that wants him to remind me that I can still care because I dread the alternative. In truth, then, I help him stir that pot.

He acknowledges that we share more than a friendship. I think he simultaneously likes it, and is disturbed by it. I think while there's a part of him that wants to go back to the way it was between us a decade or so ago, before things changed, there is this other part of him that needs to know that he has made an impact. He enjoys the frissons between us even as they make him uncomfortable. He doesn't like talking about it too much, though, because while going over old ground has never been his style, it's always been mine.

There are two sides that I find myself on and sometimes one side weighs the most and sometimes the other does. This...conundrum of him...continually exists for me. Sometimes I even wonder if I conjure it myself and keep feeding it so that it will remain. Perhaps I do. I do know that in this regard, the questions I ask myself have only partial answers.

In other news I'm glad to report that the news that struck me as a surprise eight days ago doesn't bother me much at all any longer. If BiB ever decides to respond to me that might change, but for now things are as they were. Life goes on.

Grey is a different story. But then.....isn't he always?

Song: "The Way We Were" by Barbara Streisand. Lyrics here:

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Oh My God...Here I Am...Once Again

Life sure can hand you some seismic twists. I was a fool to get lulled into the confidence of thinking that these sorts of things couldn't happen to me any longer. I was a fool to think I was immune to the effects.

The last couple of years I've settled into a pretty consistent pattern. I get up, I go to work, I hang with friends, I may play some video games or watch some TV, I go to bed and get up and do it again. Life has been very simple, steadfast, and predictable. Men have been peripheral in my life and I've been happy with it that way. They come when I want them to and go when I need them to and -- unlike my younger years -- I haven't needed them to complete me, to define me, or to validate me. I have been alone, indeed, but only rarely lonely. The sense of peace and freedom springing from this has been a new-ish frontier I've been exploring with pleasure and I've (hopefully) absorbed many lessons about how to move through the remaining decades of my life.

I've wondered now and again during the last few years how I'd react if anything came along to disturb the surface water sense of familiar I've surrounded myself with. I wondered now and again if, like the proverbial drunk, I would forget everything I have learned, pitch far off the wagon, and fall right back into old ways and old patterns. I'd then assure myself that the time for me to allow myself the luxury of self-deception had passed with my divorce and my subsequent acceptance of both my physical limitations and the emotional consequences they play in my relationships. I'd tell myself that.

Then, yesterday, I got a note from the past -- from someone all but gone in my life. It seems that he is now doing what he should have done six years ago and he and his wife are splitting. The news hit me a bit stronger than I thought it would. I didn't expect to actually "feel" the impact of it like I did and there was a part of me that was very disappointed with myself for those feelings. I kept talking myself down from going onto ledges I didn't need to go. Yesterday was another one of those learning experiences.

Today I feel much more level. I've regained a bit of the equilibrium I lost in the aftermath of the news. I am not the same person I was six years ago and neither is he. He will move on and find the path he needs to be on and it won't be one that contains me, at least not in any sense other than in a (perhaps) different sort of friendship. I cannot give him any more now than I could then -- the difference being, now I'm aware of that. I really do accept myself more now. This, at least, is good.

I also learned not to be so cocky. There are still wagons I can fall off of. I suppose only time can be the final determinator.

P.S. = the man I mentioned in my last post, my co-worker that I went for coffee with? We've spent more time together both with others and by ourselves. He's a nice man and is pleasant to be around but I feel no desire to take the relationship any other place than it is. I think he deserves a moniker here so I will call him CB. This makes sense to me for reasons I won't bother to share here.

Song: "Return Of The Mack" by Mark Morrison. Lyrics here:

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Hello, Yeah It's Been A While

Not much. How bout you?

Since vacation ended I've been busy. I came home to a whole new set of job responsibilities and the last couple weeks have been a whirlwind. Even though there's been a lot of pressure put on me with these new tasks I think it does me good in the long run. I've found my job more interesting recently -- always a big plus. I also have much more ammunition in the raise category. A few more weeks, enough to show what I've been producing (now that what I produce is a contractual obligation between my company and clients rather than just in-house) and I will go for that raise.

Personally, a thing has -- um, may have? -- come up but it's not really anything I want to talk about just yet. So I'll move on.

A co-worker of mine -- a rather nice-looking man a few years older than me but with a young attitude and a perennial bachelor -- invited me out for coffee after work a few days ago. The men friends I've told about this say it was a de facto date, something a man does when he doesn't have the cahones to ask you out on a real date but would rather test the waters. I was glad they agreed with my initial assessment of the situation. Anyway coffee ended up being dinner (a sandwich shop next door to the coffee joint, not anything we had to plan or drive to) and afterwards a pleasant goodbye and a "See you at work!"

He and I are vastly different people. We share outlooks on many things but come to them from different perspectives and first and foremost, he is quite religious and I am not at all. He's a very nice guy, don't get me wrong, but we're just different. I'm glad we spent time together and I hope that I can continue to have nice conversations with him but, unless he didn't get the vibes that I was sending his way, that is the extent of my interest.

It was a nice time, though. At least I wasn't in front of my computer.


((Song: "I'd Really Love To See You Tonight" by England Dan & John Ford Coley. Lyrics here: ))