05 November 2008

"The Talk"

”Today is gonna be ‘the talk’,” I tell my room mate and his friend over lunch. “I can feel it”

When he walks in we hardly say a word. I hug him and he kisses the top of my head and I just hold him, because I know. Then we kiss and he is pulling me down the hall and into my room. The door still open, he runs his hand over my breast then tugs my shirt up. I shut the door as he kneels in front of me and pulls at my belt and jeans. Still, we haven’t said much more than hello, but I know, as surely as I knew his ex was sleeping in his bed two nights before.
My clothes are in disarray as I hold myself up between my bed frame and the door. I come twice before we tumble onto the bed and hastily tear away our clothes.
It isn’t sweet. It has all the passion, anger, and desperate intent of the good-bye fuck. Something to remember him by.
And he makes it count. Once. Twice. Almost a third and he pulls out, offers himself up to my mouth.
One last taste.
This time, he choked just right, pulled my hair back just so, and this time, he was the one to pull away just as soon as it was done.
He looks at me from across the bed, so far away.
I dash to the bathroom to clean myself up, straighten my thoughts. When I return a moment later he is zipping up, already half dressed and I half expect to see cash on the night stand.
I had planned on cooking dinner, but he wants to go out to eat. There’s a bar nearby where his friend works. They chat about the new record on which she’s just recorded.
When we get back to my place, I suggest a movie, so he chooses one and settles onto the couch. I try to find a spot to settle into his arm. In Sex and the City, Carrie called it “the nook”. It feels awkward and he absent-mindedly touches my back on occasion. When my room mate comes home, I spring up and pounce on the cake he’s brought home.
I try to settle back in to “the nook” but it’s no use.
I go out for a smoke then wander into the office, where he finds me at the computer.
It’s time for bed and I find him laying on top of the rumpled covers completely clothed. I change into my pajamas and lay down, with him watching me the whole time.
He comments on my body language, says it feels weird.
If he were more observant he’d see that I’ve assumed “crash position”. Have been all night.
“You just feel so far away” I tell him. ” I felt the moment you disconnected a day ago. I could physically feel it, even though you were nowhere near.” And I wish he would just say it and get it over with, swing the axe hanging over my head.

“I’m reacting to your energy.” He insists. Says it’s too awkward and that he is going home so he can get some sleep.
I walk him out so I can lock the door behind him. He tries to kiss me and I resist for a moment, then give him a quick peck on the lips.


The following afternoon, the axe finally falls. He’s on the phone with excuses and reasons. Too much on his plate right now, financial worries, ex-crushes, ex-crutches, too much transition…he just can’t handle it right now.

”Well, I was a day off. ‘The talk’ I mean, I thought this was coming yesterday” I tell him. ” Guess I’ll see you around.” and I think that’s that, but he’s not through.

“I’m afraid you won’t want to.”

“Want to what?” I ask.

“See me. I’m worried that you’ll go back to what you were doing, dating other people…”

Well. Yeah.

”If we’re not together, what do you care what I’m doing or who I’m seeing?”

For this man I stopped seeing others. I turned down intriguing propositions, appealing men, enticing couples, old lovers. For this man, I faced my fear and discomfort around children, spent time with his son, met his ex-wife, her husband and their kids--- went trick-or-treating with the lot of them, for cryin’ out loud! For this man, I respected a woman I don’t even know--- his ex-girlfriend--- and hid our budding relationship to spare her fragile feelings.

“Well, you’ve been transitioning into being in a monogamous relationship…”

”Yeah…with you. It’s kinda person-specific, this monogamy thing. All of the changes I made were because I wanted to be with you, and I knew what that meant. I’m not opposed to monogamy, but it takes a specific person to inspire me to do it. I thought you were that person--- all of it, your son, your ex-wife, turning away other people --- it was a change, yes, but I think I took it all in stride. Because of you.” I countered.

And this seems to be the relationship theme of the year, these men who want to be with me, but seem to have countless reasons why they shouldn’t. Then they’d like to fuck me but can’t bear the thought of me fucking somebody else.

” What am I supposed to do?” I continued, “Just hang out and wait to see if you decide you do actually want to be with me? Look, I’ll just talk to you another time, ok?”

But he seemed to have more to say. More reasons, and excuses. My past, my exes, my public persona, and the fact that one of my exes propositioned him. Us.
And his ex. The unwillingness to hurt her or lose her friendship.
He ended things with her because he had put his life on hold to take care of her. He was through with being her crutch, or so he told himself.

”You said that part already,” I reminded him. It was all I could say, as the “interested party”. I had already told him if he really was that concerned, he should realize he is not the most fit person to help her get over him. But he would put his life on hold, “put the breaks on us” he told me, if it was going to hurt her. And I couldn’t help but feel sympathy for this girl--- the hope she must feel and lack of incentive--- getting mixed signals: “move on, but I won’t move on while you still need me.”

That’s if that was really his reason to begin with. I felt like he was just talking to talk. He said he might change his mind, might just be thinking out loud. He would still like to see me sometime, but felt weird about the thought of me dating again.
We’d been over this already.

“Right now I feel like I’m just more fodder for the blog…” he says finally.

Uh, well…if the shoe fits, as they say…

All Content Copyright 2008, Juliana Tobón. All Rights Reserved

7 comments:

  1. I loved it. Are you a published authoer?

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  2. Well, in a manner of speaking, I have been publishing on Myspace for three years. But yes, I also have a legit, honest-to-goodness published piece coming out in an anthology called Citadel of the Spirit. It's an anthology of Oregon writers, past and present, out on Nestucca Spit Press in Feb. 2009. Thanks for reading!

    xo,

    Infamous CoatCheck Girl

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  3. Oh honey. I wish we'd both just tape-record these conversations with these men and exchange them. That is, after all, what it would appear they are doing...

    -wife

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  4. Powerful post. I'd comment on all of it but I tend to be wordy. Your "talk" reminds me of something one of my favorite writers said recently..

    "Do I believe in Fidelity? You bet baby. I’m not having one of my girls sleeping with anyone else" S.H.

    Looking forward to the non-myspace version.

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  5. that guy sounds like a jerk. you obvisouly have your shit together. fuck him.

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  6. "Fuck him" was all I did for a little over a month...

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  7. At least you got some leche

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