Self-Indulgent Drivel

naked on the internet

Month: June, 2010

either i’m wrong or i’m perfectly right every time

I tend to freak out.

Uh.

Something happened last night with GT.  And I don’t know how to say it here without scaring some of the more delicate members of my reading audience (sometimes a few dozen a day!) so let’s just say that I was upset by something that GT sent me.  And he wasn’t expecting me to freak out, but freak out I did.

So now I’m wondering whether he’s going to call it quits with me, and I hope he doesn’t, but… meh.  I feel like I’m being jerked around, and that’s one thing I really don’t need right now.  You either want me or you don’t.  There’s a point where flirting becomes cruel.  There’s a point where self-revelation is kind of callous if you’re not willing to back it up with actual intimacy.  I can’t sustain being in this much of a tizzy over someone who can’t get in touch with his own emotions to figure out what he wants from me.

He’s not a bad guy, and I don’t want to paint him as such.  But I don’t think he’s ready to take me on, and if he doesn’t decide soon whether he’s willing to try, I’m going to decide for him.  I’ve given him an out.

Now I’ve got to wait and see.

somehow i’m not impressed

For the last two and a half years, I’ve had an active profile on OkCupid.  When I first signed up, I was definitely not looking to get into another serious relationship.  After six years of solid couplehood (with Mike and his predecessors) I was ready to explore who I might be without a full-time boyfriend.

I met K on OkCupid, and he fit the requirements nicely: I had regular access to great company and really good sex, and I knew he’d run screaming if I tried to get him to settle down.  Perfect. I’d already had the idea of remaining autonomous, but meeting him really sealed it for me.  Here was someone who didn’t want to give up his freedom either.  He was both my role model and my consolation prize after years and years of trying to be somebody’s somebody.

I was free to date whomever I wanted, and I did.  Over time my ideas about what I wanted clarified, and my OkCupid profile changed as I figured out what did and did not work for me.  I had one date who seemed extremely nervous and wouldn’t even look at me, so that became part of the profile: must not be scared of girls.  Although I expressed my desire to remain single, a few people seemed to think they could convince me otherwise, so I made it extremely clear in my profile that I would not be swayed.

Time has passed.  K has an actual bonafide girlfriend now, which is so funny I could stab someone, and I’m in Carmel and thinking about my life and all the adventures/mistakes I’ve had/made and… reevaluating.

I’m thinking I might be ready to try to have an actual relationship again.  Gasp.  I’m not in a hurry and I won’t settle for just anyone.  I don’t want to repeat past mistakes.

There’s been this boy, whom I’ll  GT, and let me be clear, he is not currently in danger of becoming my one and only.  I’ve known GT for about a month and a half.  I met him, of course, on OkCupid, after I knew I was moving back down here but before I actually did, although I was down here (long story.)  We hung out once down here while I was visiting last month, and once in Portland (where he was visiting, long story) and once again here a couple of weeks ago. For awhile we were probably sending upwards of 100 texts back and forth each day. It was great!  So much flirting.  It got me through my move, having someone to text pictures of my cleavage to.  It gave me something to look forward to.

But I realized that I always sent the first text each day, I wrote the longer emails, I was the one asking when we could hang out again.  Just like I always do.  And although he returned my attention with a rewarding amount of enthusiasm, I couldn’t sustain it.  Trying to be clever, striving to be witty, always looking to get a different angle on the cleavage shots… it was exhausting.  Especially because I knew I was probably smothering him a bit.  Particularly because I knew I was making an absolute ass of myself.

To quote me:

I want someone who wants to be with me.  I don’t want to always be the one initiating contact.  I want to not be the one asking “when can I see you again?” while always suspicious that the other person would do just fine not seeing me again for awhile.  I’m tired of being the only one who calls, writes, plans because I fear that if I’m not the one to call or write or plan, the other person will just sort of forget about me.  If I don’t keep it going, it won’t go.  Why do I keep settling for that?

When I wrote that a couple of weeks ago, I was, of course, all in a tizzy about GT.  But I could have written that at so many points in my life, about K or several other people (“Amy” included.)  It’s a bad habit of mine, and I’ve made up my mind not to do it anymore.

It’s been three days since I’ve contacted GT.  I’m not ruling out seeing him again, but it’s gonna have to be his idea.  I’m done wanting people who don’t want me back.  It’s time to at least act like I have some goddamned self-respect.

But… but… I wrote this list awhile back of all the things I want in a man.  There’s, like, 70 things on the damned list and GT is about 65 of those things, and honestly, we’re grading on a fucking curve, so that’s an A+.  The list is based on all the things I’ve liked about all the boys I’ve loved, and… well, my brother pointed out to me recently that maybe looking for an amalgam of my exes isn’t such a stellar plan.  After all, it didn’t work out with any of them.   And though GT is a stunningly close approximation of what I’d imagine to be my perfect boyfriend, he’s missing one crucial part of it: he doesn’t want to be.  Just like K didn’t.  I find indifference so charming, don’t you?  No?  Maybe GT’s real role in my life is to be someone who reminds me of all the ways I’ve underestimated and undersold myself, the times I’ve thrown myself at people who didn’t really care about me, and to provide me with the opportunity to not do that this time.

…So I changed my OkCupid profile again.  And now it says, in part:

I want to be with someone who isn’t ambivalent about being with me. I’m tired of chasing after people and have decided not to do it anymore. If you want me, come get me.

I’ll try not to be hard to reach.

a.l.t.a.w.u.t.b.f. PART DEUX

As an addendum to my last post, because I feel it needs to be said:

I certainly wasn’t all peaches and sunshine, either.  I am not blameless.  “Amy” is not, as far as I know, a bad person.  Ok?

a long time ago, we used to be friends

[I’ve done my best, but this whole thing sounds, well, pretty damned petty and high-school-ish.  I think that suits the story, though, so I’m done editing myself.  Names have been changed.]

I met Amy when I was a freshman in high school.  She was a sophomore, and I practically worshiped her.  She just had this air of cool about her, even though she wasn’t one of the popular crowd. She sat behind me in Biology, and we had a mutual friend, Hannah, so I got to know her pretty well before the year was over.  I never stopped thinking she was awesome.

Some of my best memories of high school are of hanging out with Hannah and Amy, although Hannah moved to Los Angeles after my freshman year.  Still, whenever Hannah visited, the three of us were tight.  And when she wasn’t around, it was Amy and I.  My junior year in particular, we spent every lunch period together, we formed our own club, hung out on weekends, dabbled in lesbianism…  high school stuff.

I broke up with my high school sweetheart right after Thanksgiving my senior year.  I was really broken up about it, because I’d thought he was the love of my life and we were going to get married and have babies, etc.  A couple months later, my dad was going on a business trip to L.A., and I convinced him to give Amy (who’d been away at college) and me a ride down to see Hannah.  When we got there, I was thrilled to be around my two best friends, and I (apparently) talked an awful lot about how upset I was that My One True Love and I had broken up.  I was told later that I talked constantly, no matter what else Hannah and Amy were trying to do or talk about.

Looking back, yeah, that sounds like me.  But my heart was broken, and I hadn’t seen either of them in awhile, and I had a lot on my mind.  So I talked.  A lot.  Whatever.

I didn’t see Hannah for three years after that, and I didn’t see Amy for a year and a half.  Such was their disgust at my behavior.  Neither of them told me why they were shunning me, they just wouldn’t call me back or see me at all.

When I finally ran into Amy again, it was because the boy she was dating had been in a play with my mother, and the cast party was at my house.  She didn’t  know that she was coming over here until they got to the door, basically.  I believe the first thing I said when I saw her was “YOU BITCH!!!”  But we hugged, and everything was ok, and we were friends again.  She told me the reason for her absence from my life, and although I didn’t think it was fair… well, if she was willing to forgive, so was I.

The next summer, when I was 20, I decided to take a trip to London.  I invited two of my cousins, a childhood friend, and Amy, and offered to buy everyone’s tickets. She resisted.  She said she wasn’t sure she could stand to hang around with me for two weeks straight.  That should have told me something.  But I insisted, she came along, and I did drive her nuts.  On her free trip to London.  Whatever.

That fall was a rocky one for me and Amy.  She did some shit I wasn’t too impressed by, I slept with a boy she had a crush on, and so we weren’t on great terms for awhile.  But the friendship puttered on, we made peace, things were ok even if we weren’t quite as close as we once were.  And a couple of years went by and I started noticing, again, that Amy wasn’t returning my calls.  She’d gotten her cosmetology license, so I saw her when I wanted a haircut or to have my eyebrows done, but we weren’t really hanging out anymore.  And then she moved to Portland without telling me, and I was a little sore about that, but I figured that we’d grown apart.  It happens.

When I moved to Portland, I made an effort to see her.  We hung out maybe ten times in four and a half years, if you count the times I had her cut my hair.  I went to one of her birthday parties, she came to one of mine.    It all seemed friendly enough.  I was sad about the distance between us, but sort of relieved too.  And here’s why:

I spent ten years of my life trying to make Amy like me as much as I liked her.  I’m really embarrassed about it now.  She didn’t want to come to London, even though I paid her way.  I had to talk her into it.  She’d written me off twice and hadn’t said why until later.  I was always chasing her.  I’d called her my best friend for years, and I don’t think she’d ever felt that way about me.  Yet I kept trying.  It was exhausting.

So…

I went to a club tonight where my old friend Julian was DJing.  He bought me a drink at the bar, and we got to talking about Amy.  Apparently she came down here for a visit recently, and said the reason we weren’t friends anymore, from her end anyway, was that I’d embarrassed her with old stories at my 27th birthday party.

Unless my memory fails me, which it seldom does, she never said anything to me about it.

I drove home tonight near-tears, thinking about this.  Even though I gave up years ago on Amy and I ever being close again, it made me feel like shit to know that she’d dropped me once again without ever having the courtesy to tell me why. I’m sure I did tell some old stories at that party, I was drunk and made an ass of myself that night.  And I am really sorry if I made her feel bad by flapping my jaw like I did.  But I wish that someone I’ve known for half my life would have told me about it instead of just writing me off.

Maybe I was a shitty friend.  At times, I’m sure I was.  Demanding, high-maintenance, bitchy, often drunk, a whole lot to take.  Ok, I get it.  But I think I also went out of my way to be a good friend to her when she’d let me.  I’m sure I managed to fuck up a lot in the last 15 years.  But I think I deserve(d) better than to be tossed out, like all the good times, and there were a lot of them, meant nothing.

It upsets me now to think of how she’s the most striking example of a very bad habit of mine: my self-destructive tendency to throw myself at people, hoping something will stick.  I am a faithful and persistent friend, even when it kills me.  And I’m astonished by how dense I can be when it comes to the indifference/ambivalence of the people I love.  It breaks my silly heart.

I don’t want to be that way anymore.

I should probably also work on the telling horrifying stories at parties thing, but, y’know, one step at a time.

it’s a beautiful day

Sitting on the deck, reading Terry Pratchett, soaking in the sun.

My eyes welled up with tears, so I closed them and whispered “thank you, thank you, thank you” to any spirits that might be listening.

It’s a very nice day in Carmel.

Gee, but it’s great to be back home

Home is where I wanna beeeeee.

I’m back in Carmel.  I’m no longer in Portland.  I’ve been home for nine days, and… well… I was expecting a huge adjustment.  Instead I find that it’s easy to be here.  After all, I’m in the same house we moved into when I was 10.  Some things have changed, but mostly it’s exactly how I remember.

I can see the stars at night.  So many stars.  I’m spittin’ distance from the mighty Pacific, and a mile from the high school I graduated from.  My brother moved back in last year, and now we share a bathroom.  It’s different, but it’s very much the same.

Once I found out my living situation in Portland wasn’t going to last, it took me less than an hour to decide to move back home.  I didn’t want to, but it was something I chose.  Does that make sense?  I knew that I would miss the city, I was really unhappy to be leaving my amazing friends behind, but I knew that I was making the right decision.  I’d been aimless for a long time, and for the past two years I’d ached to just come home.  Portland wasn’t working for me, and I wasn’t working hard enough to change that.

I thought it would be harder to be here.   I thought it would feel like failure.  And I do miss Portland, and I do miss my friends, but what I’m feeling mostly is relief.  I have a lot of things I need to accomplish to get my life back on track, and I don’t want to stay in this tiny town longer than I have to, but for right now, being home for a little while is exactly what I need.

before we’re swallowed by the work machine

I’m looking for a job.  Apparently that’s what people do when they want to make some money and not have to live in their mother’s laundry room for the rest of their lives.  While I was initially afraid that working would cut into my party time, I’ve since remembered that I can go three days without even leaving the house or putting on a bra or anything, and maybe having a job would be good for me.

I’d like to write for a living again, but I don’t know how realistic that is right off the bat.

I have some leads.  Let’s see where they go.

i’m miles away

My barely-held-together 1996 Saturn SL2, fully laden with boxes n’ crap, averaged over 38 mpg on the trip from Portland to Carmel.  You are jealous, yes?

training myself not to care

I am intense.  While I think that’s an inherently stupid statement (what does it even mean?) it communicates an idea I don’t know how to say any other way.  I feel intensely, think intensely, express myself with great intensity.

It can be a great quality.  When I’m at my best, my intensity is like a turbo-charger for awesomeness.  But it can be overwhelming, how much I feel, think, talk… it can be a bad thing, too.

I’ve been throwing myself at someone for the last few weeks, seeing what sticks.  And he’s been remarkably game, very sweet and charming, and he hasn’t seemed too put-off by my obsessive late-night emails or my bizarre text messages.  I think I had him a little worried for a bit after I said I was going to drain his spinal fluid, but I convinced him that I wasn’t serious.  And there’s been a lot of flirting, racy (but not pornographic) photos exchanged, hundreds of text messages, several email exchanges, and we’ve hung out and had fun three times.  With kissing!

I’m fucking sick of this.

Not of the guy, he’s done nothing wrong.

I’m sick of settling for being tolerated and occasionally indulged but never, not really, cherished for my quirks.  I’m exhausted by my own desire to test people, to haze them by being as INTENSE as possible, to see… to see what?  If they can take it?  If they’ll return it?  I act crazier than I really am (quite a feat!) to see if they’ll be scared off, and if they aren’t, I act even crazier.

It’s easier to be a caricature of myself than it is to lay bare what I really am– scared.  And sad.  Weary and wary of the same mistakes I keep making, but still eager and willing to try again.  I’m looking for something real and sincere and, in its own odd way, wholesome.  So of course I make lots of jokes about chloroform and stealing sperm and strange sexual practices.  I’d rather be rejected for being too crazy for someone than for being, y’know, too me.

I have the ability to love with a great, big, forceful intensity.  I have a variety of awesome qualities that I’d like to believe more than compensate for my bad ones.  I’m very intelligent, I almost always smell good, I’m funny, and I try very hard to be kind.

What am I doing?  Why am I, once again, chasing after someone who doesn’t, when you get right down to it, want me?

So I’m trying very hard to scale it back a little.  Don’t bother the poor boy unless I have something to say.  Stop trying to test boundaries like a velociraptor throwing herself against an electrified fence in Jurassic Park, damn it, trying to find the weak spots.  I cannot trick anyone into wanting me.  I wouldn’t want to, even if I could.

And here’s the thing: I’m also afraid of commitment.  I don’t know that I’d want a serious relationship (with him or anyone) even if I could have it.  I don’t know how well I’d do living with someone again.  I don’t know if I want anyone having that much influence and control over my life again, and I don’t know how to be in a relationship without subjugating my will to the other person in all these huge and tiny ways until I lose myself, and lose all the qualities that drew my partner to me in the first place.

I could have a really cool friendship with this person, and instead I’m obsessing and worrying about what won’t or can’t be regardless of whether I’d actually want the things I can’t have.

I do want someone to love me back.  I want someone who wants to be with me.  I don’t want to always be the one initiating contact.  I want to not be the one asking “when can I see you again?” while always suspicious that the other person would do just fine not seeing me again for awhile.  I’m tired of being the only one who calls, writes, plans because I fear that if I’m not the one to call or write or plan, the other person will just sort of forget about me.  If I don’t keep it going, it won’t go.  Why do I keep settling for that?  Why don’t I just back off and wait and see instead of trying to force things?  It’s got to be easier than constantly throwing myself against that fucking electrified fence.

And it’s really not fair to the Object of My Affection, either.  Because rather than appreciating all the wonderful qualities of The Object, I’m just repeating the same behaviors that I act out for every boy.  Instead of approaching him as an individual, I’m treating him as just another boy.  Another object of fixation.  And that just isn’t very nice.  It could be awesome, even if it never goes anywhere.  And chances are, it isn’t going anywhere.

I stayed at his place Wednesday night, and when I was driving back down to Carmel, I had a lot of time to think.  Even though I’d had a great time, I felt very sad on that drive.  What I figured out is simple: I don’t want to keep making an ass of myself the way I have been.  Even though he’s been, as I said, lovely and game and all, I’m making myself sick.  I can’t do this anymore.

Someone will come along, eventually, who’ll appreciate my intensity.  Maybe what has to happen first is that I learn to give people enough room to walk away.  Otherwise I’m never going to stop thinking that the only reason these objects of my fixation spend time with me is that I’m bullying them into it.

I need to take people as they are.  And I need to stop being scared to show who I am.  Otherwise I’ll keep tearing myself apart trying to change things that are, in reality, kind of amazing just as they are.

don’t stand so close to me

A couple of weeks ago, I was thinking about my attraction to the emotionally unavailable, and something I’ve sort of known for a long time became more lucid to me: involving myself with the emotionally unavailable frees me up to have a very active wish/hope/fantasy life.  Like this:

If I meet someone, and there’s a mutual attraction, and this fellow I’ve met happens to be really touchy-feely, and he wants to be with me, and he wants to move in and maybe talk about marriage and babies, that’s… horrifying.  I mean, nice, great, wonderful AT FIRST, but I don’t really know how to sustain that sort of relationship for longer than three months.  Whereas if I meet someone, and there’s a mutual attraction, and this fellow I’ve met happens to be more reserved, and he’s been burned in the past, and he doesn’t want to get married (and divorced [again]), well, it’s AWESOME.  And it might even stay awesome longer than three months!  Because here’s why:

I can still dream about marriage and babies and cohabitation and long walks on the whatever because IT IS NOT ACTUALLY HAPPENING, so there’s none of that tacky “reality” bullshit.  If you only see someone twice a week or three times a year, you don’t have as much exposure to all the profoundly disappointing/annoying aspects of their character, so it doesn’t bother you as much.  When one tries to actually build a life with someone else, there’s so much room for failure.  All that hope, just gone.  But if the Object of one’s affections always keeps one at arm’s length, well, one can dream of how lovely it would be if the Object would only let one a little closer.  One can enjoy a drink with the Object, and then go home by herself (maybe after a bit of shagging) and not have to deal with the Object’s gross drunk sleep farts.  Or the empty beer bottles the next day which the Object was too drunk to clean up.  Or the empty promises that the Object will stop drinking.

So when I meet someone whom I find fetching, and he happens to be emotionally unavailable, I want to say “OH THANK GOD, ME TOO.”  But the Object doesn’t ever believe me because here I am making uncomfortable jokes, and saying inappropriate things, and acting like any obsessive girl with a crush.  And what the Object might fail to realize is that my infatuation, as one might call it, is fed by the Object’s unavailability.  My crush, the feeling itself, needs air and light and *space* to survive.