6 Dec 2011

Little Women

Despite premonitions to the contrary, this is actually going rather well. I look around the scant crowd inside the Seven Inch, and across the table at her. Little Miss Piss-pot is doing rather well for herself, sipping her third Corona and expertly skirting past nervy second date territory with generous laughter and vehement agreement with anything I say. I decide I cannot use that nickname any longer for such a nice person.

How's it going, she wants to know.
What?
This, us.
Oh. I'm having fun, I manage, probably blushing a little.
Not quite soulmate-city though?
Definite power-ballad potential, I assure her.
She laughs. She suggests we move across the road to the more radio-friendly Mellow Yellow.

How's this going to end then? she wants to know. She has to shout to be heard, and the effort makes a nerve on her temple stand up a little. Her eyes suddenly have the shiny glaze of too-much-drink.
Are you ok? I ask.
Oh, live a little, she says. She's a mean drunk. How's this going to end? What's the break-up going to be like?

I like this particular game. Its very postmodern, hip. The dating equivalent of saying break-a-leg to an actor about to set foot on stage. Let's be modern, let's be incongruous.

I give this serious thought. I'll probably cheat, I say, and hope you find out.
This does seem most likely. She's too nice and I'm too cowardly. I could never bring myself to break up with her. Why the hell is she crying?

It was a joke, I lie, I thought we were being postmodern.
My last boyfriend cheated on me, she says, and the one before. I have that quality.
I'm at a loss. I'm saved by the gentle vibrations of my prehistoric phone.
I have to take this, I say, be back in a minute.

Its my ex. I think I might die childless, she declares.
I look at my watch. CET is seven hours behind Singapore. She's drunk at one in the afternoon.
You ok, I ask without really wanting to find out.

My ex and my mother are the strongest women I've ever met. I depend on them in ways no self-respecting man would do. I suspect they both suspect I'm still in love with them. In different ways of course. I let them suspect as much. It is an act of selfishness I have convinced myself is kindness. It lets them douse the raging fires of my self-loathing with their pity without feeling guilty. Anything more than pity would be asking for too much from women I have let down repeatedly. Pity can be administered guilt-free. Pity requires minimal involvement.

In the last few months however, the established statusqo has changed uncomfortably. I have somehow become the Man in our respective relationships. Both my ex and mother have somehow become tormented, unbalanced imitations of my own emotional core. I don't grudge them this. They are both -in different ways- at hormonal odds with the world. This is affecting their personalities, and consequently our carefully constructed equilibrium. At great personal cost, I try to help, to be supportive.

I'm just saying, says my ex, I'm 32 and childless. And single.
I'm on a date, I say.
How's it going?
She's crying.
First date?
Second.
What'd you do?
Said I'd probably cheat on her.
Too nice?
Too nice.
You want to have my babies? she says.
What?
You know what I mean.
Would we-
No. There are..processes.. for that sort of thing.

I promise I'll think about it. She knows I won't. I shuffle back in, wishing it'd rain. My date has cleaned up. Some tell-tale mascara aside, you can hardly tell this woman has just had her heart broken by her imaginary boyfriend of about 135 minutes.
I'm sorry, I say. I didn't mean it the way it sounded.
S'okay, she says, it was just a game. I'm sorry.
We smile. I want to go home. I also maybe want to see her again. Definitely maybe. Not tonight though.

Who was that on the phone? You looked pretty concerned. She says.
Oh, that's my ex. She wants to have my babies, I say.
I know I have just said the wrong thing. I know this as I watch hurt, then, anger, then disappointment, then rage, then indignation, more anger all well up internally like a physical presence and push against her eyes, her forehead, her ears, even her nostrils, threatening to break through, like the not-so-gentle probe of a prostrate exam.

This has to be the worst date in history, she says, and you're not even tall. 













14 comments:

premanjali said...

you should have a "hmmm" button under reaction... ;)

some one once said the best writers are the ones who "know" what they are writing about..i remember i had found it rather stupid when i read the first time...but the more i read it, the more sense it made...

Seems like you are a strong believer of “its good to be bad and bad to be good”…Interesting…

deviousdiv said...

On a side note-- while I do sympathise with your plight- if I ever was on a date with you, I may declare myself a lesbian and give up on the male species altogether.

Just sayin

~deviousDiv

premanjali said...

@deviousdiv - hahahahaha...am laughing out loud at work after reading your comment...

I personally think the world needs more lesbians - they are hotter, prettier and nicer ;)

premanjali said...

and I forgot to add smarter :D

deviousdiv said...

Ok this is becoming a bit of a spamfest on your blog- but... I couldn't help myself- so I wrote a reply to this post on my blog.

;)

Don't worry, I actually salute your strategy to mindfuck your way out of a stick potential relationship.

~deviousDiv

icyhighs said...

You probably don't realize this but most straight men are about 90% lesbian.

deviousdiv said...

Icyhighs-- 90% of all men are gay? Well that explains a lot! ;) clearly us women have no chance. ;)

deviousdiv said...

On a side note-- I wrote a reply to this on my blog. :P mostly sympathetic of course.

icyhighs said...

All men are gay. Fact.But that's another story. What I meant is there's this theory that women (lesbians) only love women because they love themselves, want to see themselves reflected in their lover. And if you ask me, men fall in love with women for the same reason. A great woman on your arm is always a way of validating yourself, for a man. So most men are lesbian.

deviousdiv said...

" What I meant is there's this theory that women (lesbians) only love women because they love themselves, want to see themselves reflected in their lover. And if you ask me, men fall in love with women for the same reason. A great woman on your arm is always a way of validating yourself, for a man. So most men are lesbian."

Ummm somehow I don't think that's the reason why women are lesbians yo.

Because if its just about "self-love", you don't really need a live human being for that-- a 5 inch piece of plastic with some AA batteries, and a great movie will do. ;)

Nevertheless- potty mouthed philosophy aside, by your logic, its the same with women wanting to see themselves reflected in men...

Wait a minute- that's impossible... Ok I see where you're coming from. ;)

icyhighs said...

I'll never understand accessorized masturbation. Chicks and dildos. Or my mate who just bought a fleshlight. What's the bloody point? All you need is imagination. And hands. I intend to live, die and cum old school.

premanjali said...

OMG!!! hahaha this is hilarious...

I kinda agree with icyhighs on accessoried masturbation though... :P

And a fleshlight...r u freaking serious? Well, the number of odd people out there seems to be increasing on my list...

deviousdiv said...

OMG I just googled fleshlight. I nearly went blind.

This definitely triumphs the time I checked out the 'budget sex toys' shop at Kramat Lane. Hey, I was working on my masters degree in marketing- and was naturally interested in the product marketing that went into the store.

I never thought that the sex toy industry was hit by the recession and needed to turn to deep discounts to sell!

But then their prices are apparently 60% lower than other shops, which led to the inevitable speculation-- are these second hand? Refurbished? Made of inferior quality lead paint in China?

Would that be something customers would want up their youknowwhere?

Interestingly, the budget sex shop, and his two competitor outlets (right next to each other) are among the first things that the tourists who stay at the Holiday Inn see when they come outside for a short walk to explore Orchard Road- that family friendly shopping district.

>_< Uniquely Singapore.

~deviousDiv

icyhighs said...

Clearly your education was money well spent, DD!