Cleaning house

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Once I was the King of Spain...

Getting old stinks.

I grew up under the delusion that life was supposed to be simple and easy. That relationships just happen, and that when it's right? You'll know it. Gee...thanks, Mom.

You know, something that I've been considering a lot lately, following the demise of my 'relationship' with Billy, is how we all operate under the assumption that it's supposed to be Easy to find your Someone, fall in love with them, and live happily ever after.

And it's sooooo not easy.

I have been considering how difficult it is for me, who is a moderately attractive looking, smart, fairly together, heterosexual woman, without any major visible hang-ups or fetishes. Imagine how much MORE difficult it must be for people with personality disorders, self-esteem issues, crushing phobias, people who are gay, people who are physically challenged, people who are ugly, and arseholes? And yet...they all seem to find THEIR Someone. Perhaps I expect too much?

Who's to say? I know that I have been fortunate in my life to be loved by some incredible men. Men who have been brave, and bold, and forthcoming with their emotions. And yet, for one reason or another, they haven't been my Someone. I, instead, choose to yearn for people who are quiet, and reserved, and emotionally unavailable. I lust for the magazine-pretty men I see on the street, and yet become involved with the intellectually stimulating, more 'normal' looking man of substance. (Mmmm...is there anything so sexy as a clever man that can DO stuff? Sorry, back to the ramble.)

In a previous post, I said that I'd talk another time about comments made to me by the Saskatchewanian stranger (K) at the Split Crow a few weeks ago. He was a very nice man. He and his business partner were in town installing some sort of computer system or another. He was fairly attractive, and quite pleasant to talk to. His partner (D) was a bit of an ass, but an entertaining one, so it was nice to talk with them.

D was bold, and annoying. He clued in first that Bill and I were together, although I had done nothing to conceal the fact. I had not been encouraging of D's advances, and had actually been rather DIScouraging. K was more reserved, but was also flirting slightly. He got it much sooner, though, that I wasn't interested in anything more than conversation. He was fine with it.

So...D looked at Billy, and then at me. He said, quite loudly..."What? Are you kidding me? You can't honestly be telling me you're going home with HIM?!" I nearly choked. I couldn't believe how rude he was.

I said, "Um...YES. I came here with him, and I fully intend to leave with him."

"Is that what you do here in Nova Scotia? Slum?"

I was horrified. A)--because I'd never heard someone be so blatantly ignorant, and B)--because it was so drastically far from the truth. I mean, I know that it was envy speaking, but even still...it was an horrible thing to say. (For the record, I quite enjoy looking at Billy. He's tall, and strong, and rugged looking. He's smart, and sexy, and has a really great smile when he uses it. You should date him, he's a fantastic fellow.)

"I BEG YOUR PARDON?!"

"You heard me. He's so not in your league it's ridiculous. Why are you slumming?"

I said, "I don't know what you're talking about, but you're a VERY rude man." And I turned back to the bar and my drink. I chatted with Scoot, and with K, and with Kelley (the hotel-inspector from T.O.) and tried to forget how ignorant D had been.

The part of this story that I was getting to...is when K said something to me that made me think.

Please don't think that I'm some egotistical, self-absorbed woman who thinks she's all that...because I'm certainly not. I know that I don't look like I got hit in the face with a shovel, but I am pretty average, so far as I can tell. I've been fortunate (or not, depends on your perspective) to get more than my share of male attention in my life...and still do, for the most part. I believe it's because I'm friendly, and I smile a lot. I tend to be friendly, yet discouraging, at bars. I don't want to have to come out and SAY "Thanks, but no. You're annoying me, please go away now." I will if necessary, but I don't like having to, so I tend to put up The Wall in advance. Only the most daring (foolhardy?) of men usually approach The Wall. (Yes, I'm fully aware that this may be the very reason that I'm still single. More on this at a later date.)

So...a bit later, K said to me..."I'm just going to come out and ask this, because I've always wanted to know. What's it like to be a girl like you?"

He said it straight-faced, and with a curiousity that bespoke sincere desire to Know something. I was taken aback. I spluttered a little, and said, "Umm....'a girl like me'?! What on earth are you talking about?"

"You know what I mean. You get attention from men, you know that they're looking at you, and that you could get whatever you want. Do you like to just toy with guys like me, or what do you do?"

"*boggle* Um...I would certainly hope that you don't think I was 'toying with you'?!"

"No, no....you weren't. But you could, and I want to know."

"Um...thanks, I think. That's possibly a nice thing for you to say? I guess I know what you mean, but...um..." Taking a big swig from my beer and trying to figure out exactly where to go with the answer, I replied "I know what you mean, but I don't think it quite applies to me. Because I think that it's an horrible thing to 'toy' with people. I think that, as a girl, you have a responsibility to be careful of other people's feelings and emotions. I, personally, try to always be aware of a situation and work hard to make sure that I'm not being misleading or intentionally cruel."

And that's the truth. I build The Wall so that I don't have to worry quite so much. I am generally very socially perceptive. I am painfully aware whenever some boy begins to have feelings for me. I am VERY seldom wrong in my perceptions. (for an example of just how wrong I can be when I *am* wrong, read all about my most recent doomed relationship) And it's true...I DO feel that women have a responsibility to look out for men and their emotions.

I have never accepted a free drink in my life.

I know dozens of women who go to the bar with $10 in their pocket, and go home loaded--having beveraged all night on someone else's dime. I, on the other hand, pride myself on being self-sufficient. I also take pride in not using people. I have a huge sense of obligation and guilt, and I wouldn't want to feel beholden to anyone I just met for anything at all--even something so simple as a drink. I don't want to feel obligated to make conversation with you, simply because you spent $5 on my beer. If I'm talking to you? It's because I'm interested in what you have to say. Either that, or I'm too polite to tell you to Fuck Off because you haven't been QUITE that offensive yet.

[Hell, if I was into using people, I'd have waited a few days to talk to Bill and then allowed him to mend my car like he was going to. Stupid, stupid, stupid. That's me. :) ]

Anyway...my answer seemed to make K happy...but it got me thinking. And I haven't been able to stop ever since.

I really don't think I'm anything special. I mean, I'm okay looking. And I'm average sized--not too tubby, not too skinny. I've got a rather large set of boobs--which I generally work hard at concealing. People (even other women!) are astonished when they discover how large my breasts actually are. I'm not flashy in my dress--conservative at best. I strive for business chic when I dress up, and generally pull it off...but I work in a hardware store, so I don't get to do that very often these days. In general, it's jeans and a t-shirt. Occasionally a blouse. So I'm not Patty-Provocative. I DO smile a lot. I am genuinely interested in what people have to say. I like to meet new people. Maybe this is the reason I get attention.

But how does this translate into a relationship? Why do I keep getting involved with people who choose, for one reason or antoher, to stay removed from the partnership? I don't know how to take down The Wall. I'm GREAT at sending out the 'fuck off, I'm not interested' vibe, but I haven't got a clue how to exude 'hey, you're cute...wanna?' I'm working at it...which is why I've gotten so blatantly verbal about what I want and what I need in a relationship. But how to get from point A to point C? I honestly haven't a clue.

This whole post is nothing but a big ramble, but I've been Thinking a lot lately, and Thinking always gets me into trouble.

I've been thinking about relationships, because of the demise of the most recent one. I am still ANGRY, but I'm pretty much over the emotionally crushing part. Which goes to prove that it was probably (Yeah, yeah...definitely) not really such a big deal after all. I mean, I DO love him, but he's my best friend, so I should. And we had sex, which..whatever. It's sex. I think we both just wanted to be in a relationship, and turned a genuine affection for one another into something that it shouldn't be. But...yeah. Still hurt and angry. Oh BOY am I angry. But I'm working on that. :)

I'm not so good with anger, apparently. :)

What was my point? Not a clue. Except that Relationship Stuff is never simple. I don't meet people at work. I am long since done school. I tried the online thing, and I have no intention of going back--I don't have the energy to waste on men I don't like. That, and it's not fair to them for me to judge the second that I meet them that I don't even want to be their friend, let alone anything more.

So Mum, thanks...I know you didn't mean to set an example of impossible expectation; that what you wanted was to teach us to never settle for second-best. But yikes. I don't think I'd know even Second-Best if it hit me in the head with a pool-noodle, let alone aspiring to greater things.

I've had great relationships, I know what they feel like, and how they can make you into a better, richer version of yourself. But God help me, I have no idea how to get there from here.

12 Comments:

  • Happy birthday (this time on your actual birthday) -- Of course I love the lyric.

    Here's another one for you:

    "and it's a sad, sad world
    when a girl can break a boy
    just because she can"

    (Clearly you're not that type, but you gotta admit, it's topical.)

    By Blogger themikestand, At Wed May 02, 03:32:00 pm  

  • Yeah, it started out as a different post altogether...so now? I eat humble pie. :) (or birthday apple crisp, as the case may be!)

    Thanks Mike!

    By Blogger canadian sadie, At Wed May 02, 03:35:00 pm  

  • Happy Birthday!?

    I totally hear you on everything that you've said.

    As a single girl in her 30's I don't get it. I can look around at girls who are obviously needy, less intelligent, less compassionate than I am, but they have seemingly wonderful men falling all over themselves for them.

    Sometimes I've wondered if my problem isn't that I give people too much credit and freedom. I'm not nagging, and am always fair...it seems rather UNlike the normal female trend.

    Anyhow, I am confident that we are both fabulous independant women, and the perfect relationship is out there, and will turn out to be well worh the wait.

    This was a very long comment, sorry! I would love to meet you sometime so we could share some drinks and commisserate!

    Principessa

    By Blogger Princess of the Universe, At Wed May 02, 05:13:00 pm  

  • Don't be sorry! I love long comments! :) Yeah, I've considered that the next time around I need to become more of a demanding, whingeing bitch. But I'm not quite sure how to go about that. Mainly because I don't care so much. That, and I basically want to pop those girls in the face. Or the larynx. Yeah...the larynx.

    Sorry, got distracted. ;)

    By Blogger canadian sadie, At Wed May 02, 05:20:00 pm  

  • i was actually thinking about this today. how someone like you -- smart, intelligent, pretty, clever with words -- is single in her 30's..

    and someone like me -- those things minus some of your prettiness.. let's face it, you're way cuter -- is on her second marriage..

    i think you're braver. you travelled further, loved more people, tried more things, and experienced a different life.

    i stayed here, married, married again, followed a predictable mom/wife career path...

    but i think with bravery comes a different adventure. you've never been "conventional".

    personally:

    i think you're amazing.. and i think the right someone is still out there. he's just hiding, because he's so terrific, he doesn't want anyone but you to find him and hog him.

    happy birthday. i wish you were home.

    By Blogger chRistine, At Wed May 02, 07:26:00 pm  

  • and great lyric. i was listening to that cd not long ago..

    By Blogger chRistine, At Wed May 02, 07:28:00 pm  

  • Happy Birthday and may the coming year be better than any before. Sorry the relationship stuff is so puzzling and difficult and at times heartbreaking. I'm of the opinion that nothing in life is hopeless as long as you don't give up on yourself. Clearly, you'll be fine.

    By Anonymous cronznet, At Wed May 02, 08:18:00 pm  

  • This is a great post! I've been also wondering about the whole "why the heck am I still single when all these icky people are hooking up". Just have to keep reminding ourselves that there will be that person out there that is perfect for us.
    Happy Birthday!

    By Blogger Bookingirl, At Wed May 02, 11:47:00 pm  

  • Happy birthday to you. TheMikeStand has beasically begged his monumental readership to come over and post birthday well wishes, so I thought I would comply.

    As to the relationship conundrum, I wish there were a magic bullet out there for relationships. Alas and alack, there isn't. I wish you the best of luck in your relationship life, because I do think it takes an insane amount of luck.

    By Blogger SRH, At Thu May 03, 10:12:00 am  

  • Rock on Sadie,
    Don't be down,
    you are awesome!! :D
    -V!

    By Blogger Vince, At Thu May 03, 12:57:00 pm  

  • I'm sorry I missed your birthday :(

    I'm also sorry I haven't got much to offer on this topic. I've been through a half-dozen really serious relationships in my (allegedly-)adult life, and I still have little idea of how they all started.

    I do know that I met Fenchurch on-line, and for the past several years, that seems to be working out pretty well for us.

    I wish I could offer you more...

    By Blogger Arthur Dent, At Sat May 05, 02:20:00 pm  

  • I got nothing, as my 11 year old sister so eloquently put it (to her whole friggin class) "She's had 3 boyfriends and one real relationship" and even that was typically highschool.

    On the brightside, I think we have the same birthday...so happy belated, I hope your day rawked hard.

    By Blogger Random "Frequent Flyer" Dent, At Sat May 05, 09:43:00 pm  

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