Okay, this is an odd feeling - I'm sad and have no clue what to do with this feeling. I realize we haven't met, but I thought we had a free flowing exchange of thoughts, and then a complete separation. -- Message from Alpha to Belle, May 10Well, touché, this time around I'm the one feeling sad, and stunned, and trying hard to get over this feeling as quickly as I can. Once again, I guess I'll have to sleep on it.
We had tentative plans to meet for a walk this morning, but he'd fallen ill this week, and late last night sent me a message saying that he still wasn't 100 percent and needed to cancel -- but in the same message asked me out for the same sort of date, a walk in the park, except for Saturday late afternoon or early evening. I received the message this morning, when I woke with total insomnia around five a.m. I responded, suggesting that if it worked for him, Sunday afternoon was better for me than Saturday -- reasons among them being that the park closes early, at 7 or 8; that afterward we wouldn't have any place private to go; and also that I needed to be well-focused for church the following morning. I suggested we take a walk Sunday afternoon, and that after that I could probably arrange to have the house to myself if he wished to come over. I noted that I didn't want to rule out Saturday, but maybe we could make it an early evening, if he didn't mind coming all the way down for just a short spell.
I hit send, my fingers hesitating over the keys. Even in my groggy state I had an uncertain, vaguely negative feeling about my message. Of course he'd like to be out on a date on Saturday night -- and here I am being not totally available (though I'd left an opening).
What I didn't mention in my crack-of-dawn message was that I know how I am these days – for several years now. At around five or six, the time we would have been meeting, I like to sit down with a glass of wine, and write a post to you. Also, I have a theatre ticket for a Saturday matinee, which probably wouldn't be over til about four, and probably I would be a bit tired from the day at that point, not entirely up for an active, "on!" date an hour or so after. No, I'd wish to come home, have my wine, write my thing, crash early feeling relaxed and not particularly jazzed about anything (or anymore conflicted than I already am, going to church, given the Bovaresque life I'm lamely leading), and have a relaxing Sunday morning capped by my very "on" performance as accompanist - at a special service with a guest minister, no less, this week. I take my gig there seriously - and I love it - but I hope I don't sound like a 'church lady' over it -- I'm far from that, I'm sure.
But I am a bit shy, a bit reticent, a bit cautious. Our first - well, not fight - but disagreement or misunderstanding, the one that caused Alpha to feel sad -- was that I reacted poorly to some rather dreamy but erotically forward epistolary ruminations on his part. We hadn't even met -- and I just wasn't ready to leap into figurative bed with someone off CL who not only I hadn't yet met, but if I did meet, might not even particularly like -- though I liked his writing voice, but we (that is, I) by this point know that there is a big difference between a writerly voice and a person's actual person.
So I hit ‘send’ at dawn, and went about my morning, checking now and then for his possible reply. At nine-thirty I went for a walk, stopping by the church to run through next Sunday's hymns, the list of which the Rev. M. had emailed me overnight. I got home around 11, and was a little surprised that Alpha hadn't responded, but - okay, whatever. He's gone off to work, he hasn't been feeling well, he has other obligations -- well, of course. Plus, maybe he's thinking about Saturday evening vs. Sunday afternoon... So okay, whatever, I'm relaxed, I'm good... I mean, either way, we'll get together, things are going so nicely between us...
I forgot to mention that in yesterday evening's message to me, he became quite sexually provocative in his imaginings again. Which didn't turn me off, exactly -- except that I already have this "Cordelia" theme going with him (what a very heavy-handed battleship of a metaphor). That basically, until I've really made out with him (okay, please pardon my possibly hopelessly out-of-date vocabulary), am certain that I wish to, and that I will continue to wish to -- I really don't feel like giving it all away in erotic epistolary fantasies. Which may sound weird coming from me. And it's not even a "policy" of mine. It's just that, if I don't feel it – and I mean really really feel it, towards him, or towards any man -- then I absolutely do not want to fake it. So, yeah, maybe that makes me a drag when I don’t respond in kind to his forays (in the vein of dom/sub type stuff, him directing me -- or was it me directing him? -- oh who knows, his message was a little confusing - I was supposed to ask him permission before I could cum -- oh fine, torture me already, I don't have an issue with that -- if you really know how to torture -- never mind asking permission, you will have me begging).
I'm probably missing a segue in here, but let me just leap ahead and say that for the ten days that Alpha and I have encountered each other (I answered his ad on May 7), including a lovely meeting on Sunday, after which I would have sworn we both emerged quite enthusiastic -- and by both I mean, he seemed to dig me, and I had to "sleep on it", but even before then as he hugged me goodbye, I went for a kiss on the lips, and he felt and tasted divine -- which was incredibly encouraging to me (because you know the really weird thing about the Hungarian from Schenectady? he didn't taste good -- and I mean literally, did not leave a good taste in my mouth, and the bad taste lingered for days, the two occasions, a week apart, that I had kissed him). So Alpha's kisses -- really nice!
Oh right, so for the past ten days, while I've glanced at CL listings in a desultory fashion, mostly out of habit, out of fascination, and for potential 'material' - I haven't responded to any other posts since Alpha and I connected, haven't looked at CL for that reason, and have felt, in the last few days especially, really happy not to be searching with that goal in mind.
So I hadn't heard back from him this morning, and my mind got to “wanderin'” and to “ponderin',” as it does (cue up that Laura Marling Brontë-esque song), and I remembered that in his original, rather lengthy CL post -- which I had found over the top but so appealing that I responded - he had mentioned that he wasn't interested in dating multiple partners and that if he met the right one (I'm totally paraphrasing here) he'd delete the post.
So Pandora wondered -- huh. Did he delete the post? So I went into CL. And actually, I didn't really expect to find the post deleted -- that takes quite a bit of affirmative "action" -- let those posts die their slow natural obsolescent deaths as they recede into deep dark prehistoric CL memory -- May 7 seems positively pre-Cambrian in the scale of time of a 'w' in search 4 men who write credible 'm4w' posts.
What I didn't expect? A brand-new post, different from Alpha's first, different in tone - darker, deeper, more direct - and content. All kinds of - well not 'gaydar' - but like that -- all kinds of radar went up in me absolutely in electrified porcupine form -- OMG -- it's him, I know it is!
Why is he posting? (alarm bells, whistles, fire horns) Didn't we have a great time Sunday? Haven't we been trying to make plans to meet again?
Are you telling me that in God's Perfect Plan [his theological theory, not mine] he was supposed to get this stupid intestinal bug that prevented us from meeting and having our SECOND amazingly wonderful kiss, but because of that we didn't, so things had to get bounced to Saturday evening, except that I'd rather meet Sunday afternoon -- oh, and it turns out --- how can it be that lightning strikes twice -- you're a DOM? In search of a sub?
Which I hardly even know what that means? On 'youp*rn' they don't even have a category -- believe me, I checked -- for BDSM, or dom/sub.
I'll tell you right now -- well, maybe I won't - yes I will -- I like to do it a hell of a lot more than I like to write about it. And that strikes me, actually, as a peculiarly 'sub' way to go --
oh grrrr I'm frustrated
sorry to end on -- well not a huge great punchline
hey I'm just typing here, not crafting a New Yorker story
oh -- and then --- right -- I drove up at lunchtime to the K'hook library, where I picked up Shades of Gray -- which I've already read (an hour later) four chapters of -- simply by reading a phrase or fragment of a sentence from roughly every other page. Because I wish to cut to the chase.
(Unlike the other totally lovely book that I am just so filled with joy and touched to read --- the memoir of a first-generation Jewish-European-American, who has the courage, and temerity, to delve into such acutely powerful and painful places, including in the company of his own father - and his son -- oh, truly, I am just marveling at that section, and wish so much -- well, no, not really I don't, I don't have it in me, I never did - it used to be put on me -- You Should Write The Story of Our Family -- and I never did, and I don't have the -- I'm stalled here for a word -- but you did, dear Prof. C.B. -- I really really relate to your story, where I've stopped, where I am -- you are an archaeologist - and - no not pottery -- poetry --- the letters are so similar)
So -- oh I hate the cellphone, and I have a crappy one. And Alpha and I have never talked on the phone. Until today. After my stop at the K'hook Library, with its faster downloads, I was able to retrieve his cell #, and would have liked to send him a text, but simply couldn't figure out how to do so from a computer. Right click onto his bright-lined number maybe - is that how it's done? the library computer didn't seem to allow for it.
I jotted down his number, left the library with Shades of Grey (Clerk: now you won't be able to renew it, it seems there are pending reserves. Me: don't worry I'm sure it's quite the page-turner.), dialed his number -- so motivated was I -- and made contact. Alpha was surprised to hear my voice. Let me pull over, was the last I heard - probably ever - of his voice. I hung on the line for a minute or two, waiting for him (in my mind's eye) to pull to the side of some major highway - and waited, phone pressed to my ear. Time passed, I looked at the phone, all dark – it had gone dead.
I called him back and left a message. Notably, Dear Reader: he didn't pick up.
Tried him again from reliable landline at home
Again Dear Reader [cue ‘sound of other shoe dropping’] -- no answer.
And so -- ah --- man, he has no idea what he's missing.
this is, I suppose, a first draft
thus - unpolished
but all rights reserved (this for future lawyers,
haggling in my absence,
over my noncorporeality)