I got my period today. It is the first time in three months and I am nauseous and probably will be for the next ten days. I don’t want to hang out with Brian tonight. I’ve already told him no, but now he is here standing outside my work, holding this piece of paper. Someone comes to the back of the restaurant where I am hiding.
“Your boyfriend is here.”
No shit. Who could miss his lanky, balding, Simple sneaker-wearing, fingernail chewing, laugh like a retard face, peeking in here, like there are window displays, or as if it’s under renovation and his curiosity lives close by. It’s a restaurant. We serve food and the people here eat on tables while sitting on chairs. I walk outside to greet his oh so eager blue eyes.
“What are you doing here?”
“I am coming to see you silly.” He is smiling, but something about it is strange.
I feel nauseous, not silly, but humor him at his suggestion anyway. I make a few more roll-ups before wiping down saltshakers, and then use him for the ride home. He waits. In the time it takes for us to get to the West Side, I remembered the story he told me when I asked him about the girl he saw before me. I didn’t really care about the girl or his whereabouts before me. I have little concern for those truths, but someone told me those questions filter out freaks and weirdos from the people we meet. But this advisor hadn’t prepared me on how to interpret the answers and make sense of the filtering. Brian’s story was about a woman that he had kissed once after two dates. He built the story up by giving me suspenseful details about their interactions before they kissed but not the actual kiss. At the time I understood the cringe of indecision and excitement, but then he fell flat when he told me that after the kiss happened she fled from him, furious that the entire thing had happened. What was I to say when he told me this? And why was I thinking of it now as he drove me home from work?
I swelled in the breasts and belly, the wind hitting my shirt from the open window was painful against my chest. All I wanted was to lay down with my feet up, maybe even watch something, dare I say silly, on television, but he had other plans in mind. All of this paraded on the stage of my mind as Elton john sang why they call it the blues in his Sundance.
“Were you going to tell me you were cheating on me?”
“What the fuck are you talking about?” He slammed a folded piece of paper against my thigh. I open it to read a string of emails.
“This one wants to get drinks with you, and this one said they had fun the other night, and who the fuck is Seth, you guys are emailing about taking photos.” I asked him where in all of this did it say that I was cheating on him. I got no response.
“Why would you need to email with other men if you’re with me?”
“My feelings are right here in front of you. You don’t need to search through emails to see how I feel.” I must have left it open on his computer. God knows we didn’t live together. I didn’t need an advisor for that.
“Why are you checking up on me anyway? What have I done to give you the impression that I am cheating on you?”
“I didn’t think it until I saw all of this.”
“You checked my inbox, and what do you know? You found emails. What did you think you were going to find?”
“No, What do you think about this?”
I wasn’t cheating on him, but I didn’t care if he thought I was. I didn’t want to be with him, and I guess that’s why they call it the blues just ended. These are the kinds of things that make a person go crazy. Or maybe it grants a crazy the opportunity to go sane. It isn’t just about jealousy, this kind of modern dating bullshit is rooted in self-consumption and some fucking mommy issue he wasn’t aware of never mind able to self-disclose. This was a relationship crossroad that demanded immediate action: to talk about it, or not.
But the fight is never on the heart of the matter. Brian is a selfish lover and maybe I didn’t want to necessarily or even temporarily write him off. He isn’t always a selfish lover, but he’s lazy, and it kills me that this awful quality finds its way to the bedroom. I could spend maybe ten or twelve minutes seducing him with kisses and licks on his neck and upper back, waking him from the twenty minutes he may have spent drifting to sleep lying next to me. And after all of that squirming and boyish moans of enjoyment, he props me on top of him, but not so he can touch me, just so he can line my organ up with his to go in raw. Several times I have offered warning words with a smile.
“Oh you are so spoiled.”
Sometimes I do let him in for a minute or two. It’s the reward I have been known to give when he’s worked for it, showing me love all over. And he does, after the proper amount of attention deserve to be inside without anything between us. I cave for a small amount of time and with an eject and sitting-to-kneeling-shift, he gets up to grab a condom and it’s peeled on. He gets on top but doesn’t even know that he’s already about to enter, instead he touches himself knocking us out of prime positioning. His hands are shaky. I rock my hips to get us back on track, but before I can even get it all the way in, he’s already got all of his weight on me trying to get to my belly with his dick.
What do I think about it? I think it sucks, but do I want to teach him all the ways he could have tried to be a better lover. No, absolutely not. Do I want to talk about it? Not really, unless it’s something that interests his brain, but we both know that nothing about this is actually being thought out by his brain. So now we have entry and I’m making a face that isn’t the fuck me face he is looking for and he asks, “What?” while still trying and doing it all wrong, as if now is a good time to talk about his bedside manner.
Should I say: “You know when you do that thing, oh yea that, that thing you’re doing right now, stop it. I don’t like it when you do that thing. And I can hear it now, the lame response that lies in waiting, “But that’s what I always do,” or worse, “I didn’t do anything.”
Well, yes that part is true, but how does that make you feel, because I thought I was the one who had strong feelings on that detail. I could say: “It’s not your fault, you are just lazy,” but that’s passive aggressive and unnecessary.
I could be sarcastically empathetic and say something like, ’It is too bad that they cut the perfect sexing-is-fun afters program for losers like you, where you could stay back a year and just practice. But these are the breaks Brian, there is only now.’ Now, the moment he’s accusing me of cheating, seems like a good a time as any to end things.
No guessing: This is why they call it the blues.