Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Pass the Chapstick

On Saturday Mr. Green and I went to an NFL Draft party that one of our team members was throwing at his place. It almost felt strange to go together, as it's not like we've been dating for very long or are sharing that information indiscriminately. I know that some people definitely got what was going on by the end of Thursday night, but not everyone was around to see that. But it wasn't that strange. It was easy. It's all been easy.

What wasn't easy was that we got to the party at about 1:30 and the draft didn't start until 4:00. That left almost 3 hours to be filled with Beer Pong and Flip Cup. What wasn't easy was resisting the urge to make out with Mr. Green in public once I'd had a drink or two. What was easy was kicking butt at Flip Cup. I just have a natural talent.

(If it sounds like I'm behaving like a college kid all over again - I totally am. I'm not ashamed of it at all. I felt like this part of my social life has been missing since I left LA and since I was with PC and I'm ecstatic to have it back. I'm not married, I don't have children. I'm gainfully employed and fiscally responsible. If I want to let my hair down and act like I'm 5 or 6 or 8 years younger in my free time, I should do it while I can. And I'm going to.)

So we watched about the first 13 draft picks (as number 13 was the all-important Redskins first round pick) before being a little too intoxicated to pay as much attention as was deserved. Once I had finished off a six-pack of Woodchuck (which I paid for with a raging 6 am headache on Sunday morning), there was no turning back. At some point, Mr. Green and I ended up talking on the porch for long enough that I think the other party-goers thought we had left, and it wasn't long after that we went back to my house.

Some of the rest of the evening is blurry - but the later it got, the more clear it got, because I really had quit drinking pretty early on. What I can tell you is that there was a lot more kissing and not a whole lot of sleeping. It has been so long since I've done this with someone - enjoying getting physical without getting completely physical. I certainly didn't do that with PC. Before that I was spending time with The Kid, and that was nothing but physical. And I'm not even sure my memory can go back much farther than that. Suffice to say that it has been a long time since I have been in this situation. And this situation is a bit intense. I guess I sort of forgot what new attraction is like and I was so miserable at the end of my relationship that it was hard for me to muster much attraction at all. This is fun.

He stayed until about 2pm Sunday afternoon. Once I was irreversibly awake, I subjected him to day 2 of the draft. We stayed in bed and watched a bit, talked a bit, made out a bit. It was a perfect Sunday morning. By the end of it all, my lips were ridiculously chapped and I had some serious beard-burn to show for it. Completely worth it.

Lyrics of the Day

"To wake next to you in the morning, and good morning to you. How do you do? Hey, good morning to you!" Band of Horses Part One

Monday, April 27, 2009

Men Are Like Taxis

I wish I could remember where I read or heard this: that men are like taxis. The theory is that when a man is ready for, or open to, the possibility of a relationship he turns his taxi light on. If you happen to be the girl that hails the cab (him) while the light is on, you've got a possibility of a decently long ride. But if you grab a cab with the light off, it doesn't really matter what you do, it's just not going to go anywhere. I think I learned this little theory sometime after The Ex dumped me. His light was definitely off, it just took a few months for him to figure that out.

What I have learned in the last week is that Mr. Green's light is on - really on.

After our date on Monday, Mr. Green sent me a text to say that he had a good time. Then he called me on Tuesday, just to talk. And on Wednesday. I wasn't expecting that at all - the lack of game-playing and holding back. It seemed that he wanted to talk to me, so he called. Dating someone definitely didn't go so smoothly back in the LA days where everyone is always on the lookout for something better than what they have. We didn't really talk about when the next date would be, as we knew there would be Thursday night and kickball.

Thursday night we won our game. Well, we really didn't - the other team forfeited - but that counts as a win and we'll take one where we can get one. Mr. Green and I kept it casual at the field and afterward at the bar, but got subtly closer and touchier as the evening progressed. You know how that goes: first you kind of stand near each other, then there's a little brushing of the arms, next a little leaning into each other and eventually it's pretty hard to miss that something is going on there.

We left the bar at the same time and walked out to where our cars were parked. I was thinking of the weekend and if he wanted to go to our teammate's draft party with me on Saturday. I was thinking maybe we would grab a drink or something on Friday night. Around this time, Mr. Green suggests something along the lines of coming home with me - though he said it in a tactful I'm-not-just-trying-to-get-into-your-pants way. The thought hadn't even crossed my mind, to be honest, but once it did it seemed like a pretty good idea. It seemed like a fantastic idea, actually, but I had to address the important stuff first. I told him that I wasn't looking to rush into something too quickly, especially not in the physical sense. But I said that I was really enjoying spending time with him and would be cool with him coming over, as long as things didn't cross certain lines.

So he came over. We had a drink, sat on my porch and just talked for a while. There was very tentative but brief talk of previous situations. He told me that he has dated since he's been in Florida (about a year now), but hasn't had anything serious. I told him that things had been on the way out in my relationship for a while before it actually happened - implying that I'm not just rebounding. (I think I've told you all before that I detest previous relationship talk. I don't want to know and I certainly don't want to tell you much. It only puts bad images and feelings in people's heads and provides ammo to drudge up when fighting.) But it was good to learn the most basic information and know that Mr. Green isn't a creepy serial-monogamist.

(I don't really think all serial-monogamists are creepy, but for me there is just a certain amount of suspicion attached when someone is constantly in a relationship. It generally means that they have some kind of problem being alone and may not be all that discriminating when it comes to who they commit to. You know what - I'm trying not to offend here, but to be honest, I do think serial-monogamy is creepy.)

Then we made-out for half the night like a couple of high school kids. It was fabulous. I think that making-out is a bit of a lost art these days; everyone is always jumping right to the sex of it all. And Mr. Green can kiss. Our styles are near-perfectly compatible and there was some definite heat there. More than some. A lot. Eventually, we had to sleep a little (and judging by how delirious I felt at work on Friday, it definitely wasn't enough) and he put his arms around me. They call it spooning because you lay just like spoons, lengths and curves aligned, and Mr. Green and I were a perfect fit.

Lyrics of the Day

"I know your name, I know your skin, I know the way these things begin. But I don't know what I would give of myself, how I would live with myself if you don't go." Suzanne Vega Caramel

Friday, April 24, 2009

Back on the Horse

So, after just over a month of my new single status, I went on my first date in nearly two and a half years. Mr. Green (This is based on what my coworkers are calling him. I've gotten a reputation as the office recycling-nazi and his job has to do with converting waste into fertilizer for orange groves and things. My coworkers thought this was a riot, that I would date someone who does work that is environmentally friendly.) and I talked on the phone last weekend a couple of times before figuring out that we would meet up for a drink on Monday evening.

I played it really cool on the phone and on the date itself, but I totally dorked out that evening before I left. I had to call The Sister for advice on clothing and greeting protocol. I even texted her a picture of the shirt I was thinking of wearing, so that I could get Fashion Guru approval. I aimed for something slightly better than casual, but not something that made it seem like I was trying too hard. I had forgotten what a nerve-wracking art the Date Outfit is. So we met at an ale house in a big shopping center down here. Mr. Green lives in Naples, which is about 30 miles south of Fort Myers and the shopping center was somewhere in between.

It went well. It went really well. We talked and talked and had some drinks. I found out that we are way more compatible than I had initially thought. He used to be a professional motocross rider, which is not something I even know anything about. But he's got a Real Job and has his stuff together and we talked really easily. And he's pretty adorable. He's got dark hair and almost shockingly light eyes. The contrast is really cool. He's somewhere around 6', maybe a little taller and has great hands, which is a thing with me.

We had a few drinks at the ale house and then agreed to postpone our mutually early bedtimes a bit longer by stopping over at another bar for one last drink. I broke out the old, "I've got a cat" information - which is something that is actually more of a worry than you would think. Some guys just hate cats. But Mr. Green does not. Mr. Green likes cats and didn't flinch when I mentioned mine. Score one for LB.

After the final drink, we walked to our cars. There was casual, yes-there-is-chemistry touching. And then, there were kisses. Slightly tentative, really nice, no-tongue kisses. Quite a few of them.

Lyrics of the Day

"And let our legs just run, no concept of distance. And all these rules we've learned could make no difference. There's so much to do or say without repeating... so why don't we?" Maria Taylor Lighthouse

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

I've Got Game

Of course, there are cute guys that play in the kickball league. Initially, I just appreciated the chance to revert to my old shameless-check-out ways. But as the newness of my single status wore off, I began to realize that I could flirt again. I could bat my eyes and giggle and generally make a fool of myself. It was rather liberating.

From the beginning, there were a couple of guys on my very own team that I took notice of. One of them turned out to be married (I should be getting used to that by now, but it's still a very odd concept for me). The other seemed, as far as I could see, to be unattached. So I began to foster a little crush. I had forgotten how much fun it was to have a crush; I used to be the queen of crushes. But two years in a relationship gets a girl out of practice.

So, week before last, I show up at kickball and expect to continue my crushing. All seemed well through the game (despite the fact that we lost), but at the end of the game I was thrown a curve (ha ha, clever kickball puns). My crush had a girl with him.

I have to say, I was inordinately crestfallen at this discovery. I actually thought to myself at the time that I was way more bummed out than I should have been. But I shook it off and the girl actually ended up being pretty cool and a good sport as she joined us at the Flip Cup table.

Now, our kickball league (and I assume all kickball leagues) puts out a hilariously irreverent weekly newsletter. Previously they had noted that there was not enough hooking up going on at kickball and they intended to change that. So they put out an issue last week with pictures of league singles and a couple of (amusingly fabricated) profiles. After the game, at the bar, my crush commented indignantly that he got left out of the singles issue of the newsletter. He said, "What, just because I bring a girl to a game, everyone assumes I have a girlfriend?" And of course, that's absolutely what we all assumed.

When he set us all straight, saying that she was a nice girl but not the one for him, I realized that the door to my crush had reopened. So I flirted. I flirted blatantly, but not to the extent that I actually looked like an ass (I must be learning in my old age!).

Near the end of the evening, as I worked my way toward the door, my crush suggested that we exchange phone numbers. I agreed that we should and after we had walked out of the bar and discussed getting together sometime the following week, he planted a peck on my lips as we parted.

Lyrics of the Day

"All at once you look across a crowded room to see the way that light attaches to a girl." Counting Crows A Long December

Monday, April 20, 2009

Kickin' It

For the past six weeks or so, I've actually been involved in social activity down here on the gulf coast and it has been my saving grace in my newly single state. Every Thursday night is kickball night.

I got hooked up with this through a coworker and it has been the perfect thing. It's only partially about playing kickball (yes, that same schoolyard game that most of my generation played), it's really mostly about going to the bar. Much more time is devoted to the sport of Flip Cup than is devoted to the kickball itself - fortunately for me, I seem to have a little bit of talent for both.

The coworker who introduced me to the idea of joining the kickball league ended up bailing on the activity herself, so I was thrown into a crowd of 15 or so people whom I had never met. Many of the players were separated by more than one degree and a couple were randomly assigned to the team by the league. Somehow, it ended up being a fantastic mix of really wonderful people.

Originally, PC had been a member of the team as well, but the break-up went down after the first game and I've been on my own since. My teammates were very sweet and supportive when I broke the news that PC wouldn't be returning to the team, and the social environment is so much more fun and stress-free for me now that I don't have to watch him interact in it.

(*Anyone who wants a taste of what PC was like in public should really go see "I Love You Man". The way that the Paul Rudd character behaves around the friends that he's trying to make was frighteningly reminiscent of how PC would behave. Watching it was like having an acid flashback.)

Kickball has been a great place for me to meet potential friends. I didn't really expect to meet potential dates though...

Lyrics of the Day

"I fell on the playing field, the work of an errant heel. The din of the crowd and the loud commotion went deafening silence and stopped emotion. The season was almost done, we managed it 12 to 1. So far I had known no humiliation in front of my friends and close relations." The Decemberists The Sporting Life

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Right Outta My Hair

This blog is about to become a PC-free space.

I'm tired of talking about it. I'm tired of letting his bullshit affect me (If anyone is a grammatical genius and can explain to me, coherently, how to know when to use affect vs. effect I would be forever grateful.), which is something that should end when a relationship ends. I'm trying to tie up loose ends so that I won't have to associate with him again until he comes to pick up his things. Aside from the self-serving wish to have it all over, I really do believe that is the best thing for both of us.

I could continue to detail the conversations that we've had (PC asking me if I had been accessing his email account and the ensuing revelations that I knew what he had done; the subsequent denials of everything except what he knew I had concrete proof of), the things that I keep finding around the house that he took without asking (like my razor blades, as if we hadn't had that argument about 8 times) or that he left undone (like the dirty coffee pot that I happened to find and clean before actual mold formed). But I'm not going to do that. Well, any more than I just did.

I'm going to do, on the page, what I've been doing in my head since he left. I'm going to move on. I almost feel guilty for disconnecting so quickly and thoroughly, but it's hard not to when I was constantly on the verge of disconnecting for most of the last year. I feel better. I feel lighter without him. I feel slightly panicked about the prospect of dating again and having to impress men again. But even that feels good.

So, next step in the process is: Research.

Lyrics of the Day

"There's one thing I want to say, so I'll be brave. You were what I wanted, I gave what I gave. I'm not sorry I met you; I'm not sorry it's over; I'm not sorry there's nothing to say. I'm not sorry there's nothing to save." Stars Your Ex-Lover Is Dead

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Lie To Me

I've been lied to before. The Speed Freak tried very hard to cheat on me, and he may have actually accomplished it. He never told me the truth about any of that (or much else, really). The Ex lied unintentionally (and probably more to himself than to me) when he rushed me into the semblance of a relationship without the ability to finish what he started. But I'm not sure I've ever been so violated.

I'm losing sleep over this. I really can't believe that it really happened and was happening for so long. Part of me really wishes that I had been told earlier, when everyone else knew but me, so that I wouldn't have made the mistake of those last few months. But the rest of me knows that I needed to make this mistake, learn this lesson, and do it on my own. The people that protected me were doing the right thing, even if it is painful to think about how long it was that I was the only one not in on the joke.

The problem is that now I want to obsess over this information. I was, as a wise friend put it, spied on. I was spied on by a person who swore up and down that he admired my independence and respected my privacy. I let him share my computer, trusted him with my phone, told him about the existence of this space. Because he said I could trust him.

Is there an excuse for that? For being stupid enough to believe someone when they say something to you, even when you've caught them in blatant and bold-faced lies on more than one occasion? Is that the desire to trust or just some pathetic, subconscious attempt to keep from being alone?

The truth is that I can't figure out exactly how this is making me feel. I have flashes of near-livid anger. I have long periods where I can't really conceive of the reality I'm now living in. I have moments of nauseous anxiety and moments where I want to call him and tell him exactly what I think of him and his uber-creepy activities. In the end, I'm not going to do that. I'm going to call My Husband and apologize for putting him in this situation. I'm going to, definitively, move on with my life. I'm going to get everything I possibly can that belongs to him out of my house. I'm going to change my passwords, just in case. I'm going to try to get it through my thick skull that it doesn't matter how much he lied to me anymore, so I don't need to spend my nights thinking of things he could have lied about and analyzing the likelihood that he did.

Because, in all honesty, there are probably more of those things than I will ever know or ever want to know.

Lyrics of the Day

"Why you always making me cry? Why you always making me cry? You look me in the eyes and tell me all your lies. So why you always making me cry?" Joe Purdy Why You

Monday, April 06, 2009

Trust No One

I don't consider myself an optimist. I really tend toward pessimism and I anxietize about everything. But I guess that I tend to want to see and believe the best in people and it turns out that can be a dangerous game.

I feel that I should give a little background...

Last November, my family went on a trip to the Dominican Republic. A family vacation for a family that may or may not be whole for very much longer. After the vacation we went to California for Thanksgiving and I planned a weekend in LA to catch up with friends and hang some more with The Sister. I ended up spending most of that weekend with My Husband and a good friend of his, The Editor. The Sunday that I was in town, the three of us and my fam spent, literally, a full day drinking. We started at about 9:30 am for the Redskins game at the bar in LA where 'Skins fans are known to congregate and made stops at a couple more bars throughout the course of the day. I had a connection with The Editor which was flattering and surprising. In the end I ended up enjoying the attention too much and flirting with him and I upset My Husband. This is not the first time this kind of thing had happened and he didn't talk to me for a while, which I basically expected. Eventually, after a sincere apology over email, we started talking again casually. But it has gone in fits and starts and now I haven't actually talked to him in a few weeks.

My family is in Florida right now. My parents came to town for 2 weeks and they decided last week to fly The Sister down for the weekend so that we could all be together. My dad seems to be losing ground fairly quickly and we're seeing the need to spend as much time together as we can. More than once this weekend, The Sister or my parents mentioned doing things with MH, talking to him, future plans with him. I was pissed. I thought that it was completely uncool that he was still basically shutting me out but he felt like it was totally fine to still involve himself with my family. This morning, I told The Mother that I was pissed. That it bothered me that he would still insinuate himself into parts of my life but shun me personally.

Then the truth came out.

No one wanted to tell me, because they didn't want to be responsible for breaking up a relationship that I was trying to make work. No one wanted to get involved when they weren't sure that they should. But it was time I knew. I had to know.

PC had called MH. He had called because he suspected something and wanted to know what happened. He called because he had been reading my email and he saw my apology letter to MH. He called after he looked through my phone and got My Husband's number and put MH in the worst position possible. My Husband stopped talking to me to protect me from what he knew about PC. He wanted to protect me from the knowledge that PC checked my phone and my text messages and my emails. All the time. And part of me suspected things like this. Part of me thinks that he found this blog (though I still can't figure out how, if he did) and that he's been using it and everything else that I've typed to keep track of me. But I wanted to believe that he respected my privacy. I wanted to believe that I could have things that were my own. Because I can't honestly conceive of doing that to someone else. Why would you want to be with someone when you trust them so little?

Lyrics of the Day

"If she only knew, then he'd be through. But who knows which parts are true. She hates how it looks, but what can she do? The girls all talk behind her back, they say she's being used." The Good Life Notes in His Pockets