I’ve never had a New Year’s resolution. This year I’m finally taking one on: do not play the game. This beautiful game we play is some times called love, but it’s merely the battle for the upper hand. Entering any prospective relationship in its formative stages, we want to go in knowing we have the upper hand. It’s the reasons why our friends tell us not to text or call, why we wait x number of days, and stalk people’s Facebook and Instagram. We want to know that they are into us as we are into them.
This recent snow has led to thoughts that resulted in this resolution. The last time I had sex (which has been almost three weeks! and coincidentally the last time it snowed) really led me to this. I met an advisor on Tinder who, after off-and-on messaging, finally took up my offer of meeting. After a few messages, she asked me to come over that night for dinner. She was watching a kitten, so we would cook or order. Immediately, this sounded like straight-up strange ass. Or a trap planted by a serial killer. I found myself at this woman’s house shared by two roommates. It was a dark brownstone on a dark street with unattended mail notices on the door. This could very well be home to a serial killer – or just some girls in their twenties. She greeted me at the door, tiny unclawed kitten in hand. Halloween cut-outs were still hanging, Christmas lights were up, and Hannukah decoration everywhere. On the coffee table, large piles of fake coins revealed a big game of dreidel. In this room of holidays and antique furniture, I wondered if bodies were piled up in the basement. I went forward with my adventure: played with the kitten, ordered food, and learned how to play dreidel.
How did I end up here in the first place? On her Tinder profile, her face shots revealed a pretty girl with a nice body. Our first series of messages waned and the chat stopped. Like a dog, I revisited it when I saw a new pic: her dressed as Bunny Lebowski (her friends were the rest of the cast). Fun, great taste in movies, and a bikini photo. In reality, her head shots were well-angled with an expression (think how/why people do duck face) that hid her strong facial features.
The roommates returned from their plans before the food got there. We ended up all sitting around (three female roommates, a boyfriend, and me) sharing food, drink, and smoke. As I got drunker and higher, the realities started settling in: I was attracted to one of her roommates and my host was annoying and more than zany. Her heavy use of Yiddish catch phrases (oy vey) went from unique to irritating. She snapped at both of us as we talked and traded looks across the table. The most telling moment was when my date was petting the kitty and her roommate took it off her hands to do the cuddling. Metaphors. She finally retrieved it and started to dance with it, which meant shaking the poor thing wildly. They warned that it’s probably not a good idea to do that. I immediately thought of her shaking her newborn to death.
I discreetly called a taxi through Uber. When the car came. I announced my departure and awkwardly waved goodbye to them as I sidled towards the door. The boyfriend shook my hand: I believe because he hoped I would come back and have a partner in his little situation. The teacher walked me to the door and I stepped out into the hallway out of their sight, so she could give me a hug. As we hugged, we began making it, which quickly led to aggressive groping. It stopped when I began to try to pet her kitten and I made my way out. Part of me wondered if I just missed an opportunity for an awesome one-night stand. In other words, did I just lose?
I resolved not to call her since deep down I had no long-term vision for us. But the self-loathing had grown as the weekend approached and I wanted to win this game. I had to be sure, so date number two. I went to a friend’s party early, met her for dinner where her strange mannerisms continued in full show, then we ended up at my place. We were making out, then the clothes came off. Incredible body. We ended up having sex after major foreplay efforts on my part, and she left after a few hours. I woke up the next day reviewing the date. More importantly, collecting my thoughts since I was a little tipsy after my friend’s party. First, I was thinking about the nurse during dinner. Second, I was thinking how irritating her mannerisms and personality were. My base instincts took over as the night progressed: I wanted the win. Aside from a few text messages, I have not made any attempts to see her since. It was an empty win and it only makes me feel that there is more negative energy stacked against me. After a week or so, the feelings of guilt and greater self-loathing are the only things that remain.
The reality of my situation is that this is no longer a game. This is life. I believe there are karmic forces at play. I hope fewer people will be hurt, while more people, especially me, will be truly happy.