RSS

Tag Archives: new york dating

Parts of a Whole — by Mack

Something's gotta change.

Something’s gotta change.

“I gotta go. I promised I’d meet my friends on the east side. They’re waiting for me.”

I’ve said those very words a dozen times. Now they’re being said to me. Katherine, with her shoe half way on, slips her index finger into the heel as a makeshift shoehorn. I reach for her wrist and lead her back to the bed. Before she has a chance to object, I soothe her with a kiss. With my tongue in her mouth she gently sucks, then releases, but not before biting my lower lip. I think she just might stay.

She breaks away. But with one part consolation, one part condescension, she cups my chin. The way someone might to a silly dog.

“You’re too much fun, you know that?” She gently slaps my cheek.

I want to say, “Please stay. I love the way you reach into my shirt from my sleeve. I was hoping we’d wake up together in the morning. I could make breakfast and you could do that thing where you hug me from behind and you rest your head on my shoulder.”

But instead I say, “It’s all good. My buddy, Ian has a thing in Williamsburg.” What else am I going to say?

It’s later.

“What was I supposed to say to her, Mack?”

It’s a different time and a different place. Since high school, over the last ten years of my life, I’ve played around, had fun in the city. But not Malcolm. He got a serious job, got married, had a kid, and is now getting divorced.

“She said she just wasn’t happy anymore. And I knew it, too. She didn’t lead on, but I knew it. Hell, we were still talking on the phone 2 times a day and texting all through out. But…I just had this feeling. I’m fine though. I really am.”

I want to believe that. But I can’t imagine how he could be anything but devastated.  I just want to say that thing, that nugget of wisdom that makes the world alright again. But the only thing that comes to mind are television inspired cliches. I am woefully ill-equipped to make any substantive comment whatsoever.

“That sux, man,” is what I come up with.

It’s even later.

“So you said the horse is big, like a Clydesdale. Dark, with a white star on his nose, and is eating the flowers around the room? Well the horse represents your ideal mate.”

“Oh my gawd! This…is…so freaky!” Beth says as she puts her hand on my arm.

I’m running The Cube. It’s a personality test/game/cold read exercise pickup artists use. It’s no wonder I have no faith in marriage. If it couldn’t work out for Malcolm and Meredith, how could I ever believe it would ever work out for someone like me?

“So you probably like your guys big, but since he’s eating your flowers and they represent your social circle, I bet your boyfriends often get in the way of your friends.”

Her eyes are so wide now, they’re about to pop out of their sockets. She puts both of her hands over her eyes and throws her head back in disbelief.

“My mama, says that exact thing to me awull the ti-em!”

It’s a little earlier.

Malcolm is singing in front of the bar. I have no idea how he can get out the words to “Don’t Stop Believing.” I don’t care how drunk or how much of a high he gets from karaoke, after that bombshell, I don’t see how anyone can be a believer.

Now it’s much later.

And I have made peace with the fact that I am kissing a married woman. She understand a part of me no one ever has before.  It’s the polar opposite of Beth. I didn’t go after Nadia, it really did just happen. But I am not thinking about the how. I’m thinking about the profound sense of wholeness I had given up on ever finding. And the nagging knowledge that it will not end well. I’ve crossed a line. I am someone who has done irreparable harm. But I keep telling myself, “I don’t believe in marriage anymore.”

It’s earlier.

Back in the bedroom with Katherine. She’s putting on her coat and pulling her hair out from beneath the collar to flop down on her shoulders. As she leaves, the light spills into the room. Katherine has a beautiful silhouette. I could be happy with her. But for some reason it isn’t happening. It’s just out of reach. Something has got to change. I give it one more shot.

“Let’s do something next week. What’s your Wednesday like?”

She peeks her head back around the door.

“Yea, I’m pretty busy. But text me…gotta go.”

So something does change.

I’ll become deeply puzzled…

“We still talk, Mack. Hell, I still talk to her father. I’ll always love her. But more I came to understand her the more I realized I wasn’t what she needed.”

“Was she what you needed?”

Malcolm chuckles to himself.

Then reckless…

“But the star on the nose of the horse means you won’t settle for anyone who doesn’t stand out. Like really special.”

My hand goes to her inner thigh, right in the middle of the Starbucks.

And finally selfish…

“I should go.” Nadia whispers.

But she doesn’t move. She’s curled up, cradled in my arms as I’m sitting on the floor with my back against the refrigerator. I could spend the rest of the day here. All my defenses are down. I’ve never had this before. How was I supposed to abstain from this? How was I supposed to say no? Don’t you have the right to be selfish sometimes?

Nadia finally gets up. I want to ask, “Where do we go from here?” but I’m terrified of what she’ll say.

She looks at me with profound sadness in her eyes. I know at that moment I will never see her again.

Something has to change again. I just have no idea what to do anymore.

 
1 Comment

Posted by on March 21, 2013 in By Mack, Dating

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Another ending — By Mack

She doesn’t even use the recycling bin.

It was a few months ago.

We’re walking back to the apartment. There’s all this tension. The conversation is awkward and flat. Somethin’s up. Somethin’ she needs to say but either doesn’t want to or doesn’t want to deal with the fallout. I’m 98% sure she’s about to break things off.

I’ve felt this coming for about 3 weeks. Last week I crossed from suspicion to being pretty damn sure. The change in the texts, that’s a big red flag. When you first start, they’re like Christmas presents. You’re damn hungry for them. Over time you relax, but they still got that hint of excitement. That immediacy to respond, when that goes, then you know you’re in trouble. Granted, people get busy. Involved. They’re “going through something.” But if they’re still into you they’ll find a way to get back to you. They’ll give you an “authentic response.” Not a cookie cut one. And the divide grows from there.

We’re a block from the apartment. 98% sure. It’s funny because there’s still 2% of me that’s still in denial. Maybe it is all in my head. Maybe she really is going through something. For some stupid reason I think that if I get her back to my room, get her in my bed, I can somehow fix it. I don’t know, remind her of the physical connection? Maybe I just want her one more time.

Then she stops. She looks down. Brushes her hair out of her face. Then looks up at me. It’s this moment, this second, where I’m sure it’s coming. But it hasn’t happened yet! She’s still mine! This look is coming from one place, the place of her being my girlfriend. When she opens her mouth and says what she gonna say, it’ll be from somewhere else. Foreign. Independent. And I won’t be welcome anymore.

My mind has jumps to a month ago. The last “good” time we had together. I say good, I mean fun. I had already started to figure the break up was coming. But it was something I could still fix back then. We’re outside the hospital, playing like 6 year-olds along the fence of this closed cafe. Her eyes were so different then. Filled with…I don’t know…some kind of wonder. It was like she was drinking me in.

She hops off the fence, grabs my hand, runs across the street demanding we lie in the grass. The thought of an ant or spider crawling on makes me roll my eyes. As I light my cigarette, I wonder if she’s too young for me. But it’s too late, she pulls me down. She gives me that look again. It makes me feel like some sort of diamond. Girls don’t usually make me feel precious. It is a damn sweet memory.

In the now. She begins to speak. The thing that I hate, is that what she’s gonna say, it changes that memory. Like, corrupts it. Making me question it. For a while, I just assume it was a lie. How could she be so damn in love with me then and now…nothing?…”thanks for playing, here’s a copy of the home game.” I’ll eventually figure it was a misunderstanding.

She says the words I know she has to say. All of a sudden I’m so damn hot. I glaze over a bit. She talks. When I was younger man I might have pleaded and begged. When I was younger. but not quite that young, I might have attacked her. Been vile. If I did truly feel like she was the “one” I might lay it all on the line pouring my heart out. But deep down I know she wasn’t. At least not from our relationship so far. What’s funny is that I really wanted her to be the “one.” But I’m starting to believe I may not be capable of feeling that for anyone. So instead of all those other actions, I just…comply.

We reach an understanding. As much of one as I think we can reach. And we have that goodbye kiss. That take in all and everything you can. It is a mix of sweet familiarity and the pain of euthanized hope. I feel her tears on my cheek as we pull away half an inch. Just breathing, thinking, feeling. Lingering in hesitation to let go. That uncomfortable heat returns. It’s an anxious feeling, but I stomach it for as long as I can. We eventually
we do let go and slowly back away from each other.

Thank you’s and pleasant words are exchanged. I ask her what she’s going to do. She says she’s gonna stay at a friend’s tonight. Then I clarify, I mean with the roommate situation.

“I’m moving out.”

“Gonna go to Brooklyn or somethin’?”

“Actually, I’m going to move back to Seattle. I’ve been thinking about leaving New York for a while.”

So long…

It’s the 2nd gut bomb of the night, but I didn’t see this one coming. I figure it’s for the best. I watch her leave for her friend’s for the night. There a good breath of relief. The anticipation of doom is finally gone. But of course I’m sad and somewhat angry. But mostly sad. I’ll miss Jill.

-Mack-ified for your enjoyment.

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 2, 2012 in By Mack, Dating

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

And now the thrilling conclusion…Quantum Entropy! – By Mack

The conclusion.

Soooo…this post is about a month and a half over due. Whoops. But better late than never, right? For those who don’t remember you can catch up with the preceding saga here (1) and here (2). Otherwise shorter synopsis: cool, smart, and sexy dorky girl (who we will call Quantum Entropy) I had a connection with and was dating.  However there was a faint hint of of something being “a little off.”

When planning a second date, dinner and drinks simply won’t do. It usually calls for something to wow her, or at least inspire fun. Normally I’d have to rack my brain, but with Quantum, I had the comfort to take it easy. We ended up at an improv show a friend of mine works for. I found myself up on stage giving suggestion to the actors. Some of my suggestions  were so out there one of them stopped and said “really?” I tried to get Quantum to go volunteer (by grabbing her hand and raising it myself) but she punched my arm and playfully called me an ass.

Laughter may not actually be the best medicine, I’m pretty sure it’s an aphrodisiac as we were all over each other at the bar.  About a half a dozen drinks later, we’re stumbling around the streets of New York looking for a Boar’s Head deli. I swear it was the only mile in Manhattan without one. We ended up in a Walgreens for a bottle of water when we passed some inflatable lawn furniture. Quantum chimed in with, “You know there are people who are into balloons. Like for sex.” To which I snapped back, “They’re called ‘looners.’ It’s a fetish.” She gave me a perplexed look. “You’re not into that are you?”

I should have said no. I’m not into balloons or any other kinky fetishes.  But there was something that stuck out to me. Maybe it was a suspicion of a closed mindedness I wanted to challenge. Maybe it was the tone in her voice, the implied condescension. Maybe it was the look on her face of perturbed dissatisfaction. I didn’t think she was unattractive at all, but in that moment she was. So I replied, “What if I was?

“I don’t think I could date you,” she retorted.  I just laughed it off.  But I don’t think I ever answered her.

We ended up going back to her place but upon entering the apartment she warned me that her roommate was a little “weird.” The plump (but not fat) middle aged man, named Dirk, sat at his dinner table with a look of dissatisfaction. I tried, in my own charming manner, to engage him. I’m usually pretty good at winning people over, even the socially inept. He just stared at me and answered my questions with short single syllable responses. “Yes,” “no,” and the dismissive”huh.” Quantum grabbed me, ushering me into her room.

“Dirk can be a little creepy, but the rent is cheap.”

“And I’m sure he doesn’t charge extra for watching you as you sleep.” My joke didn’t go over well as she gave me a terrified look. “I’m kidding.”

“I think he might have cameras in here.” With this phrase I’d normally start to question the sanity of my present company. But the Dirk really was creepy. “Let’s get out of here” she suggested.  We took a cab back to my place, eating our sandwiches during the ride. Quantum gave me excuses why she was still rooming with the guy. Being a full time student doesn’t leave much time for work and living in Chelsea isn’t cheap. But anyway you slice it, creepy crazy roommate was a mood killer.

Back at my place we got back into it, but there was something askew.  Maybe it was the fetish comment, maybe it was my suspicions of her paranoia, and maybe the thought of Dirk possibly scheming of ways to kill me and collect my pubic hair. Whatever it was, we both couldn’t get lost in the moment. Suddenly Quantum chimed in, “You know what would be fun?” She pulled out a prescription pill bottle.  “I don’t think I need any Viagra.”

“No, it’s an Ambien. It’s more fun that way.”

“I’m still pretty drunk. Is that safe?”

“It makes it better.”

My powers of deduction and reasoning were greatly diminished at that point. I think we had already each done a shot when we got into my room. But I decided what the hell, down the hatch. And for a good bit it was fun…and then I woke up. As you can guess much of the night is fuzzy. So I don’t remember what I said to Quantum as she was getting dressed to sneak out my door. So the rest of this is pretty much me guessing what we said to each other.

“Where are you going?”

“I think…I think I’m going to go home.”

“What? Why? I was hoping to wake up next to you.”

“I’m not really a cuddler.”

“Are you sure you’re going to be alright? You had an Ambien too.”

“I’ll be fine. I have them like every night.”

“Umm…okay…”

Had I not been super dugged/drunk, I would have been more insistent about her staying. I wouldn’t have been good to go home. Granted I wouldn’t have made her sleep with me if she wasn’t comfortable (I could always take the couch.) I don’t see how should could have made it home safe. Especially with Dirk probably waiting for her. But there’s only so much I could do in that state and holding my head up wasn’t one of them. Quantum walked out of my apartment and out of my life. I think we may have had one superficial text conversation after that. But otherwise that well had dried up.

To start anew.

–Big Mack Attack.  o_O*

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on August 10, 2012 in By Mack, Dating

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,