I waited all evening for Monsieur. He says such sweet things to me on the phone, but never appears for our dates. I think he might be trying to recruit me for ISIS. This is what I think many of the men on okcupid are doing. Perhaps I enter into our exchanges with an air of suspicion, which is why the chemistry mostly fails to take off. When it does take off, I am left with a P or an A, which is sort of like loving the air beside you in bed, pretending it’s a person.
P is sitting at home painting. His apartment was tolerable for a week because his new maid came. But now the empty bags of chips, half drank bottles of red wine, and plastic bottles are drifting back in. His lack of enthusiasm toward me is keeping me at bay. I get one word, lukewarm texts in response. He does not invite me out on dates, or even over. I am too tired, too old to be tolerated.
The dating is getting to me. I am beginning to resent the time taken from my writing. A few days ago I went out with Señor. He was handsome, silver-haired, with gentlemanly manners. He cracked corny jokes throughout dinner, and folded a paper airplane that he threw at the waiter. We walked to a nearby bar so he could sit near a fire. A very drunk man jumped onto the firepit and made a big show out of clenching a loonie in his butt cheeks, then holding it there while he walked around the fire. Later, the same man joined our conversation and spent half an hour giving Señor valuable dating advice like, “Kiss the woman no matter what, even if she says no. Just do what you want to do. Women like that.”
I wanted Señor to make Loonie leave, to be firm. I wanted him to take control and I kept having thoughts like, “Be a man!”, which is what Loonie was trying to teach him in his backward way. But I did not make Loonie leave. I did not wrest control back, not even when Loonie grabbed my hand and pulled me to my feet, turning to Señor and saying, “There, see what I just did? I took control.” Shortly after, Señor got up and went to the restroom, leaving me with Loonie who began to criticize my date. I half-heartedly stood up for Señor, but really I just wanted to get home. I missed P.
I saw P the next night. We talked until 2am, lying in bed, our legs tangled up. I want to let go into this falling, but his heart is a battleground. It is rigged with minefields, razor wire, hidden trenches, snipers, bombs. I stand on the soft ground, pink flesh. The rush of his blood moving is like bird song. The air smells of warm milk, vanilla, cedar. I am alone inside of him. One false move and I’ll be torn to shreds. If I stay frozen I am safe. My feet planted, my senses open. It is so lovely in here. So very lovely. And lonely.