The Last time I saw Dick

The last time I spoke to my husband was a year ago, he contacted me- first time since the separation hearing- because he got a letter informing him that he had to pay property tax on our flat, and it wasn’t fair. As I read his name, there was a flood of emotion. Not hatred, not hatred. Just the memory of when his name went with mine, when we were tied up together. His name, his name, the name I was forced to sign after my own on the act of sale when we bought the apartment, even though I didn’t take his stupid name because I didn’t want to, and I already had my own double barrelled name anyway. But they were all men around the table.

There was the ancient white haired notary, impeccable, ivory hands like a pope’s, latest in a long line of king’s lackeys, Oh the money that man skims off the top. The cream of my life’s earnings. Then my father, shaking hands and knocking his fist on the table, asking if it’s mahogany, one piece? What a table. One solid piece of wood. One of these for the office, eh? Waggling his eyebrows at me. So alien to us, the legal, the formal world. He’s a businessman, there’s a certain amount of respect for him even though he’s scruffy and unconventional with bitten cuticles and a battered leather briefcase. Me, dressed up nice, makeup, well groomed for an Irish woman but not quite up to Italian standards. I was just a little girl to them, playing house, peering over the shoulders of the men. And there we were, my dad, my Papi, who was getting more estranged from me every day, and my husband, and then the owner, a weasly man waving his hand sickly to indicate all the properties he owned, who regarded our odd little family with some disgust. Foreigners, and an Italian who didn’t drive or dress in the style he could clearly afford to. Those men, they just looked at me blankly as I said I didn’t want to sign his name after mine on all the documents.

Why should I?  I elected not to take his name when we married. Isn’t a signature something important, something expressive? How could I SIGN a name that isn’t mine? They just looked at me and said “that’s how we do things in Italy.” I said no, it’s not my name. There were so many pages in that document, each to be signed. Each page. And it wasn’t my name. But my dad said this isn’t Ireland, this is how it goes here. I bristled. The little notary added, trying to help, trying to move it all along, because his time was more money than I could imagine, he said “it’s so we know who you are, who the document is talking about.” Without my husband’s name at the end, presumably, I could have been anyone, anyone. I wonder if an unmarried couple buys a house, how the hell anyone knows whose name that is, with the female name, the name unattached to any man mentioned. Who is she, if not someone’s wife?

But this feminist blather, I couldn’t even begin to verbalise. I was outnumbered, and making too much of it, so I swallowed the bile and gracelessly signed around 80 times, 80 times, like I’d been a bad girl, 80 times to drill it into me, Abby Natascha Di Gianni Flicker in Garcia Ramirez, over and over as the men watched until I had hot tears stinging my eyes, and I fell into a place where the words had a beat, and it drummed through my fingers, Abby Natascha Di Gianni Flicker in Garcia Ramirez, again and again and again and my fingers cramped and seized up, it wasn’t fair, nothing was fair, I was buying a lousy little apartment that needed work, and I was the only one of us with any money at all, and I was putting my every penny into the notary fees, to pay the little man, and the estate agent fees, so Graziella could have her Jimmy Choos, the odious woman, almost deformed by her sense of style. Blue mascara and perma tan and frosted lips, and everything so bright and lifted, a sad caricature of youth.

All my money, my grandparents’ generous gift to me, into this apartment with this man, and I loved him still then, but then I know that I had learnt to love alongside hate, too. Stubbornly, because I didn’t want to let go of love wherever I found it, it was too intoxicating. And I sort of always hated him, from the beginning, when he was awful and cruel and used me. And made me feel stupid, or invalid, or like a silly woman, when I was so much cleverer than him. Perhaps that was why he did it.

So I handed over the money, all those thousands, I never saw money like that before or since, and the notary thanked me but it was nothing to him. It was just some kids playing house, plankton, and he had such big fish. But it was all the money I ever had. And then three years later, a year ago, maybe, he emails me, this man whose name I signed with mine, his name brings me back to that table made from one piece of mahogany and impregnated with the metallics of sweat and money. And after his name, after I let myself float off into venomous memory, it subsides, and I can read the message.

We haven’t spoken in so long, it’s surreal to converse with him. Scary, because for so long he’s inhabited a world that’s unchangeable, fixed- that is, the past, but now he’s writing to me and I remember how volatile and poisonous he became, so I’m very aware that this exchange now is not fixed, this is all being written as I write, as I choose my reply. Choose carefully. He holds some power still, to fuck with my life. So I read and reread, and think before I type. He says they’re asking him for property tax, but it’s not fair, because he doesn’t even live in the apartment, so why should he pay? Oh, fair. That word. What is fair? Who teaches us the word, even? What use does it have? The last time you could judge a thing to be fair, I believe it was a birthday party and somebody was cutting the cake with Pythagoras theorems and a spirit level. I point my index finger at the computer screen and its neighbours squeeze tight into a fist. It’s a strange gesture, I’ve never made it before. But I must be physical, or I’ll burst something in my head. My jaw is clenched too.

Oh you you you… Not fair. Not fair to leave me with the whole mortgage, and all those old bills, and never pay, knowing if you don’t I will, and if I don’t, my father has to, because he’s our guarantor. And all the money I put in, and all the money my dad put in, and then you say it’s not fair I get to live in the apartment.

When I told my lawyer, the bitch with the sexless frame stamped in Versace, when I told her he moved out, and never paid me another cent, she told me firmly, you’re a fool. she didn’t think much of my dad or I. She was polite to him, and talked to me like I hadn’t just got married too young, but more like I’d come over from Estonia and given my passport and money to a man in a van who claimed he was a modelling agent. She glared at me as I spoke, her jaw sharp enough to castrate, and I never knew if I was giving her too much information or too little, but she thought I was a damned fool for not trying to get anything from him when we split, and not just that, but to lose money too.

I asked her if I could sue him for the money he owed me, but she said no, there was no point, it would cost more to sue than I’d get back. And he could just skip the country anyway. That wasn’t fair. Debt is an awful thing, it hangs around your neck like a bag of rocks, and it hurts because it’s heavy but also you remember when you picked up those rocks, and you remember that you made that choice for yourself, back then, and you didn’t care it would hurt now because it was good then. It was hard to be stuck in Italy for a year on my own, with a separation, having lost my closest ally in the country, and custody of all our friends, and with my little sisters wanting to cheer me up but lacking the tools, because they were too young. And with that debt, but it was worse still because it wasn’t my debt, and I hadn’t picked up the rocks.

They were his, him, the man with the name, the name they slapped on me, and he left when he wanted, he moved on as soon as he was ready, he met a new girl, kept the visa from our marriage, met his new girl. An Italian. She’s older than me, less attractive, simpler looking. The kind of girl a man would go crazy to love, because she’d make him happy. Not me. I don’t make men happy. I drag them down, and up, and down again. I’m sweet sometimes but then maybe too sweet, and then I’m all claws and pathos and I need, need need. And I’m not sure of anything but I’m passionate about it all, passionately optimistic, but nihilistic, and obsessive and compulsive and impulsive and lazy and hopeless and full of scorn. A woman like that, all simplicity, grounded, real; god, I’ve looked down on that kind of wman but she could make a man happy.

I don’t feel jealous, no, he’s a stranger now, I look at his face and I don’t even know if I remember anything about him, anything I used to know, his secrets, his face, the lines… Oh yes, but there were lines under his eyes, in a sort of network, I remember looking at them, scrutinising his face and thinking he’s older than me, he’ll die first, and I’ll be so lonely without him. But that was another face, and another version of me. there isn’t a grain left of the girl who loved him or cared if he lived or died. I’m not jealous, not of that petty, greedy, mean bully. I’m not jealous. It just feels sad, sometimes, that the people who aren’t good enough for me, supposedly, well, they’re much more capable of finding happiness. Simplicity, and perhaps humility. I find it harder now,because I want so much, and I start to wonder if all my self satisfaction isn’t just self soothing, and maybe i don’t have anything to offer a man after all.

Maybe I’m just young, and men are attracted to me, and I’m intelligent, so I tell myself I’m this full package, this wonderful woman, too good for most I meet. But I’m lonely, now, sometimes. Not in my own thoughts. It’s the physical space, it starts to feel like time for me to move on, onto someone, try it again, more sensible this time, less of a fool, or a different kind of fool. I’m not jealous he moved on, I’m just sad that he’s better at it than I am, that I’m the one still recalling these moments with anger because he’s the last person to share my life, and I haven’t found someone to fill that space since, not really. And tonight, he wrote to me again, a year since we last exchanged some curt, emotionless words, and tonight he asks not for money, but for information. When are we getting divorced? When can we apply? Can we already? Are we good to go?

It occurs to me, he wants to marry his girlfriend. I tell him October. We’ll need a lawyer. A lady told me we could share one, if it’s amicable. I snorted.

Amicable, like our marriage. He never hit me.

He never hit me. But I took a fucking pummelling.

Tonight I tell him October, and I’m about to say we need a lawyer, but I choose not to. I don’t need to enter a discussion with him now. I can’t bear to let him back into my reality. He’s boxed up, fixed, sealed, he stays the same, in the past. If I engage with him now, I can’t… it’s all old. It’s all been pored over, I’ve woven all my own justifications around the past, processed everything, and now I’m firmly in the right, and I didn’t hurt him, no, he deserved it. And anyway I was hurt too.  And he got a visa, and I got his debt. So it’s all set in stone, and let it rest. Please.

But sooner or later i’ll have to not just engage, but speak face to face with him.

With husband. Dick.

The last time I saw Dick was Italy, two years ago, and I had lost weight and given up smoking and I felt so good and happy to be casting off the things that held me, that saddened me. I wore a blue dress I’d bought before our wedding, that I’d considered getting married in but it was a bit tight and then it got too tight altogether as I put on weight.

I had never worn it before, and he didn’t know it was nearly my wedding dress. But I knew, and it gave me a secret power. I wore it confidently, looking great, looking much better than I looked on my wedding day. I felt better. I felt free, or closer to it than ever. In the pit of my stomach was a little twisted piece of pleasure, because I was wearing a dress I couldn’t wear while we were together, and now I was better, a better version of myself without him. We met outside and walked in, the Palazzo di giustizia, big awful hideous eyesore, reminds me always of the Ministries in 1984. Minitru, Miniluv… We walked past staircase A, B, C… it’s a huge complex. A path runs all around, and it takes ages. Lawyers everywhere. The invisible strings of money and power whipping past as heels clicked neatly. Ball stomping heels.

We made small talk. Waited outside the courtroom, finally were ushered in. An old man, a beautiful old man with crinkled eyes and an appropriately gentle smile for us,  in a little room. He was the judge, apparently. I expected an amphitheatre of a court room. Of course it wouldn’t be that. It was a little office. We sat in rows facing the judge. Mari Angela, my lawyer. Dick. Me. I remembered our wedding day. The stony faced registrar asking do you, and Dick bellowed “ABSOLUTELY.” And I was embarrassed, a little, and annoyed that he did it and not I, and then I was going to be the boring one who said I do.

But the judge read our statement made nine months before when we had really split, and the terms of the separation, which I craned my neck to see because I remembered his tears falling on the page and a sick part of me wanted to see the smudged writing. We agreed and signed, and I signed my own name, and then the judge said you are now legally separated, and I wish you the best of luck. And his eyes were on mine as he said that, and I got a feeling of his wishing me well, specifically me, and his understanding, in those eyes, of what I had escaped from, the sad stifled life. I felt he must see so many couples do what we did, and he must catch these glimpses. But his eyes sought me out, and I thought he recognised me and understood. And I felt the whoosh of freedom, and my mouth stretched out into a grin, and I begged myself to stop grinning, to switch it off, go back to the sombre divorce face, it was so rude, so cruel to grin, god, no, and Dick there looking sad and lost. I couldn’t stop smiling so I smirked, but that was awful too, so I strained and strained and covered my face with a hand and scratched my nose, desperately. But the smile leaked out anyway and I was just grateful my body didn’t break out into a dance, or leap into the air, because it felt like it might have.

Oh, to be truly free. October, October. How long will it take and how much will it cost, to get there?

To finally leave him behind, Dick, his name, his face, his part in my life.

10 things I hate about dickhead features! A list-based moving on session.

I feeeeeel good.

I feel happy.

Guess who helped me feel better?

My mother.

I called her earlier teary and full of mucus and she offered to come see me and that was what I wanted. I said please bring tobacco because… and I didn’t tell her this… I had been smoking butts of cigarettes that were in my ashtray and it was horrible and then I smoked all the butts and I had none left and that was a full ashtray.

She took her sweet time, she did, but she came with houmous and tomatoes and lettuce and a bunch of fresh wildflowers and a bottle of wine and just enough whiskey to make three hot whiskeys in a plastic bottle, and tobacco, and a bar of chocolate and oh my god I couldn’t have asked for anything more.

Except maybe if she had brought my towels, I left them in her place when I went away because she was going to wash them not because I can’t wash my own towels but I didn’t want to leave damp towels in my bedsit for two weeks and come home to rotted smelly towels. But she forgot to wash them so I didn’t have any towels. I have been drying myself with my pyjama bottoms and my tablecloth for over a week now. Now that I think of it, I have only had two showers in that week. Mostly because of the lack of towels, but… hmm. Skankay. I really should have showered today but I was too depressed. Anyway I forgot all about the towels but the rest of the stuff was just what the doctor ordered. If I was the kind of timewasting individual like Sinead O Connor, who would take her heartache to a trained medical professional. Which I’m not.

But we talked. I told my story, we talked… we talked properly, for hours, without fighting… for the first time in a long long… long time. It was lovely. She felt for me, she was horrified at the sight of my swollen eyelids, I look WEIRD. I really do.. but she was helpful, I don’t even know what she said but talking and talking to someone with more experience, who knows me… it really helped.

I feel pretty good.

I attribute some of this to the wine.

Then rebound guy was online, actually this was before my mother showed up, and we had a nice chat. Good banter. I’m not going to lead him on but it just reminds me, I am not some discarded loser of a woman, I got suitors. I got people who want a piece o this… I am so much better than the blubbering ex of some immature guy whose main attractive feature is an instinct to hold a woman’s face when he kisses her and say pretty things.

OH YAY! Another breakthrough, I’m reducing him. This has been really tough because I kept coming back to no, he was still great… but I’m reducing him now. Booya. Progression along the stages, from self loathing to him loathing. The lesser evil.

Also I have wine, the wine is helping fo sho.

And I’m back in work tomorrow if my eyes manage to de-puff… wine probably not helping this. God I look insane with these eyes. They are super swollen. I’m not talking puffy, red, I’m talking looks like I got punched in the face, the old one two. Fucks like a butterfly, stings like a bee that you are allergic to.

Wow we really were made for each other… I’m a motherfucking poet too.

God I want to smack that boy. A woman scorned.. oh boy you don’t know what you are messing with. I will destroy you if you ever decide to come crawling back. I have done the revenge-get-back-together-with-just to screw-with-your-head before and I am not above doing it again. No that’s just bravado… it’s true but I was like 16… I am not going to do it again and I am probably not going to get the chance, but I’m proud of myself for being cheery enough to think of REWENGE.

He can suck on my hairy ballsack. I don’t have one but if I did it would be really hairy.

You know when I went over to see him in France he had shaved his pubes? He isn’t a very hairy guy, he’s kind of blonde.. so it was utterly pointless and sort of pathetic. Like it was just patchy and there were still hairs randomly. I didn’t know why he did it, but the friction after three days of constant bedroom shenanigans (not all of which occured in the bedroom) has left me still kind of raw.   It was such an unneccessary gesture.. I put it in the vault of things I will eventually remember when I don’t think he’s amazing any more. YAY!

Let’s open the vault.

Bear in mind this is the passtime of a loser, a rejectee in love. None of these things bothered me when we were together. but now, let us deconstruct the image of perfection I built to keep all the nagging thoughts and nagging friends at bay.

1. That Italian accent he thought was really funny to put on all the time. But I didn’t know it was supposed to be an Italian accent at first because it was awful and uncalled for. Seriously, it sucked major ballsack. And not in a good way. (I do it in a good way)

2. The stupid youtube video of two babies. I have always found it hideously offputting when a guy invites me to watch somethign “hilarious” on youtube. It’s supposed to be one of my dealbreakers, if it isn’t hilarious. This wasn’t hilarious. I forced a laugh, because I’m a weak willed man-pleasin’ biatch.

3. Minor bum acne. Nuff said.

4. He made a big effort to avoid things that were too cheesy. The sunset would have been too cheesy if it was perfect. Oh sorry, I forget that it’s important to be poetic at all times without actually hitting the cheesy note. That’s important.

5. He didn’t like my plastic wine glasses so we stole real wine glasses from a bar. I enjoyed the stealing aspect of this, but not so much the responsibility of having to keep wine glasses in my house that might break. I liked my plastic red ones. They were safe and practical and nice. Obviously not POETIC enough. But practical.

6. He didn’t know what he was doing in the oral department. I don’t mean to be crude (haha. lies.) but he belonged… belongs… to the school of cunning linguists who think the hanging rashers are an erogenous zone. No… no. No one wants their bacon bits nibbled at. I didn’t care because really it’s all about the penetray for may, but it’s still a legitimate a flaw. I gave him GREAT head. I wonder what rebound guy is doing?

7. He’s a hypocritical emotional fuckwit.

8. He lives with his parents.

9. Some of the music he listens to is really shit.

10. I’m clutching at straws here… oh wait, he’s 21 and thinks he knows about love and life and he doesn’t know shit. That’s one. There we go, 10 flaws.

OH!

11. He didn’t really read much. what is that, he loves poetic things but not reading? So then I get to feel like a dunce because he watches GOOD films, films about things… and all I like are romantic comedies and non romantic comedies but actually I read a fuck load of books so that’s just stupid, movies are my mindless escapism, I read books when I wanna think.

I’m feeling optimistic because this is the first time I mention any of these things. Because they interrupted my perfect man appreciation, but there they are. Not really very good flaws, nothing like ex husband’s, or anything. Ex husband could fill a page of detailed, mind blowing dealbreakers.

I am moving oooonnnn up!

And I’m moving to France! If I get into English teacher school. And then I’ll be all by myself again but it will be exciting and I will not be a hermit, I will go out and meet people and learn French and teach English and make friends and meet an older, more mature French man with a name like Jacques and he will bring me to his really fucking beautiful apartment full of art, and we will drink amazing wine but he won’t be pretentious about the glasses, but of course he will have nice glasses, and he’ll show me how to eat oysters but not act like it MEANS anything to know how to eat oysters or not, and we will lie in bed talking about books with our sweaty sex legs all tangled up in a white sheet, and he’ll notice tihngs about me that are flattering but also kind of make me sad, and lonely, and I’ll fall back into his arms and he’ll admire me and tell me… not ask me… that he is taking me somewhere on Saturday, and to wear something fancy, and we’ll make love and fall apart and come together and fall apart and eventually there will be croque monsieurs that he will make appear out of thin air, when I think he’s going to the bathroom, and he won’t care about all the crumbs I get in the bed and he’ll tell me I’m wonderful and his bathroom will be so far from his bedroom and the windows so big, there will never be any need for me to hold it in again and get all bloated, and I’ll leave before he could ever imagine wanting me to leave, and he’ll lie looking at me getting dressed and grinning at his good luck at finding such an awesome lover and then he’ll send me something to my house, flowers, a note, something…

Yeah I believe I’m actually pretty good now, I’m just hopelessly in love with the idea of being in love.

I want a big romantic sexy story. I want it better than Antoine, I want it so much better. I think I’m good though.

I just want more of what I had with him, more but BETTER. For grown ups. YES I WANT ROMANCE.

I am feeling damn good. Fuck Antoine, just wait until I meet Jacques the art dealer with his cellar full of wines and trouser full of snake. He’s going to make me feel aaaalllll riiiiiight.

I’m sorry for all this I subject you too. I am a rollercoaster woman. This is what most pissed me off about my argument with assholefeatures. Because he thinks I’m soooo in love with him, crazy in love. NO! I’m just a hyper emotional, possibly bipolar type of person. I don’t mean to bandy around terms like bipolar when I don’t understand it but whatever it is, I’m so fine I don’t even care any more, he’s a jerk. Also I have wine! Wine is fine.

I might see if rebound guy is online and use him for banter and to pad my self esteem a little bit.

The Hunt for Red Cock-something

Hmmm where was I?

Oh yes… FREAKING OUT about some guy.

No, I won’t be continuing in that vein. Sorry about the last post… It’s just my ego is my achilles heel… And it doesn’t even have a small surface area like the heel… my ego is like a top-heavy iceberg, 90% visible. What lies beneath? Self-doubt maybe. I’m not sure. This analogy is boring me.

Let’s move on.

Ok, so although you might never want to read another line about that guy (I called him Ross last week) and his stupid asshole face, he is actually, maybe, probably going to be reappearing here…

A week after his ego-massage hit and run, just when I was back to feeling like a strong independent woman on a lady razor or tampon ad, seizing the motherfucking day and throttling it with my bare hands, when out of the fucking blue, my phone emits an uncharacteristic sound… you’ve got mail, biatch.

Probably my mother, I thought. It’s always my mother. “Hi chicken, just having a walk with the dog. How are you?” ARRRGH Stop calling me chicken. I am a grown-ass woman. And stop fucking texting me all the time for no reason. I keep thinking you are going to be some hot guy I must have forgotten giving my number to or even a friend asking me to join a magical adventure that involves dressing up nice and wearing makeup.

But it wasn’t my mother. It was Ross, the asshole cuntfaced bastard wanker I had just convinced myself I never liked anyway and he was some scrub who can’t get no love from me. (In a side note, I just discovered that in my favorite 90s anthem, No Scrubs, they don’t sing “A scrub is a guy can’t get no love, he’s also known as a bus stop,” which was like my favorite line in a song ever, they are in fact singing “also known as a buster” which was just like finding out there is no santa, or easy way to lose weight, or cure for herpes. (even if you haven’t got herpes, the day you find out it’s for life and not just for Christmas is a harrowing one. You play back all the frivolous snogs of your youth and realise just how easily you could have become infected and how bloody likely it is for one of the next hundred unworthy slimeballs to rummage tongues in your mouth to be carrying the virus) So that sucks. I’m disillusioned, though of course I still love “No Scrubs”.)

So he texted me asking me out that night, he had tickets to see some band… I think I might have actually squealed when I read that yes, maybe I had played it a little too cool… that it wasn’t a case of he didn’t like me, more like… he did like me, but he made a bit of a tit of himself by spilling his guts that night and coming on too strong… and then probably, when I wrote to him the next day with no mention of our weekend love-in plans, he must have thought it meant I wasn’t interested. Anyway I don’t want to wreck your heads with my reverse engineering the whole situation through new, more confident eyes. Suffice it to say, knowing he does actually like me, makes it possible for me to say I do actually like him too. He may have been a bit too keen, but fuck it… somebody has to be more interested, and I’d rather it wasn’t me.

I told him I was busy that night (the truth, actually…) but we could do something some other time.

So there, whether or not this specimen stands up to sober scrutiny, I have no idea. He may turn out to be immature and clingy. But the thing is, I haven’t met someone who I could really stand at all… in so long. You know this… I’ve been writing this thing for over a year now, since January 2011, and not once have I actually come across a man I’d like to go out on a date with.

BUT that’s not what I wanted to talk about here, I swear.

In my last post I talked about the sex with Ross… wherein we ended up fucking with a flavoured condom (strawberry.)

I have since been informed that flavoured condoms are only supposed to be for oral sex. I would never have actually bought the damn things… they came in my STD clinic party pack. So that actually makes sense as to why it got a bit sore and uncomfortable after a while. Anyway. The point is, it was a RED condom.

After he left and I was lying there all hung over and stinky, I wondered where the condom had ended up. It was flung away somewhere without being filled, and maybe it fell down the side of the bed and maybe it was tangled up in the sheets. Or maybe Fabio’s odd habit of taking his condoms with him when he left… wasn’t that odd after all. Maybe Ross took the condom or put it in his jeans pocket or something.

I don’t know, I mean I thought it was fucking weird when Fabio did it, I would be like, dude, I live alone, you can throw it in the normal bin, no one will see it! And he’d just be all, “it’s ok, I can throw it in a bin on the street.” And I didn’t want to insist because maybe then he’d think I was going to get out the turkey baster as soon as he left and try to make a little copy of his admittedly fine DNA. I tell ya, with his looks and my personality and intelligence and everything else, we could have made some kick ass babies. But obviously if I had this guy’s babies the chances are, he would get involved in their upbringing and there’s the risk of my own offspring winding up Italian with boring personalities.

So no.

But I thought, maybe this is normal.. taking the condom home with you… maybe it’s like, the way women don’t put their period crap in with the normal bin because you don’t want some guy coming across your icky evidence of normal bodily functions. So I guessed Ross might have taken the thing with him. It certainly wasn’t under the bed, or behind the bed. And then I forgot all about it.

And a few days passed.

I spent St Patrick’s day in a sober den of Seinfeld and solitude. And masturbation. Lonely, sad, low self esteem masturbation. The only kind I would really approve of calling “self abuse.” Sometime in the evening I ran out of Seinfeld to watch decided it was too pathetic, so I called Steve my sober friend and we went for dinner with another friend of his and then to a trad music session. It was very civillised and enjoyable. I had NOTHING to drink. Go me!

I stayed in my mother’s house that night because it was closer to get back there and I didn’t really relish traipsing through Dublin city alone with so many drunk people roaming the streets. Steve and I walked home, it was like a forty minute walk and it was dark and scary and we talked about stupid sexual things as usual. We joked that he would have to rape me so that no other rapists could get to me, because you can’t get raped twice, everyone knows that… And I’d rather be raped by someone I know. You might think this is my way of flirting, and to be honest… I have no idea if that is right or not. I might have been flirting. It wouldn’t be entirely out of character… I remember talking about having semi-decomposed corpses in my apartment, that night with the army guys. I sometimes wonder with Steve if he takes all my sexual talk personally. I wonder how he sees it… I don’t mean to flirt but I feel like I’m one of those stupid sinks with two taps- the hot is too hot and the cold is too cold.Why two taps, why? I want to wash my hands with hot water but not scalding so I wash for two seconds and then have to blast with the cold. Disappoints me every time.

I might have run a bit too hot but it’s hard to tell because it’s an unspoken thing between male-female friends. How much are we in denial and how much are we really, honestly, deeply friends.

Anyway, having drunk nothing all day, I woke up without a whiff of a hangover, also, alone!

And right there in my mother’s house, on mother’s day. Total brownie points there.

I didn’t have a card or gift, but my stepdad had been sent this “make your own robot” kit by mistake from Amazon, and so I made my mother a robot out of cardboard. It took less than 2 minutes to assemble. She was like, oh a cardboard robot, how… sweet? (Sarcastically)

So I wrote in biro on the head of the robot, “To a very efficient mother. Terrabytes of love from your progeny, Abby”

My mother’s eyes welled up when she read it. That is so… sweet. TERRABYTES OF LOVE!! AWWW and she hugged me…

My stepdad looked at me cynically, as if to say “I know you’re really a total jerk and I don’t know how you get away with this bullshit. I wont say anything because your mother is obviously happy but… I’m not buying it.”

I found it a little difficult to believe I had gotten away with assembling a shitty cardboard robot for my mother and writing some smarmy bullshit on the head in blue biro, but what can I say… my mum is a hopeless romantic, and I’m a chancer…

Anyway we had a lovely meal, I didn’t wash any dishes after or anything although I did consider doing something to help as a special mother’s day treat.. I enjoyed the satisfaction of having thought of something that would really make my mother’s day like that, but then I got distracted by these shoes I had left behind, that I wanted to bring with my to my new place. In the end my mum washed the dishes and then drove me up to Dublin. She came into my apartment for about half an hour. She sat down on my couch and looked around and noticed things.

“Ooh I like that scarf, is that silk?”

“That’s a lovely little tin, is that for your sugar?”

“Oh I see you found your red slippers!”

Basically, she just looked around the room while I made some tea. It’s a small room.

The couch is red.

The armchair is red.

The armchair is directly accross from the couch.

My mother was sitting on the couch.

I don’t know if you get where this is going, but my mother eventually went home, she had to drive in rush hour traffic.

Happy mother’s day indeed!

And as soon as she left my house, I went over to my armchair to pick up my red slippers which were sitting there.

And beside the red slippers, on the red armchair, directly accross from the red couch…

WAS THE MISSING, RED, STRAWBERRY FLAVOURED CONDOM.

Now I don’t know… if my mum saw it or not. I know she saw the slippers… she’s not the kind of person to say something if she did see the used condom lying there. She’s too passive aggressive to actually start something like that.

Suffice it to say I spent the rest of mother’s day with a face that matched my furniture and slippers and condom.

One of my friends, when I told him about the condom thing, was like “ah at least she knows you’re having safe sex.”

Which is like, yeah… but I actually didn’t have safe sex that time, and also… I had been moved into my place for TWO DAYS before having that sex. She knows I only went out that thursday night. She knows that. So if my mum did see the condom, she’s gonna think… she’s gonna KNOW that I found someone new to fuck just two days after landing in Dublin. There’s no way that looks good.

Anyway. That’s all I have to share. I have been out and got drunk since, but it was just fun and I didn’t do anything stupid. OH except that we were in this nightclub and some guys were talking to me and one of them said he was Italian so he was talking to me in Italian. I was pretty pissed so I didn’t think to try and get away from the annoying Italians… I was just proud of how well I speak Italian. I was showing off. but the second or third phrase out of the guy’s mouth was “have you ever had a threesome.”

SO I being drunk, and the proximity to my actual recent foray into group sex…

I blurted out

“HOW DID YOU KNOW?” and looked at this guy, mystified. I presumed, he must have known. Why else would he ask that?

He was of course, like “I didn’t know.. you just told me.”

I’m like, what?

He’s like, yeah you just told me by saying “how did you know.” I didn’t know.

I’m confused. I’m like, oh. He high fived me and I think asked me if I liked it or if I would be interested… I just shook my head and said “oh well I don’t remember anything so I couldn’t tell if I enjoyed it or not. Sorry, I just don’t know if it was any good…”

I don’t remember how that conversation ended but I certainly didn’t have group or even two player sex with anybody. Oh how sad it is that that makes me so very proud. One night out, heavy drinking, jagerbombs and vodka… and I didnt sleep with anybody.

I didnt’ kiss anyone either. One 20 year old boy cornered me in the smoking area (I have now finished the pack of tobacco so that’s the end of the smoking. Will not buy another pack again, that was so fucking stupid) and told me “you complete me!” several times.

Instead of being a jerk I went the other way and tried to give him serious chatting up women advice. That is probably the purpose of using such an awful chat up line. I felt sorry for him. He told me I was amazing… I was like, yeah I know… but seriously, you’re too young for me…

He said I looked 17.

That pissed me off so I told him I was 25 which is not true, I am 24.

Anyway I got bored there and went dancing, which was terrible because I am the worst dancer… you know this. I’m not supposed to dance. I was very drunk…. I bumped into the young guy but I think when I danced in front of him he was put off so he pretended not to recognise me on the dance floor. Anyway, still going to count going home alone as a success.

And that’s all my news. I am currently looking.. scouring the web for a job. I don’t even care any more, I just need some fucking money. I’m so fucking broke… I miscalculated how much money I have in my bank account. Rookie mistake. Anyway I’m poor… I need monies. I need a fucking job.

Can’t even afford to go out…

I’ve just been obsessively cooking and cleaning my apartment.

Yesterday I made pizza, pesto and pasta all from scratch. They all turned out beautifully but I’m worried if I don’t get a job soon I will just get fat. The day before I made banana bread and a huge pot of soup. The soup is amazing. But I made far too much.

Anyway I’m gonna cut this short (ish) now because I have actually nothing left to report.

Weekend confessions of Abby N. Flicker

So after the monster hangover last week and all that entailed… panic attacks, self loathing, and of course… parent resenting… I jumped right back on the horse, the noble stallion called alcohol abuse… I wasn’t GOING to drink, but I spent the beginning of the weekend arranging everything for Italy this week, so I can go back and ship my stuff over (well, I booked a return flight…)

Then, due not to being an international billy-no-mates but rather just a series of plans coincidentally misfiring… I wound up on Friday night with nothing to do and nowhere to go.

I used to have a few friends near my mum’s house, but most of them have either migrated to the capital city or even left the country itself. I have one remaining friend in the area…. but he’s someone I really shouldn’t….

You see, and I don’t want to sound like, full of myself here or anything, but this guy was my best friend for a couple of years, and let me tell you, my milkshake brought him to the yard. If that’s not a euphemism for giving him oral or something, but rather just means he likes the cut of my jib, and if we take jib to mean hot pants. I mean, he likes me, I friend-zoned him, but I didn’t even have the decency to be consistent about it.

In fairness we only ever met because of this really hot guy I was pretending to be ok with casually fucking when I was 16. Hot guy came to my house one time when my friend was staying over and brought his buddy along… we got on great, discovered we were neighbours, and the rest was… a messy drunken friendship. We used to spend hours watching Seinfeld and smoking joints and drinking masses of cheap wine and cheap cider and whatever we could scrounge from my parents. He was always in my house, he would just pop in and stay until ridiculous o’clock, he ate dinner with my family, or depending on what was on the menu, he’d go home, feed and maybe even bathe and then head back over to mine for the rest of the night.

He always outstayed his welcome but I liked having him around most of the time… He was easy to talk to, funny… it was fun. I was mean to him. I bullied him and when he pissed me off I’d say “get the fuck out of my house, Steve.” And Steve would look at me nervously and go “ha” and I’d fix him with my bitchiest look and say “no, I’m serious… get the FUCK out of my house.” Anyway we drank a lot together… we drank bottle after bottle of wine and then I’d be horny and lonely and he’d muster dutch courage and violate the vague line I’d set out, that he was not supposed to cross. He’d kiss me suddenly, with his whole body, urging me… and you know, I have a high sex drive and a desperate, easily flattered ego.

When someone pounces like that, with every nerve and sinew… strongly driven by desire of me, it is VERY HARD NOT TO GET INTO IT. And in my defence, I mostly tried not to, I mostly pushed him away in disgust and told him to go home… but it did, of course, turn me on, this huge attraction he would so often spring on me. But then A LOT of things turn me on… and I liked him, I really cared about him as a friend. I had a lot of respect for him, despite how mean I was. I was only mean because I didn’t want to encourage his feelings, but obviously that’s like trying to put out a fire with vodka.

I was totally naive, I clung stubbornly to my idea of our friendship, him as a kind of gay friend accessory, and I refused to accept his feelings as valid or serious. We hung out every single day… I missed him desperately when he wasn’t around but really, honestly I just wanted to be friends. I only wanted to fuck him in the sense that I want to fuck every man…. So many times I forgot, or stopped caring, or toyed with him on purpose, exaggerating my behaviour… letting him catch a glimpse of underwear… just because I was bored…

We both drank far too much. He gazed at me needily, my friend said. He looked at me with begging in his eyes… He LOVES you she said. I just thought it was such an affront to me, this love… There’s nothing more unattractive, more misshapen and creepy, than unwanted love… I wanted us to be best friends. I wanted to talk to him about everything… but I didn’t want to respect his feelings, because they ruined everything. But I knew it was me, I fed it too… I was too aware of my own guilt, that I sometimes flirted with him but pretended it was just him reading into things… I’d “accidentally” let him catch a flash of underwear… I’d get drunk and snuggle up to him, for my own gratification.. I was pretty much a horrible selfish uncaring dick. However, he could keep trying, because aware as I was of my own fault, I didn’t get angry when I pushed him away, and when I lost control and let him kiss me, with a passion I don’t think anyone has ever had for me… all over my face, neck, chest… smothering me with desperate kisses…  I would say no, no, no… I don’t want to ruin everything… because I just wanted to know, yes, I still had him… but I was never angry or weird the next day, because I couldn’t blame him for something he did drunk… and we didn’t talk to it, and I told myself he just tried because he was drunk, and it wasn’t a big deal….

We eventually came to the end, we had a huge falling out. He started spreading rumours about me, I think, or else he said his friends said I was an annoying bitch, and I was heartbroken anyway, and I called him to talk it out like adults but brought a raw egg in my pocket when I met him on the street between our two houses.

I asked him again, what did he say? He called me a bitch, and I knew he was right, I was a total bitch, so I hated him with all my heart and an eerie grin crept across my face, not the expression I wanted to show right then but it stretched out against my will as I delivered what I thought would be a crushing, cool as fuck, one liner… and brought the egg down on his head. Now that I think back, I realise how fucking stupid it all was. He stood there and said, yeah, you ARE a bitch. You’re a fucking bitch Abby. I’m glad I said that, you’re a fucking bitch, you always were a fucking bitch.

And I laughed at him because there was egg dripping down his head and I said yeah fuck you too, and I ran home and cried in my bedroom and wished I hadn’t done anything and hated him and hated myself and wondered why I thought the egg thing would be cool or funny and wished I could rewind it all. We didn’t see each other again for ages, and then we made up at some point but we weren’t best friends any more, we each had our own separate friends and I wasn’t sure where our friendship stood at all. I apologised for being a horrible bitch… I don’t remember the conversation but I apologised for all my awful behaviour.

Then about a year ago when I was in the first most sluttish throes of my separation, we crossed glasses again… after a few years total radio silence. We sat, we drank, we talked candidly… I recounted my sorrows and he shared about his ex… he told me, she was jealous of me, despite the fact that I only saw him once or twice while they were together, because I lived in Italy. He must have talked about me a lot… he said, one time I invited him over and he arrived and I was trying on some leather clothing. I didn’t remember this, but he said it drove him crazy… I was wearing some leather outfit and he said I looked incredibly sexy… he couldn’t stop thinking about it… and his girlfriend went ballistic because he told her he had gone to visit me. So I sat and listened and cringed and remembered how much of a selfish cock… how mean I was with my so called best friend’s feelings.  He clearly liked me a lot. And what the fuck did I do? I invited him over to watch me try on leather outfits? I don’t even remember the occasion properly but I know myself and I was of course doing it on purpose. I promised myself not to toy with a man like that again. What an egotistical bitch…..

Anyway that night we drank a bottle of his parents whiskey and sat on the carpet to smoke out the window. We wound up holding each other… in perfect honesty it didn’t occur to me that it was a prelude to sex or kissing, I was just drunk and sad and lonely and heartbroken and drunk. He stroked him hair and held me in his arms and I felt my sadness booming deep down… but also strangely calm, at peace. I have my friend back… lovely… I thought dreamily as he stroked, stroked, stroked my hair, and my jawline… I would have been happy to stay like that, to fall asleep in the arms of someone who cared, just for this once…. but it shifted, then we were aligned differently and our mouths met. There’s something about kissing someone when you are on the verge of tears… it’s oddly passionate. We kissed and I saw us moving in his desired direction… it had been so long, I no longer held the control like before. Times had changed, he wasn’t some inexperienced boy any more, hoping for a shot with the girl almost next door… He was holding me to him, he wasn’t asking me to allow him… and while I wondered if it was what I wanted, or if it was a bad idea, or if I even wanted him to stop… he lifted me up, his mouth locked to mine, and carried me in his arms into his bedroom. I was dumbfounded. A few years have passed, of course…. he’s… well, It was terribly passionate, sweaty… hot… he surprised me…. There was only one condom and it broke or was filled quickly or something happened, but we managed to find other ways to completely negate whatever friendship we had. I lay on my back and he stood over me, looking down on me… “have you any idea how sexy you look right now?”

Mmmm… that’s what I like. I like to hear that, very very much. I happened to be wearing matching underwear that day, for no particular reason… He pounced on me, with 6 or 7 years of experience and distance from how it used to be…

I snuck out of there in the morning and back home… my mum at the door going to work… I told her I fell asleep on his couch, pissed… I don’t know what she believed, but I slept like a baby… it took 12 hours or so for me to stop desiring my friend… I cooked up schemes in my head, to get us privacy… I wanted to feel those eyes on me again, lustful, admiring… he surprised me in bed… I was impressed. I guess a lot of it was, how much he wanted to fuck me… and to be honest I was always curious too…

Anyway I know I’m a silly girl but I wound up the next night, having a repeat… in my house this time, and again without condoms. We fucked for a short while anyway… just to see what it was like… of course… and he sighed in my ear “I love you” to which I didn’t reply but I held onto his back tightly as the sadness and reality seeped into the moment. I realised I was doing a bad thing again, and I stopped, and I remembered where there were condoms but I didn’t say. I tried to leave and he kept pulling me back and forcefully kissing me, holding my neck… making me stay… and little sparks jolted me from within…. man, I wanted to straddle him right there… but I reclaimed my dominance as he gripped my neck just a bit too tight and I told him “look, there’s a fine line between your forcefulness being a complete turn on and being actually scary. You’re starting to cross it…”

He let go of me with a flicker of recognition, look who’s back, it’s Abby- the- Bitch. He saw the moment was over, the chance had passed, I wouldn’t be his like that again… not unless, maybe, a lot of drinking…. who knows.  That was the end of that. My mother asked me, isn’t Steve coming over again? And I said no, he was annoying me…. I wonder what she thinks of my friendship… maybe she just presumes I fucked him all along. I can’t tell how much of my bullshit my mother believed in my teens… and bullshit, if it goes unchecked… well, you really never know how good a liar you are unless people call you out for lying.

Anyway… This little story was just because, I wanted you to know about my friend Steve… and after last time, I said no… it’s just not fair of me to go using him for friendship and randy drunken antics when he clearly wants and will continue to want something more. The thing about the male-female relationship is, for me anyway, if a man likes me, he’s gonna like me a real lot… I’m like Marmite, baby. I have a polarising effect on men. And if he likes me, like, likes me, then the slimmest, dimmest chance of my becoming his… even for a moment… is totally worth risking or destroying the friendship. He’s got better friends than me, he’s got funner friends than me, and he can talk to them too, in a way he can’t talk to me. I’m just the selfish cunt who used to lounge on the couch, resting my feet on his lap, mischievously aware of what might be going on underneath my restless tootsies… and whine and moan about how there are no men around, and how much I wanted to meet a hot guy… I mean, I fucked a lot of his friends. But that was after all, how we met.

So on Friday when I had nothing to do and nowhere to go, I trampled the little voice of reason telling me to leave the poor bastard in peace, and I said no, I just want to see my friend… and I texted him sup, homeslice? Are you around? He immediately said he was in the area and would call in… He probably ran to my house. He was pretty sweaty… So we watched some comedy shows… ate takeaway with my parents… hung out… it was nice. I had a few glasses of wine, he no longer drinks at all. Coincidentally, he quit drinking the day after our last… reunion. I have a strange niggling feeling about that… honestly I don’t know how to take it.

But Friday night, he’s sitting there beside me, he doesn’t keep my eye contact and it’s a little unnerving…. But I was beginning to nurse the idea of just fucking him a little tiny bit, just to like, get it out of my system… like a noble sort of friendship thing… hmmm… when my stepdad burst in, home from the pub, with three of his oldest, drunkest friends over from California for the weekend. My teetotal pal Steve took this as his cue to leave… goodnight… my stepdad met him in the hall and told him regally, he was always welcome… to pop in… even if I’m not there, he’s welcome… he’s one of the family… thank you, thanks… good night… I  followed Steve out to the hall and wondered would I give him a hug and be a bitch, do some sort of lingering, confusing squeeze, or let him feel my breath hot on his neck… but he gave me a quick smile and we waved at each other from a metre away… and he left, thank fuck, before I could do anything stupid.

I joined the drunken middle-aged folks for a little while. They had a bottle of 18-year-old Jameson which went down a treat… beautiful stuff. Let me tell you, it won’t be easy-going back to the normal cheap shit after tasting that. My… that was a lovely tipple. I was witty and soberer than everyone so I said a few great one liners and then retired to bed, perfect showmanship… I started to write a post about how much I wanted to fuck my friend, but I let it simmer for the night, and when I woke up it was just horny rantings with terrible spellings. I know, I know, my best posts, right? Well whatever.. I woke up disgusted with myself and infinitely grateful that nothing had happened. For someone who is really not interested, I am giving totally the wrong impression. It’s not my fault I’m incurably horny, but there’s no excuse for me toying with someone over and over again… I like to tell myself “he’s a grown up, he can look after himself” but I’m a woman, I have my wiley ways… how is he supposed to resist my tipsy flirtations?

I was in bed by 6 anyway, pondering delicious dirtyness with my neighbour while resolving to leave him alone and stop this madness.

Then the next night, I stayed in with my mum… enjoyed feeling good, and normal… ate cheese, watched episodes of the IT crowd. Realised that as my body returned to its normal levels of hormones and serotonin and whatever it is, I was more able to cope with my mother talking to me.. I was nice to her, I bit my tongue… avoided argument… and we had a nice time, laughing… just getting along well. I could see that for every bit of truly annoying mother rhetoric that stresses me out, there is at least one or two nice, friendly things she says that I am flipping out about by proxy. I’m sorry, mother. I will be nice…

Later on, the drunken revellers landed again, but this time they brought company, a lot of company. A party descended on the house, and my mother and I rolled our eyes, finished our wine, and knowing we could never beat them or get any sleep next door… joined the cider and beer-swillers.

Had a lot of fun… it was a middle-aged party but they were mad, bad middle-aged people with pills and uppers and downers and all kinds of pharmaceuticals… the energy in the house was lively and off the wall. I didn’t take anything, I mean I may party with my folks sometimes but I wouldn’t take drugs with them. There are certain things my parents don’t need to see, and my eyes rolling around in my head as I share my most intimate secrets with the world is not one of them.

One of my old teachers was there… he actually didn’t teach my class, but he worked in my school for a bit. I knew him as Mr Lyons, and I saw him at a party when I was 17 and he still worked in that school… I remember being silly and flirtatious just to creep him out, and calling him “Mr Lyons!” all the time. So on Saturday night he was there and I saw him and bellowed “MR LYONS!” and he shook his head, Jaysus… you again…

He tried to get me to call him by his first name, but I refused to even learn it… I called him MR LYONS all night, giggling to myself, feeling like a naughty temptress although I’m well past having a Lolita effect on men… I used to get a great kick out of being young and making men uncomfortable. But at this stage, the schoolgirl thing… I probably can’t pull it off any more, but I still had a wild one-sided laugh with myself. I thought it was hilarious, randomly interrupting Mr Lyons when he tried to have normal conversation with me, exclaiming loudly “SORRY MR LYONS BUT I DONT THINK ITS APPROPRIATE ME CALLING YOU SIR, I’m sorry but I just don’t want to call you SIR!” and he was like… oh shut up… stop that.. as people looked around with raised eyebrows, and I was massively entertained by my cleverness and mischief. Eventually he left, I like to think I just made him too uncomfortable when I started sitting up on the kitchen counter (I wasn’t getting enough attention) but it’s entirely likely he just left because it was ridiculous o’ clock and daytime and most people left around then anyway.

My mother went to bed around 8 or 9 am and the only other woman went home with her husband a little later. She was a patronising 40 something year old who kept bursting into loud and incorrect singing of the music that was playing…so when she left, I was the only woman left, and came into my own, queen of the castle, the prettiest girl in the room, yay! And I positively blossomed under the male admiration, even though, yes, of course, these were some very, very drunk and high middle-aged men. But fuck it, an ego massage is an ego massage.

I walked on their backs… don’t know why or who initiated it, I’ve never walked on a back before. One of the men walked on my back… it made me laugh hysterically the first time, and I think he really enjoyed that so he kept taking me aside, whispering, as if it was a dirty little secret… and asking to do it again, and then he did it again and I felt obliged to laugh the same way as before, for some reason. I got high on walking on those mens backs… it was glorious fun. I felt dominant, mwahahahah… wonderful stuff.

We smoked joints all night… for some reason we were doing blow backs. I haven’t done a blow back in years, but I know that by hanging out with me for the night, I had swept these geezers up with my youthful energy and they were feeling all bold and young for the evening… also, drugs… One of the men kept trying to whisper to the other… but missed the entire point of the enterprise, ie, the volume reduction and stealth… and I heard him yell-hiss “I’m SO attracted right now… I’ve never been so attracted to anyone in my life… she’s incredible…” now this was said by a guy in his late 40s on ecstasy… but my ego accepts all major currencies. It counts, motherfucker, it counts.

I swelled up with pride at my achievement. I feel like I won “best female in show” at an event where no other females showed up. STILL COUNTS!

They all have wives. They all started the night singing the praises of these wives, talking about the importance and wonderfulness of these wives… towards the end, towards the midday point… they seemed to have forgotten the wives a little. One admitted to having a sort of open marriage… where the wife winds up fucking 20 year olds and he… doesn’t seem as capable of taking advantage of the arrangement. I find this fascinating, but oh… the dwindling drinks, the starting to pick up opened beers, slopping them, checking for liquid… knocking back anything… I opened the fridge, saw there was no booze left, checked the cupboard, and returned to the fridge… and repeated.  No booze… no bloody booze. We polished off the rest of the 18 year old whiskey. The men gazed at me with the confusion of the truly drunk, the beyond help….

One of them was like a chubby Tigger, a cannonball of energy… obviously it wasn’t all natural, he had a pocketful of rainbows, that guy. He kept pawing at my chest, I don’t know what kind of brain function made him think it was subtle… it was actually so ridiculous, it took me a while to realise it was a desperate attempt to touch my boobs. I don’t really have much boob though so I just thought it was funny. Also I was wearing a very padded bra so I couldn’t feel thing through the cushioning… maybe that was giving the illusion of a greater chestal region. Probably. Anyway I just laughed, if you party with middle-aged men and drink all night and all morning, you have to be reasonable about the flirting. It suits my purposes, ie, my vanity, so I’m nice about it. You silly men… tee hee…

There were the overt come-ons in the form of swipes across my front… then we had a nice little dance, he twirled me almost into the glass doors.. I had fun but left the dance floor before I gave them a little too much encouragement. I may be a bad, bad dancer, but these men are twice my age, any way I lurch around, it’s going to look like missed opportunities and old girlfriends. But I did sit up on the counter a lot, with my legs up… wearing a skirt, obviously…which was probably just as bad…. When one of the final three men fell asleep on the couch, and one was in the bathroom, the remaining partygoer seized the opportunity for alone time and I could see and smell and sense he was going to kiss me… I wouldn’t have done it because I wasn’t attracted to him at all, but I let him sort of believe I would have if it hadn’t been for the circumstances… etc. He nodded at my “no, it’s not a good idea” as if he had also come to the same decision, thinking of his family and all, and he probably felt really undeservedly good about that…

It felt sort of like a good deed, returning the ego boost, a thank you for making me feel good about myself…  It always reminds me of how much everyone is full of shit. These are extremely happily married men, I have never met anyone who wouldn’t cheat given the opportunity and the right state of mind. I guess there were drugs involved, I’m pretty glad I didn’t have any or who knows what I might have done…

Anyway, I stayed up til 1 or 2 pm, polished off the last of the booze in the last of the mostly empty bottles, and went to bed, emotionally hugged my new friends goodbye, and they watched me disappear into my room with bleary eyes. Good night, it’s been real…

I went to bed, I slept shakily until they all burst in on me the next day…still horrifically mangled, to beg me to come to the pub. Come on! You were so much craic last night, come on to the pub!

I considered it for a second… getting up, getting dressed… makeup… bloody marys…

The only woman in the room…

Me stepdad came in, partially recovered… He was one of the first to k.o. that night. He’s now leading the expedition to the pub. “It’s boys only, but you can come if you like! It would be nice actually… come on!” aww thanks you guys…

But no, let’s not. I don’t want… I CANT bear another hangover like that, I just can’t do it. The panic… the fear… the depression… NO. So I smiled weakly and waved them away. I will take the hangover now, thanks. And for my sobriety, for my resolution… you would think I would get an easy time, a nice weak hangover…

But I still had a heavy dose of panic attacks, the frail stomach, the weakness of body, the ache of skin and muscle and the tight stressed jaw. Thank fuck I cut my losses and quit while I was behind. The men continued on to the pub and then to another pub and stayed out all day and most of the night before arriving home, twisted and mangled and with broken shades and missing jackets. My mother stayed in with me, looking after me, bringing me things i wanted and taking away things I decided I didn’t want any more.

I had tea, I had soup, I had half a packet of stilton.

And I found myself, going through the absolute horrors… on facebook… and I threw out the typical feelers of hung-overness, I messaged a couple of friends who were online… hello! How are you! What’s up? PLEASE somebody witness me right now, I need to know I exist, I need to keep the dark back…

And one friend, a school friend I hadn’t seen in years, but we sometimes synchronise loneliness and have a little chat, posted something about a hangover. I rejoice… a hangover buddy! I message him, something like, I bet my hangover could kick your hangover’s ass.

We exchange descriptions of how bad we feel. He has a pizza, and I am hideously jealous of that pizza. My mother enters the room and offers me soup, bread, more tea… pain killers… I hiss at her “WHY IS THERE NO PIZZA?” and she gasps, with an indignant “I ASKED you what you wanted, I went to the shop and you said you didn’t want anything!”

“YEAH WELL I didn’t KNOW I wanted pizza. There should be pizza. It’s not fair!”

My mother offers me soup and fish and bread again. NO I DONT WANT THAT YOU KNOW I DONT LIKE FISH! I ONLY WANT PIZZA! But she’s been cleaning up after the party all day plus I’ve already had her bring me lots of things and so she ignores my petulant sulking and tells me it’s my own fault, she ASKED me what I wanted. I yell “UGGGHHHHHH!!!” In exasperation and then go back to abusing my hangover buddy for having pizza. I call him a motherfucking serial rapist and type frustrated strings of letters “ARRRRRGGGGGHH! UNNNNNGGGG!!”

It doesn’t help, I’m all tense and I can’t believe how awful it is to be without pizza now that I know of pizza. Ignorance of pizza was bliss….

He tells me he’s really enjoying the pizza, it’s almost better than sex. And so, sex is added to our conversation. Ugh it would be so nice to get laid now. That would truly hit the spot. We commiserate on lack of sex.. he enters my mental sphere of sexuality. Hmm. Well, of course he’s in another country….and I never considered him that way, and  wouldn’t… except for this conversation. We might have kissed once or slept together in a platonic way… with a little flicker of sexual tension… once… maybe…years ago… but I’m a bit of a tramp actually so that’s not particular to this one guy. I have slept with or kissed pretty much all my male friends … Our chat progresses, it leaves sex, it muddles around in our news, our lives, what we are doing, where we want to be… but the sex has been mentioned, it’s on the table and we both know we are just circling above it, it’s going to be revisited, one or the other of us is bound to bring it up again…

He says he’s too hung over to do anything, his day has consisted of porn and pizza and netflix. Mine has been netflix and food but unfortunately I am in my mother’s house and I don’t really enjoy my bedroom… it makes all my wanking nostalgic, and the post-auto-coital feeling is one of tremendous failure… He says he’s enjoying being home alone. I throw out an innocent, “nice one handed typing…” and he admits, he’s pretty horny right now, but has both hands on the keyboard. You know me and sex and talking about it and masturbation and all, I don’t really think of it as flirtation… in fact I tend to keep my hobby out of conversation if I like the guy… but I am flirting now, just in a casual way, I don’t really care if I sound stupid at all because I’m just shooting the breeze with my hangover buddy. It’s all protected under the “what? That was just all a big joke” agreement.

The conversation escalates… I laugh, I’m typing with one hand too… guess what I’m doing… He says, I’m not gonna lie, that’s turning me on…. Hee hee. I’m eating a piece of stilton actually. Oh…

I realise I feel much better with this distraction from my hangover. My head no longer feels like it’s held in place by a thought, and if I let go of the right thought, my brain will just die… I feel shitty, but a little frisky now…. Things are starting to hum into action downstairs… I consider how long to leave things in the innuendo stage before I retire to my bedroom with the computer…

This morning I looked back over our conversation. It lasted 5 hours….  and reading back over our exchange, I think we were both pretty smooth, and I got another good one out of the re-read… I am impressed with what I said, it managed to be just the right amount of sexy and casual…

We went from joking about masturbation… to… well, I brought my laptop into my room and told my mother I was going to try sleep for a bit.

I started to actually type with one hand. I made a few spelling mistakes… he picked up on it. I played silly-coy, but let him know… actually yes, you’re right… that’s what I was doing… but I stopped because my hangover was too fucking intense. He admitted, the idea of my hand between my legs… was turning him on. As usual, when someone is turned on by me, my sex drive revs into action. We flirted more obviously… he let me know, he was touching himself too… our replies became shorter…

He admitted, “you’re playing a pretty big part in my fantasy right now…”

“Oooh… What part am I playing?” I asked, “I promise I won’t be weirded out…”

He starts to describe what he wants to do to me… nothing creepy there… sounds pretty great actually… I counter with what I’d do…  leaving out, of course, all the really weird stuff I would actually fantasize about, and sticking to a normal run through of just a really good fuck. I don’t want to freak him out with my skeevy honest fantasies… he’s probably doing the same thing and editing all the weirdness out…. Or maybe he’s not, and I’m just a creep.

We build a sexy story from the ground up, taking turns describing actions and how it would feel, with one hand of course.. every message coming on screen brings a tingle… I’ve never had phone sex or successfully done this by message before. I mean I have attempted sexting, and I used to “cyber” when I was an impressionable teen playing online jailbait, but I’ve always found it awkward and more cringey than it was sexy. This is just… it’s easy because I’m not faking it, I’m just actually describing what I’d like to do in real life. It’s cool… it’s really turning me on.

Our fantasy reaches a crescendo over half an hour, our alter egos thrusting and fucking and having wonderful, exaggerated orgasms. The reality follows close behind… it’s a massive, wonderful orgasm… much much better than the average solo deal… really, wow…

I read back over it and the last two or three lines we typed are barely approximations of words. I sent one message “uo fjuckkkk”

We discussed it afterwards… it was really, really great and totally unexpected. He said “yeah, it gave me an interesting insight into what fucking Abby would be like”

I grin to myself. Yes, very interesting.

Yes. indeed…

Hmm..

Well, I tell him, if we get the opportunity, we will of course have to do this for real.

He agrees, although of course we don’t live nearby, but sure… if you’re in town, that would be amazing…. Oh, it was fun… fun fun fun. And it totally almost fixed my hangover, although it stirred up all my horniness again. Damn it. Eventually he signed off, some time around 2am… “good night, my sexy friend,” he said, to which I replied, “See you later, masturbator.”

Strange little episode though, I’ve never been comfortable describing sex acts like that, apart from in my blogging and that’s different because I’m not trying to turn anybody on, and I’m not reporting fantasy but fact, so it just spills out of me like surplus jizzle. The whole “uh then I stroke your dick…” thing just always seemed a bit sad and embarrassing and I blush alone to myself, thinking no… they can’t find that sexy… they can’t….

And my buddy, my partner in grime, he’s no one I would have thought of in that way… not that he’s too ugly for my shallow sober persona, which is the usual reason I don’t sleep with someone despite them being straight and male, that’s not it at all, as far as I remember (no good recent photos on facebook) he’s definitely with acceptable levels of attractiveness. It’s just we don’t have a lot in common and when we were friends briefly I think we both had other people we were fixated on… so it never really occurred to me, and then we lost touch.. Anyway it was lovely and weird and fun and unexpected… a little moment of recognition between two very horny hung over people. I like that…. It’s oddly rare…. I used to think everyone had a similar kind of sex drive but lately, I’m finding that we are a minority of some sort… I know my “sex addiction” is self diagnosed but it is probably real, otherwise what the fuck DO I have?

It’s probably totally sex addiction.

Anyway if you are a doctor or a psychiatrist or something, I would really appreciate a free diagnosis. It doesn’t have to be official or anything, you can just be like…pssst… I’m a doctor and you are totally a bona fide sex addict. You poor thing, you are doing so well despite your terrible affliction. Well done on the not fucking any old people or taking advantage of your old friend who is in love with you.

If you are a medical person and you think I am not a sex addict, well that’s just like, your opinion. I may not be humping furniture or getting rapey with anyone but just remember, for every miserable bone I detail here, there is at least one other I am too ashamed to mention.

I was going to watch that movie “Shame” because I thought I could decide if I had sex addiction or was just unusually randy,  based on that movie, plus, I’d like to see lots of non-porn movie sex, but then I couldn’t find a pirated copy, so my proper diagnosis will have to wait. But rest assured, I’m going to get a second opinion on my condition, even if it is just 2 hours with Micheal Fassessessassenbender or whatever, mmm he looks pretty hot. He’s Irish, apparently.

Anyway. I’m all tired of typing now. I think I might have another read over my filthy conversation from last night and muse on that for a bit, then hit netflix. I have netflix now. I love netflix…. internet streaming in this house is so bad, I couldn’t handle waiting 20 minutes to load 5 minutes of film, so I got netflix. I’m pretty impressed so far, I have to say…

So. That’s me gone for the time being. Please take two seconds to answer my poll, in the name of scientific research and the advancement of my mental health. Thank you.

 

Later-oonies,

 

Abby N. Flicker.

Independent woman: Part 2! It’s gonna be… OFF THE HOOK!

So that was… well, unfortunately not a personal record. I have had worse hangovers, but not many. Or many, but I can’t remember them. Or some.. whatever. It was a bad hangover.

It came with depression and hallucinations and panic attacks and the tense jaw and the feeling that if I stopped moving I would have a brain haemorrage and die. That is what panic attacks are like for me. When they are not being heart palpitations, that is. Not a pleasant few days. Did I mention it lasted THREE WHOLE DAYS? That’s right, a three day hangover for a three day bender. It seems a little steep, but maybe it’s fair and I should take it as a lesson or something. (That’s a joke, people)

I still had minor panic attack preludes today but I was in the hospital visiting my friend so I managed to force myself to be real and stop freaking over imaginary illness when right in front of me is a really sick person who is actually stuck in hospital and manages to be really cool and calm about it. Well maybe calm is the wrong word. They are giving her sleeping pills but apparently my friend is un-tranquillizable. She’s a feisty little critter… Anyway I brought my own brand of inappropriate humour to visit her and it was fun, she told me no one else wants to laugh about the sign that says “on days of discharge, patient must vacate the room by 11am”. I was like, dude… discharge! It says DISCHARGE. What’s not to laugh about? And she agreed but sighed, apparently other people just tell her she’s being vulgar and crude and weird.

Well that’s just wrong… Other people suck.

I take some moments to congratulate myself on being such a wonderful hospital visitor. I should be like an adults-only clown, going ward to ward making fun of the shameful and awkward to lift the spirits of the ailing… But it’s actually really scary being around sick people. Fleeting visions of a nursing career that will never be…  Brrrr…. I don’t like healthy people, I certainly wouldn’t like them with weeping sores and bedpans and having to sponge the smeg out of their comatose fat-folds.

Ewww.

Anyway my friend wasn’t scary looking so it was ok although she did have a load of wires and shit attached to her body. And bruises from I guess scary medical equipment. And they came in and out taking blood and measurements and she coughed a lot. I made jokes about all of it. Some of my jokes fell flat but I just pretended she had misheard me, shook my head and moved on. That’s how you gotta do it.

Anyway the hospital was pretty fun, but it’s not the only reason I am in such blindingly superior form today. (compared at least to the previous 3 days)

So… Yesterday I spent a vigorous hour online checking apartments to rent in Dublin, and calling estate agents. The flat I most liked the look of was actually the only one whose owner called me back and arranged an immediate viewing. So I had hoped to line up a series of potential places to see in one go, but it was not to be. Obviously there would be something glaringly wrong with the apartment I liked. It would be missing a bathroom, or the oven would be gross…. Or it would already be taken by the time I got there… anyway I met the owner and he showed me the flat.

Now, I normally cringe and say, hey, call it a fucking bedsit, that’s what it is… but this is kind of nice enough that I will allow myself to puff up and say “studio apartment.” A studio apartment, anyway… kitchen, living room, bedroom in one… with a little bathroom…. can’t take long to show. It can’t. But it took over an hour. Seriously, the landlord- lovely, friendly guy by the way- literally showed me everything in that room. He showed me how the thermostat works. He showed me where the shared hoover is kept. He showed me how to work the washing machine… he showed me how to work the electric fire. He turned on the shower to show me the shower pressure.

I liked that apartment. I liked it so good… I really, really liked it. It has wooden floors… it has NICE furniture. Normally you rent some shitty little lonesome nest for insignificant low income people and it’s got mouldy grandma chairs that you are not allowed remove, and ass-coloured stains on the counters. You wind up draping blankets on the chairs which just means your living room only ever looks tidy the few minutes before anyone sits down, and then needs tidying again. This place has a nice sofa, a big double bed, a nice armchair, a fireplace albeit with an electric fire… but it is NICE. I fell instantly, madly in love with the place. I forgot all about the depression I have been feeling every morning I wake up in my childhood bed, in my childhood room, but without any of my stuff… You know, I really miss my apartment like crazy. My apartment isn’t all that but it’s MINE. I used to wake up there, ok with a shitty social life and wildly lonely but I woke up peaceful and relaxed. I feel a little heartbroken to be honest, leaving my old apartment. It’s like… when I left my husband. I loved him, but I was unhappy with him. I tore him out of my life while he was still deeply rooted and it hurt like FUCK. Now to a lesser extent I’m tearing myself out of my own apartment that is my home, my first ever real home that is mine… because I’m unhappy in that city. But I still love my home, and I miss it sorely.

I left that almost ridiculously in-depth tour of the tiny apartment feeling like yes… that was it. That was my new apartment. But what to do? It was the first place I had seen. No one takes the first place. What kind of noob takes the first place they see? But I knew it would be gone soon. I had called yesterday about another place in the same building, today it had already gone. I called the landlord and said, you’re gonna think I’m an awful fool going for the first place I looked at but… I’ll take it. If that’s ok….

He laughed. It’s ok by me!

I felt like I needed to explain my childish rushing into the contract… “I just don’t think I’ll find anything better really. I’ve seen some awful photos of places…”

He said something I couldn’t hear down the phone. What?

“Uh I said… you won’t find anything better? You’re just settling for me… Eh never mind…”

Oh wow, an awkward joke! I’m feeling at home already…

So there, I’m signed up, I’ve paid the deposit, I’ve made my bed… it’s a reasonable rent, it’s modern and nice and clean and the walls are thick… I can see myself very happy there. I move in in two weeks so now I just have to head back to Italy, ship my stuff home… and find a MOTHERFUCKIN JOB!

With my emancipation looming, I’ve decided to cut my mother and stepdad a little slack. They have been drilling into my brain with their bickering and snapping at each other, but I am watching it today from a seat further back. It’s horrible and it maddens me still, but I can handle it a few days more. It makes me sad for my mum, but I can usually keep myself above despair about it… She’s a grown up… and she’s too wrapped up in her own version of our family, she wouldn’t even want help. She just wants sympathy and to keep going as usual. It does break my heart, my mum.. I used to want to take her with me when I left this house, but I guess it’s her home.

She comes to visit me sometimes, wherever I’m building my life at the time, and brings her own reality, and sometimes I visit theirs and revert back to my teenage self. I am so glad I’m leaving here. Just thinking about how my mum used to be… I think, before him… but I don’t know… makes me sad and lonely. I was too little, I was four or five. My mum was the greatest, happiest kindest person in the world, but I was little…. She’s a lovely person but she’s also kind of trampled and impotent now, to a point I don’t know how to respect.

My mum reaches out to me constantly across a chasm. I DO try… our relationship has good moments and bad.

She offers me advice of what jobs I could do. She’s so damned naive about some things, it would be funny to me if I wasn’t so sad about it right now.

Here are some career suggestions from my mother.

“Well you like playing computers, you could… design the games, or something.”

“Mum, those jobs go to people who have studied computer game design. I don’t know how to do that. I don’t want to do that with the rest of my life, so I don’t want to study years to learn how…”

“Well I’m sure you would need to study for the hard bits, but you probably could come up with all sorts of ideas for games.”

“Yes mother but that isn’t a job you can go out and apply for. If I knew how to make games, or if I had a great idea for a game, I could maybe go to someone with that… but I have neither knowledge of how to make computer games, nor a great idea for one.” (apart from: game where you get to actually see the boneing)

“Well you could come up with the names for characters.”

“That is not a job.”

“They must need somebody to come up with those funny names for the characters, or the countries in the games… You were always very good at that.”

“Mother seriously, that isn’t a job I would get paid for. The people who are capable of building massive 3d environments and designing the game in general, would probably be able to stretch to coming up with some fantasy character names.”

“I don’t think so, I think they would get someone to do the names.”

“MOTHER! I know very little about the computer game development process, but I know they don’t pay people to come in and think of a couple of names and then go home”

“Well whatever, it’s just a suggestion.”

“Yeah well.”

“There’s no need to be mean.”

“I’m not… I’m not… Urgh I don’t mean to be. Just… I know that’s not a job, ok?”

“It’s just your tone, I’m sensitive to how people talk to me….”

“MOTHER SERIOUSLY AFTER ALL THESE YEARS YOU SHOULD BE ABLE TO DEAL WITH MY TONE. It’s not a tone. It’s just… I just don’t… urgh just leave it.”

“Well what about correcting spelling for a newspaper or something?”

“That’s… they have computers for that.”

“Well you’re very good at spelling.”

“I know mom….” (I really am very good at spelling. It’s one of my special skills I have. I’m so good at spelling, when I lived in South America for six months, South Americans would ask me for help spelling their shit… in Spanish.)

“I always thought you were great at spelling. You’re a little wizz!” (STOP PATRONISING ME MOTHER I AM NEITHER LITTLE NOR AM I A… well actually yeah I am a wizz. But I’m not little. Unless of course you mean skinny…)

“Urgh. There are computer programs for that mum, there… like you can a red squiggle appear under words as you type. I don’t use those things obviously because then I would probably lose my awesome typing just like I lost my mad maths skillz when I started relying on the calculator.”

“You’re very good at spelling. You could proofread for a big newspaper.”

“No one is going to give me a proof reading job, I’m like… I got a C2 in English in my Leaving Cert exams.” (I should have studied for those exams but I felt like… I really just didn’t want to study.)

“Well I just think you’re being very negative. I think about it this way, if you like doing it, you’re good at doing it… and you normally do it for free, you should start doing it for money. That’s what should happen.”

“Mother, that’s the kind of thing a hooker’s mother would say”

“WHAT? I DON’T THINK YOU SHOULD BE A HOOKER! You’re twisting my words now!” my mother looks at me in disgust and hurt. “I didn’t say that AT ALL!”

Anyway me and my mum are having all kinds of unwanted conversations about my career. Sometimes I try to be nice so I bullshit, because to say nothing at all or give a noncommital answer is not an option. She weasels an answer out of me. So I say things like, yeah, that’s a great attitude, you know I used to love playing with LEGO, I wonder will they give me a job as an engineer, or an architect? But she gets hurt when I am sarcastic because I’m twisting her words and being nasty. I don’t mean to be, it’s just…. to me, things are either hugely impressive, or wonderfully funny. Or just sick.

The wonderfully funny section of life and the universe is the biggest. But I don’t mean any harm by my attitude, I just like laughing at things. It’s my favorite.

Also I like sex. Sex I take seriously. I don’t like to laugh in sex…. but maybe I am doing it wrong? It’s possible. I have two weeks before the venn diagrams of “living in a country where I can get laid drunk” and “have my own double bed and my parents aren’t one room away” intersect in my kick ass new apartment.

So you know my goal.. apart from obviously the finding a job soon thing… is to get some serious laid.

 

Despite my mother’s best intentions, I will not be combining business and pleasure.

A whore charges…

my love don’t cost a thing.

PARTY ON.