Sexless in the City

Sometimes reading romance novels doesn’t quite prepare you for a love life...

For this 30-year-old urbanite, love is always a misadventure: The Harvard Lickwit, Hippie the Groper, the 5% Man, and the Ad Weasel. These and many other men wander in and out of her life — but never her bed.

Saturday, January 29, 2005

When jobs are like bad relationships

You know it’s bad when you wake up Saturday morning (er, afternoon rather) and start debating the legitimacy of a sangria-for-juice beverage swap on the “breakfast” menu.

It’s just that I made sangria Thursday night — at first as consolation that I didn’t get the San Francisco job, hence will be stuck in New York another few months. But then, in light of my new, über-freaky Jesus freak mentality, I decided a pity party was not in order. I mean, clearly if this didn’t work out, it’s for the best. I must say I was rather less than thrilled about that job anyway ... It was mostly that I thought I could swing them paying for my move.

So it woulda been like wedding the odd, little quiet man you’re bored by because he has a stable job and a good relationship with his (single) mom, that consists of going to her house every Saturday for tea and to rake the leaves. They play nothing but classical music and she always asks awkward interrogatories about the New York Timesyou’ve only skimmed over the shoulders of other train commuters. You always feel as if you’re going to sneeze, but never can. Instead she offers you another dry cookie of the kind you really hate and pours you more weak and lukewarm tea you suspect she made from dandelion leaves or the meak pots of herbs (said with the h in front) on her windowsill. Her apartment is fitted out in muted mauves and ecrus that make you feel like you’re stuck in a rest-home parlor. You just know she thinks that your favorite home-decor and fashion store, Urban Outfitter, is a leather shop in Harlem or something. Her son is just your height — no more — and has that thick-but-firm-about-the-middle body some middle-aged men get. How on earth did you meet him, anyway, and get this thoroughly stuck in his plodding life?!! His hand when he occasionally takes yours for a quiet, Sunday-afternoon walk along that one — just that one — path through Central Park is always faintly moist in a way you never could speak of but are always secretly disappointed by. Maybe Gold Bond for his gloves? On the sly, of course, as if it’s special cleaning powder.

AUGH!!!!! What a horrific future that would be! Thank God I didn’t get that job. A spinster-writer may do boring work you see, but it needs to be, say, a secretarial job of such a fashion she can carry it out with sly, retrosexual flair. You know — with the edgy, subtle spectacles of a librarian whose private life the men muse about occasionally. Who wears the staid, boring lower-Manhattan office uniform, accessorized with curious little details the staff occasionally, briefly raise an eyebrow at. But files are whisked in and out so smartly, and letters drafted so efficiently, the most a middle-aged, male supervisor can do is gently cough now and then and say things like, “Yes, very well then. Thank you, Miss Broadway. That will be all for now.”

That kind of boredom I can deal with. There’s a strange satisfaction in undemanding displays of competency. And the life has all the faint drama of a romance novel heroine’s before she’s discovered by her husband-to-be. Which, once I find a job, could possibly happen. Assuming my dream is right, of course. But why wouldn’t it be? I’m sure dreams are just as reliable guides as romance novels are. Maybe even moreso! After all, dreams are like personalized romance novels.

... Wow, so much fantasy, on so little booze or caffeine! Amazing what happens when a mind is pent up writing summaries of truly horrible deeds in other countries. Thank God today’s the last day of all that. You see, I quit this miserable freelance assignment. Decided procrastination was kicking in wayyyyy too early on the job for this to be a healthy kind of work to do.

My Wall St. temp agency has some possible work for me now, though, since I can commit to long-term assignments. Too bad I don’t fall for banker types ... just kidding.

But I did attend a fellowship for creative sorts last night, in a crowd including not just Hapless Hesitator but the Captain as well. I barely said a word to either of them, though the Captain (perhaps owing to our new buddy-buddy status) apologized for only saying “howdy.” Next time he’ll endeavor to say “hey” as well, he promised.

More about the ups and downs of the Christian meet-market next week. Meanwhile, I’ve got a caption to write. For, as we are coming to the very end of January, it is time at last for the conclusion of our “December” contest ... and the Blog Reader World Series!

Sunday evening, a wealth of talented single ... er ... talent is coming together to judge the photos submitted by our reader leaders, Poster Boy and Frasier. In addition to blog-celebrity Best Friend, we have celebrity bloggers Esther and Blogfather! Yours truly will be on hand to observe the proceedings, explain the rules, and generally laugh her ass off (well, the parts of it the cold has left intact; 18-degree highs indeed!!!!). Don’t miss Monday’s judge-a-thon wrap-up. Maybe even with photos of my Better Than Sex cake (prepared, along with aforementioned sangria, as a cold-defying celebration of closure and to compensate the judges for their services)!