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.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Stages of Broadway, pt. 6

A few of you, already, have left Stages of Broadway, pt. 5 scratching your heads in dismay and consternation: “No dating?!!” “Are you ending this?” Frasier endorses the wearing of braids, submits that previous dating fasts were mostly a fraud ... and so on.

But the thing is, I’m sick of dates. If that’s all I wanted, I’d just get a palm tree or something. I want marriage. But I don’t need it like a person needs water. What would marriage give me, after all, that I don’t already have? Basically, as near as I can tell, three things: babies, sex, attention (though probably not in that order). But let’s consider the urgency of these “needs”:

  • Attention I get walking down the street. Even when well bundled up for winter, it turns out. Either glasses are inherently hot or I must have good lip gloss. In any case, superficial admiration isn’t hard to get. For more than that, I’ve got plenty safe men in my life: brothers, guy friends, uncles, a father, and readers. ;) (Well … most of them are safe.)
  • And as for sex … after nearly 27 years I’m getting used to being single. Really. Sure it’s restless sometimes, but restlessness is worst when you think your happiness depends on precisely the things you don’t have. If I can’t — and haven’t — made my peace with solitary singleness, something’s wrong! There are worse things than a sex-itch you can’t scratch. And like an itch, the more you choose not to scratch it, the less it drives you crazy. For real.
  • So that leaves babies. Which, truthfully, while great, are rather costly. I mean, you better be some kinda man for me to give up booze and coffee to have your kids. Plus, there’s the labor thing! And stretch marks … and lotsa other stuff too depressing and banter-killing for me to mention here. I think the reason most of us want kids is not, in itself, the process of bringing them into life or even the sacrifice of raising them. It’s more about the love of which they are fruit, the lives they become, into which you pour yourself. Girls probably get most baby-mad depending on the guy involved: “I wanna have his babies, raise a girl with his eyes.” Etc.
Now if all these non-essential things are what I’d get from finding a husband, I’m actually doing all right without. Which is not to say I wanna set off on some silly, self-sufficient “I don’t need a man” kick, but what I don’t need is more life as an emotional yo-yo, or ambiguous friendships and hang-outs.

Ambiguous friendships and hang-outs. What the hell do I mean by that? Well, it’s like this. A couple months ago, I met a nice Christian young man. Despite a figure-concealing sweater, naked face and frequent threats to go vomit in the nearby ladies’ (I had that nauseous kind of headache, you see), he seemed a little interested. Maybe. He mentioned wanting to hang out sometime when he was less weary from the week — “And I less inclined to be sick,” I chimed in. “Yes, I could see doing that.”

But then a bit later it dawned on me I wasn’t sure what to expect of this ambiguous hang-out. Luckily I’d inadvertently prattled on, later in the chat, about a boy then well ensconced in my affections … but still the problem — as a general situation — remained. And the thing is — as confirmed by conversation with a single Christian guy who brings about his own DTRsone-on-one hang-outs lead to trouble. Almost as much as backrubs. Most of the guys I know are mere acquaintances I sometimes see in group settings. Otherwise they have their own relationships so one-on-one times, when they happen, are clearly defined and almost sibling-like. Besides: if a guy needs solitude to get to know me, why does he really want to know me that well? What is he really after?

It may be something close to what I’m after, or it might not. If my heart’s gonna get excited, there better be a definite chance of marriage. Which, I think, may call for an entirely different approach to romantic relationships.

‘I got you, babe’ ... right?
But seeing as how that may not make for very, well, spicy blogging, I think a change in format may be called for. I know many of you have come to this blog for a 10-minute laugh, mid-morning, but somehow between your readership and a combination of other events in my life, major changes have occurred. Changes that don’t permit me to blog in the way I used to.

Just because I’ve changed doesn’t mean this here blog must go bye-bye (besides, there might be a shot at turning it into a book!). But it, too, must change. For starters, I’d like to get back to engaging my readers more often. And more publicly. Start thinking of this as an advice column in addition to laugh-generator. Feel free to pass material my way that you think I’d want to share with fellow readers.

Bottom line, you’ve made this blog what it is. If it’s been worth reading so far, and you’d like to continue to do so, help me forge in a new direction. Don’t forget to enter this month’s contest! And if you missed the story on what brought me to this point, catch up here: Stages of Broadway, pts. 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5. Otherwise fast forward to the conclusion ... so far ... in Stages of Broadway, pt. 7!