Friday, May 7, 2021

FIDELITY

Imagine being in a haze. Not physically, but in your mind. You go on a date and play truth or dare, drinking shots of soju when you refuse. This takes place in a private karaoke room, where you sing Taylor Swift, off-key (it’s always off-key for me, I’m tone deaf) and he tries to sing My Chemical Romance’s The Black Parade, but it is too high for him. You both get steadily more drunk, you talk about your exes and he talks about his. Truth: Which ex would you get back together with? It’s a toss up, East Coast or West? Never thinking about the recent one, the one who loved you, because you have to deny what hurts, right? You’re in a daze, anyway, it doesn’t matter. He is smart, smarter than you are, and this is not too common and you know it. You’d have to be smart to advise college kids on what paths to take, it will affect the rest of their lives. You carry yourself like the woman you know you are, you are intelligent and kind and good-looking and you could command anyone’s attention if you wanted to. One of the shoots you recently modeled for has just churned out a social media ad that your friend screenshots and sends you, it’s a telehealth app and you look so happy and bright and you’re holding a pack of birth control pills like they’re the best things you’ve seen, which is ironic because you argued about STI testing, you don’t remember the last time you got tested because it never used to matter when you’re in a relationship and you only have one partner. But smart men, they are your weakness. They will always be. He carries himself with the assuredness of being anatomically well-endowed or that he at least knows how to pleasure a woman. It turns out to pleasantly be both, until you have the STI argument. How many men have never used a vibrator during sex, and how many women have seen social media posts, agreeing that penetrative sex, together with a vibrator is the best combination? Such wildly different lives we lead, all due to our sexual organs. When you arrive, though, you are disappointed, because his room is messy. Why are men’s rooms always messy? There are sheaves of paper on his bed, there are piles of clothes, there is a photo frame of him and his goddamn ex (oh mon dieu!) on the dresser. He promptly sees it and faces it down, but too late, we both know we are not over our exes. You tell him, Jesus, I’m going to write a book about all the men I’ve dated, and the common thread will be how goddamn messy their rooms are, how do women raise men like these. He says, “you should see women’s rooms, they’re just as messy” — again, it’s never #notallmen, but #somewomenaretoo! You walk the five blocks back from your workplace to his apartment, and it’s the first time you’re seeing Singapore’s buildings lit up from near, it feels a little like New York City with its grids and forever-lit-up towers. You hate the idea of these corporations and you hate Singapore, but the two of you walk together and you think, what a pretty, pretty haze, you could stand to be here a little longer. You’re both so messy and you don’t know what you want, and where you’re going, but some days, it’s nice to be in a daze together, than apart.

2 comments:

Belly said...

Stay away from my ex

Sarah said...

??? Is that advice? Is that a threat? A warning?? What is going on? How do you even know he’s your ex???