15
Jul
10

This is either my most boring entry ever, my most revealing entry ever, or some bastardized amalgamation of both: On self-preservation.

“I think you’re scared [of being hurt],” said my friend, “Monica,” over her plate of healthy food and my plate of fatgirlfood during our impromptu 3am breakfast at The Diner.

*Insert beleaguered sigh here*

I have had some variant of this conversation—a conversation that necessarily implies a cognitive dissonance betwixt myself and my emotions—at least 4 times within the last two weeks.

Now, this is partly my fault.

It is well-established within my framework of female friends that I am, at best, vague, and, at worst, shady as a motherfucker, with respect to the men that I “kick it” with.

The reasons for this are as many as they are varied, and perhaps we’ll discuss this further, and in greater depth, should the appropriate occasion arise. As they are irrelevant to my present line of thought, let us table the matter.

Instead, permit me to settle the dispute, once and for all, with respect to the seeming miasma that is my much-touted emotional complexity.

Prepare yourself for the unveiling of my greatest secret.

Ready?

My emotions aren’t complex at all.

Nope.

Not at all.

Simple as a motherfucker.

I like, dislike, love, and hate in fairly equal measure.

I’m not ambiguous about a damned thing when it comes to how I feel about you.

Let’s start with the fundamentals of boy-girl (or boy-boy, or girl-girl, whatever your pleasure) romantic entanglements, as I see them.

Fooler’s FuckWithYou Fundamentals:

-The Jump Off:

A timeless classic. A proper jumpoff is a man who visits during those pesky times, often after 10 pm, but, occasionally at the noon-day hour over an extended lunch break, when you’ve got that irksome itch, but require two calloused, masculine hands to scratch it. Though you need not know anything particularly significant about your j/o (that he does not have AIDS will suffice in most instances), individual tastes on this will vary with respect to what it actually takes to (and allow me to be frank, here) get you off. For instance, I personally prefer that my jumps can read and properly conjugate verbs. That is not to say that he need appear at my doorstep, voluminous, leather-bound tome of Ovid in hand. It is enough for me to know that, should my doorman inquire about his day whilst signing my building’s visitor log, his response not call to mind Pootie Tang or South Carolina’s newly-elected senator.

-The Steady Date:

There are many different takes on what actually constitutes proper “steady-dating.” Here is the version that works best for me. When I steady-date you, I probably know what your mother’s name is, and whether you have siblings. I have an idea of your ambitions, and what’s more—I probably give a damn.  Now, as the “steady” nature of “steady-date” connotes consistency and regularity, I necessarily think that some fucking should be taking place. Now, that’s just me. Personally, I don’t see the value in looking meaningfully into your eyes, and contemplating at length the extent of your hotness factor, if there isn’t ultimately some potential for you to be rubbing all over my breasts. I’m sorry. I can’t see it. We can hold hands and recite poetry to each other when you’re 80 and impotent. For now, be nice, make me laugh, engage me, and fuck me. I’ll be much obliged.

Now, here is where it gets tricky. When I steady-date you, I am not committed to you. I night date other people. I might sleep with some of those people. I might not. Unless you ask me outright, I probably won’t mention this. And I don’t have to. Here is where people get confused. In the “steady-dating” phase, there are to be no “non-compete” agreements. We do not agree not to date other people, or not to sleep with other people. Those types of understandings are the EXCLUSIVE property of the Boo-Up phase, and we haven’t gotten there yet.

The most important part of the steady-date rubric is the crisis-call center located at the heart of our understanding. Odds are, if we are steady-dating, we are friends, and I care about you (call to mind paragraph I. of this section). I am down to listen to your problems, to help you sort through them, and to be your shoulder to cry on if need be. Be that as it may, when shit gets too heavy, we either need to re-negotiate our terms (that is, upgrade to Boo-Up phase), or I need to cut and run. During our time in this space, our arguments—IF ANY—should be few and far between. Do not ask me to loan you money. Do not ask me to co-sign anything for you. And please, above all, remember the part about fucking me.

-The Boo-Up Phase, often referred to by its street name, “Some Ole Bullshit:”

* sigh * We don’t sleep with or date other people. When it’s bad, we don’t sleep with or date each other. I know everything about you, and I love and or care deeply for you—which is why I’m still here not fucking other people despite the fact that I know everything about you (and probably hate a solid 8-17% of it now that I am fully aware). I am obligated to stick by you through feast and famine. We do a whole lot of shit together. Both of us are entitled to be angry when the “doing a whole lot of shit together” portion of this phase isn’t appropriately fulfilled (here’s a hint—if you’re in a relationship with me, the angry person will probably be you, as I’m tyrannical about my personal space). I not only care about your dreams and ambitions, I help you make them a reality.

The truth of the matter is, I can’t really comment too much on this phase, as I don’t fully understand it, even at 29. It is difficult for me to wrap my mind around fully integrating another whole person into your life, and being accountable for his emotional well being. Here’s what I will say: though the idea of monogamy defies logic, to me (This is not to say that it can’t be done. It can.); while the notion of let’sbetogetherandallineachother’sshit is hard for me to embrace, the men that have inspired me to try have been incredible. So despite my rather incomplete comprehension– emotionally, I get it. But, be advised, dear readers: “Fools rush in.”

Still with me?

Well done, you. Way to give a fuck about what I have to say.

We’re halfway there.

Now, here’s how I get down.

I prefer to stick with options 1&2. My capacity to properly succeed at #3 is something we might not ever get to on this space.

Either way, romantic entanglement or not, I have a general two-hand approach to all interpersonal relations.

Ready?

Fooler’s Two-hand Approach for all Interpersonal Relations:

Let’s view the heart poetically; as the pulse of all things emotional and endearing.

I envision my heart with two out-stretched hands stemming from it. These hands are its guardians; its conservators. They enable me to pass time with you, share jokes with you, have fun with you, whatever.

As time goes on, and I become relaxed around you, and I see you as someone who won’t screw me, I’ll take a hand down. I’ll let you in, a bit. This is where most of my friends are. It’s a good place to be, I think.

If there comes a point when I can’t picture my life without you; if I want to be your friend forever; if I trust you and confide in you, and actually love you, I take both hands down. My parents are here, my linesisters are here,  a few of my prophytes, 1-2  childhood friends, my crew of “boys” are here,  my mentor is here, and a smattering of law school friends have cemented their presence in this spot. It is here, that you get all of me, for better or worse. I think most will find that, once here, they have a decided preference for one-hand up status.

If ever, while at one-hand up status, you reveal something really fucked about yourself; some previously unseen evil or malevolent characteristic—something that goes beyond the pale of a garden variety misstep; some untoward abuse of trust, I’ll put the other hand up, again. And we have to start afresh.

If ever, while at two-hands down status, you reveal something really fucked about yourself; some previously unseen evil or malevolent characteristic—something that goes beyond the pale of a garden variety misstep; some untoward abuse of trust, we’re done for good.

Still there?

Wow, excellent. Here’s the last leg.

Let’s re-visit Monica’s initial suggestion, and apply everything that we’ve seen here, today.

“I think you’re scared [of being hurt].”

The truth is, I’m not. Not at all.

Hurt is an integral part of the human experience.

I accept it.

I know that its emergence is ever near.

I don’t fear it.

I just don’t have time for it.

In my mind, the older we get, and the more we subject ourselves to life’s disappointments, the longer our recovery from these individual heartbreaks takes.

The older I get, the more my emotional state of well being is like an old man who breaks his hip. A few years ago, he could have done some physical therapy, and speedily rehabilitated his injuries. But now—time worn, with brittle bones—the break fucks him all up; puts him out of commission for the foreseeable future.

Maybe if I were 21, without a care in the world, I could handle a stint of depression that comes with the crushing hurt of a two-hands down catastrophe; a time dedicated to wallowing and excruciating self-valuation.

But I’m not.

I’m 29. I have a mortgage, and a job where the neediest motherfuckers in Creation clamor for my unwavering attention. I have bills to pay, appointments to keep, and a rather slippery clutch on the passage of Time and the wiles of my youth.

I have to eat this world, and everything within it, now, while it is spread before me at the ready; when I’ve had my full—that’s it. There are no seconds.

And the truth of the matter is, that when it comes down to the come down, most people, no matter how dear they are to you, aren’t worth your unending downspiral. Most people aren’t worth your own undoing.

It’s not emotional avoidance/denial.

It’s emotional intelligence.

Advertisements

10 Responses to “This is either my most boring entry ever, my most revealing entry ever, or some bastardized amalgamation of both: On self-preservation.”


  1. 1 LawInTheMaking
    July 15, 2010 at 8:48 pm

    I saw myself in this. Well done.

  2. July 15, 2010 at 10:46 pm

    Great post. I think all women can(should be able to)identify with this post who are in their late 20s and single…It’s all a part of knowing who you are and what you want out of life. Next step is figuring out the obstacle course you want to take. Some things/people you can just work around with trusty old intellect.

  3. 3 sourpatchkid
    July 16, 2010 at 1:44 am

    loved loved loved this. “Maybe if I were 21, without a care in the world, I could handle a stint of depression that comes with the crushing hurt of a two-hands down catastrophe…” — i hear that. i love the distinction you make between being afraid of getting hurt, and simply not having time for it. approaching stuff with caution means you’re wise, not a scary shit. thanks for sharing, def wasn’t boring.

  4. July 16, 2010 at 9:51 am

    Too many people (myself included, at some point) have allowed someone to take too much space in their lives, with no room left over. 2 hands down, PLUS a freakin’ artery, even. #Nobueno

    And If this ain’t my truth right here:

    “…when it comes down to the come down, most people, no matter how dear they are to you, aren’t worth your unending downspiral. Most people aren’t worth your own undoing.

    It’s not emotional avoidance/denial.
    It’s emotional intelligence.”

    I may have to direct a few of the people in my life who DO need this lesson, to your blog. Great post.

  5. 5 NotThisFool
    July 16, 2010 at 3:13 pm

    Self-preservation & emotional intelligence, I can definitely dig that! Loved the post.

  6. 6 Synman Fredo
    July 16, 2010 at 3:35 pm

    Jeebus. Terrific. I just hope the mofo’s who NEED to see this message happen across this blog. Preaching to the converted may be rewarding (like matsurbation) but it’s not the same as gettin the point across to someone who despreatley needs it (like masturbation, lol). Keep it going. I love this place. You are simply awesomeness.

  7. 7 str8lovanochasa
    July 16, 2010 at 4:39 pm

    i absolutely LOVE this post.

    the grit (nicely-known as ‘honesty’) with which you write, keep me checking out your blog on the regular.(-:

    2-handed approach? love it. live by it. as a 38 y/o, divorce’ who stayyyyys
    explaining ‘why i’m single’…this felt like a page out of my own journal.

    so, thank you and please accept my shoutout for your emotional intelligence…

  8. July 16, 2010 at 4:40 pm

    +1

    Excellent post. I’m really enjoying your work. Even as a guy I found myself being able to relate to the detailed breakdown of relationship statuses (I believe your list can apply to men as much as women).

    “In my mind, the older we get, and the more we subject ourselves to life’s disappointments, the longer our recovery from these individual heartbreaks takes.” — As a very close friend of someone who’s going through a period of heartbreak (understatement of the year, I feel), I can pretty much agree with everything you’ve described.

  9. 9 Dickie
    July 21, 2010 at 8:18 pm

    great great post…you truly have a gift and your word speak truths many of us need to hear…please keep it up!

  10. 10 Dummie
    July 26, 2010 at 8:30 pm

    Assumption: This post was written by a African American (AA) Woman

    I see now! I now realize why the rate of STDs, specifically HIV has risen so sharply amongst African American women.

    Thank you for opening my eyes…


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


July 2010
M T W T F S S
« Jun   Aug »
 1234
567891011
12131415161718
19202122232425
262728293031  

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 535 other followers

a history of my meanderings….

Advertisements

%d bloggers like this: