Thursday, May 5, 2011

Nobody Home

"I've got a little black book with my poems in
I've got a bag with a toothbrush and a comb in
When I'm a good dog they sometimes throw me a bone in

I've got electric light
And I've got second sight
I've got amazing powers of observation

And that is how I know
When I try to get through
On the telephone to you
There'll be nobody home

I've got nicotine stains on my fingers
I've got a silver spoon on a chain
I've got a grand piano to prop up my mortal remains

I've got wild staring eyes
I've got a strong urge to fly But I've got nowhere to fly to
Ooooh Babe when I pick up the phone
There's still nobody home"
(R. Waters)

 Tuesday night was the best DATE of my life.  David and I made plans for us to meet up at his hotel (since, after all, it's obviously easier for car-less me to get to him that for his expense account ass to get up to where I was staying - but the things foolish people will do for love, right?) after he finished his work.  Since I didn't really have anything nice packed (thanks to Tova's no checked bag rule), I wore my jeans and a clean t-shirt and we decided to not be fancy.  I also shoved something to sleep in and something to wear Wednesday, just in case, into my bag (a girl can never be too careful).

We dined on sushi, drank cold Coronas and took a very long, romantic walk on the boardwalk.

We talked for hours.  Literally.  We talked about everything.  Life, our dreams.  Our futures.  We talked and we laughed.  It felt....well shit, it felt amazing.

A few hours later we were spooning (fully clothed you pervs) in his room. I was glad to be facing away from him lest he see the shit eating grin on my face. 

I can't remember feeling quite that happy in a long time.

Half asleep, almost already in my sweet dreams, I asked what he was thinking.  "I'm thinking how great it is to have you as a friend."  Through the sleepy fog, tiny alarm bells start going off in my head.

"A friend?" I ask, suddenly awake.

"Sure," he says, "friends."  He amends himself.  "Good friends." 

His voice is matter of fact.  His words, a dagger in my heart. 

He shifts his weight and it feels as though the direction of the conversation has created a chasm between us.

"So we are just friends?" I ask, instantly regretting the words before I can haul them back in.  I feel a sweat breaking on my scalp.  In my mind I'm clawing back the hands of time and putting a zipper on my mouth before those words come out.

"What else would we be?"

What else indeed.  What else would my foolish heart and my fucking stupid brain have thought?  That this awesome guy, who can have anyone in the world, would choose the broken down thing who spent countless hours bearing her cracked soul to him to the point of nausea?  That he would choose this vessel, used and abused like a common whore for so long, over the myriads of Monster McBitches and their perfect pedigrees and their lack of religious and emotional baggage?

I made a sound like a laugh tinged with shards of glass.  "Haha, nothing," I say.  "I'm just tired.  I am gonna go to sleep."  And I'm glad I'm facing away from him lest he see the single tear falling off my eye onto the impossibly soft hotel pillow case.

I am gonna go to sleep.  So I said.  Except I don't sleep for one minute all night, while he peaceably slumbers.  Yet I'm pretending to be asleep when he gets up the next morning, gets ready, davens and leaves for work.  I wait until I am sure he is gone before I get myself into a sitting position.  Then I cry. 

It is my preferred cry of choice - soundless, tearless.  Shoulders heaving until I feel as though my chest is breaking.

When there is nothing else left, I gather my things, leave the hotel and take a cab back to Tova's place.  She doesn't have to ask.  She sees the look in my eye.  We embrace and she hold me for a very long time.  She eats breakfast.  I have no appetite for food.  Then we go through our daily ritual.  Bathing suits on, suntan lotion applied, we head for the pool.  We don't speak about it for a long time.  She tries to convince me that he didn't mean anything.  That his words were not rejection, just foolish, sleepy pillow talk.  I try to convince myself she is right.

I cannot remember feeling this miserable in a long time.


  1. Ill have to agree with Tova. He considers u a friend, and a very good one. For all u know, he is in the same sorta 'rut' as u, that he just doesnt know how to broach the subject. He may have asked u abt the other girl hoping that ud say something. When he asked u "what else would we be", he could have been hoping ud have said something, confirming how he feels.

  2. Ditto to what The Professor said. Be direct. Stop torturing yourself. Things are happening, and it's time to come clean! (P.S. My regular guy friends, the ones who are not into me, have no interest in spooning with me, ever. Just sayin'.)

  3. Ditto what irina said

  4. I don't know. In theory, it all sounds great - maybe he's confused, maybe this, maybe that. But he's a very down to earth guy with a rational head on his shoulders - it was the WAY he said it - so matter of fact. Like duh,what else WOULD we be??

    On the bright side it poured the entire last day i was there so i got to be doubly miserable

  5. Consider this; until around a month ago, you would have never looked at him in such a light. A month ago, ur reaction to the situation had it been reversed, most likely would have been the same. Then there is also the point that as friends, hes probably trying to avoid 'hitting' on u. if u would actually speak to him abt it, i think things may be a bit different

  6. Wow, what a crappy ending to a night! Good luck, Cymbaline - hope it works out for you.

  7. Dave 'ol boy was hoping for some confirmation from you!!!
    Why don't you just ask if your wasting your time or is he ever gonna get serious?
    Crying ain't gonna get you anywhere!!

  8. Reading this story from beginning to end...but already knowing the ending...still makes it a sad post :(