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Not for the first time, I am interpellated by a loon

  Thu 6th February 2014

Trina has been here since Monday. This three days a week is far too long for me. Yesterday she said, with what I suppose she thought was a magnanimity for which I should be grateful, "Well, I was going to give you some 'me time' today anyway," as if my free time is now her monopoly, to be gifted to me for finite periods at times to suit her.

Which is a shame, because when we do things of mutual interest together, we have a great time. On Monday we went to the launch night of our Dark and Winter Ales Festival. The landlord, handsomely dressed in one of those palely coloured shirts with patterns of small flowers or curlicues, that would have seemed a bit poofy ten years ago but which look quite good now, was a bit jittery, eyes roaming the room while we were talking, carefully tending, like a Tolstoyan hostess, to the social success of the evening.

Yesterday we were chatting away in the pub. Someone who thinks I'm his friend latched onto us. I met Larry two years ago when he overheard me saying something and asked if I had any work to give him. I explained that a man who earned £7775 last year hardly has a richesse to share with others, but unfortunately he hasn't been put off. His conversation is an account, at limitless length, of his crap life. Like many people with this brand of solipsism, his one real talent is turning any known or theoretical topic of conversation back to himself within seconds.

Trina and I plotted our escape by pretending to text, showing each other our unsent messages. The last message I wrote reflected the extent of the naturally sparkling compassion I effervesce towards others: "Fucking victim".

I had to go to work for a short time, then came back to hear Trina talking incessantly at the lodgers. I later discovered she had availed herself--which I have told her she can do any time--of the Extra Strong Mints hidden behind the unread Saul Bellow novel. I cooked a hurried tea, then suggested, with what I hoped sounded like an imperative, that we go upstairs, to give everyone else a rest. We danced about a bit for an hour or so to some house music and then we had rubbish sex.

This won't work, and I need to broach the issue. She thinks I want to spend as much time with her as I can. I've already started lying about the amount of time I am required to spend with the girls. I feel stifled and controlled, having to give a performance of delight at spending more time than I want to with her, which occludes the enjoyable parts of that time. If only she could just turn up, we could drink, dance, fuck, take drugs, go to concerts and pubs, and then if she could--you know--sort of, bugger off.

An odd moment the other day when I was out with Chris and Barry. I was on my way to attend to my ablutions, when I saw Erica, out with some of her colleagues. I went over to Erica, just chatting amiably, pleased to see her as I always am, and without design, put my hand on the upright of the chair on which the mental woman to my left was sitting.

I turned to her and smiled, as an invitation into our conversation. She slowly recoiled, shrinking from her chair, making a look of disdain. "Don't touch me," she said, and slid off her chair. Erica reached across us with her hand, and gestured and said to her "It's alright, stay there." I was bemused and surprised, but composed myself and turned to Erica and said "OK lovely, I'll see you later."

For the next day or two I practised better responses, talking to myself. The winning candidate was "Listen, I'm sat down there with a beautiful, clever, well-dressed woman. Why do you think I would want to touch you?" But she's a bit unhinged, and I think struggles with the pop, so probably best that my insult was only retrospectively available.


Comment from: [Member]

after 7 or 8 years of fairly constant companionship with Studley, i try very hard not to assume he wants to join me on adventures. If there’s an event i want to attend, i will invite him, but remind him that he is under no obligation to join me. on occasion – especially if he has to be nice to assholes as part of a charity fundraiser – he will decline and say he’d rather stay home and have a wank. and i am GOOD with that response. my worst nightmare is that he is with me out of a sense of obligation, rather than interest.

i do think you’re right about explaining this to Trina. she did make it sound as though she is gifting you your time… that would have sent up many flags for me as well…

as for batty, territorial chair woman? sometimes the “look. blink. blink again.” treatment is best… and we move on…

Fri 7th February 2014 @ 01:06
Comment from: [Member]

Yes, good counsel DF. A little conversation is looming. The good bits are worth preserving; just not with the stifling surroundings. I hope you carry on with what sounds like a successful negotiation of your time with Studley.

The lunatic amused me, with her egotism of imagining I was after her. She’s best left alone. She’s a raddled looking borderline alky (er…)

Fri 7th February 2014 @ 07:45
Comment from: Suzy Southwold [Visitor]

“If equal affection cannot be,
Let the more loving one be me.”

Fri 7th February 2014 @ 08:14
Comment from: [Member]

I’ve always been careful to avoid the L word, but that shouldn’t rule out some good times together.

Always good to have a bit of Auden in the morning though.

Fri 7th February 2014 @ 08:17

I feel bad for Larry. Do you think he knows this about himself? Or suspects?

This is all coming to a sad end, isn’t it? It ran it’s course. If it ends, if she decides to flee, don’t pursue her.

The best retorts always show up a day or two late.

Fri 7th February 2014 @ 11:40
Comment from: [Member]

People like Larry are blessed with the lack of self-knowledge that leads to happiness. I’m fairly sure he doesn’t know why he has so few friends.

I don’t think necessarily it’s coming to an end–I would like to keep the many good bits. I just know she’ll go off in a massive strop of insecurity when I mention it.

Fri 7th February 2014 @ 12:19
Comment from: Jo [Visitor]

Obviously, Trina doesn’t read your blog. Does she know about it?

Sat 8th February 2014 @ 11:31
Comment from: [Member]

No, and fortunately she isn’t really into computers much. I’m not sure she even knows what blogging is. I know the IP ranges she uses, and she certainly doesn’t know how to spoof them or to use a VPN, etc.

Yes, blogging like this can be a dangerous game. But I’m not interested in posting pictures of my meals and dull-as-fuck accounts of my wonderful holiday with wonderful friends where we discovered a wonderful restuarant.

Sat 8th February 2014 @ 12:07
Comment from: Leni Qinan [Visitor]

Good for you then. I predict sooner or later you will have to face the situation. I hope a peaceful conversation works to make things clear.

Sat 8th February 2014 @ 12:15
Comment from: [Member]

Yes Leni–that’s what we need to do, just straighten things out in a civilised manner. However, I am can see trouble ahead. I think there’ll be tears.

Sat 8th February 2014 @ 12:22
Comment from: Hipster Yaya [Visitor]

She will have to face the situation as well, Leni. As far back as I can remember, a few posts ago Looby explained to her what was it going to be like. And she accepted the rules.

You surely don’t want to call it relationship, right Looby?

Sat 8th February 2014 @ 12:28
Comment from: [Member]

I have done my best never to mislead Trina. I have told her that I have never loved anyone in the sense in which the word is commonly used, and that I think “love” is a social construct which organises a culturally and historically specific set of responses to involuntary biochemical reactions.

I do think it’s a relationship of sorts, in a fairly basic sense of that word. It’s her that constantly wants to make it into something which it isn’t, constantly going on about how “special” it is.

No it’s not, it’s just two people who met on the internet and are now (for the most part) having a good time together enjoying several shared interests – including a joint sine qua non – going out dancing to house music. Why can’t we be happy with that?

It’s a fault line between, a crack we’re constantly papering over. I wish we could just STFU about “the relationship.” Don’t know, don’t care, but do you fancy another bottle of wine?

Sat 8th February 2014 @ 12:35
Comment from: Suzy Southwold [Visitor]

Oh, you’re so full of sociological bullshit, you bloody ponce.

I hope we’ve known each other long enough to realise I’m smiling fondly as I type that.

Sat 8th February 2014 @ 19:31
Comment from: [Member]

I can think of no-one I would more like to puncture my bubble of academic toss than you. And I don’t say that to every bird I meet.

Sat 8th February 2014 @ 20:52
Comment from: Gossamer Beynon [Visitor]

Even though I haven’t known you for very long, if at all, I tend to agree with Suzy. In a nice way, of course.

While I admire your honesty about the situation with Trina I disagree with your idea and interpretation of love being a social construct. If I were nit picking I’d say it’s really about language and how we use it to describe the world.

You put me in mind of Simone de Beauvoir when she said ‘I am too intelligent, too demanding, and too resourceful for anyone to be able to take charge of me entirely. No one knows me or loves me completely. I have only myself’.

Sat 8th February 2014 @ 23:43
Comment from: [Member]

Well, for whatever reasons I just haven’t ever felt it, in the way other people describe it. Pure selfishness and self-absorbtion are good candidates for keeping it at bay, I suppose.

Sun 9th February 2014 @ 10:08
Comment from: furtheron [Visitor]

Just love Suzy’s comment!

Sun 9th February 2014 @ 20:42
Comment from: Jo [Visitor]

I enjoy your blog because you are so honest. I asked you that question about Trina because I suddenly imagined her reading how you feel about your relationship.

Sun 9th February 2014 @ 21:29
Comment from: young at heart [Visitor]

hi… comment…..sorry but my tech-no-knowledge prohibits any changes….someone else set it up am afraid…..!!!

Mon 10th February 2014 @ 08:56
Comment from: [Member]

F: Yes, my pompous airs and graces don’t last long round Ms Southwold.

Jo: Thanks – I have to tell it all to someone :)

YAH: Not to worry, I’ll carry on commenting using the blogging abomination that is Wordpress :)

Mon 10th February 2014 @ 11:25

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looby, n.; pl. loobies. A lout; an awkward, stupid, clownish person

M / 59 / Bristol, "the most beautiful, interesting and distinguished city in England" -- John Betjeman [1961, source eludes me].

"Looby is a left-wing intellectual who is obsessed with a) women's clothes and b) tits." -- Joy of Bex.

WLTM literate woman, 40-65. Must have nice tits, a PhD, and an mdma factory in the shed, although the first on its own will do in the short term.

There are plenty of bastards who drink moderately. Of course, I don't consider them to be people. They are not our comrades.
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