My Night with the Sailor

Note: I published this blog post this morning, then had to pull it and edit the hell out of it in order to protect “Tom.”  The descriptive quality of the narrative has been somewhat compromised.  That is all.   


I met “Tom” at The Campbell Apartment at Grand Central.  My friend and I went to Grand Central on the assumption that the sailors would congregate at the public transportation hubs after a long day of sight-seeing and/or participating in the Memorial Day activities.  We picked The Campbell Apartment on the assumption that officers would be there, because enlisted men would have no interest in drinking $22 cocktails that do not include naked exotic dancers.

       We were right.

        Kat didn’t want to approach them.  She definitely has no confidence issues, but she thinks that men ought to do all the work.  The problem with that is that you might not get the guy you have your eye on, because you’re going to get tied up with whomever approaches you first (and maybe his buddy).  If you don’t like him, then you have to disengage and get another man to come up to you, and then the first one is put out, and the men get some dick-swinging thing going on, and if worst comes to worst and they’ve been drinking enough, a fight breaks out.

        Nope.  Best thing to do is to take charge.

        I did not pick the most handsome.  Handsome guys are jerks and they are often boring in the sack (seriously, the most handsome man I’ve ever been with looked like a human Ken doll and if you could have bottled his sexual mojo, it would give ambien a run for its money).  The one I picked was slightly plain, with perfect posture and a blade nose.  He was wearing a wristwatch.  Who in hell still wears a wristwatch?  He was alert like the Harris’s hawk that I saw at The Cloisters on Sunday and I could see him sneaking glances at me and my friend.  He reminded me of the men in my family.  He looked early 40s.

        I went right up to him and asked him if I could buy him a drink as a gesture of appreciation for his service to our country.

       They stopped talking and stared.  Men always act surprised when they get hit on.  

        “Well, I appreciate it, Miss, but I’m not supposed to drink in uniform.”

         “What?  Sailors who can’t drink?  What sort of preposterous bullshit is this?”

       They started laughing, and I knew I was in.

        He made eye contact and gestured with his head to another group of men at the other side of the bar.  He said, under his breath, that he was with his boss.

       “I took you to be the boss!” (I did, actually.)  Then: “Are you from here?  How do you like New York?”

        The others bought Kat a drink and Tom went to the bar and kicked his buddy off the stool so that I could sit down, and that was that.

        “Tom” was a sailor serving on a ship. 

        I don’t know much about sailors or sailing, but I thought that the surest way to his heart would be to ask him flattering questions about his boat.  The Mathematician had a boat (lying scumbag), and boy, did he love his boat.  Sure enough, Tom loved his boat, too, and was a wealth of knowledge about everything having to do with it.

       I asked him if he had pictures, and he produced his cell phone and showed me eight million photos of the huge metal boat and all of the sailors running to and fro about it. 

        Did you know boats have “histories” and “distinguished services”?  I didn’t, but now I do, because Tom told me.

       Tom was very polite, and bought me expensive soft drinks and a $22 appetizer.  He kept asking me if I wanted anything.  He had an intense, energetic quality about him, even though he didn’t move very much.  I was impressed with his vigor.

       He was smart, but had zero intellectual curiosity.  I tried to get a handle on his intelligence–I’m good at that, I do it for a living–and he seemed like a problem-solver.  Nothing in his conversation was speculative.  It was all data and observations about people and concrete objects in the immediate vicinity.  He spoke in simple, clear declarative sentences. 

       He wisely, and sensitively, did not talk politics (military guys skew Republican, and however well he treated me, the minute he started bitching about welfare recipients or liberals, I would have had to dump him).  The only political vibe that I got from him was when I told him that I was a teacher, and he said, “That’s a good career for a woman.” 

        After a few hours, I asked him if he wanted to see the East Village.

      He hailed a cab and it was cute because he didn’t know how.  When he finally got one, he opened the door for me, and then ran around to the other side to get in, and that was cute, too.

        At the bodega across the street, he bought himself a beer and a case of Diet Pepsi for me.  

       The sex was good for vanilla sex with someone I just met.  First-time sex is usually not that great because both parties are nervous and worried about offending each other–it’s polite “getting-to-know-you” sex.  Tom was pretty decent.  He was competent, which is precisely the word I would use to describe every aspect of his personality, and he asked permission before doing anything, which could either be sensitivity or a shitload of military-ordered sexual harassment training. 

        Nice body, nice cock, did not try to get out of having to wear a condom.  Did not pull any pornsick guy moves.  I came.  Fun but uninspiring.  What else can you ask for in a one-night stand?  It was good to shake off the rust.  Besides the stuff I’ve been doing with Professor T-Rex, my sex life this year is the worst it’s been my entire adult life.

       Before he left, he changed two burned-out lightbulbs, entirely of his own volition.  When I went to the bathroom afterward, I saw that he’d folded his bath towel into a neat little square. 

       He thanked me for the sex…well, he didn’t say “Thanks for the sex,” he just said “thank you” after he came.  It always makes me feel weird when guys thank me for sex.  I don’t know why. 

        He told me that I was beautiful, which was nice.

      He’s sent me two friendly but impersonal text messages, and a selfie of him on his boat.  

       It was fun, and he was nice, but I felt a little conflicted about it the next day, and I discussed it with my analyst yesterday.  I felt like I objectified him, like I went out on a scavenger hunt, and maybe it is not nice to think of people that way.  I am objectified at work by most of my clients, which is fine because it can’t be too personal, but at the same time, it doesn’t feel so great emotionally to have an intimate experience with someone and know that you are just an avatar for their fantasies.  

       Did I do something wrong or immoral, in picking up Tom?  I mean, he wanted to be there.  He got something out of it.  I didn’t hold a gun to his head or anything.  Hell, the date probably cost him a hundred bucks.

        I’ve had plenty of brief relationships and one-night stands and even entire affairs that were predicated on sex.  I never gave a thought to it, aside from a few guys I wouldn’t have shagged if I’d been sober.  I never second-guessed myself before.  Why am I doing it now?

        I guess because it’s not enough, and I’m still going to the museum alone.

Reader Mailbag: What Happens to Old Masochists?

     First: yesterday was lucrative and fun, but also a total marathon.  I had THREE SESSIONS in a row!  Two of them were sub sessions and I went to the second one still red with the whip marks from the first.  I made $800 just in time to pay my rent, which was nice.

      Blog post about picking up sailors is forthcoming.  I thought I scored with an officer, but I was wrong.  His rank was “Master Chief,” and with a job title like that, I assumed he was practically an admiral!  I just looked it up on the internet, though, and it seems that he is an enlisted man.  

       My friend and I met him at The Campbell Apartment at Grand Central.  We went there on the assumption that the sailors would congregate near major public transportation hubs after a long day of sight-seeing.   

      In the meantime, here’s a question from the mailbag!

Hi Miss Margo,
I’m probably old enough to your father and never practiced BDSM. One thing I’ve noticed as I get older is that old pains resurface. For example, broken bones hurt even though they have been healed for years. Have you ever asked any old masochists if they ever suffer for the “pleasure” of their youth? 


       Well, this question is sort of weird, but you seem sincere, so I’ll do my best.

       (I’m always amused by what vanilla people think kinky people actually DO.  They seem to think that we actually torture each other FOR REAL.)

       Nope, I’ve never asked.

        Most of what even the heaviest masochists (and I include myself in that designation) do causes only superficial tissue damage, specifically welts and bruising.  Bruises heal.   The worst beating I ever took came from the Attorney.  The marks lasted over a month, but they faded.

        I have met one old masochist whose butt was hard and rough like alligator hide.  I suppose it was just callused.  He was compulsive, though, and had been spanked/beaten several times a week for decades.  He was an unusual case.  

        Guys who are heavily into nipple play can get crusty, dry, gross nipples.  I don’t let men touch my breasts, so I don’t have to worry about that.

        The most catastrophic injury I’ve ever heard of happened during a heavy CBT and ball-busting session.  A man’s scrotum ruptured and his testicle came out.  The domme drove him to the hospital and left him at the ER.  I thought this was an urban (or dungeon) legend, but I recently talked to the domme who did it, and I think she’s telling the truth.

        In general, though, masochists don’t do anything more physically dangerous than people who play sports.  Actually, BDSM is probably safer than most sports.   Physically, at least.

       How it affects a person mentally…well, that’s another essay.  Just speaking for myself, it defines my sexuality almost completely.  It is the only sex that I fantasize about and practically the only sex that I am interested in having. 

        It is also toxic to me.  My analyst believes that I will have to give it up in order to having a loving relationship with a healthy man.  I don’t know if I want that, or even if it’s possible.  It seems like a tremendous sacrifice.  But then, I’m probably looking at it like a junkie.   

Fleet Week 2014

  Sorry I’ve been scarce.  Things have been a little depressing around here, and it was the end of my semester, which meant that I had a lot of grading to do.  I’ve also been writing for a professional project, and I really need the money, because I have to move in a few months and it’s not going to be easy. 

      Anyway, I’ve decided to honor Memorial Day by doing my patriotic duty: I’m going to pick up a sailor in port for Fleet Week 2014. 

       They’re roaming the City at all the typical tourist spots.  I intend to hit a few tourist night spots.  One of my domme friends is going with me so that the night won’t be a total loss if we’re unsuccessful. 

       The requirements are minimal: well-groomed, be nice to me, not too drunk, and do not murder me when I take you back to my apartment. Or steal my stuff when I’m in the bathroom. Hopefully he won’t be a dud in the sack, but this is more of an adventure than a thing to relieve sexual frustration, so whatever. 

      The only question that remains is: do I want a young one, or an older officer….?

       HAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA I’m joking, obviously. 

       Now: where will the older ones congregate?  The young ones are all at Times Square watering holes, Hooters, the nudie bars if they can afford it, and the bars by the ships.  But if you were an old military dude on a boat, visiting New York, where would you go…?

      No idea.  But I will find them.

       Hair is curled, makeup is tasteful, I did my nails.  I am wearing a short white tunic dress with sequins on it and nude leggings with a pattern.  I am wearing nice sandals, because I expect to have to walk quite a bit. 

       Apartment is cleaned, fresh sheets on the bed, fresh new towel in case he wants to take a shower.

       Wish me happy hunting.  Update tomorrow. 

Untitled Project

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      Note: this is part of a short story I’m writing for a horror fiction contest.  If anyone has feedback, even if it’s critical, I welcome your thoughts.

                   *                           *                           *

       

It was told that when it was properly trained and domesticated, it would be allowed into the house.  Until then, it was sheltered in the place one keeps animals that traditionally live outside and are prone to running away or wandering off.

       He kept it in the barn.

       For the first few days, he fed it Xanax to keep it docile and to prevent panic attacks from the inevitable claustrophobia that came from having to wear a leather hood.  He felt that the hood was necessary to disorient it and distort its sense of time and location.  Truth be told, he also just like the way it looked wearing that hood, and wrapped up all snug in its straightjacket, laying on its futon mattress there on the floor.  With the hood on, it couldn’t see and it could barely hear, which meant that he could walk right up to it and stare at it, and it wouldn’t even know he was there.  He was delighted with this fun little game.  It made his cock hard, which was the most important thing.  It also made his cock hard to observe it through the cracks and holes in the barnyard walls, so he did that a lot, too.   In fact, he was so preoccupied with his new playtoy in the barn that the people in his household started to wonder where the hell he kept disappearing off to. 

       “I’m editing my most recent manuscript!” he said.  This seemed plausible, since he was, in fact, a scholar by vocation, and also because he was always taking his Macbook with him.

         What they didn’t know was that he wasn’t getting much editing done, out there in the barn.

        He was doing something creative, though: he was using the computer to make movies of the barn’s new resident.   They were mostly brief, and the footage was sometimes grainy or shakey, but his special friends on the internet loved them.   He told it that he was recording it, and that one day he would show it the videos he was making of it, so that he could see how much it had changed, and how far it had come, and how he had improved it.

       He fed it periodically, but at irregular intervals, because he didn’t want it to know what time of day it was or when it would be fed again (it wasn’t very hungry anyway–the benzos kept it pretty groggy).  He had to feed it himself, because it couldn’t use its hands or arms with the straightjacket on.  He would feed it cheese and crackers through its hood, or apple slices, or even a sugar cube, as if it were a horse.  He would also check the bandage on its leg that went underneath the metal shackle, to make sure that it was in place, so that the metal wouldn’t rub a sore.

      After a few days, he took off its hood, telling it that if it caused him trouble or misbehaved, the hood was going right back on!  He put his mouth up to where he thought its ear-hole would be and asked it if it understood.

      It nodded, so he unlaced its hood from the back and pulled it off.

       Underneath, it looked rather frightened and pathetic, and not at all like the confident young woman it had been before he brought it into the barn.  Its face was alternately mottled and pale from being inside the hood for so long, and its eyes started stinging and watering from the sudden re-exposure to bright light after being in the dark for so long.  It blinked furiously as its pupils pinpointed.  Its blonde hair was matted to its head and darkened with sweat, and he told himself that he would definitely shampoo it when he washed the rest of it with the garden hose. 

       “There!  Isn’t that nicer?”  he asked.

       It looked around itself at the barn, trying to figure out where he’d put it.  The barn was huge, and there were barn owls up in the rafters, carefully observing all of the goings-on.

       “I’ll take you out of that mean old straightjacket tomorrow morning if you promise me you won’t try to run away.”

         It looked down at the metal shackle on its ankle and rattled it.  The shackle was attached to a long length of chain which was wrapped around one of the oak beams that supported the barnframe, and padlocked.  

        “That’s going to have to stay on until I can trust you, unfortunately.  Don’t worry.  Soon, you won’t even feel it.”

      (In truth, he was not so sure about this one.  The chain was rather heavy.  He’d used it as a chainspot when he watched his neighbor’s massive Great Dane the previous summer–the dog had to be restrained because it kept going after the chickens.)

       “Please let me go,” it mewled. 

        He sighed and reached for the hood.

       “Never mind!  Never mind!  I take it back!”

       Its voice was much changed from when he’d snatched it off his campus.  Then, it had been screaming its little head off, and it had fought back, too.  He almost thought he wasn’t going to be able to get it into the trunk of his car without choking it out, and he’d had to wear a T-Shirt to bed every night so that his wife wouldn’t see the bruises.

     He let it cower for a minute, and then put the hood back down.

     “Ready for dinner?  I brought something very special for you: fresh figs from my fig tree.  You’ll see it when I let you outside.”

       It watched him as he took his computer out of his bag.  He turned it on, brought up the camera function, and sat it down on a chair by the futon, adjusting the angle.  He wanted to make a video of this so that it could watch it when it was finally pretty again, and see how much it had changed.

       Besides, his friends on the internet would love the footage.

       Then he sat down on the chair in front of it and unzipped his pants.  He had a huge erection, as he usually did whenever he was around it, or even thought about it, and how he had managed to capture it, and when he intended to do with it.  

        “First, eat this.”

                    *                        *                     *                 *

         He brought the rest of the figs into the house and was washing them in the sink when his wife looked over his shoulder.

         “I thought I saw more on the tree outside,” she said.

         “I think the ravens must have gotten some,” he said.

         “What are you smiling about?  And, by the way, I can’t find my Xanax again, and I just had it filled.  You don’t think the maid took it, do you?  Have you noticed anything missing?”

         “I’m sure it’ll turn up.” 
       

             

Dudebro Teaches Margo

     I despised Dudebro, which is exactly why Heinrich invited him.  Dumb boy with hair product and that stupid tribal tattoo (one time I lost my manners and scoffed, “Nice ink! If you had a puka-shell necklace, we could pretend it was 1997 again!”  Oh boy, was I punished for that).  If I’d met him in public, I wouldn’t have given him the time of day.  I can’t stand meatheads. 

      I couldn’t have anticipated it in a million years, but Dudebro actually had something to teach me: hatefucking. 

       I was on my back on the dining table.  Dudebro was holding my ankles (above the shackle) and pounding into me, like a piston.  He had his stupid Ray-bans on his stupid hair.  My humiliation was complete. 

       I was coming.  Hard.  Again. 

       Heinrich was standing over me, with my hair wrapped in his fist.  He’s always been big on the hair-pulling, has Heinrich–I think I appropriated that technique from him.  When I closed my eyes, he slapped my face.  He was wearing his gloves.  The leather smelled good.

        “Look at me.  You are not going anywhere,” he said. He pronounced going as go-ink.  He was leaning over me and his face was illuminated from behind by the overhead lamp hanging from the ceiling.  I understood what he meant.  A lot of subs–hell, people in general–get lost in their orgasms.  They go away.  Not necessarily a bad thing, but not always desirable, if one is being controlled. 

         “I’m gonna come,” I gasped.

          Dudebro started laughing and pumped me harder.

          “But Red, I thought that you hated me!  I thought that you hated me, Red!”

            “Ja, I thought she hated you!” said Heinrich, smiling now. 

           “Do you hate my dick, Red?” asked Dudebro.

            “CAN I COME PLEASE?”

            “I am bored with the bad grammar,” Heinrich said, and stuck his fingers into my mouth.  All the way to the back, just around the gag reflex.  My eyes started to tear up. There was leather in my mouth and in my nose and I was being held at both ends, and two men over me, and that was all there was to it. 

           “Watch her go!  Too bad you hate this dick, right, Red?”

           You know that feeling when you stand in the surf in the ocean, and the wave sucks the sand over your feet and ankles…?  Emotionally, it felt like that.  Pulled away.  Out of control. 

         Bliss.

      

Postmortem of a House Call (Or, Christmas with the Surgeon)

    It’s been almost eight months since the Surgeon made his House Call.  At first, I didn’t think that it had affected me that much emotionally.  It wasn’t the worst thing that ever happened to me.  It wasn’t even the worst thing he’d ever done to me.  I was a little shocked, of course, and then very pissed off, and also worried that he might come back and try again.  I think the baby card offended me more than anything. 

      It did seem to provide him with some closure.  He won, he got a little revenge, he could sleep at night feeling that he was the one on top.  And I’m sure the lawyer’s letter and the threat of a restraining order didn’t hurt either.  He is very protective of his practice, and the only thing that he loves more than philandering and fucking people up is making money. 

      So it was finally over. I had to deal with loneliness, but I’m used to that, and I had to grieve the loss of the relationship, which was the most significant one of my adult life.  The House Call, though, I did’t think affected me much.

      I was wrong.

      It sneaked up on me over a period of months, and I’d find myself laying in bed or sitting at my desk in a state of high agitation, outraged at the fact that he really did that to me.  He really did it! 

       And on the heels of that: pain.  Quite a bit of hurt, actually, which is strange, because I really ought to know better.  Nothing about his behavior should surprise me anymore. The Surgeon has some very, shall we say, interesting neuroses and some very interesting sexual proclivities, all of which I am too decent (or, perhaps, too cowardly) to share on this blog, but he is also a man of habit and thoroughly predictable.  He’s an asshole.  He acts like an asshole.  Why should I be hurt that he acted like an asshole towards me?  Because he said that he loved me? 

      Well, yes.  Because he said that he loved me.  I’ve had a lot of emotional labor to do in order to work through that in the last few months.

      Let’s move on.  He made the House Call in September.  Then I got a letter from him in late December, which was right about the time I’d left him for the Mathematician a year earlier (thankfully, I have no feelz for him except for contempt and, I admit, a lingering fascination with his cockatoo-borrowing. That has to be a new low in Things Men Will Do To Impress Girls.  A cockatoo!  Fucker.).

     This is the Surgeon’s letter.  It’s not actually what he wrote–think of it as the Executive Summary.  It’s all over the map.  I think he might have been drunk when he wrote it.  He’s always impulsive and when he drinks, forget about it. 

Dear Miss Margo, 

I feel a little badly about my House Call and what I did.  I hope you realize that I did it because the way that you treated me is unconscionable.  I also wanted to give you a baby.  Our relationship never should have ended.  I have never had this much emotion for anyone in my life.  You need to come back to me and be my girlfriend again.  I think of you every day.  What you have done is not right. I will make a financial commitment and not abandon you.  Even your own mother did not help you, but I did.  Have you ever asked yourself why?  I love you and we are met to be together.

     Who’s the guy you left me for?  Sorry it didn’t work out but I have no idea how you thought you could better-deal me.  Want me to hurt him?  Tell me who he is.

      The Surgeon

   
     Unconscionable.  He really used that word.  To describe my behavior. 

      I read it to my friend, Drug Monkey, who said, and I quote: “Wow, what a loser.” 

      Professor T-Rex found it sort of pitiful and told me to give it to my lawyer, which I did.

     But since we’re on the subject of unconscionable behavior, let’s revisit the scene of the crime: Christmas, five years previous.

     I was in my Ph.D. program and my relationship with the Surgeon was just over the two-year mark.  It was as serious as it was ever going to get.  He almost destroyed it.

      It was the week leading up to Christmas, which was a very busy time at my University because that school scheduled finals right up until Christmas Eve, which was a nightmare.  I can’t tell you how many times I dropped off a hard copy of my final research assignment or essay en route to the airport for an all-day flight back home.  So, a stressful week. 

      The Surgeon was in a weird mood, too.  He was having staffing problems (he always had staffing problems.  Wonder why?), and then he had to do holiday family shit.  The Surgeon would rather be eaten alive by rabid wolverines than spend time with his family, but he forces himself to do it.  If I hated my family that much, I would just dump them.

     Well, the Surgeon called me and I knew that I was in trouble because I could hear the tension in his voice.  He had a very specific tone of voice that he used when he was dangerous.  I identified it as the “I am under pressure and I am going to fuck you up” tone of voice. He can smile when he talks this way, and even laugh, but I’m telling you, it’s spooky.  Usually when I heard that tone of voice, I just made myself scarce for a few days until it blew over, because that tone of voice meant that someone was going to get it. I just went out for that proverbial pack of cigarettes and stayed gone. 

          The Surgeon had Christmas day off because his practice was closed, and he told me that he wanted to see me.

          “But, Surgeon, I’m flying home on Christmas Eve.”

          “Change the flight.  Leave on the 26th.”

           “Surgeon, I only see my family twice a year now, and you know that my mother is a Christmas fanatic.  My family is expecting me.”

          “But I was planning to see you on the 25th.”

           I knew this was bullshit.  He’d never mentioned any such thing!

          “Surgeon, you’re being unreasonable.  What am I supposed to tell my family?”

         “Tell her that you need to see your boyfriend and you’ll be there on the 26th.”

           “You want me to ruin my mother’s Christmas?  She’s sentimental!”

            “Make it happen,” he said, and hung up the phone.

            I was fucked.  The double bind, the Surgeon’s favorite form of torture.  There was absolutely no way to win in that situation.  My only choice was to pick who I was going to hurt and piss off: my family, or the Surgeon. 

           I was miserable.

           The Surgeon gave me an hour in which to stew in my anxiety and misery, and then called me back.  I didn’t want to take the call, but I had to.

           “Tell me something good,” he said.  Yup, the voice was intense. I felt it with the same foreboding a Kansan ranchwoman feels when tornado clouds assemble on the horizon. 

            “Surgeon, I can’t cancel Christmas!  Come on!  I wouldn’t ask you to do this for me!”

             “Why not?  This is a tremendous disappointment to me.  You are ruining my plans.  Just call your Mom and tell her that you’ll be there on the 26th.”

             He kept at me all…fucking…day.   I do sadism for a living, but I have to tell you, I do not think that I am capable of pressuring someone the way that he was pressuring me.  I was so upset that I was sick to my stomach.  I was trying to finish a final exam, too–so much for that.

           All he wanted was a validation of his power over me.  He just wanted to make me do something that he knew I really didn’t want to do.  He just wanted to see me jump.  It’s no different, really, than the asshole boss who calls you out of the blue on a Saturday night at 10 PM asking for a project status report…only much, much crueler.

        It took most of the day, as well as a panic attack and some hysterical begging on my part not to make me go through with it, but eventually I caved.  I was outgunned.  It was like being at the Alamo.

        I called my Mom and told her that I had a job interview on the morning of the 27th and it was for a last-minute teaching job, and would she mind if I flew in immediately afterward?  I really needed the money from the teaching job, I said.

        (I should have just said, Mom, my fucking awful boyfriend is forcing me to do this, see you on Friday, but I didn’t.  I was ashamed of myself.)

          The disappointment in her voice was palpable, but she said that she understood.

        I called the Surgeon back to tell him what I’d done.

       “That’s great!” he said, and his own demeanor changed.  He was happy and smiling again.  But there was something else I detected in his voice: gloating.

           Then he let me go and said that he’d call me back after his meeting.

         I felt fucking miserable, but at least it was OVER.  At least it got him off my back.

         Or so I thought.

         I still cried a lot that night.  I felt really badly and guilty about the whole thing.

         So, what does he do?  What does the Surgeon do?

         It wasn’t enough.  He needed more

         He fucking called me back the next morning, cheerful and happy.

         “Hi, Baby!  How’s my girl?  Hey, I’m sorry if I was a little tense yesterday.  All that shit at the office, you know.  But, hey, I wanted to tell you…I forgot that I have to pick up my dogs from the dog-sitter on Christmas so that they aren’t here when her family comes over.  I’m going to have to run them out to Long Island, it’s a long drive.  Can we get together on the 26th instead?  That’d be great.”

         I just sat there.  I couldn’t believe what I was hearing.

        “You want me to spend Christmas alone, after I cancelled my family plans, so that you can pick up your dogs from the dog-sitter?”
    
       “I forgot!” he said.  He didn’t fucking forget.  I could hear it in his voice.  He just wanted to hurt me and humiliate me that much more.  He was enjoying himself.  Like I said, the man is a sadist for real.  Besides, the excuse was proposterous on its face.  He could have paid someone to pick up his dogs.  He could have gotten them the day before.  It made no sense.

          “I’m going home!” I screamed into the phone.  Then I hung up and changed my flights back to Christmas Eve.  It cost me a pretty penny and I had to take the red-eye, too.

          Then I cried a lot.  It really hurt.

           He was furious that I left, but he also knew that he’d gone too far, and he gave me space.  I cut him off for about five months. He never did admit what a cruel and fucked-up thing he did, he only apologized for “being selfish” and he acknowledged that I “saw the situation differently” than he did.

           He knew what he did.  He never fucked with my relationship with my family again. He went too far in other areas, at other times, but he was on his best behavior around Christmas after that.

           For my part, I never saw him the same way after that.  I withdrew emotionally and always treated him with caution after that, like a dangerous dog.  I acknowledged to myself that he was sick and that he would hurt me if I left him.  I also acknowledged to myself that he did not really love me, because he would not have done that if he did.  I started dating other men. 

          Calling me the next morning was premature.  I don’t think that he thought that through.  If he hadn’t been doing his victory-lap jerkoff sadism-fest, he would have figured out that the truly  awful thing to do would be to just abandon me and leave me hanging on Christmas day, when it was too late for me to go home.

           Or come over on Christmas (without so much as a card), fuck me, and leave after twenty minutes.  I think that I’m really lucky that that did not happen to me.  If he thought about it more, that’s what he would have done.

          I am sure that he has done this to another woman–made her compromise her holiday or travel plans, and then leave her hanging.  Probably more than one woman.

         And then he calls me leaving him “unconscionable.”

        And he makes his house call, banging down the door, and I wonder to myself, I can’t believe he did it!  

         Yeah, I can believe it.  I can believe it.

         It still would have been sort of fun, though, to watch him eat the Mathematician for lunch.