After three weeks of vacation, the unthinkable happened: I fell asleep while watching porn, not out of exhaustion, but boredom! To be filed under: ways in which you know you lead a cushy life, a student’s lifestyle. Upon waking up to harsh reality of my couch (my neck hurt!), I had an epiphany of sorts, the distinct realization that I had to seriously reevaluate my life. See also: that time in college when I bumped into the biggest bitch in my high school class twice within a month (time to reconsider the private school dives in which I was hanging out).
Drastic times call for drastic measures, and I declared: I need to get laid. So I took out my book of men, and I skimmed through the list of potential suitors. Just kidding, of course. I didn’t even have to take out my informal mental list of people whom I would fuck were I to get desperate enough. I contacted Andy, my favorite thing about him being that I could call him at 1am the night of and he would be flattered, not insulted. I think he is even beyond flattery and would just evaluate the situation according to utility–utility and absurdity. But this required careful planning. The last time I decided I needed to get laid, I started contacting guys at approximately 11pm and it was too late (although, I must commend myself for being good and refraining from getting off from the time I made a point out of contacting people until the time I realized it wasn’t going to happen).
The trouble with sex is the planning. You can’t plan ahead, because how will you know how horny you’ll be, but if you wait ’til you really need it, you want to get off before you go through all the trouble of having someone come over. I suppose it is all in orgasm budgeting. Sometimes before I go out I think: I need to get laid, so I will only get off once, but if I go out and can’t attain sex I don’t want to be disappointed (after all, it would be a shame to waste horniness), so I will get off once just in case. I am a cautious girl, a careful planner, highly organized. I would have aced study skills class in 5th grade if it weren’t for my lack of talking due to a fear of public humiliation for uttering the word “like.”
On Tuesday, I contacted Andy for a date on Thursday night. I figured, even if I was magically deficient of horniness by Thursday night, at least I would not fall asleep on him. That is more than I could say for my porn. Thursday night came and I was still plenty horny (good thing my reckless sleeping habits steer me clear from the temptation of compulsive masturbation–I mean, the execution of it). Andy seemed interested in hanging out but uncertain if Thursday night was the best time for him (something about having to go to Brooklyn to pay his rent). I had plans Friday and Saturday, Wednesday wouldn’t work for me, and I was determined to get laid by the end of the week. Not to sound disgusting about it or anything–I really don’t have a list of guys and I don’t think guys are replaceable or expendable–but I got this fb message on Wednesday night, the timing of which seemed too convenient to be true. Over the summer I met this guy with red hair–let’s call him “Tom”–and he was currently in the city for his last week of law school vacation. When I met him, I had taken his number with the rough intention of calling him if were ever to get desperate enough, but last time he visited the city I half responded and half blew him off and generally displayed a lack of interest, which maybe he mistakenly read as coyness or playing hard-to-get. I’d say it was hard to get me desperate enough at a time which corresponded to his infrequent visits to the city. Never would I ever look twice at him if he didn’t have red hair. I sent him a msg back saying I might be free late Saturday night and for now I had tentative plans on Wednesday, but if they fell through maybe we could work something out. I would have much preferred Andy, but I wasn’t going to pass up the potential for back-up plans. And if I suddenly came to my senses and realized that someone for whom you lack interest is never going to be an acceptable sexual partner, it wasn’t like I even had to cancel on him.
You already know how this story ends: imperfectly. I met up with Tom late-night after he had already been out with his friends. Before I explain the disaster of an evening that was to be gilded in red-haired history, let me relay my initial impression of him, or rather the impression of the friend who introduced us. Our mutual friend first went to college with me, then transferred to an Ivy where he had transferred the year before. They were childhood family friends. I went through the transfer application process with my friend and we applied to a pool of schools similar in academic standing, but, for the most part, divergent in social atmosphere. I got into this particular Ivy but was too much of an elitist snob to go on account of not wanting to go to college with kids like those with whom I went to high school. I was soo over high school. Anxiously awaiting our midterm grades, which would be somewhat determinant of where we would get in, she said something like, “You know what it is like when it’s like you need to go to an Ivy so you can meet the right type of guy and so the right type of guy can get the right impression of you.” The answer was: of course; I’m not going to lie about whence I came. But that I can relate doesn’t imply that I want to perpetuate such superficial brand-name standards, which isn’t to say that it doesn’t go without a sense of embarrassment or at least annoyance when people don’t acknowledge my degree from an unprestigious (but well-respected and academically rigorous) institution as equally estimable or indicative of my being the right kind of company. When I meet people in New York City, sometimes I name-drop my high school. Okay, I am a tool. Or at least don’t want to be at a disadvantage as compared to others against whom I’m being judged and with whom I could easily compete if it weren’t for the obscurity of my school and the chance circumstances that determined my matriculation. But this is what I am getting at. My friend who espouses and condones these values, who perpetuates these standards, introduced me to this guy and told me that he is a tool. That is pretty low. He is the kind of guy who name-drops the law firm at which he had his summer internship, then (if he can’t think of a reason to drop the rankings of his law school or his firm) devalues his peers as to increase his purported worth. He is the kind of guy who would talk about how he can’t relate to certain people his age because of their immaturity. Humble he is not. And why should he be? He is from a rich, Jewish suburb of New York, transferred to an Ivy after commencing his college education at an academic institution wholly unimpressive for someone of his advantage, got in to one of the top law schools in the country, got a coveted summer internship which was followed by a job offer, and is generally moving up in the world of numerically measured success. I am sure you can tell already what a bore he is and my writing about his merits exhaustively is really a ploy, a literary device used to put the reader in my shoes. And now you can relate. To the two and a half hours of conversation through which I suffered, and suffered without adequate quantities of alcohol, as to not ruin the sex for which I had such high expectations.
At the first bar, I told him about this article I was writing about vaginal rejuvenation. This is the kind of small talk I like to have with the strangers I fuck so they know I am the right kind of company, the kind of girl they might come across at the type of academic institution which people attend almost exclusively so they can meet the right type of guy and so they can avoid quizzical and dismissive looks upon being questioned by the future lawyers and bankers of America, who will never really respect them for their brains anyway. I explained that the biggest travesty of vaginal rejuvenation surgery is not the vaginal slaughter; it is that doctors conceal or flippantly brush-off the non-surgical alternative, Kegels, which can be performed by fucking dildos, fucking anything–fucking. Upon careful consideration of the options, I am pretty sure that most women would choose fucking dildos. Even upon non-careful, extremely careless consideration of the options, I am pretty sure that most women would choose fucking dildos. If doctors (okay, maybe plastic surgeons who perform elective and cosmetic surgeries shouldn’t be considered real doctors, like how people don’t consider art history Ph.D.’s real doctors) recommended this rather agreeable “procedure” and there were clinical trials to confirm, there could be advertisements on television proclaiming, “Dildos: clinically proven to fight loose vagina.” I would revel in the listing of side-effects; “May cause soreness, lack of interest in leaving the home, and all the side-effects of marijuana smoking as listed in the Afroman song.” As a grade-A jerk, Tom seemed to relate to the phenomenon of vaginal looseness, but when I explained to him that guys can do Kegels too, and that the PC muscles are the same muscles you use to control the flow of pee, he asked me why on earth any guy would engage in such a futile exercise. I explained that besides increasing orgasm strength–also a benefit for females–it could increase ejaculatory control. He replied, “You can’t improve upon perfection.”
By the time we were at the second bar and I was a drink and a half in, I thought, I cannot do this. Even I am too good for this. I agreed to a third drink only because I didn’t want the date to be a complete waste. Alcohol consumption has increasing returns the more you drink up to a point. Two drinks would be a waste of his money and my time. As I was sitting there, thinking that I could not in fact do what I set out to do, I thought the unthinkable: I shouldn’t have orgasm budgeted today. As if I am going to waste my horniness on him. It would have been so much better if I had just done it before when I was actually horny. I can’t think of anything worse to think about a person, that they are unworthy of an orgasm you would have spent on yourself, that if would have been spent on you and wasted on them. Instead of orgasm budgeting, I considered alcohol budgeting. I thought about how I didn’t want to be too drunk to get myself off upon returning home alone, but given that it would have been better if I had gotten off earlier in the evening (rather than being prudent and self-restrained, as is my nature with anything not pertaining to sex,) would drunken getting off be more fun that somewhat-sober getting off that, at best, would still be less than what it could have been? All the could haves and should haves in life, the orgasms missed, the opportunities gone forever. In this bar, across from the list of credentials, thinking about the cosmic importance of orgasms (as analogous to potential and kinetic energy, gone forever vs. simply transformed in form) and how my vagina has way more utility to me than he does and the rest of the night will be determined in terms of utility to my vagina. Perhaps I will craft a vagina-utility index.
One more drink for good measure. Drunk getting off is awfully fun. Alcohol-budgeting and orgasm-budgeting go hand-in-hand. The last half an hour of our conversation was the most insufferable.
We began talking about Green Day because when you have nothing in common with someone and, thus, nothing to talk about, you bring up culturally relevant things, pop culture referents about which anyone in a certain age-group has a certain level of knowledge. Green Day: Could there be a more benign topic? He asked me my favorite album. He told me his was Warning and I LOL’d! Except he was seriously offended, like who are you to judge me for my musical taste. He defended his choice; “They set out to make a Kinks album and that’s exactly what they did; they made the perfect Kinks album.” I continued to LOL because who is he to think that his music taste in above being judged and who is he to care. Give me a break. Get over yourself. I certainly have–gotten over him, that is. I have no tolerance for people who have no sense of humor about themselves. I like shitty music and I quite frankly don’t give a fuck if people make fun of me for my musical preferences. It just doesn’t matter. We are not still five years old. We can laugh at other people for petty and inconsequential things without the fear of offending them–or so I thought.
At some point, after he bored me with his standard list of short-term goals, which included passing the bar, being more positive!, etc., he stated that they were only short-term goals. Because I am a good conversationalist–or because I had to pretend I was at least somewhat interested in him as a person, if I was to get away with going out for the drinks and skipping out on the sex–I asked him what his long-term goals are, as if I fucking care. I thought I would get a generic and respectable answer, but he said the most vile thing I have ever heard on a date: Having sons. That is his long-term goal–not having “children,” rather having “sons.” I asked him, “What about daughters?” He looked perplexed, as if it had never occurred to him and, moreover, he couldn’t imagine why it would occur to me. He hemmed and hawed for a minute, grappling with the idea of what he would do were he to have the misfortune or, at least, unintended consequence, of knocking a girl up only to receive a daughter, God forbid! He said something about yeah he guessed he might want daughters too but it wasn’t like a goal or anything. I think I could have cringed less if he announced that his long-term goal was finding a trophy wife; at least, that is more along the lines of what I expected from him. Well, it’s settled then. Thanks Tom, for letting me know in advance that when we have children you won’t love our daughters, and will probably never love or respect me because I am a woman. Fuck you, you sexist, elitist, tool. I have listened to two hours of your self-aggrandizing bullshit, put up with your cockiness and self-satisfaction and even your incessant bragging about the ease with which you bag girls (it must be the charm). You repay me by letting me know that there are guys out there (my father included) who will never think highly of me, always be disappointed with me, because I was born a woman. This was too much for even me. I thought, never would I ever tap that.
Toward the end of the evening, he started caressing my face from across the table, leaning across the table to deliver a peck on the lips and faux flattery–affectionate, but sleazy gestures. He reminded me of Ryan Phillippee in Cruel Intentions, only full of expectancy and devoid of hotness. I was somewhat repulsed and thought, you don’t need to do that. Either I will go home with you or not, and if I go home with you it is not because I like you. Stop bothering; you aren’t furthering your case. There is nothing you could do to make yourself any more palatable to me. I don’t like being bullshitted and there is no use in romanticizing the situation. We both know why we are here and it isn’t out of mutual regard for each other.
But then something changed. As the night dragged on, I began to rationalize it: We are on a fuck date–the only reason we are having drinks is so we can fuck afterwards. I knew before I agreed to go out with him that I didn’t like him; my cognitive stance had not changed much throughout the evening. The only thing that lessened my opinion of him substantially was that he had grown an overly-manicured beard, when previously he was clean-shaven. At the end of the night, right before he paid the check, he pulled his body up against mine and gave me a real kiss. I thought: That is kind of hot. Everyone feels the same in the dark. And I reminded myself that I had this lighting issue in my room, so I wouldn’t even have to see him. I could focus on the sensation and ignore him entirely. How serendipitous. In a decision-making process that could rival the one employed in the “Say hello to Hector for me” situation, if only I could remember that one, my final rationalization was: I have already suffered through two and a half hours of conversation with him; I think I’ve earned the sex. After all, the only reason I went out with him was for the sex. I am an extremely pragmatic person, or else a lazy one, and I don’t like feeling like I’ve wasted my time, my cognitive energy. It is like the classic social psych paradigm where once you’ve committed, you don’t want to retract your decision because it would be admitting you were wrong in the first place. Considering fucking him was almost as embarrassing as fucking him and came without any material reward. There is no way to justify the consideration of sex, but the enactment of sex is self-explanatory. Thank God for psych majors. Or those who are convinced easily only by themselves.