Saturday, July 21, 2007

Doofus act of the week. Last night I realised that for the umpteenth time in my life, a guy I am crushing on (the same one I dreamed anxiously about marrying) doesn't feel the same way about me. I realised this because we were at the pub and he was telling me about this girl he was interested in. While I had been getting shitfaced at a hipster party on Thursday night (without a plus-one) he had been getting it on with her. That was a depressing enough situation, but the fact he was even telling me this was an instant giveaway that we had reached 'mates way' territory.

Despite an excellent dinner of tacos (a meal with which I've lately become obsessed, for some reason), later in the evening I began to brood in a maudlin and tipsy manner on the sorry state of my sex life. My thoughts turned to the guy I was meant to bone in Sydney back in April; the one who would never, ever be boyfriend material but whose lust for me made me re-imagine myself as a sexy woman rather than a perennially doofusy friend character. In those days I felt alive; inhabiting my body because someone else found it desirable in ways it had never occurred to me to consider. I felt awakened to possibilities that had been hammered out of me by years of disappointment.

The raunchy text messages have petered out lately; it's as though we both started from a daydream and went, "This won't work. We live in different cities. We're really different people." Last night it seemed really sad to me that it should have fizzled so quietly, as if by mutually wilful forgetting. I wouldn't stand for it. So I wrote this guy a text message: I still think about you sometimes even though we never did and probably won't fuck.

And then I sent it to my current (newly unattainable) crush.

You know that feeling of total out-of-controlness that hits you in the stomach when you realise you've just done something that can't be undone? All you can do is send a follow-up SMS begging them to disregard the last one. To make matters worse, he replied straight away sounding disappointed that the message wasn't for him - in his words, that he "wasn't even in the picture". I wanted to write, My god, don't you realise the picture is a closeup of you? But doofuses don't tend towards sensible things like that.

Oh, I slept badly last night.

In other news, at the pub I came up with the idea of "vagina candy" to explain the difference between men that women enjoy looking at, versus the ones they actually want to fuck. I felt this was a rich metaphor that deserved further exploration, but the conversation moved on. Don't you hate it when that happens? When you want to talk about something in more detail but you have to follow the conversation to something else? The conversation at the pub was like that last night; really fast-paced, so many topics thrashed over in quick succession, each of them causing little peaks of concentration and enjoyment in my brain.

A while ago I was interested in the linguistic subdiscipline of conversation analysis, and particularly the practice of turn-taking - the cues by which we signal our entries into another person's statement. Transcribing interviews really throws light on this process; I am always so embarrassed by how nakedly you can observe turns being taken, efforts by one person to dominate the conversation by ignoring the turn-cues of others. You can always tell whether people are really listening to each other or whether it's like a social dance, a performance of engagement without real exchange.

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