The Tall Irish Vegan Discovers my Blog

discovery2

I wasn’t totally honest in the post date vlog of 4# and 5#, the Tall Irish Vegan…I was still negotiating how my privacy might exist in this project, and as we all know, it doesn’t.  Or at least, I am still in the process of experiencing the technical difficulties.   I keep tripping up on the fact that these things, the very private things, matter.  They are both the gateway to the way we connect to each other and our power relationships.  So on date #5, what should of been a lovely romantic venture in Kew  Gardens,  I was exhausted… The week of precarity had just happened…and I was  an hour late and ruining my date with the Tall Irish Vegan by bitching all day about J. W. and 19 year old Yuki.  We managed anyway to have some nice moments.  The Gin and Tonics garden in Kew was like a Wes Anderson movie: The set up, the barmen. the music even.  We swore who ever the manager was must of been insane for Wes Anderson, probably put a call out just for these types: tall gawky Englishmen with awkard noses, add a lanky Indian with shiny long hair.  Dress them in flowery shirts.  Afterwards we went to a pub in Kew for Dinner..  we got vegan meals together.  The pub had much better lighting than our cozy Scrabble pub in Dulwich,.. and was mostly attended by Grannies.  We just wanted a little privacy to kiss again like we did in Dulwich.

I have to say that the project has been distorting my attitude towards these ventures.  I want to know too quickly the yes or no.  because if it’s no, I don’t want to waste my time, or break with my project.

So we had the talk about flats…He had some visitors at his: not enough privacy.  I was very ashamed of the mess in my room… most embarrassingly I really needed to clean the sheets.  We came up with a solution..a blindfold.  Then the idea was just too hot to put down.  We started talking about honey.

I think he took a bus home at about 12 am.  In the morning when we weren’t in touch I started to feel that I had messed things up.  Of course it’s a self infliction of sexist standards that I blamed it all on myself.  He called me back at noon, and we talked about the fact that he would be traveling most of September, and we should keep things low key, with no labels.   In a way this is exactly what I wanted.  There was a chance I could go on 30 dates before he came back..or at least 20?  So if he really liked me we could start things in October.. If he actually liked me.  I was also suspicious that the words no labels are just a way to make a graceful exit.

I started to think the latter when our communications cooled off significantly…after a few days I did the post date vlog.

Anyway I just talked to him on Skype.  He called me up to say he found the blog a week ago.  He was hesitating out of curiosity to hear what I said, but felt it was important to tell me before I wrote about him.   He said he was okay with the blog.  He wasn’t confrontational, but gentle, and respectful. It was good to see his face.  I got that feeling you get when your mind is arranging itself around the appearance of  someone you have growing affection for. We talked about the meaning of the no labels statement, and the cooling off.  It was just a knowledge that we needed to slow down things a little (something I already stated in my vlog).  So we will definitely see each other again….at the same time he’s cool with the project and the idea that I will be seeing other people.  He feels like I do, that he’s doesn’t have to ‘own me’  for me to know that I like him more others.  If I do end up with someone else in the process than that’s meant to be.  I feel at peace with this, and I’ve much warmed to the Tall Irish Vegan because of the way he responded…in the right way…  I’m now looking forward to seeing him again much more than I was.  The boy with the Thailand tattoo texted me this morning and said ‘I wasn’t right for him’.  I can’t know if he found the blog.  I emailed this morning to make the leap of faith and tell him about it, and also ask if we could be friends.  But if he found the blog, wasn’t cool with it, didn’t tell me, and won’t respond to an email…that just shows he wasn’t the right person for me.

The Heteronormative Garden Party

The Boating Party Lunch I

 It takes a lot of effort and energy to maintenance friendships when you are single.  Most people don’t bother.   I have a lot of experience writing messages to friends:  would you like to go to this exhibition/ film/ club night/gig with me?  I often get turned down, or cancelled on at the last minute.  I have also listened to single lady friends complain that the only cohesive social group at the school I went to was a group of white men and their partners who mostly ignored the people outside of their heteronormative structures.   This is a doubly oppressive situation because as artists we know that most of our economic potential is in the social network we are able to generate for ourselves.   I have also heard single men complain that they have no one talk to about their feelings because they are not in the right space to have a partner or haven’t found one yet.   It seems like most people are aware that making heterosexuality the only way of relating is not healthy, but no one changes their behaviour.

I got the cast off my fractured wrist a few weeks ago, and decided that I will go against the flow once more.

  I plan a picnic in the beautiful Greenwich park near my home.  It is a London gem, but I know most of my friends don’t often have reason to go there.  It is also summer.   Most of my course mates not only haven’t seen each other for weeks, but will not be re-joining the course in the Fall because they are graduating.  I give two weeks’ notice and make a Facebook event.  I only invite a core group of 20 people, who I’ve had actually had good conversations and social experiences with.    I’m hoping that the smaller group will invite a higher level of social responsibility.  It seems like the idea is working.  10 people who live nearby say they will come, about 5 of which have partners.  I figure you only need 5 for a good picnic.  It’s mostly women, because this is art school.  I invite three more men personally and suggest they bring their single friends, considering the situation.

I send a reminder the day before and about 5 people cancel.. mostly single women.  I think of this in two ways:  The single women know what it’s like to be left alone, so they have enough consideration to cancel verbally, and the single women don’t know about the men I invited.   Later I find out that the couples just don’t show at all.  It’s as if people outside their heteronormative world don’t exist.  The men cancel at the last minute…. My personal connection with them has already been discoloured by the power imbalance of romantic rejection, and for one this is his way of newly rejecting me.

Not one person comes to my picnic.

I am sitting under a tree crying, eating my own food.  It is a glorious day, hot in the sunshine and just right in the shade.  I am surrounded by people in the park.  I text N.  He is one of the men who cancelled at the last minute.  He is too hung over to join, he made sure that he would be by staying out all night for no particular reason.  But he cares enough to call me and talk me through my feelings for over an hour.  He pretends that he is eating with me and the food I made for everyone is very good.  Finishing my food I go to the shop and buy some alcohol to dull my hurt feelings.   We are skyping in bed all day.. he feels too hung over to leave his bed mostly. At one point we talk about watching Magnolia together in his flat because I haven’t seen it before, but it is already too late and too far, and too much sexual tension for me to sleep over.

At around 2 am he says he’s going to tease me…like a teenage sadist.  He tells me that tomorrow he is going to make a breakfast for Elena and bring it to her flat, because she has had a concussion from her dog jumping on her.  I remember getting mugged last August. ..   A woman smashed  my head against the pavement repeatedly , but somehow I didn’t get a concussion.  No one visited me.   That was actually when J.W.  decided to dump me.   N has been talking about dumping  Elena for weeks because she wants to be in a relationship and he doesn’t.  He also talks about how she is controlling and can’t engage with him intellectually.  I feel  like no one will spend time with me unless they are planning to put their dick in me, and even when that happens, it’s like stamping a huge expiration date on your forehead.   I send a text:   sorry for being hysterical, I had a bad day.   It’s almost 4 in the morning and I’m still weeping. 

The next day I have the date with the Italian Underwear Designer.  My date is someone who will have a conversation with me without massive amounts of planning, social media, texting, and skype.  He’ll even pay for drinks.  I don’t feel that I’m in love, but I feel that I have some human dignity  and I am enjoying life.