Sour Dick-Sucking Lips (Part 5 of 5)

PREVIOUSLY: PART 4. The entire story can be viewed in this PDF file.

“So why didn’t you want to meet me at the hotel bar?” I purposely save this up for the end of the date, after she has invested a whole night in me.

“I don’t like going to bars I haven’t been to before,” she says. Immediately my lips tense and I’m in disbelief. I unhook my arms from hers and look at her face.

“That makes absolutely no sense,” I yell, getting the attention of a man in a brown blazer passing us in the opposite direction. “If that was the case then you’d never step into any bar!” I want to add “idiot” but I hold back. I’m offended that she thinks so lowly of my intelligence that I’d swallow such tripe. I slowly resume walking again, looking straight ahead, and she grabs my arm, which I take as her way of apologizing, and says, “Oh come on, you know what I mean.”

“Obviously I don’t.”

“Look I just didn’t want to trek all the way to Dupont.”

“It’s only one stop away! It’s an extra 10 minute walk!”

“But it’s far!”

I think my face is turning red but I can’t tell. I take a deep breath through my mouth. “It takes me 30 minutes to come out here to meet up with you. And you’re telling me right now that you don’t want to take one metro stop to meet me at a bar that I take effort into choosing? This is… stupid.” By “this” I was referring to us, this relationship, but it doesn’t seem like she catches that. She doesn’t catch a lot of things.

“Calm down you’re just being silly.”

She is still holding on to my arm and I can feel my chest rising up and down whereas I didn’t before my outburst. With her apartment complex in sight the words “hot mess” pop into my head and now I remember why it sounded so familiar the last time I was here: it’s similar to The Killers debut album, Hot Fuss, a record that starts strong but quickly fades into mediocrity. In an unfortunate attempt to be taken more seriously, perhaps to mimic Coldplay’s formulaic success, The Killers have gravitated away from pop-rock monster hits to a mellower sound that is neither inspiring nor affecting. Plus Brandon Flowers’ lyrics have eroded into a realm of cheese that competes with trance anthems from the early 00’s (“Castles In The Sky” by Ian Van Dahl, “Heaven” by DJ Sammy, anything by ATB, etc.). This is most apparent in their third album, Day In Age, where only two tracks are not cringe-worthy: “A Dustland Fairytale” and “I Can’t Stay,” though neither have given me a compulsive urge play dozens of times a day like I did “Mr. Brightside,” and to a lesser extent, “Somebody Like Me.” “Mr. Brightside” still moves me, probably because I anchored it to a beautiful bartender I tried to sleep with who loved the song as well. I’m not so sure why she did since it’s about a man who quickly falls for a girl after just a kiss only to have his affections go unrequited. I think she’s in Greece now.

I don’t have to do or say anything to get into Rachel’s studio apartment—it is assumed. I walk into what feels like an Ikea showroom, because she’s in Ikea’s market audience and doesn’t know any better. I casually explore the space, use the bathroom, and then sit on her GRANKULLA futon. She joins me with her laptop and asks how I’m getting home. I say, “Don’t worry about it,” and watch her wrap up some work she needs to do for the next day. While on the futon she makes sure not to touch me. This has happened to me many times before; sometimes it takes a while for a girl to warm up to me when I’m in her place for the first time. I match her distance and take out my laptop from my bag. Left inside is my copy of Fathers and Sons, a tin of Altoid Peppermint mints, one condom (size extra large), Sennheiser ear bud headphones, a travel toothbrush, a travel contact lens case, and a ballpoint pen.

After she finishes her work I show her pictures from my time in Brazil. The first photo that pops up on the screen is of me in boxer shorts splayed out across a bed. I quickly hit the right arrow on my keyboard and say, “Uh that was taken by a… friend.” It happened over a year ago anyway. She seems to take interest in the fifty or so other photos I show her.

“So how are you getting home?” she asks, again.

“What do you mean?”

“You’re not staying here.”

“Who said I wanted to stay here?!” I say. I show her more photos, from Argentina. Now I’m very sure there will be no sex on her MANDAL bed, next to the LEKSVIK nightstand, opposite the BILLY bookshelf. Ten minutes pass. Casually I say, “I think the Metro stopped running. Uhh mind if I crash on your futon?”

“This is only our second date! I told you you can’t!” she yells as she gets up from the futon.

“Alright you want me to walk home? Take a $60 cab? Great, okay.”

She says “I don’t believe I’m doing this” and orders me to get off the futon so she can pull it out.

Once the futon is ready she says again, “I don’t believe I’m letting you stay here.” I wonder why my luck is so bad that I found the coldest feminist in the city. Usually they are extremely easy because they don’t believe in “social constructs” like “whore,” “slut,” and “cum dumpster.” I begin to wonder if Rachel was sexually abused as a child, because I’ve never seen anything like it. But while I’m here…

She’s changing into her pajamas in the bathroom while I mill around the kitchen looking for a snack, something like a granola bar. I haven’t eaten in eight hours. She comes out and I stop what I’m doing to lean against the frame of the kitchen entrance, like James Dean, I’m hoping. She walks up to me and I extend my arms and she grabs them and comes into me. I bend my head down and she cranes hers up and we kiss. My hands go lower until they cup her ass and this goes on for about three minutes and right when I’m about to push her onto the futon she pulls away from me and I’m left there drooling with my eyes closed, searching for her lips in the air with my own. It takes me ten seconds to snap out of it. She is already laying in her bed.

I go to the bathroom to brush my teeth and take off my contacts. Then I lay on the futon with all my clothes on, only ten feet away from her. It’s hard for me to accept that I’m in a girl’s place and not sharing her bed. In the darkness I tell her that when I was young my mom used to tuck me in and make me warm milk with honey. “You don’t have to make me warm milk with honey,” I say, “but I would like to be tucked in. And I want a goodnight kiss.” She asks me if I’m kidding and I say that I’m most definitely not. She sighs loudly and then gets out of bed, walks over, and kneels over me to give me a short kiss. I tell her to lay down for a minute and she lets out this aggravated moan, but does it. We lay side by side, kissing, and I’m being very careful not to trigger the switch that will cause her to scamper back to the bed. My left hand returns to its rightful place on her body and she seems to be getting into it, but her breathing is light and shallow. A girl about to have sex breathes heavily and lets out deep, elongated breaths.

Her hand is near my stomach and I grab it gently to lower to my dick but it doesn’t budge. Then I begin to roll on top of her and before I could complete the move she slithers like a snake away to her bed.

“How do you… how do you just stop like that?” I say. “It’s like you’re a machine.” She doesn’t reply. My erection goes limp and I fall asleep.

I take the same bus as her in the morning. Upon parting we make plans for a couple days later, a Saturday, and then she gives me a nice kiss goodbye. I didn’t consider not making plans with her but I set it up in a way that I’d be with my friends and she’d tag along. If she acts weird I can ditch her with no detriment to my night. I swear to myself that I won’t buy her anything. It doesn’t happen. She cancels on Saturday and tries to reschedule for an off-night. I tell her I already have plans, even though I’m free. I’m being played. I tried and I failed. I’m sour as hell. I never contact her again, and she never contacts me again.

On the same Saturday we were supposed to hang out, I go with Robb Report to a hipster bar, our second of the night. While I wait at the bar to order a drink, a tall, half-Asian girl with incredible bangs make eye contact with me. When I catch her she turns around to her friend. I tap her on the shoulder three times and say, “Where I come from if you look at someone you have to talk to them. You have to ask them… what their favorite flavor ice cream is.” I’ve never said that before, and am satisfied with the improvisation.

“What’s your favorite flavor ice cream,” she asks, smiling.

“Chocolate chip cookie dough, of course.”

Three hours later I’m fucking her on her friend’s uncomfortable leather couch. I try to fuck her a second time but my dick is half-soft from the scotch (and condom) and keeps bending like a cheap rubber hose. Her dryness doesn’t help. “I think you’re done,” I say. She lives in New York and I think I want to see her again. She’s affectionate and just as pretty as Rachel, and contacts me the next day just to say hi, but I still feel sour.

I did this to myself.

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