25 January 2011

There Must Be Something Wrong With You

Mistress Matisse who I read regularly tweeted yesterday something that I replied to but have had time to think about and feel that I need to say more on the subject because it was offensive and it irritated me. The tweet in question was this:

"Theory: if someone has not ever chosen to cohabitate with a partner by age 40, the odds of him/her ever deciding to do so are slim. Discuss."

My reply was as follows:

"Er.. if they had the *option* and chose not to, maybe. If they never had the option before, then I'd say that's not true."

The more I've thought about this, the more cross it's made me. In particular coming from someone involved in the whole 'sex and relationships' industry. There are many reasons why cohabitation may not have occurred before age 40 and I would say many have zero implications on whether or not after this magic age of 40 most people are somehow statistically out of options.

First of all, there is no general promise in this life that you are going to get someone to cohabitate with. Before I discuss any other aspect of this question, I'd like to make that abundantly clear. This isn't a life guarantee. For some people, it just doesn't happen. So regardless of if you are 25 or 40 or 70, if the dice weren't in your favor, then they weren't in your favor. Is there some magic age limit when you are suddenly out of luck? No. And actually, after a lot of people get out of their 'starter marriages', I'd say that there are many people who find love and relationships post-40. Sometimes that includes finding someone who, shock and horror, may not have been married or cohabitated with anyone before. So in general, I call bullshit on this.

If there is some physical or social reason that makes you less likely to find a partner, are you more or less likely to find a partner before or after age 40? Again I call bullshit and say this is an arbitrary number that doesn't matter. I suppose if there is something actually hindering you that makes it harder for you to find someone, then it's reasonable to assume it may continue to be difficult to find someone, but also, think of all the years you may have already spent looking! Maybe by 40 you are better at it, or people who know you accept you more for who you are. Are you statistically less likely to find your life partner (and live with them) because 40 came and went? I don't think so.

Here's what I particular dislike about this tweet. It implies by its very nature that there is something wrong with someone who hasn't managed to achieve this apparent life aim of cohabitation. It does not take into account what they may want, or what choices may or may not have been available to them. It just casually dismisses anyone over 40 for having something so wrong with them that there is no hope for them in the future. Well, all the over 40's who haven't cohabitated but want to, I suppose you should all just go kill yourselves now, because I guess there just isn't any hope for you.

Which brings me around to my original response which has everything to do with the use of the word choice as the single way out of this abhorrent comment that I'll allow. I suppose it is possible that if you are someone who found great relationships but chose not to cohabitate and you have not addressed (or do not care to address) why you chose not to cohabitate, then amazingly it is true, as you pass the age of 40 you are likely to be the same person you were at 39 who does not choose to cohabitate with others. However, that seems like a not so intelligent sort of comment about people and their behavior, and so not the one that I think was intended, and certainly not what was conveyed.

Now in general, I don't think twitter is even the right place for a conversation or debate like this. Most obviously it doesn't give the original author space to explain exactly what they meant and instead leaves a rather insulting statement of only one sentence to try and do the job for them. Usually I enjoy following Matisse and her offerings. This time I'm afraid, not so much.

22 January 2011

Saturday Slowness

This is not going to be a post about anything in particular. It's Saturday and almost 3. I'm hanging about in my lounge, still in my pajamas. I've got a load of laundry about to be ready to hang up, and I've sorted out my DVD shelf by moving some other stuff around. This has enlightened me to the fact that my 'L Word' season 2 is missing. I have no idea who has it.

No further word from Mr.Aloof since he tried it on. Which is fine by me. I don't need him pushing at me which forces my had in being more and more firmly bitchy towards him. Then of course he feels like he is the one who has been wronged. Sometimes no really does mean no you know.

I feel like I just returned from Cambridge and am in no way ready to go up there again tomorrow. I've just checked the train and at least it's running, as last Sunday it was not and I had to travel Monday morning instead. Still, I honestly feel like I just got back. I don't have time to do anything, take care of anything, and then I'm up there again. And this week I have to stay through Thursday, and next week I have to be there on Thursday as well. Actually the week after next I'm off to Liverpool for two days, so I'll have no time at all at home before I'm back in Cambridge. I know that this is really just things re-settling into place, but right now it's a real burden. I'll get used to it, mainly because there isn't any other choice. And honestly, if this is the worst aspect of my current life I can't say that it's that bad. But it is enough to be annoying and draining just now. Until it settles into some sort of routine.

I've been spending a small amount of my free time turning this blog into a printable book (using blurb for anyone who might want to do the same). I've decided to do a book for every year so I can add them to my collection of hand written journals. It has always bothered me that all of this writing is separated from the other records I have kept of my life. This has turned into something of a time consuming endeavor however. And I note that many images used in the early days of this blog are simply missing, and so already the record of the past is incomplete. In some cases I remember very clearly what the image was, so I have been able to repair it. But in many cases, the image is just lost. I look forward to the first book however. I'm working on 2005 and am about 1/3 of the way through it. It's interesting to read back, but then, it always is. This is part of the reason I need it printed to join the rest. Though I wonder what will happen to any of these things in the future. Funny things we do us human beings.

Nothing much interesting on the relationship front. I had a very vivid dream last night of being with someone- not having sex with them, but having them touch me and hold me. I remember that we were spooning, with my back to his big spoon. It felt incredibly real. When I woke up I was disturbed slightly. Although there was a lot more to the dream that was equally disturbing though in different ways. It was one of my 'epic' dreams and I woke up remembering quite a bit of it which is often just confusing. This was only one very small part.

I have only managed to lose 3 lbs since putting on 6 from going to Italy which I am not pleased about. This is pushing me to behave badly in respect to my eating to force the remaining 3 pounds to go. I dislike feeling obsessive about my weight, but then I dislike being overweight. Nothing new there. This current schedule does nothing to improve my eating. What I really wanted to do today was cook some good and healthy food but of course, what's the point. I can't take it to Cambridge with me, and it will rot here in the interim.

I don't want this all to be bitching and moaning however. I am in many ways looking forward to this year. I feel so much more in control of my work and what I need to do. Yes, there are a million annoyances clamoring for my time and attention, but I feel confident that I am on the right track and can tackle this whole PhD thing. Of course part of me feels quite strongly that what I'm doing would in no way be considered a real PhD by most US institutions, but what difference does it make once I have the thing? I'm getting a PhD from Cambridge! Not only that, but I seem to be doing it reasonably well. I'll stick with that for the time being. It gives me... energy and motivation to keep it up.

I'm sure there was something else I wanted to write about but I really can't remember what it was. Ah well.

15 January 2011

Too Late

Yesterday I had a very strange email conversation with Mr.Aloof. That's right, the twat who twisted me up and shat me out a few years ago. After therapy and after I told him to fuck off in no uncertain terms, he would tentatively reach out to me about every 3-6 months. At first these moments of contact frightened me, but as time passed, I began to feel nothing. If anything, I felt a bit bitchy towards him.

I suppose it shows just how over everything I am. He holds zero power over me, although he can still irritate me, it's mainly for being a stupid twat, not for actually harming me in any way. I guess I allow this intermittent contact because I remember that I actually really liked this person once. That there were qualities about him that I enjoyed as a person, not just as a carnal lover. But I have always been very clear with him that there was pretty much nothing left and that I chatted with him on a whim. I would disappear just as much as he used to.

So this has been the pattern for the past couple years. I barely even register it. But yesterday was a bit odd. He's in Japan now, as he has been for most of last year. I was in the office late. He was out drinking late. He was drunk. And interesting for a change. Open and provocative. But then he tried. He tried to see if there was a weakness there, a point of entry. Of course there was not. But his persistence was... well... strange. I have never attempted to give him any false hope or be anything less than blatantly honest about how I viewed things.

I suppose part of his character is this desire for the unattainable. I think this is how I appear to him now. Now he wants to see me, to be with me, he wants to know what I want. And on some level, this was pleasing to read in a rather malicious and vindictive way. Until I reminded myself that were I to be inclined to acquiesce to any of his interest I would find the same person I knew then. When he had what he pursued, he would no longer want it. I have zero interest in this game and told him as much.

Which of course, pissed him off. Which I found both amusing and irritating. He hasn't changed at all. He thinks he has changed but nothing has changed. Lost soul that he is. I almost feel badly for him, but then I do not. He has made his life-bed and so must sleep in it.

Still, it was a very strange conversation.

Italy was good. Very good. Nice to get away and get a real vacation and a real break. I don't remember when I last did. Of course it only gave me a taste for it and now I want more! Need to watch that budget though. This trip was it for the year perhaps, aside from the annual one stateside. We'll see. I do have enough air miles to go pretty much anywhere I want, but I'm saving them for just now until I have a very good idea.

I've come back, as expected, to a shitload of work. I knew this would be the case. All I really want to do is work on my own PhD research and yet I have tons of other things vying for my attention. January is half done and I only allowed January and February to develop stage one of my research. Of course there is still time, but I want to do that now, not do all this other crap. Currently I'm procrastinating from my coursework which is due on the 19th. I've only had this coursework since the end of November but I only really started it yesterday. I could smack myself around sometimes for this behavior, although in truth I was busy working on the 3D model for my paying client in December, so it's not like I was doing nothing.

I think coming back from holiday to all this work and grey weather has put me in a bit of a funk. I'm feeling very isolated at the moment. I'm not entirely sure why. But I'm sure it will pass.

02 January 2011

Not Me

Seeing as I've had somewhat similar information which has made me unhappy from two different people come at me in less than 12 hours, I figured it warrants a blog.

Last night I met up with Econ. He has generally been a twat, and I didn't have expectations in seeing him, and so all of that was fine. We met up for drinks in Hoxton. When he greeted me, he kissed me on the lips. But there was no real intimacy for the majority of the evening. We chatted, we played a couple rounds of scrabble. But there were slight touches here and there and at one point he rested his head on my shoulder and I stroked his hair. Then the bar was closing and we were parting and we were saying goodbye but it was just strange. He wasn't quite going, it was all a bit awkward. I told him he was weird. We talked a bit, I told him he was weird again and then he tells me that the other person he told me he was seeing in September, well, that had progressed a bit, for whatever that was worth. So okay. You wait until the entire end of an evening to tell me you are seeing someone else? Oh yeah, and he kissed me on the lips again to say goodbye. To be honest, if I was his girlfriend, I wouldn't be at all impressed with this behavior. I guess it's a good thing I'm not his girlfriend. It doesn't mean though that it still doesn't sting a bit, or that the annoyance isn't there.

Then I wake up this morning to an email from the jackrabbit in Columbia which was cool. And it was all very chatty and then he throws in at the last bit that he might be getting back together with his ex. Now with the jackrabbit, I didn't see a 'relationship' blooming, so it's not necessarily hurtful in the same way. But I find it's still a bit hurtful somehow. Maybe I thought we could continue our fun when he got back. And I guess as he's thinking of 'getting back together with someone' on top of the news of last night, it just smacks me on the face twice that it always seems to be 'not me' in dealings with guys.

And it hurts a bit.

Not paralytically, but enough to bug me.

There isn't anything to be done about it of course. And it's probably for the best in some ways because I knew that neither one of them was quite right for assorted reasons. So better to have that be more clear than less clear. But it leaves me at square zero pretty much. And to be honest I am oh so tired of being at square zero. I have a nice home here at square zero, and I know how to be happy here. But I see those other squares out there and I wonder why it is I just don't seem to be allowed to go on them.

I said to someone a few days ago that part of the problem I think is that I don't think I need a man. I want a man. And that's an entirely different proposition. I am clearly extremely independent and capable. And maybe this is off putting. Maybe I give off the wrong sort of vibe. I know that seems insulting in some way to people in relationships, but I just try to understand what it is about me that creates my life, and this is something that seems to come up frequently.

Or maybe I'm just grasping at straws. Because it's easier to have explanations than no explanations. And it's better for me to have explanations that are not 'I am shit'. And that's the only good thing I can say. I'm not entirely hating myself this morning over this. Though maybe there's a slight whiff of it in the air, I'm not embracing it. So that's a good thing.

Regardless. It will all pass and it will all be fine. I'm off to Italy tomorrow morning so I can have a real vacation from my life. I think I need it.