"I am an idealistic, naive, passionate, truth-seeking, spiritually motivated artist, unschooled in the science of law and finance." --Wesley Snipes

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Sentences on "Old Girlfriends and Other Horrible Memories."

My (sex) life contains a finite number of sentences, arranged in a pattern. The pattern sometimes resembles a Mandelbrot set, but it's way different than that, yo. Each sentence can be represented by a discrete crystalline structure. Unlike snowflakes, some of the sentences are the same: "Is that it?" "I love you (sic)" "Oh!" "Turn over." "Why are you crying?"

I am building a giant phallic tribute to my (sex) life. The phallus is modeled not on my own modest member but on Joe Massey's penis (which I haven't seen, but have chosen for both the anger and tender heart of its owner). This tribute will be a large sculpture. It will have nothing to do with the book called My (sex) Life. It will instead act as a scarecrow on my front lawn, keeping the neighbors at bay.

My two closest female friends once wrote a song called "God at Bay" which was about Loretta Lynn. I was having sex once and Loretta Lynn came on the iTunes. Major mood-killer. I had to extricate myself, get up, and change the music to Arto Lindsay. Afterward, my companion said "What was that music? I liked it." Not a word about the sex act.

I am on medication that is known for its "sexual side effects." Guess what that means? To be completely honest with you, I was first attracted to M1 because of her breasts. I'm a man. Then it was her voice, her wry (but somehow dorky) wit, and her great compassion. And then it was her sadness. I was in love with that part of her that was sad, but frustrated with the part that wanted the world to be a better place. The world is never "a better place." It is what we have right now.

I received my first handjob after a community center dance behind a green church under a halogen light. I never saw the girl again, but heard two years later that she died in a freak automobile accident. She fell asleep at the wheel and was hit by an 18-wheeler. Kenneth Koch wrote in "The Burning Mystery of Anna in 1951," "I don't know how to kiss." I wrote in a book published by Pilot Books, "The bike cage. The first kiss."

L. and I broke up in 1992. Around Christmas 1994, she sent my parents, in a number ten envelope, no note, no nothing, the silver necklace I had given her three Christmases prior. I bought M1 a lot of things for Christmas that I don't remember. She bought me a single CD. L2 didn't break up with me at Christmas because I bought her a lot of gifts. K. broke up with me on Christmas eve, her birthday. I was devastated. I hung up the phone then proceeded to eat tamales, play blackjack, and drink to excess. I was in love with her for a year following. The last time I saw her, she wore a long blue dress. She was drunk and the Pixies played from some back room.

Distance equals rate times time. A nearly forgotten local band claimed that the absent lover was "just a 3x5 away." If the continent could tip, I could make someone tumble westward. Here be serpents. Here be the indelicacy that is west coast living. What's the main difference between us? Out here, nobody dresses up to go out. Funny how geography takes precedence over matters of the heart. Matters of the heart. I hate that phrase. In Ray Carver's famous story, the most inept character, the one most unable to love, is a cardiologist. This made my students chuckle. I just swallowed silently and continued my lecture.

M2 is the most frightening person I've ever known. Like other lovers, her main connection to me was food we shared. Sex was pretty good too. But we didn't see eye to eye on much else. It is now and always has been my contention that our dual mental illnesses made it impossible for us to just get along. I just picked up a used copy of something called The Essential Donne. "For god's sake, hold your tongue and let me love." Easier said.

After the incident(s) with L. she sort of moved in for awhile. I'd keep her awake long enough to serve her midnight meals. When I think of L now I think of a small yellow bird in the palm of her hand, her cartoony self-portraits, red-tailed hawks, and the CDs she made me back when our relationship was borderline inappropriate. We promised each other early on that we'd never be ugly to each other. We lied.


Ash said...

The girl who first allowed me to enjoy her favors died in an automobile accident when she was barely 17; she was rushing home to meet her curfew. She was about a half-mile from home. Sad, sad.

Michael said...

On the Beach is pretty good too.