July 21st, 2004

pod

Matt demands that this be posted under protest. He says that he's been a perfect angel of restraint

This is just a factual account of what happened, devoid of entertaining anecdotes or much analysis. I might post such later but I might not. Some stories are better off saved.

We were all tired Sunday and it passed in something of a grey haze. We visited Grant's Tomb, Riverside Church, and did some walking Riverside Park where we saw such attractions as the Dinosaur Playground and the Hudson river. We had plans to go downtown and hang but our Arizonian decided to split because we weren't good enough company, and Mattie was so depressed at this turn of events that it was all he could do to watch half an hour of porn and crawl into bed. Alone.

It's difficult to try and show people New York City on 2.5 hours of sleep, but I thought I did an okay job of Morningside Heights and the reason that we didn't get a chance to see more is that we started out late and we were all dragging our asses. Leigh was an interesting person, a bit flakey and obsessed with substance abuse but not completely out of it. She did totally change the nature of the interaction, though, since Matt and I were basically unable to have a serious conversation around her. She wasn't interested and had a tendency to space out, so much so that she occasionally forgot how to walk. That's not a good thing. She did show us her underwear and let Matt grope her a little aboard a Triceratops, which are two things that would have been a whole lot more awkward if it had just been us two guys. She also had ID for the buying of beers, which I didn't drink because I don't drink alcohol, but which Matt happily imbibed.

As for other random memorable moments throughout the day, there were more than a few. I tried to pick up a 15 month old toddler but got cockblocked by her mother, who proceeded to agree with us that Matt's Salmon shirt and red red socks would make him very successful at making friends in Greenwich village. Leigh couldn't figure out who was buried in Grant's tomb. Perhaps some day I will have the ability to write up the rest of the funny little incidents to Matt's satisfaction, but for now he's standing over my shoulder and critiquing every word I write while he consumes expired yogurt, and I don't want to dissapoint that bearded face. Of course he forgot that he told me he'd forget the events of the day, and that I should write them up as a sort of mnemonic device, but I really should have seen that coming.

We ate in Riverside park at the cafe, Matt made some rotten eggplant and some tasty but calorie filled pasta. Leigh abandoned us for her complete asshole friend who not only didn't pick her up to begin with but made her travel alone on the Subway and walk through the rain to meet him. It wasn't a big deal since things were probably better without her but it still stung poor Matt, as rejection is rejection.

Monday was pretty damned good. We got a fairly late start because we were still burned out from the late night on Saturday but once we got rolling we got a decent amount accomplished. We went up to the Met through Central Park (first we had a stop at the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine), and though it was closed it was a nice walk. Then we headed across to the American Museum of Natural History and paid $28 to get in for Student price. We had a really good time there, learned a lot, saw the fantastic frog exhibit that is small but very much worth it (it includes video of a giant African Goliath Bullfrog consuming a rat whole. Whoa.) and let George Plimpton tell us a lot of interesting facts about Gold. There was an unkempt man near the Star of India who was telling the story of Murph the Surf. Matt loved the Blue Whale and the exhibit showing a Sperm Whale and a Giant Squid going at it in the real fight of the century. We had to rush through the Dinosaur hall but that was okay, since Matt hates reptiles almost as much as he hates bubble gum.

After that we galavanted off to a pizza parlor where Mattie "Rube" Hickstein suggested we order a whole pie rather than by the slice. He couldn't have stood out more if he'd been wearing overalls unbuttoned on one shoulder and sucking on a bit of hay. When the order was placed the guy had to stifle the urge to ask if we wouldn't be more comfortable with a nice piece of corn pone. Eventually we managed to leave with our pie, but not our dignity, and headed down to Bryant park. On the way some Jesus lovers gave us a little bit of water, so I will stop saying that he never did nothing for me. God gave me 8 ounces of liquid refreshment. Thanks lord.

It turned out that the Bryant Park grass was closed on account of rain and pussytude by the parks department. We sat around there for an hour while Matt complained bitterly about the lack of hot women. We got to watch a man we dubbed "Mr. Skeezy" hit on various (or possibly just one) Asian women with a very tired schtick that worked surprisingly well. He was dressed like a bum who all the other bums picked on because of his poor fashion sense and had hair that was less appealing than brillo would have been. After about an hour we went over to my friend Aaron's house and hypocritically demanded his attention and entrance into his abode. I admitted at the time that what I was doing is something I probably wouldn't have tolerated if it were done to me, but I gave him the option of sending us away. He didn't. We all hung out for awhile and watched the movie from off on the side. It was Dial M for Murder and it was okay. We thought it had been colored after the fact but that wasn't so. Just a bad job of colorization. Not Hitchcock's best film, but Grace Kelly is profoundly gorgeous.

After that we got burritos and walked down to Washington Square park where we hung out and chatted about the chances of catching my old social studies teacher sucking a transexual's cock outside of a nightclub. We also saw a drug dealer who offered us Bud, Meth, and Coke. I declined but asked if he had a pepsi. I think I'm going to stop talking back to drug dealers. Street preachers? Sure. Drug dealers, not so much. We got home at 2 and caught some Zzs.

Today was a lesser day. It was the day where Matt's long lost love from the internet was flying in and we were to meet her at the airport. We tried to get Shakespear in the Park tickets but they were sold out when we arrived. We took the M60 up to meet her and got there after her plane. She was perky. I sat apart from them on the busride back and read about Thadeus "Badius" Stevens. They chatted for the hour it took to get back to my house. Once we got off the bus, things did not go so well. I started interacting with them to avoid being rude, and soon the conversation nosedived. First she said that we were much alike, which was really rough on Matt. Gentlemen, if there's a girl you like, you really don't want her to be comparing you to me. I repulse women, and not just physically. Every fiber and morsel of my being. It's the kiss of death, and Matt got it smack on the lips before he ever had a chance. They had a couple beers, we chatted, I offended her by making the correct observation that Atlanta is located in the deep south. We went walking, I was basically the only one talking, she was picky about her drinks, she made a phone call during the time together, which was another blow to Matt's fragile ego, and we saw a badly disfigured baby on our way back to my house, who I waved at.

The thing is, I was really dominating the conversation at this point. riffing off in funny but somewhat confusing monologues. I am regaining some of my intellectual sharpness, and I was on, but she was tired and offended and though she laughed as the waves of punchlines hit, she complained latter that I wouldn't shut up. I feel bad for sabotaging Matt, but I was trying to make up for the fact that he was tired and sulking. It was a bad scene. After she left he felt really bad and decided to leave tonight rather than tomorrow. I saw him down tot he bus station and on to a bus, where he presumably remains to this day (at least until 2:00) I came home and had too much Chinese food. Encounter over.

I feel bad about how this week went for Matt. We had a lot of fun, but he suffered disapointments and in the end he was pretty depressed. Of course women are to blame, or at least his feelings towards them. A large inspiration behind the trip was his breaking up for the 80th time with his cancerous for him current ex and probably future girlfriend. Leigh left him in the lurch and then he pinned too much on the girl from Atlanta. He had all sorts of plans that he never discussed with her, and expectations that did not come to fruition. I don't blame her for how she acted, she wasn't aware of how much he had riding on her and the potential red-hot fuckfest that might develop if everything went perfectly right. It was really rough on him, though, and watching him deflate like a punctured balloon was not pleasant. They say it is better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all, but in situations like this it's tough to see that. Expectations are a bitch. I knew he was being unrealistic, and I wasn't that surprised to see very little chemistry between them (not that I'm an expert observer, but they definitely did not seem to have sparks) but it's still a tough blow.

I did what I could to cheer him up a bit, but frankly there wasn't anything I could say. He was hoping for a picante encounter and he got a mild meeting. That takes time to recover from.
  • Current Music
    Randy Newman
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Lessons from Matthew's trip into civilization from the wilds of Vermont.

The lessons of the last few days seem pretty clear to me. I am somewhat hesitant to write them all up because fakingsincerity may be less than pleased by a few of the things I have to say, and may even dare to disagree with some of it. On the other hand, I did pay for him to see the frogs, so I'm not going to bite my six foot long tongue.

The first thing I'll take away from the long weekend is that internet chemistry can translate into real life, at least when it comes to platonic friendships. Matt and I had a genuinely good time together, and although there was some of the natural friction that occurs when you have two people spending most of their waking hours together for an extended period of time and not having sex (or the prospect of future sex) with one another. That was something that I was worried about, since he wouldn't have had anywhere else to go in the city and neither would I. Had things been unpleasant between us it would have been a difficult few dozen hours.

The next lesson I learned is not to backload your vacation with expectations. Matthew did just this, coming in for a good time in part but also with rather high expectations for the last couple of days when the girl would arrive and everything would be passion and joy. This both distracted him from the first section of time, and then basically invalidated it after the fireworks failed to ignite. We had fun together in those first few days, and we could have had casual fun for the last bit had the expectations not been so very high. He was looking forward to visiting the Bronx Zoo (as was I) but he wanted to do it with her and when she revealed that that would not be happening the prospect lost a lot of its attraction. We could have gone on Tuesday morning and still had time to meet with her afterwards had there not been so much importance placed on the endzone. I'm sure that given the distance of time Matt will look back on the time as having been overall a positive experience but for now he's cranky and dissapointed, and the trip feels like a bust.

I hope that Matt takes away a few "older and wiser" moments from what happened as well. One would be not to count on time with a woman until she commits to it. For him she was one of the primary reasons for coming and the instant focus of all his attention and activities. For her he was a pleasant and exciting side-note to an already well-established and important trip. This clash of expectations left him feeling dissapointed and unhappy even though she didn't do anything untoward. She hung out with him for more time than could comfortably fit into her schedule and probably would have spent more time with him later had he stayed (Going was definitely the right move though. For one it meant he wouldn't have to skip a day of work or come up wtih an excuse. For another any time they had spent together later would probably have been awkward and equally dissapointing. I got (not copped!) a feel for her in the time we spent together and she would definitely be the type who would be happy to have him around but would be focused on a dozen other things at once. She's a sociable outgoing person, and there's certainly nothing wrong with that, which would have meant that he could not have gotten the attention he wanted. Matt is an interesting fellow, he is easygoing and willing to work with the flow, but I would guess he's not overly fond of large gatherings, at least not all the time. Anyway, the primary issue here was expectation. If he hadn't had any then we could have had our fun, he could have had an amusing but not so pregnant with significance encounter with her, and everything would have been copasetic. I understant it's difficult to restrain expectations after 7 years of contact and especially given the emotional rollercoaster he had been through thanks to the malignant carcinoma known as Miri, but the results of letting your imagination run wild can be devastating.

This is a principle I've talked about before in this journal. People's expectations are often out of line with what they know reality to be because they have difficulty distancing themselves from their own lives. I'm sure that if Matt were in my position he'd have a similar viewpoint to the one I hold, perhaps a shade less bitter and negative, but similar nonetheless. He wasn't able to remove himself far enough from the situation to see it logically. You could argue that he made the right decision, that trying to grab something special and unique is worth the possibility, or even likelihood, of a painful fall from grace. That's fine, I would definitely agree that I am sometimes overly removed and focused on chances. You shouldn't just hang back and do nothing because the chances of success at a given activity are slim. On the other hand neither should you expect that you will be wildly successful at anything. Most great artists aren't rich or famous, and most artists who believe they are great aren't. Just because you think you can draw or write really well doesn't mean that that will lead to the sorts of rewards you undoubtably fantasize about. Personal, let alone sexual, chemistry is a really difficult thing to judge if you haven't spent time in person with someone. Sparks sometimes fly between people who don't like each other, they sometimes fly when it's not mutual, and they sometimes fly when you really wish they wouldn't. or fail to when you expect they will. It's a hard thing to pre-judge and we have to accept that and go in to these things with eyes open and realistic expectations. Realistic, not pesimistic (something I am guilty of.) Of course optimism may increase the chances of success, but you have to be willing to deal with the disappointment if you want to go the starry-eyed pie in the sky route.

The thing is, sex, love, and women complicate things. It may well be worth it, but it's a fact of life. I'm pretty sure that Matt and I saw and learned more in the museum together than we would have had we been a man and a woman in love (or two men in love for that matter. Homosexuals. Homos.) nitro_pb showed that by missing the Milstein blue whale on his trip there with his LOVER. I'm a very perceptive person and can spot telephones, garbage cans, and other objects that most other people would miss (My friend Aaron can attest to this, as well as the fact that I sometimes appear to be psychic as when I seemed to predict a telephone call Matt recieved 4 hours after someone had said they would call him back 20 minutes later) but I fully believe that the average person should be capable of spotting a life-sized replica of the LARGEST ANIMAL EVER TO LIVE ON EARTH hanging 11 feet over his head. The whale is 92 feet long and slightly higher than a basketball hoop. This is the distractive power of titties. Until we finally institute mandatory burkha wearing among American women (With John Ashcroft heading up the justice department this is less unlikely than you might think) it is probably advisable to travel to places of learning with unattractive male companionship.

I was also reminded of my profound dorkiness. When Matt came to town I was well-equipped to take him to places with interesting architecture and the like but not places with drugging, drinking, or easy pussy. I think I should be at least somewhat aquainted with such things, but my desire is really low and I'm not the sort of person who is accepted there. I would honestly prefer to make jokes about James Polk than to be surrounded by strobe lights and overly noisy music. Most people would not. I should be able to accomodate Polk-haters by offering them entertainments that are more to their liking. It'd also be good to have that kind of experience for writing experience. I should work on that issue.
  • Current Music
    Cranberries
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I'm thinking of changing this journal's name to "Life, sans female nudity."

Yesterday I went for a longer walk than usual, even though my legs have been dead for the last week or so. It was a nice chance to clear my head. I've been enamoured with a quote of mine that I don't remember writing, "Wifebeating is among the most honorable of the beating arts." I think this is funny for two reasons. One it matches Wifebeating and honorable, two concepts that are usually considered disparate, and for another the term "beating arts." It recalls the idea of Martial Arts but sort of flips them on their head. Martial Arts are art because of the bodily movements and discipline they require, not because of the damage they inflict. The idea of beating arts implies that the actual harm is what makes it artistic, which is humorous. Together I think these elements make it an amusing sentence, one that I'm glad I can attribute to myself. Cause I rock. It would not be nearly as funny if it were "Domestic violence" rather than wifebeating.

On the downside, there's nothing that can be done with it. The idea of wifebeating itself is not at all funny, and I don't think it can be made so. I tried to work up a routine where it was an olympic event, and there were two efette British announcers saying things like "Look at the strap marks on her, absolutely marvelous. You see how he brings the belt up and down in such a fluid motion? I dare say you don't learn that overnight." or "Now you might feel sorry for some of these women, but remember that they chose to be here. Nobody made them mouth off to their husbands."

It's just not funny. I'm not sure why, I'm very amused by dark and taboo topics but this one doesn't work. I came up with some clever ideas, but they were clever without being funny. It might be because I'm feeling very misogynystic at the moment, thanks to the breaking of Mattie's heart 1 2 3. I always feel angry at women when they bust up my friends' feelings. My friend Gabe once said that he hated women because they control access to vaginas and they weren't giving him none. He has since shacked up with a French Woman, and while he's been playing the Heinz Gudarian to her Maginot Line he's sung a different tune. It is unfair that god handed out all the Poontang to chicks, and then made them confusing and womanly. Women don't understand how they can wrench a man's heart in two just by looking at him in a certain way. So many of them flirt for their own amusement and don't know the pain they can cause. It's just as bad as guys who go out there and screw random girls then don't call them in order to pump up their self-esteem, albeit in somewhat different ways. What the girls do is less defensible against, because a woman can decide not to sleep with a man on the first date, but how is a man supposed to not flirt with a woman on the first date? Therefore the guys who get mixed signals and shot through the heart have no reasonable way to defend themselves. On the other hand it's not as conscious and not quite as degrading. Nonetheless it makes me angry

While wifebeating is unfunny, the idea of high gay-concentration areas being used as a plan to exterminate them can be very funny. The thought that San Francisco is secretly run by extreme rightests who want to gather all the sodomites together so they can open hunting season on them is funny. Add in a tour guide saying "Safest game in the world to hunt. What are they going to do? Insult the cut of your shirt or throw their manpurses at you?" and you've got a good sketch.

Matthew sent me pictures of the trip including some terrible ones of me. I look a lot worse in them than I do in the mirror, and I don't exactly look like Rico Suave in the mirror. It's a bit of a downer because things had been looking up, but I don't really care. On the other hand, Matt looks much better in a photo than he does in person, where he resembles an extremely handsome mole.

I managed to lose weight this week despite eating fairly crappily. Good stuff but I'm worried that my thigh muscles are being eaten away and that's why they're so sluggish. Probably paranoid, but then again, I am pretty paranoid. It fits me then (unlike one of my shirts in those photos.)
  • Current Music
    Chris Isaak - Heart Shaped World