Sunday, October 15, 2006

NYC Men Stink

All of a sudden, I was besodden with weariness. That's not mine. Actually, my friend Sally said it while we were browsing the personal essay section at the Barnes and Noble, after leaving my favorite hamburger joint on 72nd street. 'Favorite hamburger joint' is kind of misleading, implying a hierarchy of favorites which would indicate a sense of identification with my community and exhuberance about NYC. Like I could have family come out of town and introduce them to my collection of avenues and neighborhoods that have names like Nolita and Noho, my relationship to NYC like that of new friends who have started to exchange bits and pieces of their personalities. But I don't really feel that way about New York City; I don't really like living here; I just really like that hamburger place. A dive bar that serves comfort food. Sunken, cavernous, wood, with waiters that wear their own clothing and an attitude that defies the New York frenetic pace. The place that Zagat forgot.
I was trying to diet because I would be leaving for the beach in 12 days, and had gained a shocking 10 pounds in reaction to two failed dates and because of the revelation that I now much preferred vanilla cream filled donuts at Krispy Kreme to bullshit filled NYC men. Of course I couldn't diet with Sally because with us, it's all about excess. We added fries to each of our burgers and split a piece of chocolate cake. Only the cake was so suprisingly good, that I called out to the waitress across the room to bring us another piece, like a frat boy on spring break anxious for another shot of Jaeger. I can't drink so chocolate is my drug of choice.
The lunch was kind of a bookend to the most humiliating dating week I'd had since I'd started really dating again, which was only about a month ago. First, an actor I had made plans with for our third date cancelled because he had 'too much work to do,' (translation: it didn't look like he was going to get laid anytime soon.)
Then it got worse. Probably the worst rejection I've ever had without ever even going out with the guy. His name was Phil, I suppose it still is. First of all, I don't even like the name Phil. I don't trust it, Phil Donahue aside. I met Phil at a catering gig, a wedding. We were flirting and exchanging stories all night. I asked some reliable coworkers about him, who gave him a positive endorsement using words like 'ernest' and 'cute butt.' Then I cinched the deal when Phil asked me out to dinner sounds It sounds pretty pathetic when it's the woman who has to do the 'cinching', but that's what it's like in a city with a 5:1 ratio of women to men. In a city where women on every curb seem to be mugging for Vogue, complete with requisite pout.
Two days later, Phil followed up with a phone call, just to tell me he was looking forward to our date and that he would contact me when he returned to NYC from his parents. One week passed and he did not call. Just after I'd mentally filed Phil away in the 'promising date gone awry' junkyard pile located in the back of my brain, I received a phone call at 1:30am Friday night while I was enjoying a bag of kettle style popcorn.
Phil: Is this Erika? (I had apparently already made it into his phonebook.)
Me: Yes, who is this?
Phil: (Confused sounding) Phil. I thought I had the wrong number. Is this the girl I met last night at the bar on 24th street?
Me: No.
Phil: Oh, huh. I guess I have the wrong number.
So basically, not only had Phil forgotten about our date, he had also forgotten WHO I WAS. Fantastic. What does a woman have to do to get an honest kiss in New York?
I have not kissed a guy since I was well out of the city limits, a year and a half ago in my parents driveway, in front of my grandfathers window, idling in some guy's car. And even that guy, instead of asking for my number, asked if he could give me a spanking.


Sugar said...

Dag! Well, if it gives you any consolation, you aren't alone. I just got the news today that my ex-boyfriend, who only broke up with me seven months ago...count them, seven, is MARRIED!!! I don't even know what to think. I've been thinking everything you can imagine and for the icing on the 30TH birthday is tomorrow!!! I'm not feeling so great right now, but on the bright side, I got a cute new hairdo yesterday!!! I hope this week goes much better for you!!

I've been wondering where you guys were!!

Sally Blue said...

Erika I've been reading your postings and there are so many little parts which I want to point to and cry, "Excellent!" but of course I won't because nobody can hear me and nobody can see me pointing -- and I would put it all right here in this little comment box (writing out explicitly which parts struck me and titillated me and made me laugh or sigh in admiration) but unfortunately I'm too self-conscious to give feedback on the Internet -- so all I can say is: This is good, very rollicking; and keep writing. (Admittedly one of the reasons I loved this one in particular is because me and my words are featured.) I'm besotted with gratitude to be a character on a blog! (And I finished a little bag of Hershey's kisses and another little bag of Sunchips while reading it and I too just really don't care anymore about being too stringent when the only boys I see are really just not looking that tasty to me.) (Well, okay, that was a serious exaggeration; I take that back: sometimes I do go into massive lurches of superabundant passionate hunger -- everything to excess! -- for their hands and their eyes and their cute cute soft voices (not to mention a great many other unmentionable things); but that certainly doesn't keep me away from the Sunchips. Or the chocolate kisses. Or anything for that matter. Or anything? Including boys themselves?)

Oh dear. I accidentally wrote myself right into a boy craving. I'll stop now.

Anonymous said...

excellent points and the details are more specific than somewhere else, thanks.

- Norman

Anonymous said...

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- Murk