Brought to you by Men Give up Ribs,™ a subsidiary of Conscious/Unconscious, Figure/Ground Reality, AKA Red-Monkey Butt Alchemy,™ a division of Book-In-A-Drawer Publications.™ ©2011: All rights reserved, of course.
“I’ve got to go to the bathroom,” says she, as though asking for permission. “Okay,” says I. “I’ll be over there,” wondering what if I had said “no way.” “Are you sure?” says she, “I worry about being abandoned.” “When you go to the bathroom?” I query, sure that we were playing. “Yes,” says she, “what if you just left me here?” “Well,” says I, now a lot less sure we were playing, “you came here in your own car.” “Well, I’ve been left like that,” she offered, seemingly hesitant to move. Two hours into this and now I’ve got responsibility, I think playfully, still not sure we’re playing. “I’ll be over there,” I reiterate. She in her camouflage pants walks semi-confidently towards the bathrooms.
“You’re here.” She actually seems surprised. Wow, thinks I—this is easy. I wait for her to go to the bathroom and score points. That’s a threshold I can deal with, though I’m way less confident we’re playing.
A her-shtick ensued about abandonment, prediction, and control. This is no time for working with me, so I work just with her. She likes it that way, while getting nervous nonetheless—she’s not used to being on the take-end of the give/take stick. Eventually her story shifts from appreciation to outright nervousness—she apparently believes a woman has to have some leverage and she seems to have none.
A me-shtick ensues about abandonment, prediction, and control. This is no time for working just with her, so I let go and give her some of me. And then the Gotcha Game has sprung into action, along with the reemergence of her-shtick. She engages in relationship alchemy to lessen her dissonance. She laments she’s not going to get this-and-this. So she cries—such lovely leverage. I’m unfazed, which is just more ammo for her-shtick. Oddly, she can’t find her way home, but she’s sure of her direction.
We’re not playing at all. I don’t give me, I don’t give to her, but I do give up. Not a testosterone moment if one likes to be dragged off to the cave. Her-shtick about abandonment, prediction, and control has borne fruit—and nuts—though somehow the antagonist and protagonist got switched. Maybe I should have suspected the camouflage pants, but that’s just way too many lions in the tall grass for a peaceful and fun Sunday stroll.
“Look,” says I in general to the shes, “it’s like a figure/ground life.” “It’s an old lady/young lady thing. Look this way and it’s that. Look that way and it’s this. Interesting, eh?” “You’re in control,” the shes say. “We like it that way,” the shes say. “Very strong,” the shes offer. “But when do we get to be in control,” says the shes. Though in question form, it’s not really a question. I wonder aloud: “You shes like clearly-strong men with definite edges, but strong women are subtle women with no discernable edges?” The collective shes reply: “We’ve got to keep our options open, but we like men who don’t have options. Besides, we know that men like what we like or they’re not really men.”
Storm clouds appear—we’re in for it now, again. Or maybe we were always in for it. The collective hes bluster: “Whoa, it’s us who’ve got to keep our options open, not the shes. It’s tough sledding to be clearly-strong men with definite edges—apparently there is a lot of heavy lifting that needs to be done. Besides, we know that women like that or they’re not really women.”
I check my ticket stub. You’d think I’d be convinced “We” is not really playing in this theater.
Exactly what is the meaning of the story about Adam and giving up a rib so he has a woman? Ouch. And ouch again. Don’t tell me that men don’t give birth.
It is a cold and windy night, but the Jacuzzi will warm me and its placement will protect me from the wind. The stars are abundant. It is quiet. Soon I’ll go into my house, sit in the dark, and listen to the wind. It is a crazy world of keys and locks at odds, but despite the disconnect, peace can be found. I breathe deeply and smile. Apparently I’m doing all right anyway.