Jebediah

It was one of those humid and refreshing evenings in Johannesburg, the type that had just a bit of chill in the air that served only to cool the layer of moist heat that settled over your skin after a summer thunderstorm. I loved those types of evenings.

It was on this evening that I finally met Jebediah.

We had been talking for months and months. The actual meeting part, however, alluded us. He was chronically shy and introverted, or so he claimed. I later came to the conclusion that in actual fact he was a douchebag in disguise. That’s the thing with the quiet, nerdy types- they are possibly more douchey than the rest of them. I am, of course, generalizing but I do have some experience when it comes to dating geeks and nerds, the intelligent, quiet and introverted types. In fact, they are more my type than anything else. I find them interesting and quirky.

But that is what makes it all the more deceptive. Some of these lads will claim quite verbally and more often than not that they are the good guys, that they are the guys who have been hard done by in life, looks, dating and so on. Perhaps it is this cunning and this wit that makes them so adept at playing games, or maybe it is their own self-absorption that blinds them to the harsh reality that other people are bound to get hurt- whatever it is, Jebediah was officially the last self-proclaimed geek that I ever went near.

Anyway, as I was saying before, it took us months to finally meet. When we did, it was to play a round of adventure golf outdoors, followed by some bowling, followed by some dinner, followed by some heated snogging in the parking lot. For this little excursion I was the one who had to drive some 40 minutes in order to meet him in a shopping mall that was close to his abode. I was naïve and much younger than I am now, and quite possibly very horny, so I was wearing my anti-douchebaggery goggles at the time.

During the date, I showed off my shockingly poor ability at any hand-eye coordination sport. It must have amused him greatly. He was nice enough and we clicked rather well. Jebediah was good-looking, a bit chunky. He reminded me a bit of a slobbering Saint Bernard.

He ended the date with a lengthy kissing session which went on and on and on. Good, right?

Well, the next day he was decidedly off. I received a “good morning” text to which I reply in my normal delightful way, to which he replied, “Gud.” He never used poor spelling. A bit put out, I told him I enjoyed meeting him and hoped to do it again.

“K.”

#kbye.

I left him be after that. Message received loud and clear, right? And I moved on to greener pastures. Happily, I might add. I was not pining after him, I was not obsessing or infatuated. The date had been nice but that was it.

However, this was not a simple good bye. Jebediah had this odd way of drawing me back. After weeks of not hearing from him, I would receive a message from him out of the blue. It would be friendly and amiable and coaxing, teasing me that I had lost interest in him. Eventually the weeks shortened to days and the days to hours and soon we were back to our daily communication. It became flirtatious and openly naughty, until one evening he invited me over.

His excuse for not contacting me right after the first date? His grandmother had died and he had to take care of his mom for a time. I suppose that was acceptable. I didn’t dwell on it. He had invited me over, right?

Well he lived in a disgusting little hovel. It was this small apartment on somebody’s property. He claimed he had just moved in and hadn’t had time to unpack or buy any furniture (he moved in a month ago). I sat on the floor and drank a vodka to ease the transition of inhabiting such conditions (I am a fussy and spoilt girl- spoilt by myself). At least he had made some sort of effort to maintain his bedroom, though it was sparse and the linen smelt a bit dank.

In any event, the sex was good. I liked sleeping with Jebediah. It was probably some of the best sex I had ever had. The chunky boy had stamina and moves, yo! And there was no awkwardness that usually exists during the first time. It just sort of flowed.

We cuddled for a bit afterwards and I was about to drift off to sleep when he left the bed. Curious, I sat up, thinking he was about to chuck me out.

“Just need the toilet,” he informed me. “Sleep.”

The toilet was in the other room, separated by at least ten feet of space and two closed doors between us, so I am not sure if Jebediah thought maybe it was possible that I would not hear the chaos that would ensue in the water closet or that I simply fell asleep in the speed of light and would not notice.

I fear he may have consumed a diabolical feast of Chimmichangas or some intense hot periperi nachos, perhaps his colon was undergoing an intensive flushing procedure, for the sounds that I heard that evening were akin to the contents of a big pot of steaming curry being tossed into a sink. Oh Jesus, and the trapped pockets of gas that heralded the onslaught and echoed against the bowl of the toilet…

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Horrified, I covered my head with the smelly linen and tried to ignore the clamor. It went on for 30 minutes or so and when he returned to bed, I fiercely pretended that I was indeed asleep.

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When I left the next day, I vowed I would not be put off by the post-coital events of the night before. After all, they were simply bodily functions that were (fearfully) normal. These were some things that could be changed at a later date when we were more comfortable with each other. For instance, I could send him outside into a bush where he could dig a hole and happily continue his business.

However, after this encounter, Jebediah continued in his strange and aloof way and after another “k”, I figured that we had run our course now. When I didn’t hear from him in almost a month, I figured it was time to move on.

I can’t remember exactly when or how long after our first night together, but some time must have passed. It was winter, that much I am certain of, and I had been dating a guy I had been quite fond of only to find out via Facebook that the heinous creature had another girlfriend. Naturally, I called upon the assistance of my cousin and we went out to drink my sorrows away. In my drunken haze, I was reckless and no longer hurt, so I began messaging Jebediah. I do not remember what my drunk persona said to that boy, but that bitch has my back (sometimes). When we returned to my apartment that evening that was currently occupied by 3 other women, Jebediah came over.

As my room was a right mess, I was hastily trying to prove I didn’t live like a pig when the doorbell rang. One of my most sarcastic friends at the time answered the door and to my mortification she told him, “Another one for Ash? Hang on, I’ll get her. Ash! Another one here for you!”

Jebediah spent the night and most of the next day with me. I saw him again the next night. And gradually we became almost a regular occurrence. It was nice and I enjoyed our nights together. During the day we would mostly message each other, sometimes flirty and sometimes playfully argumentative.

I was feeling bold one night that I was supposed to visit him. We had spoken at some length about turn ons and fantasies so I opted to indulge in one of his.

I had a black coat that covered the tops of my thighs so I wore that and nothing else other than a pair of black heels. In winter.

Freezing, I was driving to his apartment when he called me and asked me to pick up some McFlurries for us. Sure, why the fuck not?

Well I sure as hell could not go into MacDonald’s dressed like that so I went through the drivethru only to receive knowing looks from the ladies serving me as the tops of my very naked thighs were exposed. God.

Perhaps I was misinformed and men don’t actually like girls who show up to their apartment wearing nothing but a black coat and bearing ice cream as gifts, but Jebediah did not invite me over again after that evening. When he turned aloof and cold this time, so did I. I grew tired of the game he played and eventually I lost contact with him altogether until out of the blue, last August, he sent out a tentative message to establish contact with me again. Maybe the smell of freshly jilted and broken engagement oozed in the subconscious of all that knew me once and now, but I did not take kindly to the gesture.

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I learnt a lot from this relationship- douchebags come in many shapes and sizes. Girls, don’t let an articulate geek misinform you of his actual intentions. When it came straight down to it, Jebediah was looking for a serious relationship but not with a girl like me. I was his back up, his hook up for whenever he felt lonely, horny, depressed… I was his emotional security net. It is an easy thing to be and it is even easier to use someone for those exact purposes, but it is cruel.

You’re feeling lonely? Deal with it. Get a plant or a pet rock.

You’re feeling down? Join the club! Seriously, sort that shit out though in a healthy way.

Your self-esteem is dragging on the floor and you need uplifting? Go to gym, brush your teeth and shower, get your mother to tell you what a handsome boy you are.

What you should absolutely NOT do? Use another person for a quick emotional fuckfest fix.

Self awareness, folks. The rule applies to all: don’t be a fucking asshole. #ashrants

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Harry #2

“I miss my monkey.”

Clearly all the Puka Puka’s had gone to my head because I’m sure I had just heard Harry #2 say that he missed HIS monkey. I refrained from blurting the first thing that entered my mind (WHAT THE ACTUAL FUCK) and tried to contain the incredulous emotions from my face.

I failed.

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I was not subtle it seemed. I do struggle to contain my utter bafflement, disdain, ‘WTF’ expressions from my countenance even though I will do my best not to actively voice just how confounded a person can make me. Harry #2 caught my expression immediately though and promptly whipped out his phone and brandished a rather recent picture of a small grey monkey on his shoulder… equipped with a little diaper as well.

Well, fuck. “I had to give him up,” Harry #2 explained. “I miss him. I could not travel and leave him behind, it would be cruel.”

Wasn’t it cruel to have him in the first place? I’m sure the poor creature would prefer not to be contained to a small house by a lead and a fucking diaper. I didn’t say anything, I knew it was quite customary over here for people to have wild and exotic animals as pets. Besides, I was very attracted to Harry #2 and up till that moment he had seemed possibly like the most normal person I had ever dated.

I was struggling to find any fault. He was an IT technician… I think. It was something technical, something difficult to remember… like whatever Chandler’s job was in ‘Friends’. Anyway, he was also very intelligent and well-read with a great sense of humour. Sitting at the cocktail lounge I had chosen for us to meet, I felt decidedly sophisticated and mature. He was dressed superbly in a crisp white business shirt and formal trousers, he smelled Godly (there is just something about a man who smells like you could ravish him on the spot), and his shoes were freshly polished. He looked dark and weirdly handsome and rugged, unshaven (which is normal considering where I live now) and very tall. He bordered on skinny which I did not mind. Despite what my previous blog posts have expounded on, I do not particularly care about height or body type or any of that, but somehow my most intense experiences have revolved around men who frequented the gym. Ok well not that many- just two or three.

I was attracted more to his personality than anything else. I said weirdly handsome before because I don’t think he fit into the conventional standards of handsome. I found him pleasing but he did look a bit odd at times. Nevertheless, as we sat together in the cosy bar sipping cocktails and talking books and philosophy and life, I felt supremely sophisticated and the classy lady.

Until my cover was blown.

“It’s good to see you again, Miss Ashleigh,” the young bartender said amicably as he brought me my regular cocktail (a blasted thing called a Potted Parrot adorned with a garish bird to boot). He looked at the man sitting next to me. “I am sad to see that it did not work out with the other guy.”

This particular establishment had become my go-to when I wanted to meet someone for the first time. I hadn’t met many men here though, I believe there was one other who introduced me to the place before Harry #2. Anyway, I liked it so much I kept coming back. Guess I would have to shake things up a little bit now…

Luckily, Harry #2 didn’t seem to catch on or he chose not to comment on it.

We spoke for what seemed like hours and I didn’t let the fact that he had evidently kept a monkey as a pet get to me too much. When our drinks dwindled away, I honestly didn’t want the evening to end. He invited me over, I accepted, and we shared a cab to the hotel apartments where he was staying.

Sex wasn’t supposed to happen, it wasn’t the goal of my evening, but it did and it was good and I do not regret it though at the time I acted like I did. After the deed was done I collected my clothes and bag, feeling ashamed of myself, and got in the next cab back to my apartment. Harry #2 wanted me to stay… he asked several times if I would, but I brushed it off casually, attempting to keep cool and calm and collected.

I suppose I am unused to one night stands that extend beyond the “one night” but Harry #2 asked to see me again and I complied. He brought dinner and drinks to my apartment and after eating and fucking I asked him to leave. Who was this person, asking sophisticated lovers to exit her bed?? Damned if I know.

Maybe the universe was building up to a terrifying climax that makes me cringe even to this day.

The next week I did spend the night at Harry #2’s hotel apartment. It was a week night and I had to arise an entire hour earlier than him (cursed profession, that of an educator), which didn’t seem to be a problem. Naked as the day I was born under the covers, I pulled them back to get out of bed as something caught my eye.

My heart stopped beating in my chest.

It was small, but there nonetheless, and if Harry #2 chose to throw himself out of bed and mess the covers, he would have seen it too.

A small, obvious spot of blood was on the white sheets, a clear indication that my uterus was laughing at me and boycotting any attempts at a normal relationship with a nice man.

I was horrified. And I got back into bed and pulled the covers tightly above me so that the offending spot was invisible.

I grew up in a family that just did not discuss these sort of things openly, anything to do with sex, monthly cycles and bodily fluids was hush hush and almost scandalous. I am more open about them now but it has taken some time to navigate around the feelings of discomfort each time they are mentioned.

So when this unspeakable ordeal occurred in the fancy hotel apartment on the first night we spent together, I wanted to die.

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I lay there, mortified to my very core, until Harry #2 woke up for work and asked why I wasn’t up yet. “Oh, I er… decided not to go to work today,” I responded quickly. “Feeling a bit sick.” Lies, lies, lies!

How pathetic was I that I let a tiny drop of blood on a white sheet stop me from going to work? OK, well I hated my job at the time so it was an easy enough decision but c’mon… Well, I doubt Harry #2 ever found out about it because as soon as he left I stripped the bed and disposed of the evidence before housekeeping entered to finish the rest.

We saw each other on and off for about 2 months. I did like him but I figure there was no real connection between us, just some good sex and conversation. Harry #2 was very laid back throughout our brief courtship and maybe if I had adopted a similar approach we would have developed into something more serious. I struggled with the fact that we did not have a label, that there was no sense of commitment and it was implied that I was free to do whatever I wanted. It left me edgy and when I spoke to him about it, he asked me what I wanted.

“A relationship,” I told him directly.

“Then let’s have a relationship,” he replied as he packed his suitcase on the other side of the room for a two week business trip to Lebanon.

“It’s that simple?”

“Yes, why not?”

I shrugged, feeling uneasy. His phone went off from beside me on the bed and he asked me to pass it to him. As I did, I caught sight of the message on screen. I’m not a snoop, I have never found the need to search through another person’s phone before, but that message quickly eradicated any notion of a relationship with Harry #2.

Someone named Amy had written: “I really want to see you again.”

Instead of letting the issue fester and gnaw away at my thoughts, I asked him directly about it and received an indirect response.

“Sometimes it is possible to misinterpret what we read,” Harry #2 said when I asked him about Amy and whether he was going to see her again.

Very inconclusive.

For some reason I wasn’t hurt. I shrugged it off and contemplated absentmindedly what I should do about the matter, but the thought came and went like a pesky fly that I had to keep swatting away. Eventually I did end the relationship with an obscure and cowardly Whatsapp message that read something along the lines of: “I don’t feel very relationshippy. Sorry.”

I never heard from Harry #2 again. I did however provide him with a very loquacious drunken Whatsapp essay after one too many bottles (yes, bottles) of Prosecco in which I regaled him of all the deep dark musings of my broke and twisted mind. How I wish I had kept that bit of prose but, perhaps wisely, I deleted the evidence off my phone and Harry #2 blocked my drunk ass on Whatsapp.

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Harry #1

I have had a guy ask me to lick his nipple. I have had a guy ask me to stick a finger in his pink (I assure you, I did not indulge this request). I have had a guy ask me to choke him.

Look, to each his own I suppose but I am a pretty normal girl.

There is nothing really that would surprise me anymore and although there was nothing extremely perverted about Harry #1, I have this lingering sense that he was just simply weird. I’ve labelled him Harry #1 because, as you can safely assume, there were two men of the same names that I happened to ‘date’ relatively close to one another.

Anywaaaaay.

Harry #1 and I met on Tinder. I had been in my new country for about 2 months and already I was a dismal dating disaster. I had met only one guy so far and it had veered horribly off course (not that I could blame him though- he was and is very young and deeply complex- more on this surprising development later). I was a bit tentative when it came to this one… he was a weight-lifter who had competed in several professional competitions or some such (SERIOUSLY MY TRACK RECORD RUNS LIKE THE WHO’S WHO OF GYMBAG DOUCHERY!).

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OK, so maybe I have a weak spot for a finely corrugated abdomen and biceps the size small bowling balls. Harry #1 was half American and half Arab, not so tall as he was wide, swarthy skin, thick wavy hair- the boy damn well cleaned up well, I say. There wasn’t a speck of hair on his body, too. I bet if he greased up you could slide right off him like an amusement park ride…

He checked off the boxes relatively quickly- good looking, engineer, educated, English proficient and he was in the market for a serious girlfriend. Yes, folks. Harry #1 looked good on paper.

On paper.

He collected me from my apartment in his very posh and expensive car and whisked me off for dinner and drinks at a nice restaurant about 30 minutes off-island. Jesus, the man could eat. Without preamble, he ordered for himself the biggest cheeseburger on the menu, a starter portion of cheese fries and chicken wings followed by the chocolate brownie dessert and the plate sized double chocolate chip cookie smeared with cream and yet more ice cream. He consumed it all like a hoover.

He was sweet though albeit a bit goofy. I couldn’t quite get used to his sense of humor… it was almost under-developed. Quite childish. I felt like he was on the verge of telling me a knock-knock joke half of the time, and he would giggle (yes, giggle) at slapstick trip ups and farts.

However, it was a first date and so far it wasn’t all bad. He did not let me pay for anything and drove me back home. We proceeded to kiss in his car for a spell and I knew by the way that he moved his lips that he was experienced… the boy knew how to kiss. Warning maybe?

Anyway, I did not take Harry #1 upstairs (Hurrah! Gone was the sluttish, misbegotten ways of my youth! I could refrain for a whole first date without pouncing on him. Such willpower…) and I was mildly surprised when he called and asked to spend some time with me that weekend. At this point in my transition to a new country and a new apartment, I was still living in some unfurnished hovel. My recent pay cheque had a nice little back pay that I quickly spent on some IKEA furniture. Well, Harry #1 had his uses in the end….

[Quick IKEA side rant- What kind of fucking company lets people assembly their own fucking furniture? Jesus Christ. I am already giving you my money, just fucking deliver the shit fully assembled to my door, you twat monkeys! Is this a foreign concept to you, well-off European country?? I could totes understand the need to assemble one’s own furniture if I fucking collected the wood for my fucking bed from the fucking tree in the BARBARIC JUNGLE I was dwelling in!]

So Harry #1 helped me assemble my bookshelf and subsequently a friend’s bench. I learned a particular thing about him during this procedure- he had no idea what to do with a hammer. Or how to follow instructions. Or anything remotely to do with assembling something (engineer?). His fancy car, his high paying job, his lifestyle- these were all entitlements and he unknowing acted like they were too. It became abundantly obvious to me that this was a man who would not be able to cope should he have to one day fend for himself.

It was very off-putting.

So I fucked him.

What made the sex so good was that despite the fact that Harry #1 didn’t quite know how wield a hammer or tie his shoelaces without the assistance of a hefty entitlement or a servant, in the bedroom he was a beast. He took control. He lasted an acceptable amount of time. He balanced the right amount of sexy aggressiveness in his voice when he was aroused, a startling and welcoming contrast to the soft pansy-like quality otherwise. He finished (a bit too loudly).

And then he farted.

And then he giggled.

And I despaired.

Was I inhabiting some other worldly dimension where this was acceptable bedroom behaviour?

And it got weirder.

He gave me a live, naked demonstration of how his mother would whip his ass if he had done something she didn’t like.

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Yeah… hashtag: GET THE FUCK OUT.

I blocked him soon after that, and then one night drunkenly unblocked him. He would message me occasionally and harp on about how broken he was over his ex-girlfriend or some such shit but this was one guy I was happy to not care about at all. So in conclusion, I don’t miss or yearn for Harry #1 in the slightest but his brief sojourn in the chasm of my life was weird and profoundly… well, weird.

I wish I could make this stuff up.

Introduction & Warning

Recently, I made an epic life choice and returned once more to the single market, which, as it so happens, teams with desperate, clingy and downright strange individuals of both sexes. I was abhorrently new to this entire ordeal, having been in two consecutive long-term relationships for nearly eight years and so downright serious about both of them I never spared a thought to what it might be like to be “in the game” again.

Well, it is not for the faint-hearted, and if I wasn’t sure of who I am and what I’ve become, I don’t think I would have lasted as long as I have. I think it is all too easy to “settle” for someone who is not quite your fit rather than grit your teeth and roll with the punches of being alone, a problem that is expounded by our insatiable desire to devour the media’s rather warped portrayal on both love and relationships. Another side to this which also brings about countless problems on the dating scale is body image- something which I do not have, at all.

I can only aim to make my accounts of what I’ve experienced as truthful (and humorous) as possible. As such, I intend to be offensive, cynical and outright cantankerous at times. Oh, and sex. There will be a lot of analysis of this because, well, isn’t that what it’s all about? But don’t worry, those who have contributed to my findings will remain anonymous and those that know me (family, friends…?), well… I’m going to be honest here and say I am going to use words like “fuck”, “cock”, and “lady clam” probably as often as I like, so read at your own discretion. Hey, nobody’s forcing you, right?

So, in summation to the start of this blog, these are my personal experiences and yes, unsurprisingly I am still single and, you will no doubt find, emotionally fucked.

Online Dating

I’m not sure how one is supposed to meet a decent bachelor in today’s age. I certainly wouldn’t consider anything I picked up at the local pub worth anything marginally serious except for an hour long session of bumping uglies before booting him out so I could enjoy the comfort of my double bed to myself (who am I kidding here? A big bed SUCKS without something furry and manly to cuddle, albeit you’d have to want it to be in there with you- which is what it all comes down to, doesn’t it?).

I was quick to hop onto the online dating bandwagon- everyone was doing it! My sister and my two cousins had all met their SO’s online and were now living out their happily-ever-afters, surely the same would happen to me? The path to self-discovery, I was soon to discover, is laced with toothlessness, weird smells, and small appendages.

I made my profile, chose a few select photos that really did capture my good sides, and I was sure to be as honest as I could be, including things like; “I’m overweight and clumsy, an outright mess, I swear like a fishwife etc,” because it just didn’t seem right that here I was putting myself out there in hopes of finding my own prince charming when he should damn right know what sort of mess he would welcome into his life. Well, I sort of (naively) assumed that the same courtesy would be bestowed upon myself. Alas, how wrong I was soon to be proven.

To date, I have compiled these criteria that have to be met before I will consider meeting a boy from an online dating site:

1.       A boy who isn’t giving me a toothy grin in his profile picture probably has a poor attitude towards basic oral hygiene. Avoid at all costs.

 2.       Deduct two inches from any stated height (this isn’t vitally important as I dated a boy who was brutally honest about himself and sits a whole inch shorter than me. However, it is always a shock when one of these bright-eyed lads states that he is a whopping 6’4” and upon meeting he stands an entire foot shorter than yourself, which leads me to believe that they are seriously deluded or merely unawares about the workings of the foot and inches measurement system, both of which are entirely plausible).

 3.       No matter how pretty, boys who take selfies of themselves in bathroom mirrors with their shirts off are not looking for anything more serious than a quick fuck. Also, chances are you will get an unflattering picture of their penis the moment numbers are exchanged.

 4.       Boys who write like this: Hy, hw u? I lyk ur pp. No. Jesus, no. Some basic grasp of foundational literacy is compulsory. Ah, wait. I used punctuation marks. Alright, fine. I may have given that guy a chance as he displayed the correct usage of both the comma and question mark, but you get the idea.

 5.       Boys who write in the “What are you looking for” section of their profile: a girl who looks after herself– don’t give two shits about how smart, successful or independent you are. They want a looker.

Now that that’s all out of the way, I’ll begin with my first official “date”.