Tag Archives: mad men

Lying on the Couch

Written on 20 OCT 2019

Friends,

I’m lying on her couch.

She’s in the next room, her bedroom, lying in her bed.

Her bedroom is a private space -that’s what she told me the first day.

Our flirtations -nuzzling, hand-holding in the streets, cuddling on this couch- have grown bolder at deliberate, steady pace, but never in her room.

I like the slow, deliberate pace of things. The slow, deliberate way in which we are re-learning each other after years apart; the way we aren’t putting the cart of intimacy before the horse of connection. Violent delights of course have violent ends, and I don’t want to relive past mistakes which sprang from impetuousness and recklessness. I don’t think she does either.

No. This time I’m thinking more seriously. I sat with her today -all afternoon in fact because it was raining- while she watched her shows and fretted about how to arrange her living room for a party next week. I sat there, not quite sombre, but pensive, thinking to myself, “could I sit here with her every Sunday for the rest of my life?

Maybe. Maybe even probably.

But I’m cautious, at least I’m trying to be. I’m really looking at how I feel in the moment and seeing if the feelings that come to me are shaded by guilt for how I treated her in the past. I want to make sure that whatever I do is righteous in the moment, and not short-sightedly satisfying nostalgia for the warm, agape love she once showed me.

I kissed her today. I was really happy afterward. I was happy because she was happy of course, but I was also happy that I recognized the right time to do it: I was lying beside her on the living room floor and she was talking about something excitedly. Her eyes, always bright and wide as their default setting, were somehow brighter and wider, and the faded black accents on her off-white t-shirt seemed as bold and vibrant as the ebony keys on a piano against the ivory ones. It was a sign. I recognized it. I acted on it. It was perfection.

************************************

In the intervening years since I broke her heart she has learned to set boundaries; no men -no me– in her bed is but one. I respect it, I understand it. Still, it hurts my heart a little when, in the evenings, she has left our cuddling on the couch to go to her room. I have asked her to stay, but she has said no, and that’s honestly what I probably need from her.

Tonight though played out a little differently: anticipating the hurt of her leaving me here on the couch I didn’t get invested emotionally when she started making overtures toward going to bed. I pulled out my laptop and switched on Mad Men as she brushed her teeth and didn’t get up to say goodnight.

I laid there for a few minutes after she retired and then realized that this behaviour on my part was just the kind of passive-aggressive, ego-based game bordering on dishonesty that has gotten me into such bullshitty situations in the past.

I got up and knocked on her door. She said “come in” but I asked her to come out on account of her bedroom being a sacred space. I explained why I didn’t say goodnight to her (protecting my feelings) and how that wasn’t right, and for a moment I guess she thought I was asking to come in and invited me in. I declined reflexively because I was already in that headspace of letting her have her space, and re-explained that I wanted to say a proper goodnight. I hugged her and we shared another lovely kiss.

I couldn’t sleep after that and instead watched another episode of Mad Men.

Speaking of which: There’s a great episode of the show where Roger Sterling seduces his young ex-wife, Jane and they make love in the apartment he bought for her after their divorce. The next morning she is upset with him and crying because she had a place that was just hers and now it was contaminated by him- even though she wanted him in the moment.

I bore that scene in mind the last few days while here, and it was certainly in my mind when I closed my laptop and laid on the couch thinking how nice it would be to be curled up in bed with her. She had invited me in after all and there is a point in the evenings, in the darkness, where noone can see us breaking the rules we have set for ourselves.

But I haven’t been able to bring myself to knock on the door. That would be a critical dose of impetuousness at a time when substance needs greater exploration, as flash has been well-demonstrated.

So I’m lying here on the couch, being the strong one tonight because she can’t be. I want to go knock on the door in a short-term fulfilment kind of way, but I’m playing a longer game now, and I’m not yet convinced that me knocking on that door is the best long-term move. Put more superstitiously: I didn’t get signs and a flash of vibrant colours like I did just before I kissed her.

There might be something there that is righteous and well-intentioned, but right now -tonight- I couldn’t hear it over nostalgia for times past and the desire to no be alone.

There is a time to act and a time to observe. Now is the latter.

Best,
-Dre

 

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So Many Identities…

My Friends,
   Right off the bat I gotta say that leading a double-life is hard.  You might recall in a previous post (“Identity Crisis,” 21 march 2012) I discussed creating a new online identity using my actual name for the purposes of job-huntery.  The plan was not only to eschew all excesses of jackfoolery tomassery I indulge in as my rad internet self, Andre Guantanamo, but also to go to the opposite extreme and present myself to potential employers a ruthless, power-hungry opportunist all-too-ready to sell his own grandmother into prostitution for capital gain.  But alas, this endeavour proved to be too daunting; when I finally got around to making the actual profile (under my real name) I couldn’t bring myself to portray myself as the huge douche that the idea would have called for.  It is my name I would be besmirching after all…
   Then I had to add a bunch of people who were already friends with me on my original profile and they kept remarking about my “new profile” and “alter ego” on my wall.  If an employer saw this they would know something was amiss.
   Finally, I had to create a new email address for the account.  I then decided I wanted to standardize both FB accounts with gmail addresses instead of hotmail addresses cause “g” sounded slightly more professional than “hot,” so I created another gmail address for “Andre Guantanamo.”
   But since I mostly check my email on my phone during the day and its a pain in the ass to switch between two gmail accounts or two hotmail accounts I decided that one of my gmail accounts and one of my hotmail accounts would forward to a second hotmail account under my actual name which would allow me to rapidly check all my mail from my phone without re-entering passwords.
   As you can imagine I am rapidly losing track of which account is forwarding to which and which account I should be giving out as my “primary personal,” “primary business,” “secondary personal” and “secondary business.”
   This whole experience has taught me that leading a double-life is not for the faint of heart.  I have heard that a prudent man should set up a completely separate identity (email, name, business card, etc…) if he wants to successfully be adulterous.  I can’t see any vagina being worth the frustration of it all.
   Ironically, Ayn Rand, whom I had meant to quote extensively in my douchebag professional profile, had an interesting opinion on lies.  Her view was that lying is self-abdication; as soon as you lie you become the slave of the person you lied to.  All your efforts go toward maintaining the deception you have wrought.  I am feeling it now.  Its so tiresome having 2 lives.

   So instead I will have 1.5.  Let me explain: it occurred to me that while an employer may do a google search for my real name, they wouldn’t find Andre Guantanamo, I have seen to that.  However, what they do find does not have to be a Facebook profile.  Instead, I have been crafting a Linked-In profile.  Linked-In is optimized for business anyhow and its different enough from Facebook that it doesn’t constitute a double existence (its weird when FB suggests that you add your other profile as a friend because of all the friends you have in common).
   One sticking point is Twitter.  Andre Guantanamo does have a twitter account (@dreguan … follow me and I will show you truth you won’t be able to unsee) but my real self should also have a twitter account linked to my Linked-In account.  Due to twitter being much less encompassing of all aspects of a user’s life, I think this is a dual existence I can endure.
   And so ends the tale of what was to be the ultimate FB troll account.  I will close it in the next few days and if Facebook’s separation anxiety regarding closing accounts is as bad as I have heard (basically, you can never leave) I may have something else to write about in the next few days.
Stay Thirsty,
-Andre Guantanamo
 
   

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To Health…

My Friends,
   I have recently been watching a lot of the show Mad Men.  One of the things even a cursory viewing of the show will make clear is that ad men in the 1950s/60s liked them some liquor & tobacco.  I have to confess that all of the vices indulged in on the show make me want to pick up a glass of whiskey and my pipe and drink & smoke along with the characters.  The drinking is not so much of a problem (well it is for me cause I don’t have any liquor on-hand) but the smoking is; I have a pipe but if I want to smoke I must go outside.  I have to admit I am feeling nostalgic for a time before I was born when people could light up with impunity.  Now I have to worry about no-smoking regulations in public places, and the sensitive noses of my house-mates and my woman if I am at home.  Sure I could always go smoke outside, but its still winter out there and I’m not just looking to have a quick puff so I can get a nicotine fix.  Rather I am looking to puff my favourite tobacco blend (its called “Mark Twain” and its the shyyyit) and sip my new favourite rye (40 Creek) all while watch one of my new favourite shows.
   Unfortunately society has predictably gone from one retarded extreme to another.  We went from the days of excess (smoking permitted in hospitals) to the days of equal yet opposite excess (smoking banned even in bars and certain outdoor locations).  Why can’t we just collectively not be so fucking retarded and simply legislate in moderation?  The anti-tobacco lobby, which started as a health crusader, has now become an overbearing perversion of its original self, infringing on people’s freedoms to enjoy tobacco.  Everyone knows at this point that cigarettes are addictive and bad for your health, but its not like every smoker is a chain-smoking case of emphysema waiting to happen.  Some people (like me) just want to light up their pipe or cigar or every few weeks with a glass of something aged 12 years, and enjoy how the two flavours complement each other.  This is a simple, yet enriching experience which I believe few, if any in the anti-tobacco lobby have revelled in.
   As far as I’m concerned, we have gone too far and have marginalized a good portion of the population.  By demonizing their enjoyable pastime we have demonized them.  I don’t like it one bit.  Now if you’ll excuse I’m gonna go find something to smoke and drink.
Stay Thirsty,
-Andre Guantanamo

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46 Hours and Counting…

My Friends,
   Today has been kind of a whirlwind day and tomorrow promises more of the same.  Headed to the city (Toronto) today to procure a last item from MEC which they unfortunately did not carry.  But I made the most of my geographical circumstance and headed over to the Modrobes store near Queen and Bathurst to peruse their wares.  I ended up outfitting myself for just about my whole trip  while there.  I got some pants and shorts made from recycled water bottles which are comfortable enough but will be put to the test for durability.   What I am most enthused for is the eucalyptex shirts I got.

They pretty much make me look like this … but with a bigger bulge

They are supposed to perform like Under Armor without the smell, which is good because showers may be few and far between.  I’ve been wearing my new gear since I got home and started packing to get used to it, but mostly because the shirts fit me well; tight around the pecs and arms lol.
   In unrelated news, I hate facial hair.  Itchy as fuck!  In the same way one prepares for a vacation by developing a base tan, I am growing a base layer of facial hair in preparation for the unimpeded growth my whiskers will see over the next six months.  The goal is that I blend in better in some of the Mediterranean and Arab countries I will be going to; instead of looking like a tourist, I will look like a vagrant, but a more or less local one.  TMI Tidbit: the carpet will match the curtains XD
   I just finished watching the last episode of Entourage so I have officially tied up all the last strands of shows I have been viewing.  That, more than anything should tell you how ready I am to leave behind the comfort of home and start traipsing about.  However, my sister mentioned to me today (ps, I visited her in Toronto) that Mad Men is worth checking out so at least now I have a new show to watch come my return in the Spring.  
   Anyhow, gotta go endure enjoy last week’s Jersey Shore with my woman cause that’s what good boyfriends do.
Stay Thirsty
-Andre Guantanamo

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