I was not made for this…

… freezing cold weather!!

It’s SO cold. And it’s only September. This doesn’t seem right at all.

I’m sitting here in my living room, legs crossed under me, trying to steal my own warmth for my poor feet, and even the Snuggie that I just received from my mum (She won it in a Tombola after I’d been eyeing it up all day – she offered it to the cats first but when they didn’t want it she said I could have it. She may be joking. Or she may not.) isn’t enough to keep me warm! Damn.

I’ve been watching a TV show set in Maine lately and it looks so beautiful that it’s making me want to move there. I am ignoring one little fact: if I can’t handle THIS weather, I don’t think I’d last long in Maine. I’d have just enough time to appreciate the beauty before I froze into a girl-shaped popsicle.

On the plus side I did buy some dinosaur soap the other day. That is cheering me up immensely. I guess people may not know what dinosaur soap is.

It’s this:

I know this is a terrible photo. Sorry. And yes that is my new Snuggie as the backdrop.

I took that just now on my webcam. It looks ever so much better in real life. It looks awesome. My photography teacher would be rocking back and forth in shame if she could see this.

Anyway. It occurred to me that I should credit this. I bought it at a local craft fair but this is the Ebay store belonging to his maker: http://stores.ebay.co.uk/soaps-favours

She only had goldfish ones when I looked but they were pretty cool too. She also sells lingerie… if you wanted to know that. I haven’t used my soap yet but for looks alone: DUDE!

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Keep going!

I have every intention of maintaining this blog in a nice regular way. And yet today I find myself faced with total apathy and no motivation whatsoever.

I really struggle with motivation. Tomorrow I’m supposed to help at the Fresher’s Fair with the fencing stall. I really don’t feel like going. The fact that we’ve just been told to meet at 9 am with no further instruction isn’t helping. My schedule lately has been more ‘sleep from 4am til 1pm’ which isn’t good but there we go.

Also if it’s going on all day surely we don’t need 20 people to rock up at 9? There won’t be enough for everyone to do. Would shift work not be better? I suppose I should be saying this to them but there’s already enough cooks wading around in that broth without me jumping in.

I’d like to justify my apathy partly by saying I do actually have a cold and feel pretty rough. My limbs feel all weak and I feel a bit spacey. Also I’m too damn introspective. I suppose I wouldn’t be doing this blog if I weren’t. Eesh.

It’s not like I’ve calmed down

So. Christmas meal: all is fine. Then, once again, no contact with B for ages.

Six months later and I was about to graduate. He congratulated me online, I thanked him and conversation occurred. I suppose I should have handled this better. I don’t know. I struggle with stuff like this; I guess I just want to be friendly and end up being a weirdo instead. Probably.

And so he asked me out again. To the cinema this time. And I didn’t know what to say. I stalled for a bit… and then I said yes. My reasons are many fold and I’m not that proud of all of them but here goes:

1. If we go on a date at least I’ve tried that; he can’t keep asking me with the justification of ‘You haven’t tried it, how do you know you won’t like it?’
2. My housemate was not remotely attracted to her boyfriend but since they were kind of friends she agreed to a date. Soon her opinion had completely changed and now (one and a half years later) they are an awesome couple. So sometimes you should give people a chance.
3. I’m young and single and have been for a while (like really, a while) now and I feel that I should be doing this stuff.
4. I have a… well… a friends with benefits situation going on (which is a vast other story and so unlike me) and he kissed a girl at a nightclub which of course is fine because we’re very straightforward and honest with each other and we’ve agreed we’re just having fun occasionally as two consenting good friends. But if he can do that I kinda want to do stuff too.

Number 4 isn’t great, I know. Some might call it a wee bit childish but there it is. I like to think the others are ok… I hope.

So I feel terrible. Like I’m not giving this a proper chance. I want to because he’s nice and you never know… except a little part of me thinks I do know and it also thinks that I don’t really, really want to give this a real chance. Shut up little part (snigger), shut up!

In which I panic

So I have a date tomorrow. Oh boy.

I suppose pre-date anxiety is normal. What may not be so normal is this feeling of absolute dread. And I mean no offence to my datee; by all accounts he seems to be a very nice guy. This is all me.

To understand the whole story I have to take you back to November last year… I’d recently been to see Alice Cooper’s Hallowe’en show and had loved the feeling I’d had of being among ‘my own people’. I belonged for once.

And so I’d developed an urge to get more involved at uni – to try and make more friends. Being in a state of Alice, the Rock Society was the first thing that stood out. Giving myself a stern ‘Look here, what would Jagger do?’ I grabbed hold of all my available courage and went to meet them at a local bar.

I’d checked them out on Facebook and identified a couple of potentially cute guys (that’s just what I do) so I was looking forward to seeing if there were any ‘nice young men’ as my mother would call them. Over that evening I talked to some great people – including one of the cute guys from Facebook. While chatting with one of his friends I learned that both also attended the uni fencing group – I love fencing and decided to sign up immediately (tangentially; his friend took a shine to me and I awkwardly repelled him for a while (see below), cute guy barely turned up but I went on to join the varsity fencing team which is once more: a story for another day).

Back on track. I continued to attend and one night I chatted to a guy who we’ll call B. I’d spoken to a lot of people, mainly about music. He was another nice person who I had a good conversation with – and that was all.

He added me on Facebook. He talked to me on Facebook. He followed this with an invitation to ‘do something over the weekend’. I had not seen this coming (I know, I know) and panicked. Unfortunately so did Facebook: it crashed. For hours. It looked like I was completely ignoring his message: full radio silence. Urgh.

I later sent him an apologetic message and mentioned how I wouldn’t have been able to do anything anyway as I had had a very busy weekend.

I didn’t see or hear from him again until the RockSoc Christmas meal where he sat one seat away from me. I apologised once more and (glad to see a familiar face) we chatted a bit through the meal. That night ended in me being the only one not drunk (having come straight from my parents’ I’d had to drive) and having cute guy’s friend walk me to my car. C G Friend had also been talking to me a lot and I was bit nervous about whether he’d try to make a move or something (although not as nervous as I was about being mugged on a long walk through a dodgy area. He was a big, tough guy and I was very grateful to him for offering to walk me). So I lunged at him and hugged him with my face turned away as a preventative measure. Yeah.

As for B; it seemed like awkwardness had been averted and we were, not friends, but maybe on track to be. All seemed ok…
To be continued (as this was getting insanely long. I’d be crap on Twitter.)

Making Contact

I am really bad with physical contact. Really, really bad.
I had cause to reflect upon this recently, you see, for every time I am a wee bit tipsy I lose this inhibition of mine and it’s a right old tactility-fest. I then stagger around enthusiastically patting my friends while exclaiming ‘I have to do this now; it’s the only time I know what human contact is like!’

Of course that’s not strictly true. There are three other times when contact is ok:

1. Hugging my mum. I have no problem with this at all. Also includes: leaning my head on her when she’s next to me on a sofa and occasionally linking arms.
2. Hugging my grandma. Slightly more awkward (with a lot more bending down, she’s a short lady) but still perfectly ok.
3. In… I feel I should put this delicately as it’s sharing a list with family and that’s already weirding me out to an extent where I may delete this if it reads oddly… in a romantic context (and in a romantic context if you know what I mean and I think you do). With someone I’m comfortable with. I mean if we’ve all acknowledged that sex is on the table then all systems go. And we’re not necessarily literally having sex on a table. Wherever it’s happening.

And you see, that entirely does not include things such as first dates or men in clubs or men I’ve just been talking to for a bit. Not that I don’t ever want any contact, just that I am stating the fact: it will be awkward. Just know that.

My first proper kiss was an excruciatingly awkward moment. Let me take you back, back…

Christmas. A few years ago. I was part of a theatre group; we took acting classes together. There was a Theatre Party. Everyone was going. Even me with a fever, a blocked nose and a slightly woozy feeling in my head. I had to go: the guy I liked was going to be there (and there’s a long, long story for another day: The Guy I Liked: AKA My First Boyfriend).

Throughout the evening we talked, we danced, we looked superb. The party ended early (the average age of the theatre crew was definitely hitting the 60s) and the younger people decided to carrying on partying elsewhere. On the way to a local bar one of my friends saved the life of a drunkard (again: another time).

The bar was crap and full of raucous, annoying people. I panicked about the guy and didn’t even know if I actually liked him. I continued to feel ill. My friends told me they were sure he was going to try to kiss me. I wasn’t sure I wanted him to.

Eventually people began to leave. We waited for taxis. And of course, all at once it was just me and him. My taxi arrived. I thrust a Christmas present at him (great timing), he leaned over… and I thought WHY NOT SAY SOME MORE WORDS. So I did. And he got nothing but tooth. ‘Oh! Sorry… I was… I mean you might get my cold anyway!’ I squeaked.

He replied that he didn’t care. He tried again. I managed this time to stop speaking mid-sentence, I believe I attempted to kiss him back but in reality I probably just stood there like a rubber fish. I then went ‘Ahahaaa, ok, hah there’s my taxi – BYE!’

Yeah.

What Not To Do

Basically, I should never go bowling. That’s what I learnt last night. And apparently I’m a slow learner because it took a lot of ‘lessons’ to get that fact to stick:

1. London. Two years ago. Group of friends… friends because we’d all washed up on the tide of that unknown city and clung to each other with the manic eagerness of people who met in the first week of uni and didn’t know anyone.
     We thought it’d be fun, a different thing to do in the day. Instead it was supremely awkward. Suddenly no one had anything to say to each other. I have a photo from that day: S and I are sitting on the bench, grinning away. You can see the desperation in my eyes.

2. Despite that, D enjoyed bowling – so much that she decided to do it for her birthday. She invited M and I plus a group of her other friends… none of whom we knew and none of whom wanted to talk to us. Me being me, I clammed up like a freakin’ oyster. There was one boy who talked to us but that was pretty much just him repeatedly offering us mead from his hip flask. Nice of him though.
     Later that evening I began to wish I’d taken him up on that offer; I began to wish I’d knocked back an entire bottle. You see, at the time D was in a rather fraught on/off relationship with a girl in her friendship group who couldn’t be there that night.
     The problem began when someone realised that D had a slight crush on M. Just a harmless, fantasy crush – M was both straight and taken, after all.
The friends didn’t know that. They thought M was trying to get D to cheat on her girlfriend with her. The atmosphere became rather frosty. They began to view me with suspicion too. Whispered conversations began. The group fragmented. I felt extremely awkward…

3. Amazingly, stupidly, bizarrely: we went again. By then D had broken up with her girlfriend but contained to flirt with M.
     It started well; we had a chat and laugh, we played some pool. Then it became… oddly morose. D was mourning her relationship. M was feeling twitchy about the flirting. S was, oblivious, but as reticent as usual.
     Personally I wasn’t in the best of moods. My boyfriend (who I lived with) had been a bit down, a bit quiet for the last few days. For some reason I thought it was to do with me.
We hadn’t spoken that day so I thought I’d nip outside and phone him.
     Since then I reckon (hope) I’ve gained a bit more relationship wisdom (fervently hope). These days maybe I’d realise it was nothing to do with me; he was often a bit down for his own personal reasons. No quick phone call was going to jolly him out of that.
     But like I said, at time I thought maybe it was ‘us’. So I rang him. I remember how miserable he sounded as he told me it was just career-related. Somehow that wasn’t reassuring. I sensed something else and wished he would tell me rather than be moody. So I was not feeling tip-top. Just like everyone else…

4. I was visiting my hometown. My friends from high school had all finished uni (I did some other stuff for a couple of years) and they were back in town.
     Everyone says it’s the friends you make at uni that you stick with. In my case, it’s been my high school friends. I’ve known them for more than 10 years now and we’re really close. Back when this happened I’d been away for a year already and the closeness had all but disappeared.
     Plus, the group had mutated over the years: people left, people came. Including (and this would have been such a novelty to our school-age selves): boys. I didn’t really know the boys. The other girls were very close. I was not. Awkward clam attack and a rather lonely evening. Damn.

5. Sometime last November. I had transferred back to my home town for my last year of uni (a whole other story) and was sharing a house with an old friend I’d recently gotten back in touch with.
     We met up with the group for another friend’s birthday trip to the bowling alley. My housemate, C, had stopped seeing the rest of the group but, with my encouragement, she started coming to a couple of activities. This time though she refused to talk to anyone but me. The group left us to it. I lost the ability to think of any words that I could say to the others and a hideous segregation began. C then claimed to feel ill and (as she had driven us both) we headed home early. Damn bowling.

So last night… I really should have just said ‘no’.