November 27th, 2005



Why do people keep writing to Enrique at my e-mail address? Don't they know how much it pains me to be reminded of his leaving, even all these years later? And what does it mean that he'd sent so many inquiries to Web sites about Viagra and Cialas? Did he have a problem with our sex life? Was it unsatisfying? And then there's this Hoodia product he keeps getting messages about; he apparently placed some orders before he left. Did he have an issue with my weight? Is that why he disappeared and never called again? He never said a word about it while we were together, but I get his e-mail now and the question plagues me, keeping me up late at night, at 2:33 a.m., pondering the meaning of life and Rodney's lips. Which isn't directly related, but these thoughts do occur. And I blame Enrique, who apparently also went by the name "Mario" and "Shawn" and carried on clandestine love affairs with available singles in his area, a whole secret life I never knew about.

Life is pain. Life is tragedy and a dwindling pile of cookies and the plaintive, distant cries of a stranger floating to you through an open window late at night--"Rondo! Man! Where the fuck you goin'? What're you at? I gotta piss, man. C'mon."

Thank god I have FreeCell and the DSM-IV and Sarah McLachlan to see me through the dark times like this. And by dark I mean "2:41 a.m." Because I am over Enrique. He can keep the $18,000 he owes me for his liposuction surgery. I wouldn't take him back now even if he came crawling up to my window in the small hours and drove his fist through the glass and then fell inside, bloody and stupid, and made a mess on my floor. Sure, okay, I did that *one* time, but he was reciting T.S. Eliot. It seemed charming then.

But now it's time to sleep. For as the great John Ashbery says, "Thus it was the laborious leopard pirated more than one freedom hymn. / Kettle boils, not urgent."

Kettle boils...not urgent. So very very true for us all.

you know...

There is the pain of badfic, and then there is the different, special pain of good fic. The pain of stories so good--so FREAKING BRILLIANT--that you wonder why you started re-reading them when you were trying to write something yourself, because you will never even remotely measure up and clearly you should stop trying and never write again, just give up and become a lion tamer. And by "you" I mean "me" and of course by "lion tamer" I mean "chartered accountant." Money is the answer. Money enough to buy all the brilliant writers and stable them and ride them like ponies!


Except less pornographically.

I'll console myself by staring at David Hewlett's mouth.

vocational tips on a career in lion taming
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notes toward the worst sex ever

I get a lot of cracked story ideas that I don't follow through on. I'll often cut my losses, jot those thoughts in LJ, and move on. I may still write this though. I'm not sure yet. I've been restless. When I get like this, I just want to fling stuff away in flaky frustrated avoidance. And then I usually end up watching Mystery Science Theater.

the story I might write about the very bad sex had by john and rodney

It wasn't the aftermath of close calls when their bodies were shaking with life, but the slack times between missions when they got bored.

So one day...

John is in Rodney's room, eyes nearly shut, endearingly hungry as he bangs away at Rodney, who is bent over his desk, pants down, both hands braced.

John, breathlessly: "Want me to give you a hand?"

Rodney, sharp and intense, and distracted as if focused on something that might or might not be the sex they're having: "Shut up!"

John: *keeps twist-banging away, groaning as he gets closer*

Rodney: "Right there, no, *there*--"

John: "Damn, you're pushy."

Rodney: "Stop! This isn't working for me."

John, high-pitched, close to pain at the thought of stopping: "Excuse me?"

Rodney makes him pull out, peels the condom off, kneels and sucks him off fast, focusing on the head. John shouts when he comes.

After he's finished, Rodney gets up, does up his pants, grimacing, adjusting himself. John is like, wtf? Rodney, frowny, says he always comes later, alone. He replays the sex, but gets himself off. Why? Because no one else knows how to do it the way he likes it. John gapes and maybe laughs at this but after wrangling is persuaded to give up on the idea. Shakes his head in bemusement and leaves.

Later, John lies on his bed, legs crossed at the ankles with his boots still on, one arm behind his head, the other resting on his belly, and does his own mental replay of events as he stares at the ceiling. Rodney is the worst lay ever, he thinks, marveling: selfish, self-absorbed, everything impatiently hastened along, over with fast. The food here is terrible, and the portions are too small.

John goes back for more.

John: "Have you ever thought of, I don't know, taking off your clothes to have sex?"

Rodney: *aghast at the idea*

Another time, John: "Don't you ever want to do more than this?"

"Like what?"

"I don't know...kiss?"

Rodney, confused: "I don't understand. Was this supposed to be a romance? You didn't say this was a romance. You said 'helping each other out.'"

"It's not a *romance*, but--"

"You're getting off, I'm getting off. I'm just doing it on my own timetable. We're both happy, right? What's the big deal?"

One night John sneaks in while Rodney is sleeping and gently restrains his hands, and Rodney wakes up all muzzy and like, hello, wtf? John sits on him and rubs his back seductively. "That's, that's rub rape!" Rodney fumes in outrage. John sweet-talks him into grumbling sufferance, but when he tries to go down on him from the back, maybe to rim him into submission, Rodney keeps his legs closed and tries to buck him off.

"You're a really difficult lay," John complains in his reedy, whiniest voice, exhausted already. He's sweaty and rumpled and Rodney is sweaty and the sheets are rumpled, and John's beginning to realize that there's no likely pay-off here.

"Yes! Yes, I am. So you should stop now. Go away and let me sleep. I need to fix--*insert blah blah blah of techno babble here*--in the morning."

Or he manages to get down there and rim Rodney, and make Rodney fuck his hand, and for a while it seems like it's going well, and then Rodney seizes up and gives a long porny groan and sighs. "That was great. Really great. Untie me, please."

"You don't expect me to believe you *came*, do you? Rodney, that was *awful*. That was the worst faked orgasm *ever*. Plus, you're a *man*. You think I can't tell?"

"Look, I *told* you. I only come by myself. I should have said something before we started this, and I apologize. If you want to stop--" Falters a bit, makes brave face, lifts chin. "I'll understand of course."

John is all, hmmfff, and says maybe that's for the best, but sooner or later he turns up again, horny and restive. At some point he suggests, maybe not for the first time, that Rodney just jerk off in front of him. "It could be fun."

Rodney resists. After a while he reveals a bit more: that he doesn't like people to see him when he's all caught up in what he's feeling. He feels self-conscious. He says he had bad and traumatizing early experiences of this kind, which John secretly imagines as perfectly ordinary experiences that Rodney blew up to outsized proportions in his mind. But at this point so late in his life, Rodney assures him, it's a thing, a habit. Too late to change.

And then something else, something else....