From my brief university flirtation with sociology, I remember a concept of mental shortcutting. To survive the overwhelming task of human function in the world, we create a personal canon of truths, like, I like carrots, and I hate heights. We don’t have to re-evaluate at every ingestion how we feel about carrots. But every once in a while, I feel compelled to truth-check my truths. I recommended the National with rave reviews to three people over the course of a week, and realized I hadn’t listened to them in months. I put them on my ipod, listened, and confirmed they are indeed a fantastic band. Truth. Another truth in my library is ‘Brad is a good friend’. I accept this as a given, but, when I visited him in Portland this weekend, it was confirmed as solid fact. Truth.
We had a fantastic weekend exploring. We ate dinner at a sushi restaurant that was good but nothing special. We had greasy hangover breakfast at a neighbourhood diner, where the bacon was just right (and the tater tots and the chocolate milk, yes I ate a meal for 4 year olds). We had food trucks for hangover lunch (GF grilled cheese!). We killed time at a cute cafe, drinking loose-leaf tea, playing cribbage, and eating a sandwich (GF!). We got three (GF!) cupcakes from a bakery and rationed them as treats over the whole weekend. We shopped the farmer’s market, we saw a movie, we went climbing, we cooked a meal at home, we browsed Powell’s. I mean, the activity level of this weekend was above and beyond my usual lazy weekend. And of course we drank. Heavily. Two nights in a row. Let’s talk about that.
Friday night, what started out as tame ended in tumult, as a direct result of Brad ordering tequila shots. What a dumb idea. We were with his roommate and a group of his roommates’ friends. The boys were nice, the girls were cold. Two of the boys were flirtatious, and one of them smelled like h-eau-ven (heh heh). He was wearing a scent that was so familiar to me – someone I used to love must have worn that cologne, because I was all over it. I told him he smelled like home, and he responded by holding me close on the dance floor. It was nice.
Saturday night, we went out with roommate and a pair of brothers: a US Marine, and a seasonal salmon fisher. Talk about manly men. The younger of the two, who had just returned from a four-month stint on a sea vessel gutting salmon in Alaska, gravitated towards me as the drinking became more serious. He kissed me and proclaimed in astonishment at 40 minute intervals “you have a masters?!” I probably should have been offended, but he was like a puppy dog. It was nice.
What was particularly nice about both of these interactions is that I had zero emotional involvement. I had no illusions about calling the next day, or seeing them again, or caring about them in the least. It was largely even non-sexual for me. Just smells and warmth. I need more of this. Single until Christmas, with openings for dates, affection, and casual sex. It’s one of those periods in my life.