Friday, September 23, 2011

Of All The Gin Joints In All The Towns In All The World

I ran into an ex boyfriend in Whelans last Saturday night. I hate drinking in Whelans for a multitude of reasons, one of them being that it's just the kind of place you might run into an ex boyfriend. I've only got two ex boyfriends, but they are both the sort you'd expect to find drinking there; square indie types called David (yes, both of them) who were always louder than they were funny.

It was David the First I ran into on Saturday night. I had seen him prairie dogging through a doorway a few minutes before he sauntered over, not to talk to me but to drape a proprietorial arm across my shoulders and ask the three men I was with for their permission to "borrow" me for ten minutes. He was met with blank stares and a hostile silence. How I love the three of them for that! “Five minutes?” he asked, still not acknowledging my presence other than with his request to appropriate my person temporarily, for reasons unspecified. His joke was wearing thin now, and his confidence waning. “Two minutes?” he said. I’d have said you could hear a pin drop, but we were in Whelans, so all you could hear was shit indie and shouting culchies. “Rosie’s very famous, you see!” he said, still looking expectantly at the three men, who were, to their credit, still staring stonily back. “Hello David” I said, sighing like I do when the cat trails shit from his litterbox across the kitchen floor. I introduced him to Andrew and he made exaggerated “I’m impressed!” noises before exclaiming “In that case...”, grabbing the woman standing behind him by the wrist and pulling her forward to introduce her to me as his wife. I shook her hand. “We were talking about you on our honeymoon” he said, and I felt her toes curl. He made more shouty noises about me being famous and asked again if he could “borrow” me. I asked him what he meant by saying that I was famous and he said “ah now, I think you’re exaggerating a bit there! Famous!”.

Sweet Jesus.

Feeling sorrier for his wife than you should for someone you’ve just met, I tried to instigate some kind of normal conversation. The what-are-you-up-to-these-days sort. He hadn’t rehearsed this, though, so he just stood there, braying like a donkey and farting like a dog after a chip-shop curry, while his wife gently tugged at his sleeve, saying that she’d lost her handbag and that they needed to go and look for it. “Give us a hug” he said, so I gave him a pat on the back. “A proper hug!” he said. “I’m holding a pint” I said “but it was nice to see you.”

“You don’t mean that” he said. “Not really” I admitted. I don't think he even noticed. He still had an inane grin plastered across his face. As his wife pulled him away, he leaned in close and whispered conspirationally “I bet you thought this would go better than it has”.

I'll admit that I indulged in revenge fantasies for a time after he broke up with me. Ones where he asked me to take him back and I dismissed him with a tinkling laugh (in my fantasies, I had a tinkling laugh and twinkling eyes and big breasts and a small waist and a pony) and strolled off on the arm of my handsome black fiancé. I was 17 at the time, and such was the scope of my ambition. Within a year of us breaking up, however, I'd moved on to David the Second, and though I thought him a vast improvement, he was alarmingly similar to David the First and thus not really anything to boast about. Our relationship didn't last long, and my revenge fantasies post David the Second changed to reflect my newly adopted sense of myself as an independent woman (basically the same fantasy, minus the handsome black fiancé. I still hadn't come to terms with being a husky, small-breasted, thick-waisted woman - that came later). I didn't have any more boyfriends til Andrew, and my revenge fantasies these days largely feature heavy plant pots falling on the cat (because the little fucker keeps knocking my potted herbs from the window sills).

Had I thought about it, I imagine David would have been right. I would have thought it would go better than it did. I couldn't have anticipated how badly he'd handle running into me again after twelve years, and I'd have thought that if he did, I'd feel good about it. But I didn't. I felt embarrassed to have seen it and I felt a furious pity for his wife. I felt an immense gratitude to my friends who stood by and made no attempt to diffuse his buffoon's bluff, and I felt smug that I'm not on Facebook, where hideous long-time-no-sees happen with horrible regularity and ugly photographs.

7 comments:

Gimme said...

Never go to Whelans. Only bad things happen there.

Also you're right about Facebook.

Also...

I ran into my when I was 17 ex-girlfriend at the Projects Arts Center. I was unbelievably fucking stoned as this is the only way I can stand to watch theatre or be in the presence of actors. I could barely speak, and stood there, barely speaking, as she repeated 'You haven't changed at all, you haven't changed at all' in a tone that patronising doesn't begin to cover.

I hope she doesn't have a blog.

KFS said...

Am I the only person that thinks facebuke is grand?
great story, you're lucky I'm not one of your friends as I can't stand to see someone squirm, I always help out, even with twits. mostly because I identify with twits to an unhealthy degree.

Rosie said...

you probably made her feel old, Dorian Gimme.

my dad thinks it's grand too, KFS. and thank you for reminding me of the wonderful word "twit". it's perfect.

Anonymous said...

Excellent stuff again - again it's not just the content - which we can all identify with - either as the prairie dogging twit, or person being twitted against - but the way you say it. I do hope you go on and get some recognition/make some money from your writing (maybe you do alreday - I've no idea who you are & what you do, over and above what I've read in this blog, which I stumbled across etc etc)
Good luck.

Stephen said...

"Facebook, where hideous long-time-no-sees happen with horrible regularity and ugly photographs."

What a great description!

This really made me laugh though -

"Whelans...all you could hear was shit indie and shouting culchies."

Great stuff as always!

Annie said...

"...in my fantasies, I had a tinkling laugh and twinkling eyes and big breasts and a small waist and a pony."

brilliant

Anonymous said...

Hi,
I've been following your blog for a while and think it's great. I really hope this isn't overstepping the mark (though it probably is). You've written about trying to get pregnant and that you have polycystic ovaries. I have them as well (though not trying to get pregnant) I was really overweight and wasn't having a regular periods and felt like I need to do something drastic to lose weight and went on Lipotrim (a liquid diet). I know they are badly thought of but for me thy were the one thing that got my cycle regular and I noticed on the chat boards alot of people were doing it to try and get pregnant and it worked for quite a few. It does seem to regularise hormones. Obviously they are tough and extreme and I not absolutely suggesting you try it but I guess I wanted to suggest it might be worth looking into (I know from your photo your not very overweght and doubt a doctor would ever recommend one for you) I just wanted to tell you my experience.