Small Town


busy cityIn the era of FaceBook and LinkedIn and Classmates and every other site that allows you instant connection to those that would be long-lost to the past in a previous day and age, there is something so magnificent in the shock of a random encounter with a once-familiar face in an unexpected locale.  Imagine, you are walking down the street in a small village in Romania, and you catch a glimpse of someone through a shop window, and the tilt of their head and angle of their shoulders makes you pause.  Some dusty synapse in your brain flickers in recognition, and you walk inside and there they are, a person you’ve not seen nor even thought of for years.  What are the chances?  It’s almost enough to make you believe in fate.

The more distant the location and connection, the more miraculous this meeting seems.  After all, running into an old high school classmate at a restaurant the same weekend as your reunion is a happy bit of coincidence (or a heart-swallowing disaster, depending on the circumstances), but certainly not shocking.  Likewise, flying to Texas from Boston and discovering you’re on the same flight as someone you met at a college party or networking event the previous weekend is amusing, but hardly earth-shaking serendipity.  There’s already some established common ground that increases your likelihood of a meeting with these people who are moving within similar orbits.

I recently ran into someone I had not seen in a long time, and it got me thinking about some of the more amazing meetings I’ve had over the years.  When I thought even more about it, I realized that four of my most extraordinary encounters are actually linked to one person, the Swedish boy I met in France at age 16, who I still self-defeatingly refer to as the Love of My Life.  And as a logical person with some understanding of coincidence and a more-than-moderate dose of skepticism, I still can’t help but want it to mean something.  Here are those four encounters, in order of occurrence: (more…)

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…Is some giant, looming PUTINHEAD.  You think that threat’s exaggerated?  We’ll see what you say when Putin’s rampaging through your city, crushing trees and flinging cars.

(Terrifying image via the genius of BoingBoing).

 

   Yeah. It’s just me here. Trixie & Kadisnky are working out-of-towns, Tailfeather is traipsing all about Europe hypnotizing men with her vagina, and SinRoo is either a.) enjoying some kind of freedom summer/summer of love thing while her classes are out or b.) she’s run away to join the Hillary Clinton 2012 campaign (already in progress). So it’s just me. Twiddling mah thumbs. Pissed off b/c I can’t find The Mighty Boosh on U.S. compatable DVDs and I keep forgetting to ask Mr. Panda if we have an all-region DVD player. Uh, and I don’t feel like writing about makeup, b/c the economy sucks and I don’t like the idea that my posts encite people to spend money. So, let’s just bullshit then, shall we? Here, I’ll give you a topic:

KARAOKE

Go!

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The Query:  Is it realistically possible to date more than one person at a time?

I am now living (far from my preferred big-city anonymity and convenience) in what I consider to be a VILLAGE.  I’ve gone from a city of four million to the comparative boondocks of a town with 200,000 residents.  I’ve been seeing a truly lovely guy for about five weeks, but am feeling some major pressure to make it Official.  Why is this? 

 Well, in a place this size, everyone not only knows everyone else, but has shagged their roommate’s sister’s ex-boyfriend’s cousin who used to work with that guy that Sharon went out with, who punched John’s best friend in the head in a pub fight and, that’s right, we all went to primary school together anyway.  Also, Sharon shagged John before she met Tim, and aren’t Shaz and Tim just an engaging couple?  They’re on vacation in Dubai this week, probably getting some gorgeous sun, but don’t mention John’s name to Tim because he goes a bit mental. 

As an outsider, the best policy has been to keep my head down and look outside the city center for meaningless sex, because there is no such thing as anonymous here.  Of course, I’ve gone and fucked it up by dating the close friend of a co-worker and my sex life is therefore public domain.  While I have outlined my ground rules to the Gentleman in Question/GIQ (see: previous post), there is no doubt that others are less accepting of my apparently hedonistic outlook that FIVE WEEKS does not a boyfriend make, and if I were to actually attempt casual dating at this stage, I have little doubt that I would be branded a less polite version of a hussy (see: manipulative cunt).

In my experience, casual dating does not work in smaller communities.  While I refuse to discuss exclusivity as a possibility at this stage, the GIQ and I are quickly settling into Boyfriend/Girlfriend territory, largely as a result of limited options.  I find myself at a disadvantage, of course, because he has a lifetime of friends and acquaintances backing his best interest, while I have…  nothing but a headstrong POV and a generally bad attitude. 

While I’m not going to willingly lose a good man over a question of principle, I’m also not going to be smothered into an Actual Relationship based on other people’s comfort.  This would never happen at home.