Lydia Davis is Efficient; or One Strike and You’re Out

We’d arranged to meet at seven but then just before six he texted to say he was not going to make seven and could we meet at twelve when his dinner was over in town. By twelve he meant midnight. If he hadn’t mentioned the dinner I might have agreed to meet. We’ve met several times late in the evening, sometimes as late as eleven thirty, but he did mention the dinner. At first I tried to keep it light and said no problem, we can meet another time, implying that twelve was too late. I even added, enjoy your dinner. I may have signed off with a kiss to show there were no hard feelings, maybe to mask the fact that there were. I don’t like being brushed off and I don’t like being lied to. What really ruined it is that he then texted back to say he wanted to text me to let me know so as not to upset me. Don’t assume you know what I’m feeling! I hate that. Especially if you’re right.

Him and I only meet for sex, but we’ve been meeting for a while and he knows that one of the things I like is his reliability. This may have been his way of telling me that he was not always reliable. It could have been a test to see how much leeway I would give him, how much I would tolerate (isn’t that what kids do?). To check how much rope I would give him. I am not a forgiving man. I was upset, and in the spirit of my New Year’s resolution of honesty and saying what I want, I texted back and said this wasn’t making me feel good and could we stick to the plan next time. I wasn’t pleased with the sticking to the plan bit of my text, but my therapist had said something about saying what I want. Say what you feel, then say what you want. What I really wanted was for him to come over as planned, but he chose the dinner with his friends over me, even though it was him who suggested we meet at seven. A friend of mine said, when I told her what had happened, no, no, no, this guy needs to prioritise.

The following day he texted again to see if I wanted him to come over. I had other plans – I really did – so I said so. I said maybe we could meet later in the week, though I knew I wasn’t going to be available for most of the week. I am trying to write all this in the style of Lydia Davis, who I am reading at the moment, and who I am listening to on my iPad. It’s not working. My sentences want to go on for too long. My thoughts don’t want to break down into bullets. Too much emotion is leaking in. Lydia Davis’ prose does not leak. Lydia Davis looks like the kind of person who does not leak. She claims to be verbose, but even in her verbosity she is airtight. Lydia Davis is efficient.

This man had proven to be someone who leaks. He is not efficient, and definitely not as reliable as I’d built him up to be. What can one expect of a man who comes over for the sole purpose of having your cock up his arse. Oh, he likes the way you kiss, and he says you’re a nice guy (“I like you very much, Michael” – Fuck off! – I call him babe; he calls me by my full name), and he gives you a high score out of ten, based mainly on the way you fuck. In fact, when he adds up all the points – for your bed manner and your niceness and some other things that you can’t be bothered to remember right now – it all adds up to ten. He gives you ten out of ten. When you do the same for him – ah yes, now you remember, he gave you a couple of points for your sense of humour – but when you add up the points in his favour, you get side-tracked by his statement that you don’t even like him, that you’re not even giving him points for being a nice guy. Your points were for his arse, his skin, his tits, and for always doing what he says he’ll do. For failing to adhere to the latter, points have now been deducted.

It’s a shame to let him go. But I have a feeling I won’t see him again.

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