Go with a smile!

Saturday, August 21, 2010


OK, I’m wondering what to do.

Something strange has happened in this World Cup. I was looking around for people to watch the world cup with. Then I found myself with this guy. And he asked along a girl who he apparently had not seen since he was in JC. Henceforth the girl will be called Catwoman.

It was probably an auspicious sign that she turned up wearing high boots and a Joy Division T shirt. And funnily enough, instead of sitting herself on the other side of my friend from me, she said on my side, putting me in the middle. We talked, and since we were from the same JC there was quite a bit to talk about. I had the good sense to drive out that night, after we were done at 1-2 in the morning, I sent them both home.

Except that I was wondering why she was walking so close to me as we were walking to my car.

That was the last time the 3 of us went out watching football together. Instead I found myself watching football with Catwoman a few more times.

We hardly ran out of things to talk about during out nights out. There were several reasons for this. I had actually met Catwoman during NS. I had a few friends from JC that I hung out with. I hung out with 2 gangs – the engineer gang and the artsy gang. People who know me know that I have potential in both fields, and that at the same time I am never completely comfortable with people in both gangs.

So we knew friends. In fact she and one of my best friends from back then used to go out together, and naturally we ended up talking about that friend of mine. I used to be a playwright, and she was working as an stage actress. So we could talk about theatre, although theatre is a different kettle of fish from my primary art form (which is music).

Before long, she was telling me a few funny stories about some guys who went after her, but she didn’t really care for, a few of whom were my friends. Including the guy with whom we watched that first World Cup match with.

It took a while (but not very long) to catch on to me that possibly she was interested in me. Or maybe not. At least what I was certain of is that I had “candidature”. Yes, it’s much less glamorous, but it’s more reflective of reality. She’s not crazy enough to be interested in you, but she sees you as a possibility.

There were a few things that people say to each other. Maybe it’s not called flirtation, because it’s not really saucy enough. Maybe it’s not called playing games because playing games has really negative connotations. It’s a practice that actors do on stage, in order to gauge their chemistry, their modes of interaction with each other. They call it workshopping.

Here are some of the things that were workshopped.

1. We talk a bit about star signs, and she says, “Many Capricorns end up with Scorpios in the end.” Truth be told, I really don’t mind going out with Scorpios since they are supposed to be the sexiest signs. Well she’s not a Scorpio, she’s a Gemini, just like codfish, and I’m surprised that codfish hasn’t turned me off Geminis for the rest of my life.

I didn’t want to answer this question proper. If I said “yes, I’ll look for a Scorpio instead”, it’s game over. If I said, “no, I’ll take anybody from any star sign…” it’s an affirmation I wasn’t ready to make. In the end I oped for the cop out: “You’re right, I’m stuck with a Scorpio for the rest of my life. My sister’s a Scorpio”.

2. Another time, she complained about a dead leg because she slept on a tennis ball. I wrote “the moral of the story is that you should not play with your balls shortly before bed time”. And she wrote back, “can I play with someone else’s balls instead?” I was horror struck and did not reply to that.

3. She asked me out to watch a movie. And she added, “bring along some mints, I just ate Korean and I have garlic breath”. I bought some mints for her from a 7-11. All the time wondering if it’s an invitation for me to kiss her.

4. During another outing, she was tired (I could believe that) and when she was in the waiting room at the vet’s, she leaned against me. I wasn’t totally shocked by that but I hadn’t figured out what to do. I did nothing, which was safest. I didn’t push her away, but I didn’t put an arm up either.

5. There were a few times – well she lives near Geylang anyway. I would see a hot chick, and follow her with my eyes. And then she would hit me in annoyance.

Ever since we met, some momentous things have taken place in her life. First, an aunt of hers came down with terminal cancer, and then a heart attack. Probably she will not live to see 2011, because for a lot of the standard treatments for cancer, you need a strong heart. Which is why it was a wonderful thing that my mother got her breast cancer when she was around 50 and not some other godforsaken age, she’s had a clean bill of health ever since.

The other thing is that her beloved cat, owing to her own carelessness, has developed a gum infection, and is in very bad health. A round of antibiotics and painkillers has made the situation better, but she is still fretting a lot over that cat.

Now, all this is a slight surprise. So I don’t really know what to do. I don’t think she’s unattractive, but I’m not crazy – I know what it’s like to be crazy about somebody, but that hasn’t happened in a long time. But I can say that I don’t really know what it’s like to be crazy about somebody for a reason other than that that person is quite physically attractive.

So what’s wrong?

First, she’s got emotional baggage. She doesn’t really like both of her parents. There was a time when I would consider this an plus, because at least we would have something to talk about. I have since cleared a few things up with my mother. I have used methods that are crude but effective, and sometimes you wonder if you’re overdoing things, but OK, we have fewer problems now.

I never had that much trouble knowing right from wrong. But suppose neither of your parents had your head screwed on properly. It’s like the daughter of a mobster – you don’t think she’s guilty but you wonder how she’s affected.

Second, it’s a bit scary how attached she is to the cat. That’s something I can never understand. I’m a little wary of pet owners, or people who like children but nobody else. It’s sometimes an overcompensation, like you may not be able to cope with the complexity of adults, so you seek solace in something more simple. I don’t doubt her ability to handle adults, mind – you’ve got to be good with people in order to make a living as an actress. But it’s really kooky.

And after stalking somebody who likes cats, I’m a little put off by women who like cats. If there’s an animal I identify with, it’s a lizard. Maybe that has something to do with my animal sign. OK, lizards and cats have things in common, like they don’t really care very much about what people think, they are independent spirits, carnivorous.

Third, one big reason why we had so much to talk about is sometimes I would just ask her something and she would tell it to me straight out. And she is sometimes never less than forthright when volunteering information. Do I really want to deal with loose cannons like that?

Fourth, I’m not that attracted to her. I’m trying to figure out whether or not I’m not that attracted to humanity in general anymore, in which case I might as well grab anybody I can find, or it’s just she’s not one of those I’d be crazy about.

Last, sometimes I see some flashes of anger. It’s a bad sign, like somebody’s trying to disguise a bad temper.

Still, it’s a bit weird. Suffice to say I’ve – through not much apparent effort on my part – managed to get further with her than with anybody else, not counting codfish, which is no basis for comparison because that was an ICQ relationship. So you can understand why I’m unwilling to cut it off like that. And I have to admit, there were times when I say to myself, this could be something. We could be going somewhere. We haven’t run out of things to talk about. That was exciting. Until I found out about the parents.

So sometimes I would just keep her talking by asking her about some of the things she cares about – her aunt, her cat, her job. Then it’s not so bad immediately afterwards because – you know I’m a bit of a monk now, any good female company who is not Edna Mode is welcome. Then after that I look down at my hands and ask myself, “what the fuck are you doing?”

Like she calls me up to have random 2 hour conversations, I’m OK. Then she called me up to help her send her cat to the vet, I’m OK even though it was 5 hours later by the time we said goodbye. Then the voice of reason speaks: are you doing this for a future girlfriend? Or are you so full of the milk of human kindness that you can just dish this out to anybody who asks for it?

Of course, there could be an over-reaction. Maybe what she’s thinking of is something in one of those fuzzy logic “it’s complicated” things. As in, you’re more than just friends, but less than an outright significant other. I’m not going to stand for that, because in these funny arrangements, one of the parties usually ends up as the loser. And you know I deal with IT, which demands rigour and precision. Do you want me to code:

int Function()

or do you want to see this:

maybe int maybe double Function()

Lastly, I want to say that one of the most successful relations I’ve had with a member of the opposite sex is with my sister. And I think that really affects the way you deal with the opposite sex. Like I would make a good brother. Not the kind of brother who shelters and protects because that’s not my traditional strength. But somebody who can help you think through things, who doesn’t judge, who calms you down. Somebody who makes you feel like you’ve got company. I don’t take the credit for this: I used to squabble a lot with my sister, until one day she offered me the olive branch. She took that initiative, not me. But since then, there have been more good times than bad.

This trait of mine also applies elsewhere: I’m good friends with most of my cousins. I recall using this mode of interaction a lot with codfish. But it’s only a very small part of what makes a person a good boyfriend.

Another thing is that I'm an androgynous person. I'm a guy but I also have my feminine side. Women are never as much a mystery to me as they might be to some other guys. This is different from saying that you're a ladies' man. But it means that if they were to confide in me, I can understand a lot.

If you were to ask me - this is not an unhappy development. It tells me that all hope is not lost. Last few times I was rejected, it was "let's be friends" rather than "fuck off creep". This time - well it teaches me that if you do find the right one, change your lifestyle and your manners appropriately, things can happen.

Anyway this door of opportunity will not last too long. I'm certain that I have found myself a friend. What would be really disturbing was my reaction - if you're not interested in women, then it is an even bigger crisis than women are not interested in you. Please please please - let me fall in love again. The first time it was so vivid - but now it's just a fading memory.



Blogger Shingo T said...

Wondering if this is going on in your mind.

Seeing your friends get attached / have babies one after another, you know you aren't getting any younger.

On the other hand, there's no point in rushing yourself to get attached, lest you make any wrong decisions.

Anyway, Catwoman sounds interesting. From my limited experience, woman who tend to be more interested in talking about themselves than finding out more about you are something to be careful off. At least that's what comes to my mind when I read this.

I don't think you have lost interest in woman, since your eyes are still glancing around, haha.

You just have to feel that electrical spark, be it Catwoman or someone else. ^_^

Love the writings!

10:04 AM

Blogger 7-8 said...

Well I knew I was going to start late. I was looking at the date the other day - oh my god this is the 20th anniversary of my having a crush on a chick!

She is interesting. Maybe I should just hang around for the experience points.

12:11 AM


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