Salome Magazine
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LAce Posted Monday, October 29th, 2007
How Long is an Eternity?
Margot Miller

An invitation to meet for coffee. Oh dear, do I want to go?

Of course, you must go.

I know I shall fail.

Fail at what?

Fail to come up with the right platitudes. I'll be looking for clues and miss what's right in front of me. I'll be excessively polite and be perceived as weak, submissive, malleable. Or possibly just stupid, stupefied, stunned, you know, the deer in the headlights?

Well, then you must be strong, present yourself as self-sufficient, capable. You'll come out in the middle that way. Perfectly balanced. Quite normal.

No, I'll come across as unsympathetic, proud or ashamed of something.

Well, what do you want?

I can only say what I don't want. I don't want to be silly and safe. I don't want the latency of good-naturedness, not in a man, and not in myself. I want emotional and intellectual energy. I want to be unreasonable and be accepted anyway.

Unfair, demanding, occasionally angry?

Yes. Yes, all of those things. I want what everyone wants, direct engagement, total intimacy, to feel connected. So I don't ever have to be angry, or unfair, or demanding.

But you must know that women are instantly recognizable by their potential as either lovers or by their instant failure of a test they are unaware they are taking. There is no recourse, no second glance. If he has invited you for coffee, in that online shopping catalogue of profiles, then you fall into the first category. You know perfectly well, when you meet, you will both know in thirty seconds if there is any hope. Men want sex and little or no demands about the nature of the relationship. Or they want to be taken care of. Usually both.

And women?

A woman likes the company of someone who can fix things when they go wrong, or who will stay with her until things fix themselves. She needs a companion in her life. An intimate companion.

Thirty seconds, you say?

It's not a long time.

How long will I have to stay?

Half an hour.

An eternity.

Mmm, but the coffee will be good.

Right. Well, perhaps another time.

Comments [post a comment]

Posted by Donna Levy [ ] on Monday, October 29th, 2007 at 10:47 PM
Truth in every word. I know what it took to write that. My thanks. Donna

Posted by Nonnie Augustine on Monday, October 29th, 2007 at 10:48 PM
Good one, Mary. I love the structure of this. xxoononnie

Posted by Donia Carey on Tuesday, October 30th, 2007 at 2:08 AM
Nicely set up. This piece offers wry enjoyment. Thanks, Margot.

Posted by Nonnie Augustine on Tuesday, October 30th, 2007 at 8:51 AM
Margot! I meant Margot! :{ Nonnie

Posted by Nonnie Augustine on Tuesday, October 30th, 2007 at 8:51 AM
Margot! I meant Margot! :{ Nonnie

Posted by Marie Shield [ ] on Monday, December 24th, 2007 at 4:45 PM
Funny. Cynical. Favorite line 'women like the company of someone who can fix things.'

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