Thursday, August 14, 2008

Ancient history revisited

I've just been reminded of a rejection from my distant past -- so distant, I'll call him the Akkadian. We met at a friend's wedding many years ago. He thought, "Gee, she's cute. Gee, she's mean." Did not think I liked him. The feeling was mutual -- I found him attractive but believed he wasn't interested.

About a year later, we met up at a Friday night dinner and ultimately spent the entire night talking. Toward dawn, after I'd regaled him with a few tales from my sordid past (not as sordid as it would be in a few years, but still rather sordid), he communicated a disinterest in dating me. I was offended and ignored him for several months, when I was taken to a party that happened to be in his apartment. We split a bottle of Absolut, got wretchedly sick, and I thought we'd made our peace. We were acquaintances after that, although not close. When I joined Facebook, we became Friends.

Recently the Akkadian started a blog and wanted people to comment on it. Being an accomplished blogger, I visited -- as Ayelet, so he didn't know who I was. The blog seemed meandering and pointless, and I left a few caustic comments. He sent me an email in response:

the first post of this blog explains its raison d'etre

why should you read it? well, aside from the possibility that i may be able to sneak in a chiddush or two among all the narcissistic ramblings, i would ask you to read it because i need critics

I gave him some feedback on internet writing and layout. He thanked me and said,

by the way... on a completely different subject/more serious note... we may have something to talk about.... i also have spent time on the other side of the locked psych ward door ...thank G-d the worst is long past but in any case i would be interested in access to your blog

This was while the blog was still invitation-only. After he read it, he wrote:

wow... any (other) superlatives for that kind of incessant public soul reckoning would just be cliched

That seemed a little over the top.

thanks, I think... "incessant public soul reckoning" sounds kinda narcissistic... see why I was critical of your blog? ;)

He responded:

Narcissists Anonymous: Hi, I'm Akkadian, and I don't care who you are.... i was actually being sincere... i was actually tooling with something "cheshbon hanefesh"-related, but that woulda just made me sound self righteous, and my (imaginary?) audiences tolerate my narcissistic ramblings more when I leave G-d out of it...so instead i just blabbered superlatives while i claimed not to be using any...

This is why I don't really like his blog. I have to read it three times to understand what he's getting at. Of course, his not knowing who I am inevitably led to:

Ayelet, you wrote: "It seems there's not a single, frum man out there who's currently willing to give me a fraction of the validation and respect that I get from my wonderful married male friends, Boaz and Dov. "

Irrespective of whether I failed to randomly hit on you (I am a Jewish "Guy" ("Jewish Man" is an oxymoron on the level of "Jewish Organization") and an UWS'er to boot...)...... I might surprise you regarding your above passage (challenge(?)... (I thought about whether your Zoloft/bed bon mot was a challenge, but I didn't wanna be that presumptuous))......

of course, if I fall flat on my ass I'll probably gain a less-than-flattering nickname that will be in the blogosphere forever (one that...but it's worth the risk......wanna meet up?

Well, now I get to stick it to him.

We've already met, and you weren't validating, because you weren't into me. I realize I had the advantage here, since I know who you are and you have no idea who I am. I promise not to give you any unflattering nicknames.

"Akkadian" isn't bad, right?

well...that explains how you got to my blog in the first place... am i that obvious? (dont answer that...i figure at this point it might be part of my charm, if not all of it...)

i actually thought i did know who you were...but the family info didn't match, so i cant even begin to guess (although it'll likely just hit me in the head one day)...

I should put him out of his misery.

Who did you think I was? And yes, I was informed about your blog, so I read and commented.

He guessed correctly. And wrote:

for the record (but NOT the blogosphere): not trying to validate, just clarify...if you remember (not that I expect you to...it was years ago) ... we spent almost 12 hrs talking (now I know why that's all we did, but i really didn't then)... and the (relative) disparity between our... ahem ..."social" experiences scared the shit outta me... and i didnt know why beyond just still holding onto some religiotic shana bet notion... i suspected there was something else at work, but i wasn't gonna admit that to myself, much less anyone else... but i gather you figured that out before i even did

You should never email anything to a blogger that you don't want blogged. Because when rejection -- fresh or revisited -- smacks me between the eyes, I cope by blogging about it.

I remember that we spent a lot of time together in bed that night, didn't really do anything but talk, and I was very confused at the end when you categorically said nothing could ever happen. Especially since you'd told me you thought I was cute. Nothing happened because you'd never done anything and weren't planning on doing anything till you were married -- which seemed inconsistent to me, since you were spending the night in bed with me. Not sure what you're referring to as "something else at work" --unless it's the fact that you and I are better suited to be friends than lovers.

I'm rejecting him. Right? He answered:

i was less categorical than you remember... but that didn't make me any less of a jerk... what prompted you to throw me out of the apt was that you thought i was being judgmental about your experiences.... i was... i hadn't allowed myself another frame of reference, and while we were talking about it during the night, you'd been a little too aggressively forward (conversationally, not actively) about it... that's what freaked me at the time

Apparently he wasn't man enough to be my man -- then or now. And this shouldn't bother me, right? I've got bipolar, he's got OCD -- any child we had would inherit a tremendous genetic risk for either or both disorders. Even though it would probably be very bright and extremely cute.

regarding that night... I'm glad you no longer think I'm the whore of Babylon. I guess you were very young, and I was very forward/demanding. Good thing for both of us that we've grown up a little in the interim. why did it take u so long to tell me this?

I'm leaving the door open... we've both grown... what's the logical conclusion?

after that night you denied my right to exist for the next 10 months -- until the night of my house party (you remember that--we both drunk ourselves sick)

after that i figured leave it alone... it's rare in any case that anyone can do any kind of sensible post mortem of this sort (possibly because no one is that psychodynamically oriented, possibly becuase no one knows better)...


I denied his right to exist? Sounds like he cared I was ignoring him.

I denied your right to exist? You mean I ignored you? Yes, but then we got stinking drunk and made peace.I honestly don't remember a heck of a lot about that one night together (less about the drunk -- although I do remember vomiting copiously and waking up in an empty apartment next to a guy learning gemara). Do you want to talk about things, or are you happy trading emails about it?

Why do I set myself up to be hurt?

no reason we can't do both...

he waffled. I lost patience.

okay... I see you have a fear of commitment ;P shabbat shalom

Which he thought was harsh. Finally I emailed him my phone number, and he called. But nothing more came from the discussion, other that the fact that he allegedly didn't think I was the whore of Babylon -- even back when he was young and judgmental. And he didn't suggest we go out now. So I felt -- rejected.

Like I said before, we're a fearsome genetic prospect. I shouldn't even want to date him. It just bothers me that he doesn't want to date me.
Copyright (c) "Ayelet Survivor"

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