Sunday, July 31, 2011


It's been obvious for as long as I can remember that my sense of humour and my interests not only do NOT coincide very much with those of other people, but also baffle the crap out of them, sometimes even frighten them.
Poor fragile little dears.

Bear in mind that I like people. As an abstract concept. I just don't get along with them.
It's like all of humanity landed here from a different planet.
And why DO they insist on speaking?

Yesterday evening I again tried to have a discussion with other people in the bar. An utterly moronic move, seeing as I should know by now that as an individual I am kindly tolerated only after folks have gotten used to me. Which is a process that takes months if not years.
Until then, I am the wild animal you should never feed.
Don't poke him with a stick, he may bite.

Me, bite? You can count on it!

I enjoy the society of humans. But I like it much better when I don't actually have to talk to them. Which, in a crowded establishment, is a status-quo that proves impossible to maintain.
Those two prize exemplars spoke to me first. They started the conversation, so they should bear full responsibility for it.
Just the fact that I was breathing through my nose might have proven to them that we had nothing in common.
Nothing. At. Frikkin'. ALL!

It was not always like that.

No, I probably never had anything in common with them years ago, either.

But back then, Savage Kitten and I were still lovers, companions of the heart, and co-conspirators. There was someone to talk to and listen to, someone whose company was a happy prospect to which I looked forward. Think of it as a social safety mechanism. Being in a relationship softens the edges of the interpersonal gears. It provides support, understanding, amelioration, and healing.
That's just one of those normal things that have fallen by the wayside.

Savage Kitten spent all of yesterday with Wheelie Boy. I saw her briefly in the morning before she left, briefly again long after dark when she returned. Her smile upon seeing me was radiant. She is the warmest person I know.
But I get almost none of her time anymore.
We're just roommates now.
Today she went off to see Wheelie Boy before noon, and she won't be back till late.
She'll likely be tired, and go straight to bed.

[Yes, I'm spending the day hiding out thirteen floors above the Financial District. I like it here. Unlike the apartment, the office is a nicer place when no one else is around.]

On very rare occasions, Savage Kitten and I eat together, maybe once every six or seven weeks.
But we no longer cook for each other, and because there is no-one to share food with I usually slap together a bowl of muck and call it quits.
There's no point in preparing something delicious when I'm the only one who will eat it.

[Let's see, what did I have for lunch today? Shrimp rice sheet noodle, and a flaky charsiu pastry. With some of the worst coffee in Chinatown. That is not too different from lunch yesterday, which was a flaky charsiu pastry and a lowpoh bing. Also with some of the worst coffee in Chinatown. Sad that 'worst coffee' is not only a metaphor!]

Given that food is well-nigh tasteless without a dinner companion, I spend an illogical amount of time thinking about what to eat.
The Chinese restaurant down the street? Naaah, not interested. Vietnamese? No, I'd sit at one of those tables with no one to talk to while waiting for the cold rice noodles and grilled pork. The seafood place? Expensive dining by oneself is pathetic. Pizza? Did that two weeks ago. And three weeks ago. Mexican? Doesn't inspire me. Crepes? Can't go there anymore, 'we' used to eat there. Besides, she apparently took him there a few months ago, so the place is off limits now, it's lost all positive connotation. Thai restaurant? Don't feel like eating an entire portion of anything, and those two have eaten there together - see previous loss of positive connotation.
Heck, the portion-too-large and positive-connotation-too-lost paradigms hold for almost anywhere on Polk Street where I used to enjoy dining. Apparently he also likes the food at her favourite roast-meats place on the edge of C'town, so I've taken a scunner to them too. Unfair, I know - their quality is very high - but it now has an exclusionary colouration to it.
Our places are no longer my places.

On the bright side, Wheelie Boy isn't comfortable inside Chinatown. Crowded sidewalks, rushing pedestrians, restaurants he fears might give him food poisoning.
Plus sloping cross-streets, comestibles he doesn't recognize, locations that are entirely foreign to him, dazed tourists who get in everyone's way, erratic traffic, dried fish, durian, no parking, loud noises, uneven pavement, strong flavours, and... and... and...
I must say, I really enjoy places where that man and his wheelchair will not go. Those are still my places.
Good luck taking that away.

On weekends I force myself to eat. It probably wouldn't be healthy to subsist entirely on tea, tobacco, and whiskey.
Awfully tempting, though.
Fortunately I still enjoy bathing. Being clean is a nice feeling.
Despite the positive social impact.

It's a slow process, but I'm learning stay out of conversations where my input would disturb other people.
There is no need for me to contribute, and not doing so keeps me from feeling burned.
It's far better to listen; it doesn't chase the shy creatures away.
Sometimes language is the only thing we have in common.
Seldom content.

NOTE: Readers may contact me directly:
All correspondence will be kept in confidence.


Anonymous said...

Well, then in that case, come out to play. On Shabbos, at Kiddush, I asked my Rabbi, HaRav Yonoton Cohen, whether there was ecumenical communication between us and the Sikhs. He asked me to do so. So yesterday, I returned to davenport at the local Gurdewara. Very nice place to meditate, they have sort of mechitzeh, and at Kiddush, "langar", the chapati is like made by someone's mom! So, the hats are different, the language, history and cultures are different, the food is far better spiced, but EVERYTHING else is the same.

Kol tuv;


Anonymous said...

I've followed your posts on this subject, which I imagine are written with therapeutic intent, with some interest. I will not presume to give advice because I don't think that's what you're looking for, and I'm certainly in no position to do so.

I will, however, observe, just in case it proves useful, that the path you follow with your ex is, despite the numerous particulars you are always careful to list that make it seem to make sense in your case, a well-worn and predictable one, and that you don't seem the kind of man to keep to those kinds of paths for very long.

Thanks for the introduction to Wilderness. It's a wonderful smoke if I can keep it burning, but any attempts to relight it turn it to an ashy horror in my mouth. I think I'm doing something wrong.

The back of the hill said...

"Thanks for the introduction to Wilderness. It's a wonderful smoke if I can keep it burning, but any attempts to relight it turn it to an ashy horror in my mouth. I think I'm doing something wrong."

Perhaps you are, without realizing it, adhering to the method of a previous tobacco?
Rub it a bit and dry it out. Then pack it somewhat lighter, agitating the bowl somewhat as you fill it to allow the tobacco shreds to make a better fit together. After lighting wait a minute or two, then gently use the tamper to compact the tobacco to a more optimum burning density.
Also think in terms of half or three quarter bowls instead of full bowls.

Thin ribbon cuts are easier to smoke, and flakes are more combustible than Oriental blends. Were you used to smoking a Vaper before?


As for the "therapeutic intent", each post is in some ways cathartic.
Along with perspective, I am perhaps getting a better handle on things.
It's a work in progress.

Anonymous said...

No the only vaper I regularly smoke is St. James Flake, though some people consider Reiner's Long Golden a vaper and I've been hitting that pretty hard this summer. Usually it's G&H Bright CR, Best Brown #2 and their lighter Lakeland flakes. I have a good relationship with a number of McClelland's ribbon cuts, no. 14, the Frogs, both Three Oaks, none of which turn foul on me so readily. Thank you, I will attend to my preparation per your instructions.

The back of the hill said...

The mention of Three Oaks and the Frogs shoots my theory right out of the water.
And oddly, I find Wilderness very similar in some ways to Three Oaks.

Maybe it's just the proportion of Latakia to Virginias, and the type of Virginia - English style blends are, on the whole, nasty upon relighting. More so if there is less aged & pressed Virginia.

I'm puzzled.
Let me know if changing packing style works.

Anonymous said...

You were absolutely right of course, thank you, I have never had to fuss over a ribbon cut to this extent, but it is well worth it. The flavors are brilliant.

Enjoyed your remarks on Presby, for which I have a very soft spot, it being the first english to click with me. I've been sampling Triple Play as well, coincidentally, though it seems to demand a hot summer morning and those have been rare so far.

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