Tag Archives: internet dating

Traversing the Tinderverse

16 Aug

The Tinderverse is a bewildering flotsam of social media space junk. The lost and the lewd, the peculiar and the promiscuous- they all hover uncertainly amidst Internet acronyms, unselfconsciously meta profiles, and enthusiastic emoticons. In my mind, Tinder embodies the Mos Eisley cantina from Star Wars: a quagmire of freaks, all killing time in between misadventures, all disappointed that they can’t play with their droids, and all waiting for the chance to unholster their weapon.

He’s 5km away from me and has a gun. Shit.

And I’m in the middle of it all. Looking for a young Harrison Ford. And just trying to get to fucking Alderaan. 

Bam-chicka-wow-wow: Storm Trooper porn


Hold on…Alderaan explodes, doesn’t it? 

Well that doesn’t work as a reference. 

I mean, I’ll never make it there. 

And I’m three decades too late to find a young Harrison Ford. Young Mr. Ford doesn’t exist anymore. Not even in the post-apocalyptic Tinderverse.

Wow. That just makes that whole metaphor kind of…depressing. 

And meta as fuck!

This is apparently two images of the same man. And that, my friends, is a failed Jedi mind trick.

Anyway, every now and then, your weirdness meshes serendipitously with the weirdness of another, and you find yourself on an actual date.

The Muso was a horrifically cute fellow that I went out with a few times last year. He was the main songwriter in an unsigned prog-metal band​. I matched with him and, feeling frisky, decided to break conventions by sending the first message: “Is the state of Sydney’s live music scene so calamitous that a musician has to find women on Tinder?! Don’t girls just peg their underpants at you as you walk down the street?” 

Apparently, being nerdy enough to use the word ‘calamitous’ as an online mating call endears you to some people and, impressed by the size of my dictionary, he invited me to beers at an achingly hip pub in Bondi.

Our first date ended with a warm smile and a chaste hug. And it was refreshing. Old-fashioned. Other-worldly, even. The force was strong in this one.

He messaged the next day to say that he’d had a nice time and would love to see me again.

How nice, I found myself thinking, to be in the company of a dude who didn’t make his desire to wrench my legs asunder the focal point of our time together. It’s refreshing. Old fashioned. Other-worldly, even.

And the second date? Well, it started with a beer and it ended with the phrase, “I’m seeing a psychologist because they think I’m somewhere on the autism spectrum. You’ve heard of Asperger’s, haven’t you?”

Ah. So I was wrong- the cute musician boy wasn’t not making a move because he was a gentleman. He was not making one because he couldn’t pick up on my ‘I am amenable to the concept of being kissed by you’ social cues.

Fuck.

Nothing’s easy, is it?

His announcement should have signalled that he wasn’t the droid I was looking for, but I didn’t want to be judgemental, especially since he a) played lead guitar and b) continued with, “Being a nurse I figured you wouldn’t run away. Thank you for not running away.”

Heartbreaking, no?

And there might have also been c) he had a pierced tongue.

But I’m not admitting to anything there.

And I figured that the words “autism spectrum” were more palatable than “casual heroin habit” or “I only killed animals as a child”, so I agreed to a third date.

It was on New Year’s Eve. We were going to have a socially isolated quiet evening at his house. He was stoned when I arrived. I was unimpressed. He misread my facial cues and offered me a joint. I poured myself a glass of wine instead. He began to sermonise that weed is healthier than alcohol. I became irritated. We debated. The exchange became somewhat heated, then he blurted out, “I was an accessory to murder once.”

Wait- what?

An accessory to…what?!

Was this a debate technique? Misdirect your opponent with ejaculatory disclosures? Why was he telling me this? I hadn’t even kissed him yet. And, in the timeline of relationships, should your lips not briefly converge with another’s before you unlock your closet and dump a pile of rotting bones on them?

As I pondered this, his cat jumped on my lap. I began to stroke the beast’s head; noticing for the first time the disquietingly large number of Pop! Vinyl dolls there were in his lounge room. The entire cast of Dr. Who was there- he’d collected the Spectrum out of them. They stood, crowding every surface: an army of esoteric sci-fi characters, mute, but somehow proud in their zanily proportioned, bobble-headed glory. They were all spaced precisely three inches apart. They were all angled to face the lounge we perched on, and they were all

Watching

Us.

I took a swig of wine.

And, under their unyielding, inanimate gaze, the Muso told me his story, giving it the sort of unerring attention to detail that only an Aspie can muster.

The murder happened during a drug deal gone bad, one that took place in a dowdy, inner-west flat. My soft-spoken, seemingly gentle Muso was there with a volatile, steroid-injecting acquaintance. They were visiting an emaciated dealer. To buy an ounce of pot. The PlayStation in the corner was broken. There was a hole in the curtains. And a blue Louisville Slugger softball bat was by the door to the kitchen.

To cut a long, disturbing story short: Steroid smacked Skinny with the bat mid-deal.

Completely out of the blue.

Ha! Geddit? ‘Cos the bat was…?!

Golly I’m clever.

Anyway, Steroid hit him once…twice…a handful of times. Skinny collapsed on the carpet. The Muso started to rise from his seat, buttocks hovering over cheap pine, when Steroid turned, pointed the blood-streaked bat at him, and told him to “wait in the fuckin’ car.”

Unsurprisingly, he obeyed.

“He had the new Slipknot album,” he told me, scratching his knee through his shorts, “so I just listened to that while I waited.”

“What song?” I interjected. “‘Wait and bleed’?”

He frowned. “No. That was on their first album.”

I rolled my eyes. Friggin’ Aspies. “Never mind. Continue.”

When Steroid emerged, the Muso asked him what happened. Steroid stripped off his bloodied shirt, wiped himself with it, threw it in the car, and told Muso to clear it from his fuckin’ mind. 

Muso left Sydney the next day. He boarded a train to Queensland, planning to move back in with his mum. On the way there, in a burst of melodrama, he threw his SIM card out the window.

“So I couldn’t be tracked,” he explained.

I ran a finger over the rim of my wine glass. “Did you call the cops?”

He looked at me like I asked if he’d changed his underwear. “Of course not-”

Of course he hadn’t changed his underwear: Aspie’s don’t like change (!!) 

“-He’d have killed me,” he finished.

I paused. “Did you ring an ambulance?”

“Nup. Too risky.”

At this point, the cat on my lap had begun to feel suffocating. “But you could have anonymously rang one and saved his life. Does that bother you?”

He frowned, genuinely confused. “Why would that bother me? It was none of my business.”

Holy-fucking-hell. He wasn’t ‘somewhere on the spectrum’, he was Aspie as shit. Aspi-er than Susan Boyle.

And funnily enough, that night after I left, ‘I dreamed a dream in time gone by…that I was high…and playing softball…I dreamed the game had gone awry…’

I awoke the next morning to a message from him. He wanted to progress to “a dinner” because he felt that we connected on “many levels”.

Which, in a way, we did: we were both smokers, both socially awkward, and both fans of Karnivool.

The only problem was that pesky ‘accessory to murder’ nonsense.

Because it wasn’t the ‘my sister’s boyfriend used to abuse her, so I gave her a gun to defend herself with’ kind- which, under the right circumstances, I may or may not be able to justify- but the ‘I sat in a car while one man bashed another into a pile of broken bone and brains’ kind.

Which is, generally speaking, the disturbing kind.

I mean, ‘once there was a time when men were kind, their voices soft, their words inviting…’

Sorry. I’ve got ‘I Dreamed a Dream’ stuck in my head now.

Anyway, I wasn’t going to go on another date with him any more than I was going to part his arse cheeks and wear him as a hat.

So I replied to his text with a generic and insincere ‘thanks for the lovely night/ maybe we should just be friends/ best of luck in the future’.

His response came three hours later: “Well FRIEND, I appreciate your honesty. And since you don’t want to date anymore, how about you come and see my band sometime, FRIEND.”

I shivered, He’s really got to work on recognising those social cues.

I threw my SIM card out the car window.

 

 

Trawling Tinder

8 Aug


I’ve never had a good experience on Tinder. And yet, like a woman trapped in a co-dependant union, I keep going back.

Because Tinder is fucking hilarious.

Pockets of humanity lurk on there and trawling Tinder freaks has become a perfectly acceptable way to spend my weekend.

He Gives Good Head

Take this guy:

img_0352

Check out what he’s holding. Doesn’t the image of a man with a decapitated goats head scream, “IT PUTS THE FUCKING LOTION IN THE BASKET!”?

Who’d make that their Tinder profile pic anyway? I mean, doesn’t that just get your goat?

I’m ‘kid’ding.

Can you see where this is ‘head’ing?

Ooh- maybe he’s trying to allude to giving good head?

This joke is old now. It’s time to put it out to pasture.

Pre-Battle Banter

Some men on Tinder are only after one thing.

TinderMan1: “So are we going to meet? What’s your address?”

CC: “We can meet, but I’m not giving you my address. How about a coffee?”

TinderMan1: “We know where coffee is going to end up, so just give me your address.”

This vexed me: Where, exactly, did this audacious prick believe that coffee was going to end up? Does coffee herald coitus? Not necessarily. Coffee can wind up in lots of places: a manic discussion on Jack Kerouac. A hilarious foam-on-the-upper-lip moment. Hell, I could be a stage five clinger that thinks espressos will mean babycinos.

CC: “You see, coffee is my he’s-not-an-axe-murderer-and-I-can-invite-him-into-my-house insurance policy :)”

TinderMan1: “Yeah. See, I work in the music industry and I can’t afford to buy every girl coffee.”

As this message was read, a thwack echoed across the city as the drawbridge to my lady-parts slammed shut.

CC: “What a shame: I’m a gold-digger and I’m not interested in poor men. Better luck next time.”

Luckily, the men on Tinder are a production line and Tinderman1 segued seamlessly into Tinderman2.

TinderMan2: “Where do I work? I work in banking and investments. So how about a vino sometime?”

When I didn’t expeditiously respond, he messaged again.

Tinderman2: “What, is working in finance a deal breaker? :P”

CC: “No. It’s not a deal breaker at all. In fact, it might even be fun to have a drink with someone devoid of a soul :D”

He blocked me after that. He wasn’t devoid of a soul, but apparently devoid of a sense of humor. My sardonic wit often combusts in the tinderbox. I was blocked by another fellow after I playfully said, “Don’t get too excited to meet me- I might yet be a convincing pre-op transsexual ;)”

Testing my Patients

I recently matched with a bearded bloke from Enmore whose profile spoke of ‘sustainability’, ‘craft beer’ and ‘meat trays’.

My, how I do love a hipster.

On our first interaction, The Beard gave me his Instagram handle and invited me to stalk him. I did. There was- amid jumpy iPhone footage of a plethora of live bands- a surprising number of posts dedicated to Shiner Bock beer. These were photographed in glistening, moist, pornographic glory. I counted eleven pictures of beer, but hardly any of him. There was more beer than beard on there.

I pulled out my phone and typed, “Saw your Instagram. Nice. I think my first question is: are you still sponsored by Shiner Bock?”

It was a whimsical bon mot that deserved, at the very least, an emoticon smiley. Instead I got a long, not really coherent explanation that was so convoluted, I wondered why he didn’t just type the word ‘no’ and save us both a lot of time.

We decided to meet for a drink at Newtown. I caught public transport in. Trains weren’t running due to trackwork, so I arrived ten minutes late, breathless and nervous. I scanned the crowd, my gaze finally settling on what I can only describe as a ‘demented lumberjack’. And he wasn’t okay.

Neither was I, actually.

Because who this bloke was in the Tinderverse and who he was in reality was somewhat incongruent.

The man from Tinder was bearded, smiling, slender. He wore Wayfarer sunglasses in one shot, clutched a bass guitar in another. He drank from a stein. He posed with a mischievous pug.

And the man trudging towards me? Well, he was the kind of overweight that usually has the adverb ‘morbidly’ attached to it. His soft, round midsection poked through a threadbare, black sloppy joe that was long ago washed to grey. It was, at least, clean. There were no obvious cum-stains or spag-bol remnants on it. His beanie, on the other hand, was coated in a powdery white substance that was, at best, cocaine and, at worst, dandruff. His face and eyes were completely flat- nary a flicker of emotion was spared for the jittery brunette before him.

And really, an expression would have been nice.

Because I’d only made a tiny bit of fucking effort in getting there.

I’d only spent an hour or so trying on outfits in my bedroom in a Tassie-Devil whirlwind of cotton. I’d only spent ninety fucking minutes battling rail buses, half of which was time spent in close proximity to a man with a facial tattoo who overused the word ‘cunt’. And then, when I changed buses at Strathfield station, there was only that tiny, little argument that I got into with the douche-bag in the hatchback; the guy who, after clocking my vintage army jacket and Doc Marten boots, decided that I was a Neo-Nazi. The dude that then began to trawl me in his car, chanting things like: “Where’s your Swastika, love? Adolf, hey? Seig Heils! Yeah! Nice boots Adolf!” through the open passenger window as I willfully ignored him for as long as I could.

‘As long as I could’ turned out to be ‘half a block’. I snapped after that and shouted- yes, shouted– “Go fuck yourself, you Peugeot-driving wanker!”

Not my finest moment. If I didn’t look like a scary skinhead before I started shouting at passing motorists with wild-eyed zeal, I certainly did after. Something clever and punchy like: “How dare you call me Adolf! Call me Eva. Or Miss Braun, you socialist swine,” would have been better.

Fucking l’esprit d’escalier.

Anyway, this bummed me out, because I thought that my carefully-chosen outfit said, ‘I’m stylish without trying too hard and my Heathers t-shirt says that I understand and embrace cult pop-culture references.’

But it didn’t. Apparently it just said two words: Master Race.

But, back to The Beard: when he greeted me, it was in a monotone, and he slurred his words.

Oh fuck, I thought. Is he drunk?

He leaned in for a kiss. I offered a cheek. He rested a paw uncomfortably close to another cheek. I pulled away. His hand lingered on my jeans like Velcro. He told me about his Sunday: a long walk with a friend that was hard because he got “munted” Saturday night, but a walk that he persevered with nonetheless because he’s “a fat bastard now”.

Then he asked where I wanted to go. We could go anywhere except The Townie. He’d been kicked out of The Townie last month- a feat that I, nor anyone who has ever set foot in The Townie, would think possible. But it was. The Beard’s version of events was: ‘I slur even when I’m not drunk.’ The bouncers was: ‘Even so, ten beers and a broken chair is inappropriate, and you have to leave.’

He asked if I’d eaten, the memory of his fat arse breaking a chair seemingly jogging him back to food. “Let’s go to Mary’s. You ever been there?”

I hadn’t.

He wiped his mouth. “I can’t believe you’ve never been to Mary’s,” he exclaimed in a flat voice.

We began walking up King street, taking a left turn down an alleyway. He led me through the darkness, deep into sex-crime central, before stopping at a place that had no signage, just a bare red bulb glowing above the door.

Oh Christ, I thought. He’s taking me to a brothel. Or a rape dungeon.

It wasn’t. In fact, Mary’s may be the only good thing to come out of that night. Mary’s is a dingy, heavy metal pub that serves fried chicken so consumable, I’m fairly certain it was a Breaking Bad, crystal-meth laced, Los Pollos Hermanos bird. They also serve a fried chicken dish named ‘Larry Bird’, which tickled me. Immensely.

He sat opposite me, studying me with open curiosity. “So how’m ah’doin?”

I put down my piece of chicken. “What?”

He wiped his mouth. “How am I doin’ on the date?”

I was taken aback and laughed. Loudly. “HAHAHAHAHA! That’s a…question. Isn’t it? Look at you asking…questions.”

“Is there like, any chance of,” he paused. “You know…”

Oh please God, don’t say it.

“Because I don’t go for casual stuff,” he continued. “Mostly. Like, I had a friend with benefits once, but that ended. It’s not me. There was one Tinder girl who took me home. That was weird because, like, she was tall and our feet touched during it. She left straight after it.”

I’d like to pause the story and assure you that I am absolutely not making this up. He absolutely said this to me, and as he spoke, I was absolutely conducting a mini-mental examination on the poor bastard: What the fuck is he talking about? That didn’t make sense. That was thought disordered as fuck. And I think he’s derailing. Is he derailing? No, he’s totally derailing. Is he a patient somewhere? I bet he’s a schizophrenic.

He wiped his mouth again. “You’re, like, big- for a chick, I mean- aren’t ya? You’ve gotta be five eight or…?”

Maybe I should ask if he takes Clozapine. The belly. The drool. Fuck! Okay, this is weird. I think I’m accidentally on a date with a fucking-

He considered me. “How do you usually go on Tinder dates? Like how do you do this?”

What the shit…? Oh no, he’s staring at you! Quick, say something now! Change the subject! Talk about  the chicken! Larry Bird! LARRY BIRD!

He left to use the bathroom. I took the opportunity to broadcast my woe on Facebook. When he returned, I casually brought up the uni assignment due that evening. I’d already done it- it was submitted earlier that afternoon, in between leg-day at the gym and my ‘yuck, I now smell like a diseased yak’ pre-date shower. I didn’t know that The Beard was going to be a living nightmare and I wanted to be free from responsibility if he wasn’t.

“So I have to leave. Right now.” Which is a shame, I tried to say with my eyes. But, you know, responsibility. Stuff.

“Have another beer.”

“I can’t.”

“I’ll drive you home.”

“Oh, you don’t have to do that! To Hornsby!”

“It’s an easy drive.”

“No, it’s fine. Besides, you’ve been drinking.”

“Only four pints.”

In two hours. And I don’t want to die in a fiery car wreck. At least not before I erase my Google Chrome history. “Really, I’ll get the train.”

He walked me to the station, I glanced at the board and saw that a train- although not my train- was leaving in two minutes. “Two minutes! Nick of time. I’ve really got to run.”

He responded by grabbing me around the waist and grinding his crotch into my hip like a horny Doberman. He went in for the kiss and, again, I offered a cheek. He smelt like chicken. Craft beer. Plague. Peristalsis. Hormones. And desperation.

I boarded my train feeling fed-up. You can’t go on a bad date without it draining you of something. Even if you enter the evening with no expectations, you leave robbed of a little effervescence. I can usually see the funny side, and writing about it fortifies me, but there are times when I can’t help but wish I could go back to that heady period in my early-twenties when the world didn’t seem to be full of weirdos.

Wanting a little pick me up, I opened Tinder.

And found this guy.
img_0023His profile states- with a two-finger salute to the rules of grammar- that he is “the badboy you’re mothers warned you about”, he’s “the real 50 shades baby.”

He’s also a poet, because he goes on to claim that he’s “hung like an ox”,

“enjoys nibbling at your…”

“and making you scream with his…”

But only blows his load into socks.

Okay, so I made that last one up.

Tinder, hey?

Shit.

Stranger than truth

4 Sep

I’ve swore off internet dating.

For the thirteenth time.

I wasn’t ecstatic at the thought of returning to Plenty of Fish, but a dry fortnight turned into a dry month that turned into dirty dreams about the cute butcher with shoulders like a Frigidaire and, since I was coming dangerously close to dry humping a random stranger, I sighed and dusted off my profile.

I started chatting to a guitarist in a punk band- continuing my almost comical weakness for creative types, something I blame entirely on my ex-boyfriend. He was a bass player. Who wrote poetry about me. I’d watch his fingers glide nimbly over the frets at his gigs and swoon like some puffed up, rubenesque Edie Sedgwick. It was heady. He ruined me.

Anyway, The Musician seemed nice at first. Funny, clever, bearded. We organised a date and worked on bonding through unbearably witty text exchanges. However, as is so often the case with men on dating sites, it got weird.

If I didn’t immediately reply to a text, he would message me again.

And again.

And again.

I’d reply. We’d chat. I’d stop.

My phone would chirp.

Again.

And

Again.

There are several things that you don’t want to find yourself doing before a first date. Flinging outfits around the room in a clichéd Hollywood montage is one, and saying “Oh, for fuck sake” in a slightly resigned tone when your phone beeps is another. One morning I woke up to this:

02bb0cc13946275dcb9609bb2fac06dfd66268a8ce218466feadd1b2f52a81ac

He was into fish, alright? He worked in an aquarium store. No, I’m not making that up. Yes, it is ironic given that he was on Plenty of Fish and…whatever. Truth is sometimes stranger than…whatever. Let’s move forward.

We’d been chatting until late the night before and I needed a lame manatee meme at 8a.m. as much as I needed one at any time of the day, which is: not at all. I deleted the text and rolled over.

8:30 a.m. – Not a fan of manatee humor, huh?

8:40 a.m. – More of an Emperor Penguin girl?

10:03 a.m. – How’s your day?

11:15 a.m. – 

3pg5u3

11:17 a.m.

download

12:45 p.m – You sleep late, Cinderella

3:32 p.m. – How do you feel about anal bleaching?

Anal bleaching finally garnered a response, though perhaps not the one he was after. I told him that he’d manatee’d me to death. Oh, the hu-manatee. The date was cancelled and my Plenty of Fish account ignored for a few months.

A few weeks ago, I logged in to delete the account once and for all. My brief presence on the site was time enough for a Beneficial Friend from earlier to jump back on the hook. (Ha! See what I did there?) Long story short, I had an uncategorizable tryst with this fellow late last year. He cancelled a few dates and gave me a case of the crankies- which sounds suspiciously like an STD, but is actually the by-product of standing me up to do cocaine with a club-footed flight attendant, or stewardess, or whatever the politically correct term for those overly-coiffed sky whores is.

That part isn’t even true. Just funny.

The truth is that he jerked me around and I abruptly terminated our beneficial agreement, ignoring his subsequent text messages. After seeing me pop up on Plenty of Fish his beseeching texts resumed, escalated to a spot of friendly social media stalking, and, well, since a dry month had turned into a dry…um…anyway, let’s just say he wore me down to a nub and I agreed to see him again.

It wasn’t a date. It was an unclassifiable evening. I was simply a selfish girl using an equally selfish man for a mutually beneficial transaction. You might think that makes me a tramp. I wish I could care. I don’t indulge in casual sex nearly as often as this blog suggests. Too much of it can make you feel empty. It’s refilling a glass with fluid that slowly evaporates as a dry week turns into a dry month, but topping the glass up too often sends spidery cracks splintering down the sides. No amount of casual sex is worth the amazing feeling of waking up next to someone who gives you a look that says, ‘Golly, I’m glad that you exist and that you happen to be naked beside me at this point in time’. No amount of emotionless physicality is a trade for real chemistry with another person, and I would never relinquish that. My x-rated business transaction was little more than scratching an itch. I reasoned that instead of slowly fucking my way through the men of Sydney, I was recycling. It was ingenious. I was cutting the sleeves off an old shirt and pinning a gaudy brooch to it in the hopes that I could flog one more wear out of it.

At the beginning of the evening, I was waiting at the bar while he went to the bathroom. Upon returning, he slipped a hand in the back pocket of my jeans. “I saw this chick with a fantastic ass standing at the bar,” he murmured in my ear, “and I got a little buzz when I realised she was with me.” Ugh. Player. Still, it was nice that the squats I had been steadily doing at the gym were acknowledged, even though he was admitting to checking out other women on our unclassifiable-evening without expressly admitting it. Which is poor form. It’s the almost-dating equivalent of looking over the shoulder of the person that you are talking to at a party in case someone better is behind them. But, this wasn’t a date, so I let it slide. I made a flippant comment about how all men should worship my perfect derrière. Then I had to explain what a derrière was. Then I had to assure him that I wasn’t French. I think he was disappointed. Our drinks arrived, I took a swig and the evening whirled from Coogee to The Retro to, bafflingly, The Marble Bar where we drank overpriced vodkas and mocked the rich people around us.

The following morning his hand woke me up, and I can say with total certainty that a cold digit fumbling your private parts is a subpar alarm clock. I rolled over, giving a half-asleep snuffle that was hopefully adorable- but probably closer to the noise that a suckling piglet makes- and politely explained that, at 6.30 in the morning, the only horizontal action I’d engage in consensually was sleep. At daybreak, I usually wanted nothing stiffer than a double espresso inside me. I wasn’t actually human until the sun was up for a few hours. In fact, he wasn’t speaking to CC at the moment, he was dealing with CC’s representative, and she can be crabby when groped in the bleak light of dawn. We kissed and I rolled over, letting out another snuffle and burying my face in a pillow that smelt strangely metallic.

Two minutes later, the sheet lifted, tickling my back. I figured he was going to the toilet. The sheet hung, suspended in the air like a half pitched tent. I frowned into the pillow. What on earth is going on? There was a small moan, a guttural noise of (hopefully) delight, and, finally, a rhythmic squelching.

He was jerking off.

With my face now arranged in utter mortification, and buried in sheets that had the unmistakable odour of the rejected early morning advances of women past, I began to wonder what the etiquette for such a situation was. Did I lie perfectly still? Lift my rear end slightly to pose? Pop on some porn? Roll over to offer a hand?

Fuck that, I thought. I don’t like anyone enough to give them a mildly hungover handjob at dawn.

As the squelching sped up, I figured that the best thing to do would be to feign sleep and hope that he didn’t finish on my leg. I lay still, indulging in the sort of self talk that comes when you find yourself having front row seats to- and seemingly being the star of- a male masturbation fantasy. I reasoned that this was simply a gentlemanly gesture. He was rocking me to sleep. Like a lewd lullaby. He was holding the sheet up in the air in case I was too warm. Maybe it was an obscure compliment- maybe he was suggesting that I’m hot. It was pornographic praise. I did tell him to worship my ass, I thought to myself. Maybe he took me literally. Eventually- finally?- he finished. There was a slapping sound that I imagined was him somehow high fiving himself. He wiped himself on the sheet, rolled over, nuzzled my hair, pinched the roll of flesh on my belly and asked if I felt like pizza for breakfast.

You probably think that I’m lying. That I’ve graduated from embellishment to balls-out making shit up. I wish I was. I wish I had a normal undefinable evening with a normal uncategorizable man who woke me up by spooning me, or making me coffee, or telling me that I had enough crust to crumb a flathead around my eyes, rather than a fiend that jerks off over me while I pretend to sleep.

I was biting the insides of my cheeks, biting my tongue, biting a knuckle. Doing anything that I could to keep in the giggles that were threatening to erupt. I was shaking with the effort of not laughing. My representative was shrieking at me to get dressed and get the fuck out of the house.

I gathered my clothes and dressed in the hallway. His flatmate chose that moment to pad to the bathroom, and was confronted by a dishevelled, half-naked, rubenesque deer in the headlights. I grabbed my shoes, opened the door, tripped over my feet, and nearly broke a hip falling down the stairs. I regained my balance and threw my head back, letting out great shrieking cackles of laughter.

On the train home I messaged my friend.

“It’s never easy with you, is it?” he replied.

No. It’s probably not. But at least it’s entertaining.

He’s cute like a frog.

4 Mar

I do a lot of stupid shit when I’m drunk.

A few months ago I placed a restriction on myself: it’s fine to get mildly tiddled with friends and make devastatingly clever and funny insights about human nature at achingly hip bars that none of us have any business being in, but it’s not okay to be alone and drunk, in ones tiny-inner-city-flat. I have learnt that the latter ultimately leads to me tearfully caterwauling from one ridiculous concern to the next with maudlin 80’s pop music playing in the background.

Yesterday though, I had a “fuck this, I’m sad and I’m going to get drunk” moment. It felt good to relinquish my vice like control freak grip for an evening. Getting drunk alone seems to hedge the sticky line between “social 30-something” and “burgeoning alcoholic” in my mind. Drinking alone makes me feel shameful, as if I am spending hours furiously masturbating to internet pornography: it’s certainly a way to pass the time but in the end you just wind up naked from the waist down with the distinct impression that you are wasting your life.

Marieke Hardy has pointed out, “Drinking alone can be infinitely preferable to drinking with other people. For one thing, you don’t have to tolerate the company of other drunks.” So with that endorsement I took a deep breath and prepared to be naughty for a night.

Two bottles of average red wine later, I had a headache, a tiny-inner-city-flat in various degrees of chaos, a troubling mobile phone call history, a pink bra hanging precariously from the television, several blank spots in my memory, a small jar of glucosamine powder for animals, and a large chunk of material for a self deprecating blog post.

And, I would like to apologise to Charlie, David, Leeroy, Duane, Ben, Andy, and the person whose name I cannot remember who is simply saved in my phone as “Mr Awesome.”

Drunk Dialling

Between the hours of one and two on a rainy Tuesday morning, I thought that prank calling people would be “hilarious” rather than “fucking irritating”. I’d been trawling through my phone when I discovered that I still had the telephone numbers of men collected during my time on an internet dating site. Most of these blokes I had never met, I usually offered my mobile phone number in an offhand manner when they were sufficiently intriguing in email form and I couldn’t be bothered continuously logging in to respond. These fellows were saved as some variation of “Ben – POF”, and with their dating profile picture added so I could keep tenuous track of them. I had not conversed with any of these lads in months, to be honest I have no idea why their numbers were still in my phone.

Unless it was to provide 67 minutes worth of entertainment to a lonely, intoxicated, thirty-something who exists in a worrying state of arrested development.

I have a Prank Call app on my phone, a relic from my relationship with my ex which would see us waste oceans of time harassing our friends and falling into fits of thigh-slapping glee when they eventually spewed strings of profane words uttered in the rabidly pressured speech of the truly pissed off.  We discovered that, much like the SpeakEasy Text-to-Speech! app, Pranksterz! provided 87 minutes worth of entertainment to two bored, intoxicated twenty-something’s who existed in a worrying state of arrested development.

My first victim was Andy, then Ben, Charlie, and I’m sure you can gather the rest. Some answered their phone, some of them will undoubtedly discover baffling voicemails where a robotic-sounding Chinaman informed them that their food was ready at 1am and would they please get out of bed and come to the store and pick it up?

When I got to David, all hell broke loose.

David was the only one on the list whom I had actually met. He was a fellow that I shagged from Plenty of Fish who became progressively nastier when I suggested that I didn’t want to take our union further, ultimately leading to a three day long text war of Dynasty proportions at which point I shrilly threatened to “ruin him”.

David was called at 1:13am, 1:21am, 1:22am, 1:22am, and at 1:23am. At 1:37am, when an intoxicated thirty-something in a worrying state of arrested development got bored of using her iPhone app, David had a three minute conversation with a human being. Named Mindy. Who explained in badly accented California-girl English that the middle of the night was her chosen time to ring past sexual partners and inform them that she had Chlamydia. And, ergo, there was a small chance that they had Chlamydia, too.

At 1:41am David was reminded that hanging up on Mindy wasn’t nice. Mindy was merely showing neighbourly concern about the sexual health of David and his future partners. Unfortunately, David did not show an appropriate level of appreciation.

At 1:50am, Mindy was briefly crushed when David called her a “crazy cunt” (which sounds like a chain of discount stores hawked in late night infomercials by a red-eyed John Singleton). David insisted that he had no idea who Mindy was and that he had “a very clean cock”. Recovering quickly, Mindy referenced the overweight Staffordshire terrier that David frequently locked in the laundry when entertaining his lady friends, proving that they had indeed shared a tawdry evening together.

Upon hearing this, David fell silent and uttered an audible gulp. His thoughts seemed to ring loudly through the crackling air: How did she know about my dog? Maybe I have fucked this bird. Oh god. Maybe I have Chlamydia. Shit. Shit. SHIT!

Unfortunately, this beautiful prank was ruined when Mindy gave a loud burp, collapsed into giggles and disappeared in a telephonic beep, never to be heard from again.

Denes Glucosamine

The white jar sat innocently on the couch. I had no idea where it came from. Upon inspection, I discovered that it was Denes Powder, a “green lipped mussel and glucosamine formula for cats and dogs”. Having no pets, I was mildly confused. There were two selfies in my phone- one of me holding a parcel, one of me holding the powder. Further investigation unearthed parcel wrapping in the bin, which suggested that at some point during the night I had decided to sneak down to the mailbox and steal my neighbours mail, ostensibly hoping that the small jar-like shape in the package was some exotic brand of cosmetic. I can only imagine that I had an inebriated internal conversation, where I managed to convince myself that if the package hadn’t been collected by 11.30pm, she obviously didn’t want it and by stealing it I was actually doing all of the other residents of the complex a service by ensuring that small packages were not left on top of the communal mailbox.

I left my keys hanging in the front door, too. A karmic invitation for burglars to let themselves into my house while I snored like a drooling pirate fuckwit with my inexpensive bounty scattered at my feet.

There is red lipstick…on everything

I woke up on the couch with red lipstick smeared on my arm, my face and my cushions, an empty wine glass sitting upturned at my feet, the crumbs of the midnight ham and cheese toastie spread over both my bosom and the kitchen floor. A small square of gluten-free bread sat forlornly on the bench, half-moon bite mark taken out of it, a determined trail of ants marching to and fro from a small crack above my kitchen cupboard. At some point in the evening, I had also made myself an espresso and managed to paint the kitchen cupboards with abstract art using only the finest organic Columbian coffee grounds.

I have no idea how or why there is now a harlot coloured lipstick print on the E key of my laptop. Perhaps I fell in love with an E, or an Edward, or Bob Ellis. The likely explanation is that I have ceased typing, mid sentence, after spontaneously collapsing, gracelessly faceplanting my laptop in the process.

To be honest I’m not even sure why I donned red lipstick to throw myself around my apartment, alone, on a Monday night.

The ever present iPhone

My Google history usually provides an interesting insight into the evening: “hybristophilia”, “Placebo Loud Like Love video clip”, “is Scarlett Johansson a whore”, “Denes glucosamine human consumption”, “is Denes only for animal consumption”, “can I give Denes to a human”, “will I die if I eat Denes powder”, and “how do you spell schaudenfreude”.

Earlier in the evening I had received a text from a fellow writer that I have been on a few dates with. I recall receiving the message at about 8.30pm but, with a flow of words pouring out of me like vomit and a bottle of red wine under my belt already, I had decided against replying, choosing instead to bash away at my laptop like a frustrated Mozart. However, at some point during the night I had picked up my phone and composed a verbose and mistyped SMS- involving entirely too many emoticons for anybody over the age of seventeen to use- which endeavoured to inform him that I found his thick framed hipster glasses “ironically dreamy” and that, despite the fact he is only my height and I would really prefer it if he could find a way to stretch his physique “only about half a foot or so, I’m not picky”, I would really enjoy another date with him if he would be “amenable to the idea” because he is “cute like a frog”.

Fuck. A. Duck.

Thankfully, I never sent it. And, thankfully, he doesn’t read my TMI blog, because I seriously doubt that I would receive much more than the awkward suggestion of alcoholics anonymous if I had not blacked out before hitting send.

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Meryl Streep’s Skeleton

7 Sep

I have a confession to make.

I have tried Internet dating.

I know, shitty confession. That statement could have been followed up with something sordid:
I have a confession to make: I have a wrap me in glad-wrap and tie me to the clothesline fetish.
I have a confession to make: when I get sad, I cut my legs with a potato peeler.
I have a confession to make: I kick cats on the street.

Actually, one should not joke about kicking cats. That’s not funny. Bad CC.

Only my closest friends knew about my Internet dating skeleton. Until I drank a beer after work and decided to air my dirty laundry.

I had to turn to the seedy world of Plenty of Fish. Months had passed since my divorce, and I was slowly becoming obsessed with the idea of fucking someone who wasn’t my ex. I had slept with the same man for seven years. My kissing style was synced to his. I wanted to fuck myself back to life. To fuck away the memory of my divorce.

The potential men were nowhere to be found.

I kind of felt like Chloe in Fight Club. The girl dying of cancer: “I am in a pretty lonely place. No one will have sex with me…All I want is to get laid.”

“…I have pornographic movies in my apartment, and lubricants, and amyl nitrite…”

You see, I don’t have that cross-the-room-to-talk-to-her appeal, I wish I did- what girl doesn’t- but I don’t. That’s not a complaint. I tell myself that having lots of male friends is the problem. I’m the girl in jeans and sneakers, beer in one hand, laughing too loudly, surrounded by guy friends. That girl has appeal, perhaps not to everyone, and certainly not to the men who seek casual sex in pubs.

One of my exes, king of the backhanded compliment, told me that who I am on the inside enhances what I look like. At the time, I thought that was a nice thing to say. It referenced internal vs external beauty. Now I think: ‘you are average until your mouth opens’. I caught up with him again recently, he broached the subject of us starting back up again- a bad, bad idea. He said, “You aren’t like other girls, you know. You actually have half a brain”.

He must have seen the look on my face because he laughed and said, “Sorry, I realise how that sounds…”

Half a brain. At least that’s more than the Scarecrow from the Wizard of Oz.

Eternal optimist.

Hollywood tells us that the world is your dating site. That men will approach you in bookstores, the coffee queue and the supermarket. No, no and no. Perhaps if I were to straighten my hair, lose 7.4 kilograms and stop dropping the f-bomb I would have more luck. But I can’t, or, more importantly, I won’t.

I used to work in a bar with a girl who was gorgeous. Coltish, feminine, lots of make up, hair in a perfectly straightened pouf, the works. She knew it too, and would often do things that I consider inappropriate, attention seeking and whorish- but that’s another story. I remember working with her one day- her, gorgeously groomed in heels and tight jeans; and me disheveled, sneakers on and sans make-up. One of the regular patrons came up to the bar.
“Angelica,” he began, a dopey smile on his face. “You are the prettiest flower in the garden.”
I raised my eyebrows and said nothing.
He turned to me, “CC, get me a schooner of VB. So, Angelica, do you have a boyfriend?”

Humph.

I would have taken second prettiest flower. Tallest tree. Neatest hedge. Nicest weed? No? Am I in the flower bed at all, or in the compost bin?

I used to look at Angelica and think, you may be built like a Pussycat Doll, but at least I’m not screwing a married man AND my best friends boyfriend. So there. Your beauty will fade but you will be a whore forever.

I was only a tiny bit bitter.

Don’t think I’m fishing for compliments or have some weird body dysmorphia thing going on. I don’t. I have given up on worrying about this nonsense. There are more important things in life than how you look. Not being a whore, for instance. Having half a brain. I’m not saying that I’m hideous, I’m just trying to give a trillion reasons for turning to cyberspace for sex.

The three men who I shagged from POF all turned out badly.

The first one was a yuppie who turned manic afterwards (“Oh my God, what are you doing tomorrow night? Sunday? Can I see you on my birthday? Can I add you on Facebook?”). He got nasty when I stood him up, and called me some vulgar and vaguely offensive things. “Western suburbs cunt” was my personal favourite. I retaliated in a suitable way. Read An Open Letter on Internet Dating for the best of my rebuttals. I eventually threatened to take the messages to the police and “ruin him”, just to get him to leave me the fuck alone.

The second fellow had no friends beyond the girls he was shagging on POF, which should have sounded a few air-raid sirens. He got cranky when I cancelled the swingers party we were meant to go to. I was interested in a guy in-real-life, and at that moment in time he looked to be interested in me, too. I thought that perhaps getting banged like a bass drum by a room full of men might be a bit inappropriate. However, nothing eventuated with this in-real-life guy, and my POF friend never called again.

The final guy cancelled a date because of a small spider bite that he had to put antiseptic cream on.

I haven’t had the best run.

I jumped back on POF recently, answered some messages, and exchanged some phone numbers but, honestly, I can’t be bothered.

I am at the classic single girl conundrum: I don’t want to have zero sex, but fucking my way through the men of Sydney doesn’t particularly appeal to me. My experience on the site has taught me that if they are normal, they wouldn’t be on POF. I don’t know what that says about me. I try not to think about that. Don’t bring it up. Shush.

I have never been one to fuck a lot of guys. I joke about how hard it is to crack the combination lock on my pants, and it’s true. I’m certainly not a prude but I would rather find a person to fuck on a regular basis- with emotions or without- than find a different wang to fill my hole each night. When I split from my ex I thought that I would be perfectly justifiable in acting like a whore for a bit. I reasoned that nobody needed to know. I could let myself go and do the most fucked up, depraved shit ever, because getting divorced is traumatising and losing yourself in the sweatiness of casual sex is completely fine.

But I could never bring myself to.

I could have bedded many more guys from POF, only because its a hook up site and I have a perfectly good vagina. I had 20 year old guys contacting me- that’s how much of a hook up site it is. But, something always stopped me. I’m not sure what. I was always strange-boundaries-girl on POF: “What? You want to meet for a drink first? Can’t you just give me your address? No? How about if I send this picture of my dick. Hello? Hello!? Are you still there? Here’s another cock shot…Hello…?”

Too much casual sex can leave me feeling empty. It’s like scratching an itch at the time, but when I get home I realise that I will be sleeping diagonally across my empty bed. Again.

Maybe it will do me good to be completely celibate single for a while. Maybe I should stop whinging about my sex life when there are people starving in Africa, you first-world-problem having pain-in-the-ass. Maybe I should just trowel on the foundation, crack out the hair straightener and hope for the best. Maybe…oh, I don’t know. I’m not sure…thoughts…?

Romance Wrapped in Masturbation References

28 Jul

I am a single lady, which I am fine with in a, now put your hands up, oh oh oh, kind of way. There are upsides to being single. It affords me time to write. My spare time is spent busily weaving blankets of bad grammar and adult themes. I wrap these blankets around clumsily crafted word babies made from nuggets of utter bullshit within which a kernel of truth resides.

When you are single, chocolate ice cream becomes a perfectly valid choice for dinner. Dutch ovens- the kind where your other half farts and holds your head under the covers- become a thing of the past. And, fuck it, I’m going to watch 500 Days of Summer. Again. Right now. In my knickers. Then I am going to paint my nails, scream “romance doth suck” in time to Beethoven’s Fifth, and pretend that I contain one fifth of the awesomeness that is Adalita Srsen whilst air guitaring in a pink wig.

See? Kernal of truth, nugget of bullshit. Try and pick what’s what, it may be fun. You know, if you have nothing better to do with your time. Loser. Actually, don’t try and search for the kernel of truth. Shame on you. Your time is running out. Your life is ending before you. You are dying and decaying more and more with each passing day. The end will be upon us all before we know it. In fact, you shouldn’t even be reading this blog. You should be sky diving. Or learning French. Or something. Go. Now. Use your time constructively. I will still be writing boring bullshit in a month. Promise.

I digress.

There are downsides to single-dom though, especially when you are trying to get your writing out to a wider audience. Saturday night is sometimes spent tumbling down the rabbit hole that is Googling your own name. Incidentally, my twitter account is worth USD$4.94.

Oh, and no sex, too. Yeah. Big downside.

The prospect of internet dating has been suggested to me a few times, and after letting out a peal of teary laughter that tastes like loneliness and red wine, I occasionally contemplate it. I imagine that internet dating is like Sushi Train, only instead of a selection of delectable raw fish speeding along before me, I will have a range of bad selfies taken in a public toilet. Internet dating to me is just sex on tap. The unspoken conversation would read, I know why you are on here, you know why I am on here. Let me meet you, confirm that you aren’t Jason Voorhees, then we can have shameful anonymous sex at your place after which I will hurriedly dress, murmur thank you, and hastily depart never to see you again. I imagine that to be the case, anyway.

Kernal of truth. Nugget of bullshit. Just saying.

So a friend recently described her experiences Internet dating. Not me, though, let’s be absolutely clear on that before we move on.

Okay?

Okay.

So, she signed up to Plenty of Fish, a free, suitably sleazy website, with the express intention of finding a casual shag. Good on her. I helped her write a punchy and clever profile, managing to get the phrase ‘I know, totally ninja’ in there. I’m not sure how either, but it did make sense in context. We Photoshopped a few pictures, hit enter, and waited for the little fishies to come nibbling.

And, they did. My God, did they ever.

The first message was a fifty year old man who sent an image of what can only be described as a Benjamin Button cock. It was at least thirty years younger than him. There were no words, just an arty cock shot. Delete. Block. And move on.

We waded through the various replies and found a few reasonable ones buried within the myriad that contained bad spelling, internet memes, amateur pornography, and poorly used emoticons.

She began chatting to one lad, Farm Boy. Two years younger than her. Farm boy seemed nice enough. His profile boasted of his apparent intellect, which usually means that his IQ lies just above turducken; but she reasoned that he could be a shy guy not adept at getting girls. They exchanged numbers and started texting, and here’s where things went…awry. Farm boy texted constantly, and her mobile vibrated more than her, um, actually, she will kill me for writing the simile I wanted to. Let’s just say her mobile rang more than…a church bell on Sunday. Or something. Damn it, nowhere near as good as the other one.

Anyway, he began asking questions. Not, “are you Team Edward or Team Jacob” questions, either. “Can I ask a question?” he’d write, and before she could respond: If we hit it off, can we have sex? Can I ask a question? If we have sex, where will it be? Can I ask a question? If we have sex, will you be having sex with anyone else? Ooh, I have an awesome question, if we have sex-

WE WILL NOT BE HAVING SEX JUST FUCK OFF YOU DESPERATE LITTLE TERD!

That was me that sent that, not her. Well, he was interrupting our lunch, where I was busily talking about myself. It can’t be all about him, you know.

“CC,” she exclaimed shortly after I put Farm boy out to pasture, “how do I know if I want to have sex with these men from just a picture?”

She had a point, and I didn’t have an answer. I personally find that there is a certain intangibility to attraction. It’s all quite primal, really. I’m sure that the little synapse that fires in my brain when I smell a male who smells a certain way has been carefully engineered by evolution. It’s that weird mix of pheromones and hormones and stuff. There’s something nebulous about a real connection, you can’t pick it, you can’t describe it, you can’t explain it, it’s just there. You turn giddy, you laugh at stuff that really isn’t funny, your pupils dilate (really, they do), you fidget, your eyes sparkle, and you can’t wipe the stupid grin off your face. Real chemistry is uh-mazing when it happens, and you can’t get it through text messages, computer dating sites or internet chats.

I am a total slave to a real connection with a person and I have written off more than a few perfectly nice men because my ovaries didn’t clang. This is before I started practicing the Single Ladies dance at home, anyway. Oh wait, that sounds like a euphemism for something. It wasn’t. I meant the hand thing. No! Not THAT…oh, you know what? Never mind. That hole is dug.

But, it isn’t all about me. There is a point buried in this.

“And,” my friend continued, “I don’t know if I can be bothered playing all the games that men play.”

Ha! Yes guys, that’s how we think. You do! You know it, we know it. Its okay, we do too. She has a point: imagine if dating was actually an honest exercise. Imagine if you could say to someone, “You know what? I don’t want to marry you, I definitely don’t want to bear your children, and you can forget an ever after with me. I just want to take you to the bedroom, shag the shite out of you, and then go about my day. Maybe the following day I will want to shag you again, maybe not. Let’s just shag and find out.” I know, right? I think men AND women would like hearing that every now and then. What do we hear instead? “It’s not a good time for me”, “I’m just flat out with work at the moment”, “I’ll call you”, “I love you”.

Actually, scratch that last one, I’m still 7.4 bastards away from being that cynical.

However, if we were completely honest with each other, would that elusive connection disappear? Would it be dragged to earth with the reality of my overflowing washing basket? Would that subtle feeling that you get, where you can almost feel the snaps of electricity in the air between you, vanish? I think it would. And I think that the agony of putting yourself out there is worth the possibility of finding something that makes you smile. Instead of Googling your own name on a Saturday night.

Farm boy may disagree with me, though. He never texted her again. I may have broken him.

Anyway, my friend’s foray into the sticky world of online dating has been short lived. As she said to me “I was getting too many cock shots. First thing in the morning, BAM, there it is. If I don’t like you enough to wake up next to you, I really don’t need to see your willy before my morning coffee. I know men are proud of them, but that’s ridiculous. Imagine if women carried on like that?”

Problem is, we do. In our own way. It’s still fun, though. Whoah oh oh, oh oh oh…

An open letter on Internet dating…

12 Jun

Dear Mr Cokehead,

I write this letter to ask you nicely and civilly to stop contacting me. Your texts are most unwelcome, albeit amusing, and the constant images of your flaccid little penis has left me with enough material to start my own porn site.

While it is fantastic to hear that you have such an active sex life, I do not envy Francine, Georgia, Natalia or Gretchen, as the barrage of text messages were coming through while you were meant to be entertaining some of these ladies. I do not recall you sending agitated text messages whilst I was underneath you, and I most certainly would have spoken up if you did. Please stop referencing these women in the texts. Number 1, I do not believe they exist any more than I believe in the fairies at the bottom of my garden, and number 2, I see it as a thinly veiled and clumsy attempt at making me jealous. This does not work. Why? Allow me to explain.

I’m not sure how to put this so your bloated Eastern Suburbs ego grasps it. I would rather fuck a beach umbrella. I would rather have extensive, unanaesthetised anal surgery than spend another second in your company. Seeing your name flash up on my iPhone leaves me angry enough to club a thousand furry woodland creatures to death.

I am not sure if you are retarded. Perhaps the English language fails you at times. You may have trouble reading. Allow me to spell it out again: stop contacting me. This means: stop contacting me. It does not mean wait a split second and then send a badly worded and vaguely indignant text which attempts to prove through a myriad of spelling errors how right you think you are.

I do not wish to see you again. As magical as the five minutes of jack rabbit sex were, I do not wish to repeat them. I am sure that a man of your wit, charms and with your unending supply of poor quality cocaine will have no problems finding another lassie who is not make believe.

So this is the last you will hear from me, I do not believe that you are worth my time, as it is already filled with more important things such as wiping my ass, squeezing my zits, or organising my Rolling Stone collection.

However, I do have to add that if I hear from you again I will not hesitate in taking the threats, insults, cock-shots and phone logs to the police. I do hope you understand this, I will make it as clear as I possibly can: I will ruining destroy you. I will not stop until I do. Get it? Good.

Sincerely,

Fed-up Phoebe.