getting around

Dear Blind Date from the Other Night,

I am extremely sorry that I peed on myself when you brought me home. And not in a kinky-European-porn way. I mean in an I-couldn't-make-it-from-the-couch-to-the-bathroom-so-I-peed-on-my-Diane-von-Furstenburg-wrap-dress-and-you-helped-me-into-your-bathtub-as-you-turned-on-the-shower way. Then, because I still thought we were on a date and still wanted to sleep with you, I tried to act sexy, touching myself for you to watch even though I couldn't really stand up straight, until you told me to stop, dressed me in your Lollapalooza '98 t-shirt and a gigantic pair of Santa-print flannel pajama pants, gave me cab fare and told me to go home.

It wasn't the first time that happened, either. The first time was a few years ago, when I was in college and heading over to a guy's apartment and ended up peeing on myself in his entranceway, right after he buzzed me up. Reminding myself of that makes me feel better, makes me feel like I'm not alone, even if I'm only comparing myself to myself.

Until recently, I used to drink a bottle of wine before a first date. It's the only time I'll drink alone. It's a behavior I've tried to spin into some sort of Sex and the City style anecdote even though I know it's not normal. But I justify it because I don't usually get drunk — not really with friends, not by myself, only with — or before — meeting a man.

Guys don't know that. When they meet me, I seem confident, bubbly, a career girl with blown-out hair, knee-high leather boots, a Marc Jacobs bag and four-inch heels, who's maybe just a tiny bit buzzed. Just in case, I always issue a standard disclaimer along with my introduction: "Sorry, I just came from a glass of wine with a friend." I hold onto eye contact, concentrating on the space between his eyebrows. I know myself too well and know that if I didn't have a focal point, I'll look away — probably toward the bar.

Invariably, he smiles and relaxes into himself. I like that. After all, he knows what he's getting: a party girl, one with friends, an active social calendar, someone who's looking for a good time.

"What do you like more, drinking or sex?"

I know, I sound like an alcoholic. And maybe, at age twenty-six and countless sexual decisions driven by one — or five — too many cocktails, I am. It's a phrase I've often experimented with: I'm an alcoholic. When I say it, it sounds like an icebreaker game. It doesn't sound real.

"What do you like more, drinking or sex?" One guy asked me that three years ago, the winter I was twenty-three. It was probably the tenth time we'd slept together. At one point, we seemed to be on a sort of relationship track, with actual dates, phone calls on nights we didn't see each other and daytime back-and-forth e-mail banter while we were at our respective jobs. That was before our fifth date, before I began drunk-dialing him as many as twelve times in a night. Quickly, our fledgling romance downgraded to friends with benefits. We never really discussed it, but it was something I tacitly understood. I was okay with that.

"I don't know?" I tried to sound coy. He'd just rolled off me and I felt sweat-sticky all over.

"I know the answer," he half-sighed. He kissed me. Because I was drunk, I kissed him back. "You love your booze."

Commentarium (28 Comments)

May 18 09 - 12:18pm
R

What a repugnantly self-loathing way to live. I really hope this is fiction.

May 18 09 - 12:43pm
ABV

I think it's sad and very, very honest. And I bet there are a lot of other women who've done this at various stages of their lives. hopefully, the writer is in a better place now.

May 18 09 - 6:32am
jd

I totally understand. Although for me, the morning after always sucks, but like a moth to the flame .....

May 18 09 - 9:49am
ted

lovely piece. and good that you are modulating. cyclical behavior is the enemy, keep it fresh.

May 18 09 - 1:37pm
LRR

I really loved your story.. very clever, funny & cute. I get the, if he will love me as a drunken mess theme.. But unfortunately people (men), are not that smart & are very judgmental.. its typically a woman, who would love a drunken, coke head.. & see so much potential in him.. that was me.. I want more of a man than his party face.. and trust me, so did the guy's who went out with you..

your awesome for righting this article I loved it
LRR

May 18 09 - 5:38pm
DMT

beautiful! I can totally relate...

May 18 09 - 6:23pm
IAB

We should trade tales of interest over a few drinks...

May 18 09 - 8:03pm
twj

Can you send me your contact info? I'd like to take you out for a drink...

May 18 09 - 9:37pm
RYNK

A good thread of life, fiction or otherwise. Although, this one might need to be pulled before the fabric completely unravels. One last toast and then...One last toast and then...

May 18 09 - 11:01pm
bt

this is amazing. i just want you to know. you are courageous and brutally honest to be able to understand yourself on a level that overrides denial with dignity.

May 19 09 - 7:39am
JCF

I also once knew someone who had a different name when she was really drunk. My guess is that if your personality changes so much when you drink that you're using a different name to represent that personality, and that name seems to be coming up quite frequently, that you should probably rethink your lifestyle. (By the way, Nerve staff, page 1 seems to be coming up pretty wide in my browser.)

May 19 09 - 1:33pm
NH

The final paragraph sums it up. My life, written out for me to read, at the hands of someone else. One day we will all see the err of our ways, until then... bartender...

May 19 09 - 3:26pm
r

yep, i've been doing this for years. i've come to the sad believe that dating people for 3 months is the best-case scenario b/c they're still the person you want them to be in your head, not the person they really are.

i love drunk hook ups. they are filled with intrigue and randomness and laughter.

May 19 09 - 8:20pm
JCB

yeah, you do it on purpose, and you can quit any time. I hope this is a satirical piece because if not, the author is an addict and possibly has a personality disorder. and the fact she wears designer clothes and goes to yoga class doesn't make it glamorous. it's just as sad and gross. please get help.

May 21 09 - 11:36am
AER

Oh. My. God. This is me and I've never seen anyone else like me with the same issue. Thank you

May 23 09 - 3:50am
as

This is most of the pathetic serially single skanks in their 20's and 30's. People wonder why it's so hard to find love, it's because the crutch they use to loosen up socially makes them disgusting people, who wouldn't be disgusting without it ... as this story was stating

May 24 09 - 7:38pm
ju

you are an alcoholic sweetie...you're not denying it but you haven't reached that jumping off point because living like this is fun for you-for now. this scenario, over and over to the tired age of 38 is what brought me to the cross roads and a church basement, hating it ever step of the way.
three year later, sober, happy and still horny===I'm finding out hot random sex, sober, is for grown ups, the shit you're pulling is for kids.
saving a seat for you...

May 27 09 - 8:29pm
bj

26 - young professional female - could have written the piece myself. except for the peeing.

May 30 09 - 1:49am
YCC

Bell

May 30 09 - 2:02am
YCC

porque es acerca de la alegr

Jun 05 09 - 3:54pm
RF

As I found out for myself, there are literally thousands of stories JUST like yours in every AA meeting in the world. If you ever ask yourself "Am I an alcoholic?" the answer is YEP. People without an issue with alcohol/other substances never ask that question. Hope you can get off that merry-go-round sooner rather than later--you can have a life..

Jun 08 09 - 6:46am
JT

You've got an excellent writing style and you definitely touched a nerve with me. You should consider a follow up if you make any progress there.

Jul 10 09 - 10:25am
PW

Lady, listen from someone who knows. Slut-Fu, or "The Way of the Drunken Ho-bag" is not something you want to continue just because it feels comfortable. Yes it's a hundred times easier than having a relationship. But that's because meaningless sex is basically robbing you of real life.

There's a reason people form lasting, loving relationships and don't just sleep with anybody they meet at the bar. They are rewarding. There is no reward in drunken hook-ups other than successfully pushing down the innate natural desire to want to make a connection with someone. Because that's *hard*. It's *easy* just to have a fling and make that your "mini-relationship". You put your time and energy and emotion into having some laughs and enjoying the pure sexual energy and freedom you find in the arms of a stranger who desires you, but does not care for you. When you find someone you can love, and that can love you back.... that's it, girl. That's all she wrote. You won't want anything else. But you can't sabotage yourself each night in a drunken stupor and expect to find it.

It took the help of my friends showing me how little respect they had for what I was doing for me to start to question my role. I thought everything was going fine. I thought it was just natural to hook up again, and again, and again, ... Well let me tell you there's some serious social stigma associated with it, even amongst other men. Once I really thought about it, I realized the reason I would just hook up without even liking these girls was that 1. it was easy and 2. I didn't have to think about how hard it would be to find a girl who I could really care for. After that I had a few friends with benefits, and once it was obvious they ran it's course i'd give myself a break again. Eventually the urge would creep up again. But it's so much better taking your time and finding someone you can spend your time with and really enjoy it. Life is too short to waste your time with "just sex".

Aug 28 09 - 10:42pm
JES

I really enjoy your writing, how you blend foggy recollections of the experience with razor-sharp observations of your issues. What courage and growth I see between your college days writing and this note. I recall how terrified I have been before a dreaded encounter and how the bourbon helped me get out the door. But now at times, your buzz is from running or coffee and you make it through. Please continue to share at least an occasional observation on these issues as it may help us both understand our journey a bit better.

Mar 02 10 - 3:20pm
NTC

I've always shyed away from hookups. Not that I don't want to but because it seems like a great way to cut out any emotional contact. I think you'll have a much more intense orgasm if you let your emotions be a part. Its hard, its scary, and it can heart your heart A LOT but its worth it.

Apr 18 11 - 1:13am
Jh

Good writing. I liked this article a lot.

May 19 11 - 8:33am
Cluisa

That was great, im the same way, im just trying to find someone to love me drunk or not

Mar 02 12 - 9:58pm
MJ

OMG this is so amazing. I totally love this story and your positive outlook on life!!! it is motivation to us office drones, monday to friday!