A Date with Raymond Chandler
July 3, 2000
Dave’s studio is a cardboard-, blanket- and electrical tapemonstrosity that takes up two-thirds of my office. It looks like a seven year old’s attempt at a rocket ship. The equipment is piled up in stacks, and Dave has to lay on his back to record, with his legs sticking out. I was bored, so I flung a rubber band at his legs. The guitar-playing noise continued uninterrupted, so I threw a book after the rubber band. Dave’s head came out: “Do you need attention, Leese?” In answer, I put a chair under the office doorknob (there were house guests downstairs). To get into the cardboard studio, I had to inch tightly over Dave’s entire body. He was instantly hard, but tried to push me off. “The guests,” he hissed.
Though stronger than me, he was wedged in tight between the layers-of-cardboard wall and the equipment: he was helpless. I backed up enough to where I could unzip his pants. My elbow caught on a rusty sheet of metal, but tetanus wasn’t about to stop me. I slapped my cheeks with his penis and rubbed it with my neck and ears (I read somewhere that’s supposed to be sexy), keeping eye contact
There’s something Dave doesn’t know about me. I watch TV from one to three every afternoon. I act high and mighty when he comes home at night, talking about how hard I worked. But mostly I’m a housewife. I think robed ladies who watch TV all alone and excited with the door locked (so they’ll have time to shut off the TV and grab a vacuum cleaner or computer should a knock come at the door) are very elegant. But only if it’s secret. With the house guests here all week, my TV-watching as well as my sexual activity has been proscribed. But today they were out house hunting, so I made a sundae and settled down on the bean bag with the remote squeezed tight in my hand. I flipped back and forth between Biography, where I learned that Raymond Chandler had to stay drunk six weeks straight to write out the story of his glittering, treacherous women and low-down men, and Days of Our Lives, where Sami Brady the blackmailer connived with the father of her child’s gold-digging new wife to get said father back on the booze so that the courts would deem him incompetent and give sole custody to Sami. I myself was feeling glittery and blackmailing when Dave came home by surprise! I’d forgotten to lock the door, and he caught me in my secret world of lunchtime intrigue. How to erase this information (my TV habit) from his mind? I grabbed him without saying hello and started making out with him (shutting the TV off with my foot), then I put my hand on his chest and pushed him into the bedroom. Seeing him as an interloper, and not my husband who comes home at the same time every day when I’m ready for him, I was surprised at his handsomeness. I’d forgotten. I said, “I like to look at you!” He said, “I like to look at my hand slapping your face.” Which he did. I turned into Veronica Lake! Dave shoved me onto the bed and slapped me between the legs and said, “I’m gonna make you come just like this.” And he did! Just by slapping me with my pajamas still on. He unzipped his pants, and woah! I never saw one of those in a black and white movie. I reached for it but he put it back and rezipped his pants and shoved his shirt down with rugged motions, saying, “That’s all you get. I’m a man, I got work to do.”
“Let me have it,” I begged. “Just five minutes that’ll be enough. They don’t need you at the Navy like I do.” But he left anyway. As I watched him mount his bicycle in silhouette against the big orange sun, I thought about the way the afternoon light came under the canape in a New York café two years ago, how it bathed only our feet and ankles Lyle and my wonderful, beautiful friend Kate, and Lyle’s bandmate, a hot Southern man. Everyone there was an alcoholic except for me, and I was in love with all three of them, and I was drunk and oh how much I loved Lyle and his plans that would never come true, and he felt uncomfortable having me love him so much and Kate felt uncomfortable having me not be an alcoholic, so he flirted with her and she let him, and I touched Southern Man’s foot with mine . . . And I thought about how much I miss it, how much I miss having something impossible, and how Lyle and I played really well at a dramatic love because we knew we didn’t have to worry about it being real. Dave and I play all the time at hurting each other because we know we can’t, and in some primordial way, we’re disappointed when it never hurts too much, and we play at it just a little bit harder.
Lisa Carver and Nerve.com, Inc.