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Too many princes

What rejection really means

A woman in a dark room looking at you like she's unimpressed

I was at this thing the other day, a social event at a restaurant, and there were these two women there, they worked at Tokyo Disney, as princesses. Maybe in the nightly parade or some shows or something? I don’t know how it works. In any case, they were blond and blue eyed and beautiful. I flirted a bit, but figured out very early on that I wasn’t going to get anything going with them. Oh well. My fallback in that kind of circumstance is that I invite them to a comedy show. Like, if they’re not going to be lovers or friends, then maybe an audience.

I had walked away before telling them about when my next show was, so it was later in the evening, just before I was about to leave, that I went over to make mention of my shows as part of a goodbye. The princesses were talking to these two other guys, one older dude who had a daughter who was into Disney, and this younger guy, I think he was from Germany or something. Anyway, I eased into the conversation, just to say civil goodbyes and make my offhand invitation. They could not have been less interested in coming to a show. The one I was speaking to directly nodded her head, saying, “sure, yeah,” but without even a hint of taking a note on when or where the show was. So, whatever.

Anyway, I guess the way I had interjected into the conversation made the German dude feel like he was getting cock blocked, or that he wasn’t going to get anywhere, so he suddenly kind of leaves in a huff, and he says, “Well, it seems you’ve already got enough princes,” or something like that. As in, referencing the fact that they’re princesses, and everyone hitting on them is an aspiring prince.

It was a weird thing to say, but I get it. He basically felt that he wasn’t getting anywhere with these women, but he wants to believe it’s because of all the noise and traffic around him, all these other guys just making it hard for him to really get his game on. So he decides to cut out of the situation, and he wants to preserve his pride by letting us know that it’s his decision to give up on this, it’s not that he failed to get anywhere.

I let out a quick breath through my nose, the kind where you kind of laugh, but it’s more an expression of detached observation than real amusement. I kind of suspect the guy had no chance anyway, but, if it really was me who was an obstacle, then he should have hung in for ten more seconds, because that’s how long it would be before I went out the door. Maybe the fact that he was on such a hair pin trigger to find a reason to bail indicates the fragility of his prospects, and on some level he knew he had to find a reason to leave so as not to stick around to confront harsher realities. I don’t think the two princesses even noticed him leaving, let alone his witty parting shot. They seemed really engaged with the older guy and talking to him about his daughter, a conversation that was convincingly innocent, as if maybe he was the only guy in the room at a stage of his life where he wasn’t going to relentlessly hit on them. And maybe he is, though I kind of doubt he’d refuse to fuck either or both of them if that were on offer.

Anyway, I was fascinated by this small moment of male sociology, because I could relate. I’ve been there. I was reminded of a moment in my twenties, at a club, in Tokyo, when I came across this super hot girl at the bar. I remember she was wearing a cowboy hat, which was a minor trend at the time. I decided to do the archetypical pick up move of buying her a drink. She accepted, but I remember after one quick sip, she left, disappearing into the crowd, leaving me feeling like I had been used for free drinks. It was one these really big clubs with multiple floors, so we didn’t bump into each other again until much later. I was walking down the stairs, she was walking up, and as we passed, I said something snarky, I don’t remember the exact words, but something like, “enjoy your free drink?” She stopped, turned to me, and said, “what?” Not in a, “what did you say?” way, but in a, “what the fuck is that supposed to mean?” way. I said something about how she accepted the drink I bought her without even giving me a couple of minutes to even try talking to her. Isn’t the gesture of a drink worth at least the polite fiction of small talk? I didn’t actually say anywhere near that articulate, but that was the gist of my attitude.

She said, “fine, okay, what do you want to talk about?” It was more of a challenge than an invitation, so, not ideal circumstances, but, nonetheless the ball was in my court now. And I totally flubbed it. I don’t remember what I said, largely because whatever it was, it was so lacking in substance that there wasn’t much of anything too remember. All I do remember clearly was her just walking away, pointedly, wordlessly letting me know that it was never a lack of opportunity that was the problem.

Of course, I walked away from that interaction still blaming her, oscillating between seeing her as an individual at fault, or the club environment, and probably society at fault. I mean, what the hell kind of situation is that, to have someone test you on the spot on the merits of your conversive abilities? How could anyone have anything so impressive to say? Was she any different from any other woman at a club, though, where they get hit on so relentlessly that they raise cynical defenses to high for anyone to overcome?

But I couldn’t shake the reality of not having been able to have anything to say. Especially since I pride myself on my improv comedy abilities, and my ability to come up with ideas anywhere, anytime.

The reality was that I just wanted to fuck her, and any and all conversation was just a methodology for getting there. Which I don’t think is unethical or bad, the only problem is that I’m trying to hide that fact under civil fictions about somehow there being some other level of connection. If I had genuine courage, I would have just straight up said, “No, you’re right, I don’t really want to talk, I just want to get you out of here and have sex with you.” I would have opened myself up to having her judge my on my physical appeal, as I did her. The odds are low, close to but not quite zero, that an approach like that might work. And if it didn’t, fine, move on to the next person.

Or maybe I could have tried some basic conversation, knowing that it’s not about trying to create the most intellectually scintillating conversation ever, but just as a way for two humans to intuitively evaluate each other’s inner character as a measure of whether or not it would be safe and fun to become more intimate. You know, like humans do.

Because either way, or whatever other approach I might take, the problem isn’t what I say to her, it’s what I’m telling myself about what these words mean, what they’re for. Her challenge shook me because she was laying the real cards on the table, and I wanted to stay in this fabricated, slightly safe for me reality, where she couldn’t see what I was really up to. Because if I can’t dazzle a pretty girl with my wit so that she doesn’t realize that I’m secretly just trying to fuck her, then I’m going to get judged on a level far more visceral than I’m comfortable with.

Something like that.

The fact is the world is a harsh place, most people won’t like you for exactly who you are, and you can either figure that out in the first minute of meeting, or two years later after a tumultuous on again off again relationship of fantastic sex after every heart shattering fight. No one wants to live in a universe that is unwelcoming to who they fundamentally are, so we all turn to the security of blaming ever present circumstance.

She would have given me a chance if she just spoke to me more, got to know me better, if it weren’t so loud in the club, and if she hadn’t been hit on by fifty guys before me also buying her drinks, and if the whole world weren’t constantly pressuring pretty women to respond so that by the time I get a shot there’s nothing I can do to overcome all of her defences… a part of me wants to believe.

All of which could be true. But when the spot light came on, standing there on the stairs with her, all that other pretext was set aside for the moment so that I had to match honesty with honesty, and I choked, because honestly, I wasn’t confident that I could measure up.

Whether or not you remember a moment in your life has nothing to do with traumatic or mundane it is, it’s the weight of the emotional lesson that leaves a mark. I’ve been rejected countless times by countless women in my life, but that is one of the ones I remember because it left me asking myself ever after, “what exactly do I want from that hot chick that I see over there?” Is it just sex, because then shouldn’t I just go to a sex worker, and have guarantees in place of evaluations?

I’d rather have the evaluations. For whatever reason, it’s important to me to have sex with someone who wants to have sex with me. I honestly don’t even care why, at some point you just need to accept who you are. In some ways, it might be more emotionally healthy to just take on sex as being no more significant than a massage, a physical thing humans can do with each other to feel good. But, meh, not for me. I get an extra charge from the feeling that this other human chose me, and I’m addicted to that charge.

In order to get my fix, I have to accept the more frequent hits of having some women let me know that I’m not appealing. It’s not that life and things and places and circumstances get in the way. It’s because she doesn’t like me. If I don’t accept that some women don’t like me, then how would I ever believe it’s real when it seems like they do?

And I kind of think that’s a reality all people, not just men, but mostly men, need to accept. If you only always blame circumstance, denying how others see you, then how can you ever see yourself? Everyone is a mirror, giving you clues about how your actions represent you, where else are you going to get your self evaluation from? What does it matter what you think of yourself if no one else agrees?

German dude left before finding out he was never going to fuck two Disney princesses no matter what the circumstances. And for that, he missed a learning opportunity. If that’s not a lesson he wants or needs, he should just pay someone to dress up like Elsa to have sex with. Then not only would he get what he wants, everyone else could have their conversation in peace.

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Lessons from Louis Lessons from Louis Lessons from Louis Lessons from Louis

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What Louis CK does that aspiring comedians should emulate.

The Lithium of Experience The Lithium of Experience The Lithium of Experience The Lithium of Experience

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Mortality is measured in increments of lowered expectations.

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What's a blog for if not to be embarrassingly revealing?

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There was a time I considered doing a comic about my experience in Japan. I decided it wasn't worth it, but I did about seven or so, and I'm going to put them online just so the effort isn't wasted. This first comic is probably the most dysfunctional, referencing issues that no longer matter and events no one remembers.

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