For several months last year, I was sleeping with a guy who didn’t really believe in having a social schedule. I mean, he had a laid-back part-time job, attended rehearsals sometimes, and fulfilled responsibilities for his family that he couldn’t escape, but he didn’t choose an hour and a location to meet folks on the regular. He actually told me once that when he has a day off he wanders the streets of Toronto until he runs into someone he knows and then he spends the rest of the day with that person. The person who he HAPPENED to run into. I speak no word of a lie.
This is how he operated on a daily basis. And no, I wasn’t dating Jordan Catalano. This was a real human person who continues to not be a character from My So-Called Life. Although, we definitely did have an Angela-Jordan vibe going on. He would be totally irresponsible thinking it was edgy and interesting and charming and I would be totally frustrated by his irresponsibility thinking it was none of those things.
As you can imagine, his non-agenda made having intercourse rather difficult since you typically need to be in the same room with someone in order to intercourse them. The majority of fornication that we had together was a result of me bumping into him at an event, me getting a drink at the bar where he worked, me randomly being free when he unexpectedly came to one of my shows, me occasionally being awake when he texted me super late at night, and me magically catching him while he was ACTIVE on Facebook messenger. We did successfully book some dates a few days prior to our coitus sessions, but it wasn’t common.
You know what WAS common? Him cancelling at the last minute, asking to reschedule, or forgetting that my existence was a thing. He was a nice enough guy and a cool enough dude and I liked him lots, which is why I tolerated his self-involvement for way too long, but his communication skills left something (everything) to be desired. He just couldn’t “play by the rules” (and by “rules” I mean a calendar and by “play” I mean “look at a calendar.”)
I knew that texting and calling and emailing and writing and speaking made him feel a bit anxious, thus I tried to be empathetic, but it was hard to look at his struggle as only a struggle and not him hurting my heart over and over and over again. When I would sadly message him to inquire as to when we would be seeing each other next, or if he was on his way ‘cause we were supposed to get lunch, or if he remembered who I was, he would instantly apologize and ask if I received his text, which included justifiable reasons for why he couldn’t/hadn’t/wouldn’t make plans. I would then roll my eyes, nod my head in sarcastic agreement with his elaborate excuses for his extreme disorganization and respond with, “It’s fine. See ya later,” or “I can’t believe you’re doing this to me again,” or “Seriously. What the FUCK, man? I’m done.” And then I would delete his number, mentally say adios, and inevitably bump into him at an event a month later (only to begin the ridiculous cycle once again).
Eventually I came to my senses and ended our long, fickle string of trysts, and although possibilities of banging again have surfaced (and I’ve been guilty of tossing out a curt, horny request here and there), I know it’s for the best to cease and desist. My personality simply can’t handle this brand of spontaneous rendezvous. Plus, my rational thought and my self-worth and my demand to be treated like a sentient creature can’t handle it either.
I am very much finished with dating folks who refuse to take thirty seconds out of their day to look at their Google calendar, choose an empty box, and type in “Hang out with Jess.” If they can’t meet this base level, necessary component of making sex appointments, then they’re not deserving of my time or my energy or my vulva. If you want the goods you gotta reserve the goods. You gotta pencil in the arrival of my vagina using the easy-to-understand concept of a seven-day week and a twelve-month year and Eastern Standard Time. You gotta purchase a working clock or glance at your phone every now and then or ask strangers on the street what hour it is and if you’re ten minutes late how much cunnilingus you should provide to receive forgiveness. That’s BASE LEVEL, people. You can’t wander the streets hoping to run into the person you like who just so happens to be at your disposal for the entire evening. That’s not an effective method for romance.
I find it mind-boggling that obeying the laws of space and time in relation to dating has become a novelty or a surprising bonus. “Oh. They actually wrote down WHEN your party starts and they showed up a few minutes EARLY? Holy Christ! Someone give this muddled individual a ring so they can propose ASAP. They’re clearly head over heels in love!” Seriously, when did scheduling something in advance, respecting another person’s time, and meeting up before 3 am become not the norm?
I know that everyone is different and certain people enjoy flying by the seat of their skinny jeans, but most of the population that I hear from are annoyed by this newly established culture of “last minute” everything. In my opinion, it’s incredibly selfish and disrespectful and inconsiderate to tell your paramour that you’ll hang out when YOU’RE free. What about when I’M free? Does that factor into this equation at all? Or are we purely having sex and getting drinks and eating food based on YOUR availability? Am I expected to drop everything on a dime to see YOUR dick? Oh, I am? Cool. Just wanted to clarify the power dynamics here. Bye forever!
Plans are a requirement for me these days and for most employed people who own friends and have family and aren’t a robot created to pleasure privileged straight men 24/7. I’m a busy fucking person with constant deadlines to meet and comedy to perform and pals to be there for and a mom to visit and laundry to clean once a month and an overall solid life that needs to be lived. So I can’t really spare the emotional turbulence or the lost time or the guaranteed frustration that comes with dating an unreliable narcissist. I am officially saying “NO!” to every transient vagabond whose concept of a schedule is not having a schedule. I’m done. Adios. If you want the goods, you reserve the goods, and if you don’t, then bye forever!