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Phase Out.

Once or twice a year, me and my gay meet up to partake in what I’ve newly dubbed as the 5×5: 1 drink each at 5 different bars. Last Friday, over mezcal at Iron Horse in SF, I noticed a man and woman leaning against the balcony behind us. From bits of their conversation, body chemistry and gestures, I inferred that they weren’t on their first date but they also weren’t quite a “couple” yet. They were in that in-between transition phase where you’re trying to figure things out.

Admittedly, I sometimes miss that exciting feeling of not knowing what’s going to happen when you’re just dating. Those moments when you’d text your girlfriends a play by play of the night, and feel everything for the first time. But that phase can be just as agonizing as it is exciting. For me, that phase also meant a lot of wondering and worrying if the person I was dating, was dating other people. Below are a few of silly ways I would test my theories.

Bobby pins: After one substance abused New Years Eve night, I woke up the following

morning not knowing what year it was with a butt naked man sleeping next to me. My bodychain entangled every which way, and at least 25 bobby pins were strewn all over the bed. I had short hair in an updo that required long hair, so there had to have been 25 more pins in my hair. I was trying to sneak out without Sleepy Booty waking up, so I grabbed as many of the pins as I can and ran out of his apartment looking like a washed up prom queen.

Although it wasn’t intentional this time, leaving bobby-pins as a way to mark ones territory had been an ongoing joke with me and the homie Jey for quite some time. In fact, I started to purposely leave them in his car in hopes that I’d get a, “Dude, I got slapped!” phone call later from him after one of his hoez found it. Yes, I am that asshole friend. 

Trash Items: I was fucking this one guy I had full blown feelings for, and had anxiety attacks at least every other week wondering if he was seeing anyone else. One time I saw a used tissue with eye makeup on it in his trashcan, and immediately my heart raced. I almost asked him about it when I realized our mutual friend and his girlfriend were visiting from out of town and crashing at his place. Whoops.

Toiletries: Back when I used to have inconvenient casual sex, I used to pack convenient ho bags. On a whim, they’d consist of the bare minimum: a toothbrush, hair tie/bobby-pins, and wipes. A sophisticated one would have face wash, leggings and maybe some flip flops. One time I was showering at “Buzz’s” condo, and thought I’d be slick and leave something as unsuspecting as a little pill holder containing face wash that was the size of a quarter. I kid you not the second he walked into that shower after me I heard, “Is this yours?” DAMN.

If we do a quick review, you’ll find that I put myself through months of anxiety over trash, toiletries and hair accessories. Obviously, if you want to know if the person you are dating is seeing anyone else you should simply ask. This doesn’t mean they’ll actually tell you the truth, but at least it’ll save you some bobby-pins.

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