Vicki Marie’s Sexy Summer Reading Series: One Chapter A Day
THE BACHELOR CHAPTERS: A THINKING WOMAN’S ROMANCE
Dion was cutting onions, Rob was dressing the pork, and I was drinking wine. We were at Whistler Village, in British Columbia. I had answered an offer for three free days at the ski resort in exchange for listening to a timeshare sales pitch. I was treating the boys, so now they were treating me to a great meal in our two-bedroom condo.
We had become a regular trio since our first night out together at Le Pichet in 2004. Even though Dion and I were lovers, we practiced a platonic vibe when the three of us were together. We had been talking about relationships in general and women specifically. Rob was entwined in a particularly convulsive relationship at that moment, which had sparked the conversation.
“I don’t think there are many women who are into being non-exclusive, even when they’ve just started to date a guy.” I said, and both men nodded. “I don’t get it. It takes awhile to know someone. Why would you go steady until you actually knew the guy?” It seemed to me that conventional dating was either overly optimistic or blindly unrealistic.
I refilled everyone’s wine glass. “Do you know any other women who do what I do?” They shook their heads in unison, both focused on their culinary tasks. “Really? None?” Rob looked up from his blade, always the voice of reason in the room.
“Sweetie, there are no women that do what you do.” I looked to Dion. Surely, my bachelor mentor, older than Rob, and single for a very long time, could name names. After all, he was French.
“Rob’s right,” he tossed the onions in the skillet. “There can not be any others. I have never met one.”
In the years that followed, I met many straight girls, and a smaller number of lesbians who had enjoyed phases of their lives with multiple partners. For the majority, it was not really a plan, but a set of circumstances. All had ultimately reentered the prevailing pattern. Monogamy was practically universal among women. Fine, I thought: I’m a pioneer. I had a precedent for being ahead of the curve. I had come out, after all, when I was seventeen.
Only this time, it appeared I might be even further out in the margins of female sexuality and relationships. People couldn’t even agree on how to define my lifestyle. On more than one occasion, I had been described as a gay man in a woman’s body: which as a way of introduction, was like dousing the fire. “Are you single?” the man asks, after she thanks him for the drink. “Sort of,” she flirts, echoing his interest, “Just think of me as a gay man.”
The gender neutral, single, didn’t work either; it implied I was between partners, and I didn’t want to mislead anyone about my future. And besides, I wasn’t single. I was independent, but I had boyfriends—or lovers—though some were better described as teammates, and our game was major league sex. It’s a sure sign you’ve crossed a line when common language can’t accommodate your activities. Whatever you wanted to call them, I had many ongoing, and eventually, even long-term relationships with my bed friends. Not only was I a bachelor, I’d hit my target and made my dream real; I had a harem of meaningful connections.
I endured a lot of questions about my lifestyle, which didn’t bother me. I understood that it was uncommon, and that people were curious. For the most part, people were intrigued by the concept, though suspicious that I was actually satisfied without love or monogamy: women, in particular. Both straight women and lesbians judged anything less than love and monogamy as inferior.
“Do you think you might be afraid of commitment?”
No. Not me. I was coupled for twenty years. I used to like it a lot.
“It takes time to heal after a divorce. Do you think you’re still afraid of being hurt?” No. Not me, either. I like getting up close and personal. I’m a big fan of meaningful connections.
“Do you ever think that maybe you’re picking the wrong men?”
The wrong men: for what, exactly? For the happily-ever-after, white-picket fence fantasy, that doesn’t appeal to me? Well, then yes, I have been.
Men just aren’t interesting to me in that way. I like to hang out with them and I like to have sex with them. Why is it so difficult for women to wrap their heads around this? I mean—let’s face it—women are habitually critical of men. You know the drill: women gripe about what idiots men are all the time. The common thread that drives these gripes is classic, “You know, he’s just being a man,” and then eyeballs roll, while all the girls nod along.
I really like men. I pick the cool ones, of course, but even those I prefer in limited doses. I prefer everyone in limited doses. I know it’s a cliché, but it’s true; I like my space. I can’t really get that worked up and bothered by men. When I don’t like how they behave, I get out of their way. That’s one benefit to having so many. They all bug me at some moment in time, but they never all bug me at the very same time. And speaking of time, when you’re middle aged, there’s just not that much of it left. I don’t have the energy, or the life span, to linger long with anyone who disrupts my comfort.
“Yes, I’ve had fantastic casual sex…” a woman might say, as she goes on to describe some fabulous fling in the near or distant past, “…but, I really think that sex is so much better when there’s love.”
Cool. Perfect. Glad you figured that one out—for you. I certainly regret any woman’s experience of unsatisfying sex. I’m not interested in it either. Again, this sister is assuming that it’s not possible to be satisfied sexually unless there’s love too. I disagree. I respect a woman’s preference to reserve her sexual practice for an exclusive engagement with a loving spouse. But until she packs more than a hundred outstanding sex partners into her pretty, hot pussy, she might just be mistaken about her capacity for satisfaction. All I’m saying is that if you haven’t worked the numbers, with partners that are experts, how could you really know?
Once I’ve answered all the questions about my possible psychological deficiencies, and we’ve touched upon the questionable satisfaction I’m actually experiencing, there is always one more category to address. There are two “gotcha” questions intended to blow the lid off my professed comfort: “Don’t you get lonely?” and “Aren’t you afraid of being lonely, later, when you’re older?”
Sure I have lonely moments. I’m human. They pass. I felt lonely at times in both of my long-term relationships. Who doesn’t? And no, I’m not afraid of the future. I expect to have friends, family and lovers until I die. Why would that change?
TOMORROW: Chapter 42
Copyright Vicki Marie Stolsen, 2014, Forever Forty-Four Publications, Publicity Rare Bird Lit, Tyson Cornell, Tyson@rarebirdlit.com, Distribution by Ingram, Available online and in bookstores in paperback, eBook, and audio format.