It's a marathon of sorts. You're at some social gathering somewhere (more than likely a house) and someone catches your eye (more than likely the host). Everyone else becomes blurry and irrelevant. Still. You can't pounce right away. You can't dominate the conversation too quickly. No. You gotta take the time to circulate and make yourself vicariously desirable for as long as possible. You gotta wait for the yawns and the this was funs and the two minute doorway conversations to commence. You gotta be in it for the long haul, despite what you might have to do the next day.
Who knows why people pinpoint in front your radar. There's always an impetus, albeit ever-changing. But when it happens, it happens and there's really nothing you can do besides go in for the attack. Still, though, slow and steady often wins the race. So you employ temporary patience and social skills until the crowd thins and things change. It's time to make your mark. Or have another drink. Or go in for the kill. This game -- no matter how tempting it may be to play -- is stupid. No one wants to be the last person hanging around for a chance of connection. It's far better to peace out and leave the particular person wanting more. Always. The stench of desperation is pungent. Always. However, this is all easier said than done when middle-of-the-night leanings replace better judgement. So, before you know it, it's just the two of you and only one thing to do. No one's really that picky at that time of the night and, after all, you did kinda ask for it.
It never fails. I'm always the first to wake up after a hookup. Perhaps it's something about the foreign bed and the foreign room temperature that stirs me from my (more often than not) post-drunken slumber. Not to mention the ever-present question of Now What. Am I supposed to feign sleep until the Other Involved Party stumbles to the bathroom for a mid-morning pee? Then, only then, can I pretend to wake -- vacant spot in the bed and all -- stretching and yawning and smiling as if this wasn't an awful idea. Normally I lay awake for about twenty minutes, feeling uncomfortable for not forcing the necessary post-coital urine dribble. I start obsessing about every which way I can leave without it seeming awkward or forced or tinged with regret. Even if I wanna stay, I convince myself to go. It's time. It's morning. There's really nothing left to do.
After I've imagined myself dressing down to the most asinine detail of how I'll lace my boots (calculated bunny-bows and double-knots), I sit on the edge of the bed and begin to search for my clothes -- socks crumpled at the bottom of the comforter, skirt sneaking out from under the bed, bra dangling from the nightstand -- and clumsily reverse the order of the outfit. Once fully-dressed (a disheveled version of Last Night's Primp), I pause for another few minutes, maybe pretending to check my phone or put on lip gloss, hoping the Other Involved Party will either wake up or start snoring (though, truth be told, I could never successfully date someone who does the latter). When neither desired action is achieved (are they faking sleep too?), I rumple their hair and kiss their cheek and say goodbye, knowing full-well that I'm unflappable and nothing they say could convince me to stay. They blink themselves awake (yes, they were genuinely asleep) and pause to remember who is in their bed before asking why I have to leave. The merit of the question is as inconsequential as the answer. I'm outta there with nothing more than a bit of a headache and a grin for my conquest.
Then, usually, in thirty minutes tops, I get a text or a call asking me to come back. Maybe they still smell me in the bed and want a little more. Or maybe they really like me and want a little talk. Who cares. They tempt me with breakfast and bad tv and all the other things that loneliness requires in others. But, as the cliche goes, I never return to the scene of the crash because, quite frankly, I don't want to. Or, more accurately, I don't like them enough to. If I did, I probably wouldn't have acted with such haste and determination. If I did, I would have let things simmer a little longer because everything that's really good takes more than a night's worth of steeping.
Or it's something like this. As much as I crave the cuddle and companionship as the next sap, I dread becoming the shit at the bottom of a shoe, unable to scrape off the stain or the smell. Plus, you can't create connection out of the thin air of sexualization. You either feel it or you don't. It's that simple. No amount of morning embrace can alter that intrinsic sensation of attraction. Plus, I know what it's like when someone you hardly know and barely like wakes up at your house. I manufacture busyness -- gotta walk the dog, gotta go to yoga, gotta meet a friend -- just so I don't have to rehash the details of the previous evening. Excuses are the best defense. Regardless of candor or character, no one really wants to hurt someone else's feelings.
Or else it's something like this. While in the bathroom debating the gait of my next move, I notice the size of their tub and start fantasizing about bubbles and candles and mid-afternoon bathing spontaneity, and -- just like that, despite my better judgment -- I realize I actually kinda like this person. Shit. I want to have croissants and coffee and read the newspaper in their dining room, passing sections and sharing articles, both of us stealing glances and lingering in procrastination. But I could never reveal as much. My intentions were obviously made clear a mere few hours ago. Thus, instead of dealing with the Wants and the Expectations of What Could Be, I go home too quickly. I am unwilling to accept the unrequited.
No matter the extent of the attraction, this serves as a lesson against the one night stand. Sure, there's always the story of the couple who fell in love after the one hit wonder, but this rare occurrence is nothing on which to place hope (especially when you're completely apathetic to the wishin' and hopin' and, instead, are more married to the projectin' and conquerin'). Someone is probably gonna want more. Someone is probably gonna get disappointed. But in the moment of boredom, we tend to settle on the Right Now instead of considering the Better Later. Everyone wants a little affection. It's how we deal with the residuals of said affection that determine how we should proceed. Plus, you initiated the game with your attempt of casual affinity. Better pass the ball along to see if they reach out their hands for the catch and actually want to play. Or else just throw the ball out the window with the resounding thud of Oops.