It’s the broads that hack your band!

jeudi, le 03 septembre 2009

This afternoon I was feverishly trying to rustle up some park playmates for The Princess. I heard a text message beep on my mobile phone. I thought it would be confirmation of a play date.

It was a text message from L’homme. I fumbled with sweaty palms to open the message. No words of undying love, no words of regret for the way in which he left, no words of gratitude for what I had done for him in the past, no words of praise for handling his departure with dignity and decency at every juncture. No, he urgently needed an invoice which he thought had been mailed to my address and he needed me to leave it in the post box for him. Just that.

I slipped into my walking shoes, flicked through the pile of mail stacked on the kitchen counter on my way out the door. The Princess was already sitting outside, anxiously waiting for our daily trip to the park.

It would appear that this year spring had arrived with all her luggage in tact. She is not going to need to plunge us back into the grips of winter to fetch some forgotten essentials. The trees in the park are busy covering their branches with their crispy new clean green leaves they carefully hid from the bitter winter cold. And the fruit bearing trees are proudly waving their arms, covered in their best pink blossoms.

Back from the park, I gave The Princess her supper and chatted to her while she ate, as is our latest custom. Not that she says much through the hungry mouthfuls.

I made more of an effort to find the invoice L’homme so urgently needs. It was nowhere to be seen. I decided that I’d ask Wonder Woman about it in the morning and gave it no further thought. Wonder Woman is the amazing person tasked with, essentially, running my household. I think she has a better idea of what is going on in my cupboards and my life than I have.

At the shop, The Princess curled up comfortably on her Ottoman, fast asleep. I buried myself in some paperwork that had been piling up so high that it now required my urgent attention in order not to topple over. The shrill sound of a call coming in on my mobile breaks the peace.

It was L’homme. I stand accused that I didn’t react to the text message he had sent earlier. It wasn’t that I wanted to stonewall him, I tell him, and that I would check with Wonder Woman whether she had perhaps filed it under ‘U’ for ‘Urgent attention: L’homme’. I didn’t even bother to ask him whether he was aware of the postal worker strike. He should be, but he needed something and he needed it urgently and no small time strike was going to stop him from getting what he wanted.

In the days before he snuck out of my house under cover of The Princess and I walking in the park, he had entered into a contract for a laptop, complete with built-in web cam and 1 Gig of broadband, for what sounded like a real basement bargain deal. Now his bills for broadband used had grown exponentially. His claimed broadband was being hacked and the total cost thereof was by now reaching astronomical proportions. He’s got the editor and the consumer desk of the largest newspaper in the country working with him to expose this injustice that is being inflicted upon him.

The longer I listened to his ranting the broader my smile grew. My broadband is mainly used for e-mails, playing innocuous online games with friends near and far, posting daily blogs and reading blogs of interest and 1 Gig hardly ever lasts me longer than nine days. There is no downloading of music or movies and I’d rather stick pins in my eyes than watch live streams of girls sensuously masturbating or raunchy sex scenes with canned breathing!! Let alone wanting to chat to friends here or there with the eye of the cam beaming my face or my crotch into cyber space. I am many things, but narcissism has barely found a foothold in my vocabulary, let alone my character. The same cannot be said for L’homme.

But what amazes me the most is that L’homme, the armchair specialist on every topic from art to x-rated websites, so firmly believes that he is the one being scuppered. ‘Really, L’homme, you so often claim ownership of intelligence, I honestly expected more intelligent thinking from you than to think that your broadband is being hacked. You hacked your own broadband by broadly hacking into porn sites, by hacking into live streams where broads sensuously arouse you.’

It deeply saddens a large part of me to realise that he has probably spent more money on roving through cyber space with the one-eyed cam of the web and with his hand on his one-eyed trouser snake than he has probably spent on me in our lifetime together. A small part of me revels in the financial discomfort caused by his escapisms of choice. But the pain suffered from financial hardship is in no way comparable to the pain suffered by a heart, body and soul torn apart.

Now he claims to be sorry for putting me through the search of an invoice for him. I tell him that this is the absolute least of what he is putting me through. I can adequately cope with rummaging through my unopened mail. He tells me that he doesn’t want to hurt me. Not once, but three times. If that is what he truly doesn’t want to do, why does he do it? I undertake to report back tomorrow on Wonder Woman’s findings. And as so often in the past, I shake my head in amazement at how diametrically opposed L’homme’s words and actions are. He says he doesn’t want to hurt me, but he’s going to dive straight in unreservedly and do it, regardless.

Of course he is, he depends on me to take his phone calls, he depends on me to assist him with his problem. Scarcely a month ago, he bluntly ignored a text message and mail from me, both solicited by his actions. He could not scrape together the common garden variety decency to thank me for wishes on his birthday. But I do think that the cumulative effect of many years of abusively heavy drinking is increasingly shrinking the areas of his brain where higher cognitive faculties are found to such an extent that he actually thinks that his behaviour is beyond reproach. He will with the same eloquence defend his ignoring of me a month ago as he would his depending on me now. The thought does cross my mind that is probably a good thing that he started life out more intelligence than most, half way through his life he is being overtaken by most.

I walk back into the shop with a wry smile and a myriad of feelings flowing through my body and mixing somewhere near the pit of my stomach. My ears somehow register that La vie en rose is playing. As I sit down I can so clearly see myself lying down on a romantic bed of red roses with the thorns pricking my heart. And I look up at the beachfront couch where L’homme is not sitting and a thorn of emptiness, of longing and missing pricks my soul.

But there were always three of us in our relationship: me, L’homme’s words and L’homme’s actions and by times it got uncomfortably crowded.

(A photo taken in the park today of the beautiful pink blossoms. I want the pretty flowers to formulate a belief deep somewhere inside of me that they are a sign of better times to come.)

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