A Conversation Between Lovers

“Yeah, and I met her off Tinder, and we went on a date, and she wound up giving me a blow job.”

The two lovers are sitting down somewhere. Where exactly they’re sitting doesn’t really matter: a kitchen table eating breakfast, a couch watching a movie, in bed still and naked. Somewhere like that, somewhere private. In a moment of intimacy but not too intimate; the clothes are on and any skin on skin contact is minimal and lacking the usual sexual overtones that lovers ascribe to their skin on skin contact.

“Oh,” she replies, a nonplussed look on her face. “Well, good for you.”

“Yeah, it was cool, but I think just a one time thing. I don’t know. This whole Tinder-online dating thing is okay, but I don’t think I’m really feeling it.”

“Yeah.”

He looks over at her, piqued by her monosyllabic response. “Are you okay?”

She shakes her head, trying to press back emotion. “I don’t know…it’s just that…out of all the things we could be talking about, why are we talking about the other people you fuck?”

“Oh, are you jealous!” he replies gleefully. But not too gleefully, because he can’t let her know that it pleases him to get a rise out of her, to see her jealous. To see her admit to an insecurity, because any admission of insecurity means that he will have the opportunity to manipulate her emotions and further control her and possess her and own her.

“Well, no, it’s not that I’m jealous exactly, it’s more that…I mean, we’re having such a good time hanging out. We just fucked like an hour ago. Out of all the things that we could talk about – I mean, we could talk about what are stars made of, or what’s the best place to eat pizza, or whether or not we think that the local anarchist community’s adoption of political values is sustainable and true to anarchist idealism. But instead of anything pleasant or scintillating, we’re talking about other people you fuck, which is strange because out of anything we could talk about, that’s the topic that is most likely to make me feel uncomfortable or insecure. And you have chosen to talk about it.”

“Oh, so you don’t want me to tell you about the other people I fuck?”

“I mean, I don’t know. I know we’re not dating. And we’re not exclusive. But if you’re using protection, a detailed account really seems unnecessary.”

“I was just trying to be honest with you.”

“I never asked you to be honest with me.”

“Well, I would want you to be honest with me. I mean, yeah, sure, you’re not my girlfriend, but aren’t we good enough friends that we an talk about that kind of thing?”

“Why do you want to know? I mean, I don’t want to know because as soon as I start thinking about other women, I’m going to feel insecure about what we have. When, really, what we have is just fine, so why sweat it.”

“I just don’t want any surprises. I don’t want to run into you at a party and not know if we get to act like we fuck or if I have to pretend like I don’t know you.”

“Fucking me is never a given. You know that.”

“Yeah, sure, fine, if that’s what you want. I just want to know where I stand with you.”

“Well, if you must know, I have two other boys that I fuck.”

He looks over at her in stark shock. “What.”

“You heard me.”

“Are you serious? Who are they! What the fuck?”

“Hah, did you think you were the only one, baby?”

“No…it’s just…like, when even do you see them?”

“Whenever I want. So, how about you? How many other girls are you fucking?”

“I mean, uh, just the one.”

“The one you got a blowie from? That doesn’t count. I mean, am I the only one? Oh, shit! Am I getting more play than you are!”

“Hey, no, I mean – I’ve just been spending so much time with you lately. I mean, like, when do you even do that! You have a full time job. You must really put effort into fucking people…I didn’t know you liked to spread it around town so much. Jesus Christ.”

“Woah, are you slut shaming me now? Fuck, man, you’re the one who asked.”

“Yeah, but you’re the one who’s fucking half of Oakland!”

“Having three lovers barely qualifies as half of Oakland.”

“And you weren’t going to tell me!”

“I fail to see how me fucking two other guys effects your life personally.”

“Do I know them?”

“No. I’m not that sloppy.”

“But they’re just out there, fucking you, and I didn’t even know. Great. That’s just great.”

“Whatever, you’re not my boyfriend, what do you care?”

“I don’t know. Maybe I just don’t want to be seen sleeping with someone who will fuck just anybody.”

“Oh my god, really? I’m outta here. This is why I didn’t want to talk about the other people we’re fucking. Someone always gets jealous! I mean, why can’t we just be mature adults, accept the fact that everyone gets extra play, and not stress about it? Why can’t we just enjoy the time we have together and take it for what it is instead of worrying about the sex we’re not having and the time we’re not spending together? I only have so much emotional bandwidth for one person, anyways, it’s not like the time I spend fucking those other dudes is time that I’m taking away from fucking you.”

“I don’t care. Get out. Go fuck your other boyfriends.”

“Thanks, I think I will.”