Long Shot Prospects

February 27, 2012 § 44 Comments

The funny thing on Friday was, my mum had dropped in for a cup of coffee and was asking me if I’d heard from Long Shot and I said, “Nah, and am not going to and, anyway, this is a man who has no responsibilities and no sense of time and, lovely though he is, I do have a real sense of responsibility and of time, and being with someone who has none might prove to be a form of slow road to psychosis.”  She agreed and then left, and I closed the front door behind her and checked my Blackberry which had been orgasming happily to itself several times during her visit, and blow me down, there was his latest email.  I shouted down the street to her, “Mum, you’re not going to believe this…!”

My mum has always wisely advised me to be with someone who is employed or passionate about their work or at least occupied for heaven’s sake.  It almost doesn’t matter at what.  I had a friend who worked like a leaf-bearing ant but her husband never got up till two.  The marriage didn’t last.  Certainly, the three great Significants in my life – maybe I’ve said this before? I am becoming more senior by the day –  were all artists of sorts but their work ethic and discipline was extraordinary, even the novelist’s whilst nourished almost exclusively, it seemed, on weed.  I think a lot of people think “arty” (puke to that word) types are all airy-fairy and bohemian and busy sitting on their arsey arses striking self-important poses in a starving garret somewhere.  But the ones who actually produce anything and get anywhere, in fact work extremely hard.  (The painter did have a garret above a pub in the East End and we had sex a few times amongst the paint pots and blobs strewn Lucian-like across the floorboards; rather thrilling though darstardly uncomfortable).  These men are not only occupied but preoccupied.  Whilst it doesn’t make their personal relationships a piss in the wind exactly, nor are personal relationships with bankers and accountants a barrel of laughs, I imagine, and it certainly makes the artists, if rather poorer, more imaginatively energetic and hugely interesting.  Oh, and punctual, oddly enough.

Now, LS is a man who is not just late, he is three weeks late.  The spirit of a place or person captures him and he goes with the flow.  I kind of admire this way-the-wind-blows take on life, but it is not real life, or at least not as bourgeois, narrow-minded me myself I knows it ie. one which embraces children and work and emails and supper on the table and toothbrush chargers and commitments of all sorts.  He is, more, like a nineteenth century fellow of the world.

Listen, I am not imagining myself with him.  I am merely speculating what it might be like to be with someone so diagonally the opposite to me in this respect.  In some ways, because I relish my automony (now there’s a surprise admission, coming from the Original Plank) and feel fiercely protective of my solitude (some of the time), he could be the perfect person for me and, indeed me for him! I am not needy (once I am in a relationship, even if the very existence of this blog would seem to contradict that statement whilst I am out of one).  I would be quite happy for him to fuck off for weeks at a time doing his la-di-da will-o’-the-wispy thing.  Now, not many women could say that and mean it, but the OP has had practice, and would quite value the chance of a few in-between times.  My thrust is that it is nice to have someone, even if he’s not there all that often.  So a date is worth a shot, why not?  Does that make sense?

I’m bollocksing on; stop me.

It will be interesting to see if he gets back to me about the date he mooted for sometime in the next few days.  Or if I shall still be waiting still, in the spring of 2018.

Sod it, I don’t really care.

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§ 44 Responses to Long Shot Prospects

  • Barry says:

    Me niether …lol …..on y vas !

  • Jane says:

    Just want to add my two penn’orth on the subject of ‘arty types’ Both my sons are in the creative industries (one in that most reviled of modern fields, the media) and have both had to work damned hard (and often for nothing) to make a go of it and get to a point where they make any cash. No doubt that some people do ponce about in an airy fairy way, but unless they are receiving state help, I fail to see how they can do it for long. I know that my two and many of their friends in the same fields are some of the most driven, inspired people I have ever met and that is not just me being ‘overly proud mother’. They all stick at it when lesser mortals would throw in the towel and take whatever other work they can to make it possible to carry on doing what they love and what they passionately believe in.

  • Amanda says:

    I completely agree with you here. My ideal man would probably be absent about half the time. Most adults can cope in life with friends and a family. So why would a lover be required to be on tap every day? No, a few weeks apart give you the chance to catch up with said friends, family and to be alone with your thoughts. There’s also the remote control issue.

    All the beautiful, reliable people in our lives are always here for us, no matter how long it is since we saw them, why then not a man?

  • It’s not over with LS until the fat lady sings, obviously. 🙂

    I also agree with Amanda. Having space to breathe is an under-rated necessity.

  • MissBates says:

    I’ve often thought that the optimal boyfriend would be in my life on approximately the same terms as divorced couples share custody of their children: time in alternate weeks, half of all holidays, and a month in the summer, and special provision for certain defined events occuring outside these general parameters (in this example, family weddings, ghastly work-related events at which having a partner would be advantageous, etc.).

    OR, as Katharine Hepburn said (not entirely sure of this attribution, although it SOUNDS likes a sentiment she would have expressed): “separate apartments with a connecting door.”

  • Lydia says:

    Keep all options open . Apparently 1 in 4 single women have 3 or 4 men on the got at once (which is probably why plankton find it hard to find anyway) and it surprises some men that I might be writing to them but also to others as they prefer to move from one to the next.

    I don’t want an absent man. I want one with me, into and on me as it were an awful lot. There are lots of people out there who want something semi detached and even long distance and if you go for that you give yourself more choice so it’s a wise choice. I don’t think it would be my choice. If you love someone and want them then you don’t want to be apart from them surely?

    As for hardworking people I think if one is hardworking as I am then it is better the other person is too although I’m not paranoid about needing someone identical in that respect. If they don’t work at all then it puts me off. Most earn a huge lot less than I do and that’s not ideal even though I don’t want their money. Arty types never fit with me though, they usually have hugely different political views and differences,.

    • MissM says:

      Strangely enough I wholeheartedly agree with your second paragraph Lydia. If I want someone I want them around a lot, doesn’t necessarily mean 24/7 and I’m not adverse to occasional (short) times apart and personal space is truly a valuable thing, but certainly I’d want them to be there more often than not there. I desire someone to share my life with not someone available to perform the same function as an escort/gigolo once a week and on special occasions. Also if a man only wanted to see me once in a while as opposed to all the time I’d be insulted, and I wouldn’t want to treat a man in a way I would not like to be treated myself.

      Indeed I think it is true that “if you love someone and want them then you don’t want to be apart from them”. Maybe if you don’t feel like that about someone, you have the wrong person. I’m sure we all have friends that we can only stand in small doses, I can’t imagine choosing someone like that as a partner though.

      But as always, to each their own.

      • EmGee says:

        “I’m sure we all have friends that we can only stand in small doses, I can’t imagine choosing someone like that as a partner though.”

        Oh my! I think there is a misunderstanding here! I love my bf dearly, but if he stayed here all the time, he’d be miserable – there’s no work here for him for starters. He’s getting a workshop together here so he can work on his carving and luthier work, but he needs to go down to the city where all of his contacts and union are, if he wants to make money to live on. He also wants to continue his education learning from other instrument builders – it isn’t because I can’t stand to be around him! I fell in love with a free spirited man who has dreams just as I do, and I want nothing but to give him the freedom to do those things.

        You are right that such a situation would not suit a lot of people.

      • MissM says:

        Hey EmGee I think you perfectly reasonable in recognising a free spirit, and giving him that freedom is most admirable and clearly comes from the love you have for him, which is totally different to to having someone that you can only stand to be around only some of the time. The difference is in accepting that he has the need to be apart from you for various reasons, as in your case, as opposed to wanting him to be away from you because you have ‘had enough’ of him, which is not you as far as I can tell.

        I have simply have more of a problem understanding people who from the start are only looking for someone to be around only on the occasions when it suits them, and that does not sound like you at all. Not saying that they are wrong in what they want either, just that I don’t feel like that and don’t really understand it fully because I don’t feel like that. I would not want to pursue a relationship with someone if I didn’t think I wanted them around pretty much all the time.

      • MissM says:

        PS I do hope it all works out well with you and your bf also, you sound like such a generous soul EmGee and I do love reading those those bits the of joyous aspects of coupledom that you sometimes share with us. More happiness in the world is a good thing.

  • June says:

    Yes i just read that lots single women haver three men on go, Three i thought, it did not say how old these women were but id guess under 30, in my neck of woods it is hard enough for any women over 45 to get one suitable man let alone 3!

    Also read dating tips for online dating for over 60s in same paper, the woman who has done it agrees not easy at our age, but does seem to have at least had a few more than me, she does not live where i do, she says that everyone puts a picture pf themselves at least 10 years ago, she has, do they, well i certainly dont,what is the point. Still shes still alone, so obviously hasnt been that successful.

  • EmGee says:

    Arrrgh! Plankee!!! Halt the hyperbole! LS was NOT 3 weeks late. Iirc, he said in his last email that he’d ‘let you know when’ next he was in town and available. Okay, now that I’ve got that off my chest…

    Bless you for the kind words about us artsy types. ❤ I find that the people who try to make a living at art work very hard at it, with no guarantee of success, let alone the promise of a meal, unless they are Trustifarians who can get away with throwing a blob of paint at an old door one minute a month, hang it in the gallery of a well-connected friend and spend the other 29 days (or nights rather), hobnobbing with all and sundry, wine glass in gesturing hand, convincing themselves and everyone they can suck into their orbit, what a geniuses they are. Makes me froth at the mouth, it does. Okay, now that I've got that off my chest…

    When I met my bf, I too thought it was a perfect arrangement; also a now you see him, now you don't relationship. Both of us creative types, lovers of order over chaos, and while I don't indulge in it myself, he's weed fueled as well (although his mileage varies on the productivity scale). He, however was stuck with the idea that his lifestyle was *special* and the rest of the world, including me, was determined to rein him in, so he ran from me, too.

    Now he's back, and while things aren't quite the same as before, he now realizes that he doesn't have to trade his freedom for a modicum of stability – he can have both in whatever measure he likes. During the 6 months he was AWOL, I was at once heartbroken, loving him still and knowing it wasn't my fault, but I got on with life and my creativity has soared along with output and my general sense of well being. As the song goes, "I don't need you so much as want you."

    Having said all that, I do hope it works out for you (and me, I confess!), whether it's LS or another fella…

  • Caz says:

    ……..”because I relish my automony (now there’s a surprise admission, coming from the Original Plank) and feel fiercely protective of my solitude”….
    Once again spot on P. I think that’s how so many of us feel after a few years on our own. It’s all about finding the right balance. I’m all for a LAT relationship (Living Apart Together).
    Good luck with LS….you sound so much more chilled about him and what may happen now – you’re in a good place….

  • chris says:

    Ah LS………..what to say. He has, my dear, got well and truly under your skin. No point in being in denial. Well, where do you go from here ? I think you could be hanging around dangling oh so delightfully for months on the end of his string….even if that string is only in your own head. Feel free to rebuke me if I am wrong !!!

    • RS says:

      Hate to say it but I’m kind of in agreement with you, Chris. As I recall the problem with LS wasn’t all the fact that he disappears for ages upon ages, but also that when he finally DID write dear Plankton an email it was incredibly self-absorbed and left her, if not cold, quite perplexed and convinced he’d been a bachelor for too long. All that seems to have been forgotten.

      I’m an arty type myself. And deal a lot with people who are in far-flung locations, living on the fringes of regular society. And I know that internet, satellite phone, mobile signals, etc are available in the most unlikely of remote places now and so don’t buy LS’s excuses for past non-communication at all.

      I think we’re back to square one here. It makes me sad.

    • The Plankton says:

      No, Chris, you are probably not entirely wrong. But it’s not so much that he’s stuck in my head as someone with whom I’d like the opportunity to give it a whirl, but if the whirl unravels, so be it. Eyes wide open, I can promise you. Px

  • plumgrape says:

    I have a new problem, an introduction to a new word I have to think about: peri- it means about or around, as a prefix, applied by a friend to menopausal, ie “peri-menopausal”!
    How would you feel if the woman that you were interested in, say to marry, as you are no longer interested in carousing, if she was “peri-menopausal”? Do you think you would be willing to sacrifice entirely the possibility of a family of your own? Do you not think that you might not at least deserve to be persuaded of the happiness of this outcome if she is interested?

    • Lydia says:

      Are you asking about babies? if a woman isn’t fertile you can still have babies. If she has no viable eggs you can procuer them and have them implanted in her or a host mother once fertilised with your sperm and thus the couple can have children.

      And of course it matters. Many of us love having children and most people want them.

    • Elle says:

      Plumgrape, are you saying that menopausal women, even though they may be younger than you, are not worthy of any man’s attention because they are no longer fertile?

      That’s it in a nutshell, isn’t it? Even if you men don’t WANT children you still want the ego-boost of being with somebody who is CAPABLE of having them because it makes you look good.

      The last time I looked most of the women who post here weren’t in the full flush of their girlhood and that’s one of the reasons that they identify with Plankton. We do not need to be reminded of the social limitations the states of peri-menopause, menopause and getting older place on us women.

      So go ahead and keep rubbing salt into our wounds, our feelings don’t matter because we’re over a certain age and surplus to requirements anyway. Hell, if we were livestock we’d either be shot or sent to the abbatoir!

      Men, of course can pick and choose among the most nubile of women until the moment the last sod of earth falls on their coffins or the furnace in the crematorium burns them up.

      • fi says:

        Really? Theoretically perhaps but the women I’ve known have always been kind of choosy and actually aren’t interested in old men.

      • RS says:

        I don’t agree that all men can have their pick of nubile women but I know a lot on here do. Truly, the nubile women I know are, for the most part, disgusted by horny creepy old goats going after them.

        Anyway.

        Older men who think having a younger woman on their arm makes them look good are sadly mistaken. The contrast makes them look even older, and foolish. But if they are the sort who insist on only chasing younger ones, there’s no convincing them of reality. They’ve made up their minds and no amount of snickering behind their backs is going to change their attitudes.

      • fi says:

        @RS. So so true. And the only old men (and I would class anyone more than 10 years older than the woman in this category really) that get younger women do so because either they’ve got something the woman wants (money, status, power etc) or because the woman is desperate. Rarely do women want a man outside their own age range for the man’s himself, unless he is exceptionally entertaining or good looking. Most women want a bloke their own age, that would live the same kind of life as them, and get on with their friends. Men who think they have something else to offer (eg experience to teach the younger woman) are as deluded and creepy as the ones who buy them in from Thailand and think that the woman really does love them. Er no. And the women on these pages who keep saying that men don’t have a sell by date, simply because they can’t find a man, perpetuate this myth. I bet there isn’t a single woman here that hasn’t at some point in their youth been pursued by some middle aged man who thought he was god’s gift to women, and been both repulsed by him and astounded at his delusion. Is it any wonder they believe that when women here tell them so. Blokes – chase young women all you want, but you know in your heart of hearts they aren’t attracted to you. Remember when you were young? Did you really worry that the women you knew would leave you for a middle aged man? Didn’t you pity them chasing young girls and vow not to do that yourselves when you were older?

      • Elle says:

        I was being ironic – can you really imagine hordes of nubile women hurling themselves at a man’s coffin before burial? Twilight fans excluded.

      • fi says:

        @Elle – sorry thought you were being serious. 🙂

      • EmGee says:

        @ Elle:
        “Twilight fans excluded.”
        That’s. just. wrong. 😀 (but I can’t stop lol’ing)

    • RS says:

      I would also point out that peri-menopause starts in many, many women at around 35. So not in “dried up old crone” territory. And it certainly doesn’t mean they aren’t fertile, just that it can get trickier to conceive.

  • Oxonian says:

    We are perhaps being a bit snobby here in separating ‘creatives’ out from people with other sorts of passionate and time-consuming enthusiasm, including other types of busy job, scientific observation, computer gaming, sport, travel, bell ringing, genealogy, railway modelling and so on.

    I guess any interest of this sort in limited doses is quite healthy for a relationship, for reasons already given. While you want someone with a life of their own though, you don’t want someone too addicted to or absorbed in their personal interests to ‘manage’ a relationship at all. The problem with Long Shot is perhaps not his mobile lifestyle, but rather an inability/unwillingness to subordinate the rhythms of that mobility to any one else’s interests.

    • fi says:

      Maybe I’ve forgotten and there’s more to this ‘relationship’, but I thought all that’s happened so far is 2 people have exchanged a couple of emails over a period of a few months. And that LS doesn’t even know P is interested in him. Have they even met?

    • Jane says:

      @ Oxonian, No, I don’t think we are being snobby, the creative arts/industries are different in as much that you have to have superhuman dedication and belief in what you are doing. In most other fields there is a ‘right way’ and a ‘wrong way’, if you are building model railways, the wheels have to go in a certain place and the tracks have to run a certain way, sport you either put the ball in the net or you don’t , not much room for interpretation, science is definitely even more of the same. Creative subjects consist of so many variables , so much interpretation, therefore the people that choose that path (or rather that it chooses them) put their hearts on the line. Time after time they offer themselves up to the world, saying, this is what I love, this is what is important to me, this is what I have made…what do you think? takes guts I think.

      • Oxonian says:

        So: ‘creative’ activity (leaving aside the question of how we define it) is uniquely multifaceted, complex and difficult. Therefore it requires a unique degree of dedication and self-sacrifice. Therefore it deserves a unique degree of admiration.

        I appreciate your passion on this issue Jane and share your awe at what has been achieved in the creative arena, but I’m afraid I don’t agree with any of the above statements; nor do I think they logically follow from one another. Creativity involves a particular kind of complexity, but I’m not sure that it’s a higher level of complexity than is involved in politics, economics, structural engineering, or particle physics, for example. The fact that the creative industries are poorly funded and highly competitive might present particular problems, but I don’t think that allows us to say that it requires a degree of commitment without parallel elsewhere (bomb disposal personnel?). And that’s assuming that we prize dedication above other virtues.

        But in any case, the point is not whether creative people are or are not more admirable than other people in themselves, but whether they pose particular issues as potential romantic partners.

      • Lydia says:

        They are just being over precious which is why they are best avoided. There is a lot of creativity in business but we don’t make such a song and dance about it and at least are able to feed our children on the results of our endeavours.

      • EmGee says:

        Add to that very little expectation of financial reward for most of us.

        I think Oxonians pov is also indicative of most people’s perception nowadays that creative thought and ability are of very little value, and have a very narrow minded view of the creative process: sometimes it produces a painter’s masterpiece, sometimes it produces a cure for a terrible disease like polio, sometimes it inspires others to new heights, like the idea of landing a man on the moon.

      • fi says:

        Well I think there is a misunderstanding, but its from ‘the creatives’. I’m a civil servant and its not box ticking I do. I think creatively and write to express my ideas, I would go so far as to say that people who aren’t creative don’t get very far in the civil service but probably in other jobs too as in order to progress you need to be able to come at problems from different angles, and express your ideas and unusual concepts to other people and you need to be able to think. I also (pretentiously maybe) think just about everyone needs to express themselves , not just ‘creatives’ – and people find ways to do this in their lives in other ways, and some lucky people get to do it in their work. I could no more do a job that didn’t require me to write about my ideas than anyone else here who calls themselves a writer, but I do it in my work. Its such a myth that the people who work 9-5, in an office, are boring or less creative than free spirited people who live in a garret

      • fi says:

        I included the reference to me being a civil servant (which I am) because that is an area that people would automatically think of as being boring and uncreative. And I think almost everyone feels the need to express themselves , whether its painting their houses, writing a blog or writing a novel. And almost everyone appreciates it too which is why we have art galleries, and music (to mention just 2 forms of self expression). I think there is a lot of snobbery among creatives but I honestly don’t see how someone writing a novel is more ‘artistic’ than someone writing a blog. They are just different forms of self expression, with maybe different levels of interest from other people in the output.

  • EmGee says:

    All I can do is quote:
    “The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier they dug on hallowed ground
    But the tomb of the unknown artist is nowhere to be found.”

    • Jane says:

      Give it up Emgee 🙂 I think the responses on here say everything that needs to be said about the disparity between creative types and ROW and perceptions of same, ‘was, is now and ever more shall be’ *sighs*

      • EmGee says:

        Sigh. You are right Jane. I wrote and wrote (and deleted) so many analogies and explanations as to the difference, but realized it was futile -too many years of social conditioning to change anyone’s view in just a paragraph or 2.

        And personally, I feel the art world is over-run by people of marginal talent (if any), but an over endowment of chutzpah.

  • rosie says:

    I work in the media and it is choc full of bell ends, some of whom haven’t got a creative bone in their little toe and are there by dint of their connections, but if you’re working on the assumption that everyone is ‘artistic’ as everyone else then it wouldn’t have mattered if Shakespeare had been a painter and decorator.

    • Oxonian says:

      Oh dear. I think this thread has become a demonstration of the dialogue of the deaf that can happen if you do not define your terms to begin with. A lesson to remember should weighty topics come up again, I suggest!

    • EmGee says:

      I got a degree in commercial art in my early 20s. In retrospect, I probably should have grown a tougher layer of skin (and scales and fangs, lol!), sucked it up, and followed that career path. But my idealism was such that I just couldn’t stomach all the back biting, and stepping on anybody in your way, up the ladder of success. Hopefully though, I am a better person for not doing it.

      Having said that, I adore the series Mad Men – too bad it is so close to reality.

      Rosie, I was going to compare the artistic merits of even the best blogs, to novelists like Michener, Tolstoy, Hemingway, et al, but decided it was what, casting pearls before swine? But that seemed…, Snobby, so I demurred and deleted.

  • Jane says:

    🙂 🙂 🙂 Rosie

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