Saturday, May 20, 2006

Some People

Have you ever met anyone who attracts and repels you simultaneously? Meeting them, you want to remain silent (so he can suspect you're a fool, but you don't open your mouth to remove all doubt) and you want to babble incoherently and you just want to get the fuck out of there. Or maybe that's just me.

He called me to come in for a meeting, the one senior vice president of this company I'm doing work for, that I had never met, but heard of. In fact heard so much of that I really, really didn't want to meet him at all.

But he got his HR manager to call. And say come in. We want to talk business. So I went. Apprehensive as hell. The others, who are sweeties and very good buddies of mine, had let me know he was a little, um, how do you say, difficult? Hard-headed, masterful, strong.

They forgot to mention that he was also incredibly handsome.

So I sat in the meeting room, reading an essay by Jeanette Winterson because I always have a book to tide me over these interminable waiting periods. But the words were jumping all around, tying themselves into slipknots, a noose, a noose, what's with the capital punishment imagery?

Anyway, there were the footsteps, and in he came. We looked at each other. And I wished I was somewhere else.

He sat down, fixed me with a penetrating look and asked whether I used to cover this company in my days as a reporter. Yes, I said. Were you kind to us? So, he didn't even know who I was. Cos that was a stupid question. Very stupid.

Probably the kindest any reporter has been, before or since, I replied.

Right, he nodded. He talked about the industry. Gave his opinions so decidedly. Would brook no opposition. If you opposed, it's only because you were stupid. Too dumb to understand. To know what's what.

Eyes narrowed, he judged everything I said.

I returned the favour. Everything. All words falling carelessly from lips caught in that vice-like net, to be gone over, evaluated, rated.

I stumbled and fell. Put my foot in my mouth, trying to express an idea.

Eyes narrowed, he judged. Lips curled in a sneer. I wanted to sink through the floor. Oh God, why did I have to say that? Why does he make me so nervous. I said once that I found it easy to like people. I was wrong.

He introduced me to someone to facilitate the work I would have to do, and drifted off without bothering to say goodbye.

I went home after and felt horrible for the rest of the day. And if you asked me why, I wouldn't have been able to tell you.

I am extremely attracted to him. And I never want to see him again.


goldennib said...

Oh, yeah, I've felt this way. It feels like a train wreck and a car wreck and another kind of wreck happening in your head and your heart and your genitals all at once.

I've giggled like a moron and stubbled over my clumsey feet and completed hated the person because I was so insanely attracted to the person physically and yet knew I couldn't stand the person. And the perso made me feel totally insignificant.

David Cho said...

I thought this was a problem only for men. Hmmm...

Jenn said...

Nessa: You captured the feeling exactly. And he did make me feel totally insignificant...I am not used to being made to feel totally insignificant.

David: Huh? You can't be serious. I was just talking to two friends the other day about how we can only gaze at cute guys from they make you so totally tongue-tied. You don't want to speak, you don't know what to say, and you're afraid of sounding like a fool. That, and you're afraid that they will open their mouths and destroy that illusion of perfection.

goldennib said...

There's this guy that services our heating and air conditioning at work. When he comes in, everyone buzzes me so I can casually stroll by to look at him. Like I'm twelve.

A thinker said...

heh. he sounds like a jerk. but I know a guy like that. know exactly what you mean.

Jenn said...

Nessa: Really? That's so sweet. You made me smile...:)

A thinker: A jerk definitely. But what is it about some jerks? You can't dismiss them. So you work extra hard to avoid contact.

David Cho said...

Not I, but the study is saying that. If you are correct, then is that why I seem to run into so many "dumb" women here in Southern California :=)

Jenn said...

Hmmmm. Must be your dashing good looks or Promethean charm.

Give them a break, Dave. Where's your sense of chivalry?

David Cho said...

I certainly would like to think that, but then again, I run into equally dumb men around here.

Now that makes me very nervous

Jenn said...

Why should it make you nervous? Attracting both men and women is the sign of a healthy, balanced personality, the yin and yang totally in order, you know what I'm saying?

David Cho said...

My point is, maybe they are just dumb and that their stupidity has nothing to do with my presence.

Jenn said...

Dumb is as dumb does. Who among us is truly dumb?

*looks around waiting for answer*

Thunderous silence.

*Walks away sadly*

part-time buddha said...

I hold the spade in my empty hand.

Jenn said...

I mean to say, what?

part-time buddha said...

It's a zen koan, and as such, I'm afraid you'll have to seek your own understanding (enlightenment). Just think on it when you've nothing much to concentrate upon and in time your meaning will come to you.

Let's just say that your post helped me undestand that koan a little better.

Jenn said...

Hmmmm I could sure have used a koan a few days ago when all this happened and I was feeling, to not put too fine a point to it, shitty.

I will see - a spade. In a hand. Am empty hand.