I have discovered my Perfect Man does this…
To get something out of the way right off the bat, I see it. I see the cliché dripping from my every word, so pointing it out is unnecessary. I see the cliché in recognizing one’s own cliché. I am 33, I am single, I live alone. I do not have a cat, but only because I’m allergic to cats. I schedule my masturbation. I leave toothpaste clumps on the sink. I leave flossers in the bed that poke me when I roll over. I cry at everything. I exercise religiously for two weeks, then give it up entirely for three. I eat in my bed. I think about dying alone. Like, really think about it. Not just conceptually, but actually dying alone. If I hit my head or have an aneurism, who cleans up the mess I leave behind? I didn’t used to believe in marriage, but now I believe it to be the most amazing thing a person can do. You are signing a contract that says, “You have to deal with this mess when I die.” I can’t imagine that.
I eat alone, I shop alone, I travel alone. In the rare instance where I find myself travelling with someone else, I panic. I feel the need to divulge all of my flying quirks in one hurried breath in the security line because I want my companion to have an out should they want one: I have to be chewing gum as the plane takes off. I have to have the window seat, even though I am 100 feet tall. I have to have a book, which I will not read. What I will do is mildly overdose on Dramamine and sleep fitfully for four hours. I will not wake up in a good mood or in my right mind when we reach our destination. And I have to, HAVE TO have a Hershey bar when I fly, which I will not eat. My mother always had one and I’m pretty convinced that they make the plane stay up. If you fly without a Hershey bar and your plane has never crashed it’s because someone else on board has always had one. Think about that.
The men in my life are bountiful. They are kind. They are handsome and flawed and they smell like laundry and they are passionate and wise. They are comedians and actors and teachers and entrepreneurs. They are fathers and brothers and uncles and they hold coats and know my drink order. They build things and write things and are feminists and warm huggers. These of course, are my friends. My boyfriends, my sex partners, my endless causes of scrunched up eyebrows have been many of the aforementioned as well. Just not for me. Or they possessed those qualities exactly and my head was turned elsewhere. Or some outside distraction had their attention, like an ex-fiancée or a new job or a drinking problem.