Thursday, 15 May 2008

Friday 16/05/08

So on Tuesday last week, perhaps Wednesday – it’s hard to pay attention when your whole life is stuck in midweek – I’m sat at my desk staring at some computer screen, maybe the wall, and I overhear some guy a bit further down the office (Guy 1) asking some other guy (Guy 2) something about squash. And I should point out that there are squash courts at the bottom of the building where I work.

I don’t think much of it, because I think maybe I’m hallucinating, so I let it go.

And on Thursday last week, perhaps Friday, I hear the same guy down the office (Guy 1) asking some third guy (Guy 3) something about squash. And this time my concentration is better (am I not on sedatives? I should never be) because I manage to deduce that yes, my worst fear has come alive: Guy 1 is setting up a work squash tournament and he has asked every other bloke in the office apart from me.

Obviously being a gay disqualifies me from being interested in sporting activities of any kind, even if a) these activities are squash (i.e. one of the gayest sports in existence) and b) I am actually the fittest looking person on this floor.

So I decide to take huge offence at this – partly because I have nothing better to do – and I start planning, scheming and stewing (in my anger).

Firstly, I decide to email Guy 3 (who I’m most friends with) and say: “Hello Guy 3, So I understand that Guy 1 has asked every other male under 65 in the company about the squash tournament apart from me, even though I am the most physically fit person in here. Can you speculate on any non-offensive, non-degrading reasons on why that might be?”

Secondly, I decide that even if I am asked now, I do not want to take part because I’m offended.

The next day, Guy 1 sends me an email asking if I might be interested in the squash tournament (Guy 3 has told him I’m feeling left out), so I reply that yes, I’d love to play and when do we start.

My first game is on Friday at 1400 and for this game I am going to wear: white Ralph Lauren polo shirt, black Ralph Lauren mid-thigh length shorts, white Nike wristband on left wrist, white socks, white squash trainers.

I am bound to fit in.

At this point I am choosing to ignore A Girl’s comment, a malicious comment that says: “I can’t wait to hear the results. I can almost picture half the office gathering around the stands watching this match. Please don’t forget the wristband and take a picture of you in your outfit if at all possible”.

On Thursday this week at work I’m emailing Brendan and the conversation steers towards Superman (or rather I grab the wheel and drive it there head on) and Brendan speculates that if I walked into the gym one day and saw 1) Superman happily working out with a gay boy that I don't particularly like and 2) wearing that boy's torn t-shirt instead of his own, that I would have a psychotic moment like in a David Lynch movie where I black out and end up in a parallel dimension.

And on Thursday afternoon in the office, I’m so mind-numbingly bored that I’m willing to hallucinate this scenario Brendan has presented, just to kill some time, time that will take me to 1800 and Superman faster.

So on Thursday after work, I get to the gym, anticipation killing me because I’ve decided to talk to him…

…where over the next hour, I pretend to do back and abs, going through the motions really, because Superman is not there. HE, is not there.

As I watch the minutes go by refusing to give up hope, time turns to 1830, 1850, 1915. And on this Thursday evening, it seems that He has given training a miss.

As I walk through the gym with my heart ripped out, I don’t consider it a coincidence when The Ex Factor by Lauryn Hill comes on my iPod through shuffle. And as Lauryn Hill sings to me…

“no one loves you more than me and no one ever will / is this just a silly game that forces you to act this way / I keep letting you back in, as painful as this thing has been, I just can’t be with no one else / care for me, care for me, I know you care for me / cry for me, cry for me, you said you’d die for me”

…I realize that fate is playing a cruel game with me and that fate is not done yet. Fate wants me on my knees, broken, shattered, alive.

When Violet by Hole comes next on shuffle and Courtney Love shouts in my ears…

“go on, take everything, take everything, I want you to”

…and Superman is still not there, it becomes painfully obvious that he won’t go on, he won’t take everything, and he doesn’t want me (to).

I shower. And I leave.

37 comments:

Trybaby said...

Are you any good at squash? I'm not sure why it's so gay.

LC said...

Hi LP. I was introduced to your blog by a friend of mine a month ago. I now fear I have developed an unhealthy obsession with your blog( if I dare say life?) Perhaps it would be better for me to channel this obsession into hitting the gym more often. And, yes I think it is a great that you are trying to speak to superman. At least that will get this obsession out of your chest.

London Preppy said...

trybaby: I'm OK. It's the only sport where I can actually compete without humiliating myself I think

lc: Hello, well thanks a lot. And yes, I think the only way to deal with my Superman obsession is to face it head on

Nix said...

Perhaps Superman didn't turn up because of the anonymous comments from yesterday?

London Preppy said...

nix: Hm..I'm willing to dismiss this option!

NGM said...

great stuff LP, i have not listened to Hole or Miss Hill in ages, are now on my to do list, as superman is on yours.

Scott said...

Hey! Are you using my iPod?

Alex said...

LP- why beat yourself up so badly over something that seems to have snowballed from nothing?

Although the somber mood you left us with doesn't make much room for compliments, I'll still make note of your fantastic writing. :D

London Preppy said...

ngm: I'm lucky they came on shuffle. Shuffle is dangerous cause you might get lots of crap, but you can also remember of great songs you had forgotten about

scott: Let's go out together

alex: I don't usually explain the posts or the mood or whatever, because people should just take them as they like. I'll comment on this one though. I was actually writing it in a forced tragic way. Kinda meaning to be funny. As in, how on earth am I so upset and beating myself up over this, over the fact some guy I've seen twice didn't turn up at the gym. So it's kinda comic and tragic at the same time

Anonymous said...

Squash is an extremely preppy sport. You should be a natural at this.

Bale

Gary said...

Oy vey! The emotional roller coaster ride! But at least you can relax now and go back to the original plan of just getting to know him.
About the squash match, will there be pics or video?
And to lc who commented about his obsession with LP’s blog, I don’t think there’s a 12-step program yet for this kind of thing, so like the rest of us, you’ll just have to accept what you cannot change.

semistraight said...

If I was you, I'd actually be glad that they didn't ask me. You could've waited a bit to make sure that they really want to single you out and then silently nurse your plans for running amok.

semistraight said...

Oh, and I'd advise against any kind of prolonged conversation with superman...you remember how it ended the last time with that bit of a cook :-X.

London Preppy said...

bale: Well the competition at work looks a bit lame anyway, so I'm sure I'll be OK

gary: I don't think so (about the squash). They think I'm odd enough already without filming the sporting activities!

semi: Ha ha - nah, I have faith on Superman. He's a good guy. (I'm just building myself for a big disappointment here - we know how I thrive on those)

seahorse said...

aww bless! Always a good read. Lots of catchin up 2 do though! Nasty business ol fate but hey thats the game we play! Keep smilin:-)

dimitri said...

now, i need to listen to l hill again. i havent heard that album in years.

just also read in one of your posts, and not sure how i missed that you are a fan of bruce springsteen! i love him... i used to work at this photo store and he would come in all the time. one time he needed help with some digital photos he took, and he sat with me for over a half hour. hes such a nice guy. i was also able to show him my photography portfolio, and he was very flattering. it was awesome. hes an amazing person. so very cool and approachable. the only down side is his feet, he would come in in sandles alot and he had razor blade toes... very funky! hehehe but... its bruce, so i forgive him! hehehe

Jack in Sydney said...

Your last two lines are perfectly pitched.

This is going to be epic...

London Preppy said...

seahorse: Welcome back, innit

dimitri: Cool, what a good story. I guess the unkempt toes must go with the whole image

jack: Thanks. Let's see eh

Foxx said...

Hey LP, very much looking forward to a picture of the squash outfit. Unfortunately I had to give squash up - busted my shoulder playing.....it's just too dangerous! Play safe!!

Maluminas said...

I had no idea something other than that delicious type of fruit was called by the name of squash, let alone a sport. Interesting.

Ben said...

What if....












[dramatic tension building pause]

















anonymous *is* Superman himself?

Hmmm....

Dick Pics said...

heartbreaking! tragic! brilliant!! london preppy does it again!

Alex said...

Oh well, thanks then. The fact that it's forced goes on to show how good of a write you are. I am, in fact, jealous of your rhetoric.

..and now I've become instantly self conscience as to whether rhetoric was the right word for that sentence.. please don't make fun!

Gabriel said...

erm. this is really funny and tragic because i've gone through exactly the same thing. except he's a frog and it wasn't the gym. and i still think about this sometimes!

michael01 said...

Lovely piece. I wouldn't mind being your editor. Hah! Not to get on too high a horse, but it amazes me how people just skim the surface of what you say, and don't get the literary quality. Good for Jack in Sydney, though.

michael01 said...

There's a certain comic sadness that reminds me of Gorky.

seahorse said...

lol yeah always sumfink for nuffink i say haha.. Ok gotta run off to paris today and doing the drive fingy from hyde park to dover. Got hangover and have a feeling Tom Tom gonna act up lol.. I wanted 2 mention that im off to greece late july some funny island about an hour away from mykonos for a couple of weeks. Going to greece is like being a virgin all over again haha is it advisable to cover up wif umbrellas to avoid the baking sun....?

London Preppy said...

foxx: A sporting injury is cooler than most

ben: Oh Superman wouldn't play games like that. He's straight in every possibly way

alex: Thanks, I do appreciate that

gabriel: The frog didn't turn up somewhere? They can be so unreliable

michael: Thank you very much. Sometimes it's completely insignificant what I write (as far as I'm concerned anyway), but I just have fun writing it. This was one of them

Nathan said...

I'm a little saddened byt the fact that you wrote 'squash quart', which appears to be the first genuine error (non typo etc) I've noticed since I started reading this blog. Unless you were making an amusing play on words because in America they drink 'squash' and they measure in 'quarts', and your preppy style is clearly American in nature.

I'm going with the latter explanantion.

Also, I never cease to be amused by your writing. I too am mid (late) 20s educated and desk bound gay who goes to the gym often and therefore doesn't really fit in with his straight (yet inoffensive) colleagues. I have even feigned anger at not being included in the company sport, and then participated just for the outfit (or, more accurately, the lack thereof).

For the record to day I am wearing blue canvas Chuck Taylor Hi-tops, fitted Lee jeans, a white American Apparel v neck tee a black gucci belt and a baby blue cashmere Ralph Lauren v neck sweater. (I am actually debuting this outfit today and chose it because I usually wear a suit and now everyone can see that I have a big chest and shapely arms)

Normally I would describe my style as the antithesis of preppy, but today I think I could almost be considered preppy (although I probably fail due to lack of collar).

So, clearly, your blog makes me feel so happy because I know that if at least one other person shares many of my nueroses (eg A&F T on a first (nay ANY) date and various Gym obsessions) I'm not alone in the world. [I described my gym obsession as 'Super Cub' as he was kind of Hairy and had a clipped beard but had a beautiful muscular body and wasn't Beary that much at all and moreover had wicked style [kind of Camden but without the tightness of jean]. Sadly he's obviously gone off-cycle recently and while still hot enough to fuck I've had to drop the 'Super' from his moniker.)

London Preppy said...

nathan: Oh my God, did I really write this? I have to go back and change it. I should really stop and proof read before posting.

I like the outfit you describe

Graham said...

So, LP, do we assume that the anonymous 'friend' of superman is actually just a big fat liar?

I think he probably went to the gym at lunch time on thursday, just to mix things up a bit and to expose himself to as many guys as possible. I know his type well. He loves, no craves, the attention from others in the gym and like every guy, numbers are what count to him. If he went to the gym at the same time every day he'd only see the same people. By going once or twice a week at a different time he gets to see, and be seen, by a whole extra set of people (guys! Lets face it, he knows guys love his ripped tshirt thing!).

As for the squash. I wouldn't have played. I wouldn't have replied to the email from guy 1 until after the tournament had started, or better, I'd just wait until he said it to me in person and they I'd act very disappointed and offended and hurt that I'd been the last person to have been asked. The scope for emotional games is much greater then.

Vicious Debonair said...

Maybe Superman is now avoiding the Gym because anonymous is real and passed your blog to him?

george said...

oh my god.....that gym scene was so sad i almost cried.....i feel for you. i feel your pain....i long for you and superman to be together this life time....george

Richard said...

That's rude and really annoying that you weren't invited. I hate when stuff like that happens, and I probably take it far more personally than you. And the Ex Factor by Lauryn Hill is a great song.

London Preppy said...

graham: Maybe he does that. But I doubt it. I think he just wants to be my friend exclusively. That's what I'm willing to think this Friday evening at 2234 anyway

vicious: No way! He's nice and wants to be my friend (I'm drunk)

george: Thank you. Thanks you George. You understand me

richard: Oh well sometimes you have to forget and forgive in order to get the long term benefits innit

Oldyeller said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
London Preppy said...

oldy: Hey, don't want to give away too much from the next post, but I didn't go gym and squash match was great fun