Does This Count As A Date?

It is late at night and I’m visiting my mom. Lying on her couch in San Fransisco long after she’s gone to bed. This trip rounds out a year of celibacy for me. A full-stop, romantic time-out after a particularly soul crushing break up. It’s been a good year. Reflective. Maybe even productive. But lonely and serious.

Being back in my home town has me remembering my wildness. My body. My teenage drawers that were filled with thongs and pushup bras. Finally itching to put myself out there for the first time in thirteen months.

Instead, I’m scrolling Facebook. My friend Amy has started a new blog about her online dating. I follow the link and read a few posts. It paints a friendly world of endless men. All complicated and well-intentioned. Together they go on picnics and out dancing. She learns things and practices being herself. In one post, she describes making out with such innocence that it warms me into a smile. I do love making out.
I fill out a profile and get to swiping. Unbelievable. I’ve been walking around my whole life wondering where the men are. They’re all here! Collected online for me to peruse. So many men. Men rock climbing, biking, cooking, playing music, working out. Helping old ladies cross the street, hugging puppies and taking very cheesy selfies. I like a few of them and my inbox fills with messages. The phone dinging like a vegas slot machine.
Me and this one guy get to chatting even though he’s in New York and I’m in California. He seems cute and his messages are immediately raunchy in a way that matches my late night mood. He asks if I want a front row Facetime view of him stroking his cock. I’m a little shocked and then intrigued. Why not? I’m a grown women. I got nothing to loose.
Within the minute I am looking at the long, pink tower of his dick rising from its protective bushel of hair. A giggly and shocking reminder of the stuff consenting adults can get into on the internet. All of it only a few taps away.
But, in truth, he is a boring cyber sex partner. Reticent. Basic. No new words for the often referred to bits and acts. No inventive deviations from the standard porn narrative. He keeps asking me what I think about his cock and slips in the ‘dirty little slut’ talk right when I am about to cum. Being called a dirty little slut by a stranger is not high on my list of turn ons. It puts a damper on the wave moving through me. Landing my orgasm flat on the shore. An aftertaste of grief and resentment.
But he does wait for me to cum before he strokes himself to climax. He does say he likes my big ass and has a beautiful, almost Italian face. Fine boned and full lipped with dark, oiled curls. As sensual in beauty, if not in practice, as a Caravaggio painting.
He says good night to me with tenderness and a shameless self-confidence I admire in someone who has just exposed their sexuality to a stranger. So I count my blessings. I close my computer and turn off the lights. I shut my eyes and pull the blankets around me, welcoming my own rebirth back into the weird wild world of dating.

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