Tuesday, 2 March 2010
Postcards from the Provinces: #2 Lovers' Ruin
Have you ever been listening to a song and have had to turn it off because it evokes a memory or an emotion which turns your stomach, gets stuck in your throat or kicks you in the balls, leaving you either wanting to cry, or hold your head in embarrassed shame. I have, and it's almost always related to a girl.
It dawned on me that this would an interesting subject to write about. So many songs have been ruined for me by the women I've know, loved and still love. This article is going to look at songs which have been desecrated by the memory attached to them, etched by ghosts of girlfriends past and present.
1. 'I’m Like a Bird' by Nelly Furtado:
I’m like a bird isn’t a song that I listen to by choice, I’d say it is just one of those songs you occasionally hear on the radio, or see the video on a music channel now and then. However without fail, each time I hear Miss Futardo’s smash hit ode to commitment issues I can’t help thinking about the night I lost my virginity. I’m not even sure to this day whether I lost it or, quite literally, misplaced it. ‘It’ being my penis.
I was a late starter in life; everything I did was prolonged or put off, usually because I was scared to face challenges thrown at me. I’m the person who’s going to do the job tomorrow rather than today and like everything else, girls were no exception. However there always comes the day when you have to get the job done, even when you’re desperate to do anything thing else other than what you have to face. My first kiss was one of these occasions, I’d attempted everything to get out of it even sabotage.By stopping off at MacDonald’s and loading up on double cheese burgers, I was convinced that the overwhelming stench of onions and fear would send the girl packing, but no. When I arrived on the date, I found to my horror that Denise was keener than ever. As we walked through the park Denise would sporadically squeeze my arse, I couldn’t help but blush. She was a crafty one, I thought, as she guided me round a corner into a pretty sunken garden full of ornate foliage. We stopped and without warning she'd clamped onto my face, it was horrible-her tongue whirled around in my head like fish in its final death throws. 'When will it stop' is all I could think, and then like the eye of a storm it was calm again. I never saw Denise after that day. Thank god.
Soon after Denise I started dating a girl called Pia, and happily for me we made it through our first kiss unscathed, no dead fish moments, but the relationship was starting to move forward, we were heading for unchartered territory, our love was about to get physical and frankly I was shitting myself over the prospect of getting my portions. There was clearly so much that could go wrong, she could see my penis and laugh at it. I could discover that I don’t like sex and realise that I was in fact a repressed homosexual. I could just cum down my leg before I got it anywhere near the Holy Grail. The anticipation was staring to take its toll on me.
The much planned night was upon us. I had managed to get my mum out of the house by telling her that the two of us wanted to celebrate our three week anniversary, this was true, but what we really wanted was to unshackle ourselves from the oppressive constraint of our virginity. So at sevenish Pia knocked at the front door we looked at each other like we were complete strangers and I suppose that's what we were...tonight was all about the sex and neither of us had a clue.
We started kissing as soon as she came in the door, she was of the let's get this out of the way school of thought, while I being a serial procrastinator decided to slow it down and watch some telly first. We watched MTV for a while, well I say watched, it was actually listening-we were kissing in that manic manner that teenagers do, as if you were to stop the other person would disappear.She grabbed my hand, as 'It Wasn’t Me' by Shaggy started to play on the telly, I can remember the unbelievable sense of impending doom as she dragged me up from the settee and said “Let’s go upstairs.”
We got to the bedroom and all I can remember is Pia lying there naked while I left the room to put on a condom, god knows what she thought I was doing, I didn’t. I returned to the room and it started. We rolled around like two worms wrestling, and I was pretty happy up with the way it was going, I felt like I was passing the ‘he’s definitely not a virgin test’. Then The moment that seemed to trigger my downfall occurred, Furtado started to pollute the house as Pia asked if this was my first time. ‘How does she know?’ I asked myself, but I later realised I was probably humping her leg.Of course I didn’t think this was the time to admit to being a virgin, I don’t know where it came from but I started listing mythical women I’d slept with they all had ridiculous names like Tallulah, Witney and Trixie, I might as well have told her that she was fucking Slim Goody Peterborough's finest pimp. Why couldn't I say Sarah, Helen anything but Trixie.
I’ve learnt now that it's never a good idea to mention other women while in the throes of sexual passion with another lady. It isn’t a common foreplay technique, and there's a reason for that. Girls are touchy. In an attempt to shut me up she grabbed my penis, it was happening.
‘Your faith in me brings me to tears/Even after all these years.’
The fear took hold of me, it was happening. I was waving goodbye to the age of innocence I WAS BECOMING A MAN! but as the song swelled into to another chorus my solider lay down and died. 'God no, why now? This has never happened to me when I was practicing.' I thought as I attempted to give him a helping hand.
Pia was quite comforting over the whole situation trying to get the old boy to have one last fight at it, but her efforts were to no avail. She even suggested taking the dog out for a walk and that's not even a dick based euphemism. I think once you start discussing dog walking the moment has passed, consigned to the history books as a failure.
It's not all doom and gloom because later that week I finally got the job done, but that night will always be known as ‘Flop and Fear’. A term first coined by young Thomas Reynolds to explain similar lonely travails. I drove Pia home that night with a complete sense of humiliation; we didn't really talk much on the way to her house. 'I'm Like a Bird' started to play on the radio and I wanted to kill myself. Luckily I can laugh about it now, but whenever I hear that song I just cringe...
I still don't know if I lost my virginity that night.
* (Joke originally attributed to unknown comedian, Norwich, 2004 - editor)