An Incongreenient TruthbyZuzusPetals©
I love New England. All the history, the old buildings covered in ivy, the leaves turning colors, the sports, the people. I love it all, except the weather. The winter drags on forever, and just when you think the days of knee-deep snow and dirt-covered slushy sidewalks are over, the flakes fall again. It blows.
I also love my boyfriend. But just like New England, he has his moments. We're complete opposites, and although for the most part that just makes our relationship more exciting, we can occasionally clash.
One cold February night I left work at 7:30, and it was so dark out on the blistery streets that it felt more like midnight. I navigated through the crowded subway, dodging a cigarette seeking homeless man, and multiple rats scurrying across the tracks, looking for a warm nook. Finally, I got to our apartment, taking out my janitor-sized key ring for the front door, and then climbing to our 3rd floor walkup. I was ready to fall down dead, when I pushed my weary body and bags into the apartment, and the first thing I saw was a garish, old bike sitting next to my new Pottery Barn couch.
I found him sitting in the bedroom, looking professorial grading papers.
"Hi babe," he said smiling over, a sheet inked in red.
"Hi," I said, out of breath. I looked around our room, covered with his clothes, much like every other room in our apartment.
"How was your day? Another long night," he said glancing down at his watch.
"Yeah, very long day," I sighed. "By the way, why is there a bike in the living room?" I asked, pulling off my heels.
"Oh, that. Yeah, I'm going green," he said flipping to the next page of the paper in front of him.
One night some girlfriends and I were at a dive bar, far from campus, on karaoke night. The place was an eclectic mix of students, professionals, and several people who did not fit into either category. After a few rounds of shots, the idea of singing started to sound better and better. When it came down to it though, none of us wanted to sing by ourselves. My roommate giggled after her fourth tequila shot, squealing,
"Jane, I'll give you twenty bucks if you sing this one," she said pointing to the music book laid out in front of us.
I laughed looking at the title, knowing twenty bucks would not be motivation enough to sing I Touch Myself.
"Not a chance," I sighed, shaking my head.
"I'll give you another ten," another girl cried.
"I'll give you ten too," her roommate added. By the time we got to fifty I caved.
It was the most embarrassing and shameful three and a half minutes of my life, as I swayed and cooed drunkenly to the breathy lyrics. After the last notes fell silent and the hooting of patrons in the bar stopped I escaped back to our table, blushing from head to toe. But I did get my money. And plenty of free drinks.
A while later I stood up at the bar, desperately trying to get away from the guy chatting in my ear, with his creeping hand on my lower back, when the bartender came up to me smiling.
"This is from the guy over there," he said pushing a beer to me, and cocking his head over to the right of the bar.
I craned my neck to see who it was, and the bartender continued, "He wanted me to tell you that he thought you were the worst singer he's ever heard," he said, shaking his head.
I laughed to myself and met eyes, with a tall, skinny, flannel wearing man. His light brown hair was a mess of curls that he'd tied back in a short ponytail. He looked like a neo-hippie tribute to Kurt Cobain, and was completely not my type.
I immediately shed the preppy, fellow business major at my side, and walked over to my non-admirer.
"Hi," I smiled over the lip of my glass.
"Hi there," he said, nodding his head.
"I'm Jane," I said lamely. He raised an eyebrow slightly and nodded,
"So, Jane," he said taking a sip of his own beer, "how much did your friends pay you for that little performance?"
I laughed, looking over at them. Their gazes were locked on us, no doubt wondering why the hell I was talking to this guy.
"Fifty bucks," I smiled. He grinned, staring at me,
"Well, I'd make it a hundred, just to see you do that again."
The next morning I woke up in Allston in his bed. Blurry images of the previous night came to me, in embarrassing flashes. I buried my flushed face in his pillow as I remembered making out with him at the bar, as I practically dry humped him in public. I'd been uncharacteristically wanton with him, letting him take me in multiple positions, and the soreness between my legs was a testament to his stamina.
I spied him suspiciously while he slept next to me. Without the fog of alcohol lingering over me I realized just how good-looking he actually was. Especially with no clothes on. He was amused in the morning by my embarrassment of the night before, and as I scrambled for my clothes he made us coffee and watched my neurosis unfold. He gave me his number, and even as he was scribbling it down I could see in his face he knew I'd never call him.
Over the next week I bumped into him four times around campus. After four years of never laying eyes on him once, he was everywhere. Each and every time he was unendingly amused by my propensity to dissolve into an awkward mess of politely superficial small talk. By the fifth time, he asked me on a date, and not knowing why, I told him yes.
The morning after our date I stayed cuddled next to him, laughing and kissing. I stayed like that for a year. None of my friends understood our relationship. My waspy family and Connecticut upbringing was completely different than his liberal flower power childhood. He was getting his masters in anthropology. I was applying to business schools. When May rolled around I was the most miserable college graduate I knew. My boyfriend was moving to California with a doctoral program and research abroad study ahead of him. We both couldn't rationalize staying together while he was across the country and planning to live in North Africa for 18 months.
We stayed in touch for a while, and I was always excited to hear from him. But eventually, as the spaces between our correspondences changed from months to years, I moved on. I found a great job, making my money-centric family happy that I hadn't run off to Africa like they'd thought I would. It was just last fall I was sitting in a coffee shop off Newbury Street when things changed again.
I felt as someone hesitated above my seat, where I was penciling things into my planner in between swigs of my latte. Then the foreground in front of me changed as the figure sat down in the opposite seat, laying his coffee on the table with mine. Mildly annoyed, I looked up to see who would be interrupting my first relaxing time of the week, and I went frozen.
"Finn," I said, shocked.
"You changed your hair," he said smiling.
"You changed your hair," I said laughing. Gone were the lengthy curls, and it was now cropped shorter. He'd put on some weight. But in a very, very good way. Like he was preparing to be the next Spiderman kind of way.
"You look great," I said, nearly choking on my words. He laughed as he continued to absorb the changes I'd made in nearly eight years.
"You still look gorgeous." He offered to buy me lunch. Lunch turned into a movie. A movie turned into drinks. Drinks turned into having sex on my living room carpet. The carpet burn eventually subsided and we moved in together three weeks later.
"Going green?" I asked, as my eyebrow arched to the ceiling.
"Yes, you can wipe that look off your face, doll," he smiled, from over his papers.
"I think you've watched that Al Gore documentary a few too many times," I said, throwing my coat on the bed.
"Well, if I could afford a hybrid car right now, then I'd go for that, but with my means a bike is probably the best I can do to cut down on my daily impact," he replied.
"Your daily impact?" I asked again. I was beginning to sound like a quizzical echo.
"Yes, you know, car pollutants. They make up the majority of air pollution. Especially in a major city," he added nonchalantly. I laughed openly. I guffawed, in fact.
"Are you filming a Public Service Announcement that you didn't tell me about?" I said looking around the room for cameras in mock curiosity.
"You know, you don't have to be so sarcastic about it, Jane. Just because I want to do something to help cut down on pollutants that are contributing to the global warming crisis, doesn't mean you have to give me shit about it. It's not going to even to affect you. You're not the one riding the damn thing," he said tossing his glasses onto the desk.
"Sarcastic?" I asked, staring at him blankly. "I don't care if you ride a unicycle or hop over to work on a fucking pogo stick, Finn, but don't say it doesn't affect me when it's taking up half the space in our fucking living room," I said, my voice growing a pitch higher.
"Jesus, Jane," he said, the angles in his face tightening, "Plenty of people ride bikes. We live in a city for Christ's sake. If you'd just stop being so dramatic, and let the precious five feet of space it takes up go, it would make things around here a lot easier to take."
"Dramatic?" I screeched. He was pushing me. I began stripping off my heavy sweater, as I heard him sigh.
"I just wish sometimes you'd understand that there are certain things I really care about. Our planet as one," he said, I cut him off before he could continue his eco-friendly tirade.
"What? And you're saying I don't care about our planet?"
"No, Jane, list-"
"No, you listen. I come home out of a fucking blizzard, which by the way, definitely goes to prove the "climate crisis" is upon us," I said adding dramatic air quotes, "And come home to find your clothes everywhere, and your stupid bike in the living room. Maybe I wouldn't care so much about the bike if you'd just pick everything else up. It wouldn't look like our living room is the size of a postage stamp," I yelled, storming off to the bathroom.
I turned the shower on and could hear him moving around the apartment, presumably picking up his clothes.
I saw him through the crack of the door carrying a pile of sweatshirts back to the bedroom.
"Sorry, the maid doesn't come on Mondays," I said coldly. We don't have a maid.
"You don't have to be such a bitch," he sneered.
"I've got news for you, darling, even tree-hugging Nader supporting, granola girls get pissed off when they're boyfriends live like pigs," I said through the door as he slammed the bedroom door shut.
I quickly scrubbed my body roughly, angry with him, angry with myself. Sometimes I couldn't accept our differences, and liked to fight with him rather than just let things be. Afterwards, I dried myself off, dabbing at my damp skin, when he flung open the door.
"I cleaned up the living room your highness," he said narrowing his eyes. I pulled the towel tight around my body as he examined me, "But I'd appreciate it if you wouldn't continue to drink all but the last two sips of every beverage in this apartment. There's about four bottles of juice in the fridge with an ounce left, so if could stop doing that, it would be great," he sneered.
"Fine, I'd be happy to," I said back, meeting his harsh gaze.
"Fine," he said, squeezing out of the doorway.
A while later, I sat in bed, briefcase at my sock covered feet, papers strewn around me. Finn had moved his work out to the living room, and I could hear him rustling things around, and I inwardly groaned at every disrupting sound he made.
I felt him in the doorway and chose not to look up.
"Are you hungry," he asked. I could tell his mood had cooled.
"No," I said tersely, brushing a long wavy piece of hair out of my face.
"Are you sure, Jane?" I finally looked at him. He was staring at me. My tank top was riding up my stomach, and my boxer shorts were riding low on my hips. Our bedroom was uncharacteristically hot. I hated our apartment's temperature. In one room you needed a parka and in the next you risked heat stroke. My cardigan sweater was a paradoxical testament to this irregular heating system, but I didn't care what I looked like in my own home.
I pulled my shirt down to cover my wintery skin and shook my head wordlessly, avoiding his glance.
"Fine," he said disappearing.
I sighed, resting my head against my pillow. I wished I could be less of a bitch. Sometimes I just couldn't get passed our complete differences. It had been the same in college, but we'd always gotten over our little issues before. Something now about living together in the real world made it seem harder. I didn't know if I could live with someone I was so different from. Or marry him.
I felt him on the bed next to me, and jumped, startled.
"Here," he said, resting a plate on the bed stand next to me with a grilled cheese on it
"You're a jerk sometimes," I said finally.
"I guess you could call that a thank you, but different," he smiled. I looked at him seriously. He widened his eyes playfully, and frowned, imitating me.
"What's wrong, Jane? I know this isn't about a stupid bike. If it were, I hope you know I'd throw it down the hallway to make you happy, but that's not it, is it?" he asked, stroking the skin of my arm, not exposed by my sweater.
"No," I replied, pushing myself up the bed.
"What is it, then?" he asked, breaking a piece of the grilled cheese off and handing it to me.
I took it, and nibbled at the corner, "Sometimes I feel like you say things to make me feel bad about how I live, and what I concern myself with," I said.
He moved closer to me, wrapping my leg around him, "Baby, I don't mean to do that at all, you have to know that."
"Well you do," I said firmly.
"Like when?" he asked rubbing my leg.
"Like," I said, removing his hand from my thigh, "the other day when you made those sarcastic comments when I wanted to record American Idol and made you watch the debate in here instead," I said.
"Jane, I was just kidding, that stuff really isn't a big deal," he said.
"I know, but sometimes I just feel like you're condescending about politics and stuff like that when you don't even realize it. Just because I don't follow Obama and Hillary's every cough and sneeze in the blogs doesn't mean I'm an idiot," I said.
"Baby, I don't think you're an idiot at all," he said taking my hand in his.
"I know you don't, but sometimes the things you say just hurt. And I know I don't care as much about this whole going green phenomenon as much as you do, but just because I can't recite facts about greenhouse gases and sometimes I just throw the stupid paper out rather than recycle, doesn't mean I don't care about our planet," I said.
"I know, Jane," he said. He wound his fingers through mine.
"I love that you care about so much, Finn. I love that you bought a bike, and that you reuse practically everything," I said laughing. "And I love that you really give a shit, and you're so different from the people I have to see ten hours a day, but I just want you to know, I'm trying to get used to this. To us. But it might take me a while. And I might never buy just organic, or remember to recycle aluminum, and if Idol is on, I don't care what Obama or McCain or Al Gore is saying, because I want to make sure Jason Castro is safe. But I love you, I really do. And I don't care about the bike," I said, as I pulled him down to me by his shirt, kissing him.
He slid on top of me, parting my legs with his body, as he kissed me back.
"I love you too Jane, and I wouldn't want you any other way," he whispered.
"Even though I'm a registered independent?" I asked.
"Mmhm," he said kissing me again.
"And I hate nature," I asked.
"And even though I'll always take a cab over walking those few extra blocks?"
"Yes, Jane. I'll bike extra far to make up for the both of us," he smiled, as he snaked his hand under my tank top.
"Ooh," I flinched, "your hands are so cold," I giggled.
"I guess I need to warm them up," he sighed.
"Yes, we need to get some greenhouse effect going on in here," I teased.
"You're a funny girl," he smiled, as his hand began grazing over my braless tits.
"You just get me so riled up with all this global warming talk," I sighed, running my hands over his chest.
"Well, I was reading this article on the Kyoto Protocol today," he grinned, pushing my sweater aside.
"Oooh God," I moaned in mock arousal. I smiled at him and held my arms up like a little girl, indicating what I wanted him to do with my tank top. He slid it slowly up my torso, and over my head, his eyes never leaving mine.
"We haven't done this nearly enough lately," he said softly, as he touched my nipple with his fingers.
"Mmm, I know." He was right, the last time we'd had sex was a quicky one morning before we'd gotten out of bed, almost a week before. For some couples that wouldn't seem like too long, but we needed each other constantly.
I stared at him as he unbuttoned his shirt and was happy we were acting like ourselves again. I bit my lip, grinning at him, as I played with my breasts, watching him slowly undress.
He pulled down his jeans, slipping them off his legs as I continued to tease him by touching myself. I pushed my tiny boxer shorts down my hips, just above my pussy and I let my hand travel up and down my stomach, finally coming to rest underneath the cloth of my shorts. He groaned, and pulled his own boxers down, stroking at his hardening cock absent-mindedly. I licked my lips as I mouthed the words "fuck me" to him.
"Oh, I plan on it, sweetheart," he chuckled, and he pulled me under him, kissing me again. I felt as his hands trailed down my chest and stomach, pushing my bottoms down further and spreading my wet lips with his fingers.
"Uhh," I gasped as he pushed two fingers into my wet hole, while he kissed and nibbled on the side of my neck. His mouth started moving further down, nibbling on my collarbone, kissing my breasts, and sucking my nipples into his mouth, taking them between his teeth.
"Oh god," I sighed, pressing my pussy against his hand, hearing the wet sounds of his fingers moving in and out.
His tongue circled my belly button, then moved south, until the wet trail ended at my clit. He began sucking on the hard little bud as he fucked me with his fingers. I moaned as he took my clit between his teeth, and fucked me roughly with his fingers, adding another one.
"Finn," I sighed, grabbing onto his hair, a sign he knew to take that I was close.
His tongue flicked my clit rapidly as he gently nibbled,
"Oh, fuck Finn, I'm gonna - oh, god" I sighed, feeling my orgasm sweep over me. My cunt clenched around his invading fingers while he continued his aural assault on my clit. I eventually nudged him away, as I became more sensitive, gasping and trying to catch my breath.
He smiled at me, his wet chin resting on my hip as he touched my breasts, rolling my nipple in his fingers.
"Come up here," I said, crooking at my finger, mimicking my words with my digit. He crawled up my body playfully, kissing up my skin, nipping my collarbone, raspberrying my neck.
I giggled at his touches and trailed my hands down his strong back, pulling his ass towards me.
"Yikes," he said, grinning, "Excited aren't you?"
"You have no idea," I said, "I'm just imagining you're Al Gore," I laughed, as he grabbed me spinning around. I screamed as he slapped my ass.
"You're a bitch," he laughed, holding me close in his lap, his arms wrapped around my stomach.
"Well, I think you should take all your environmental frustrations out on me," I sighed, "Right here," I said, dragging his hand between my parted legs.