Lust Life: Ambivalent Sex

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“I’d like to see your office,” she said in her gritty French accent. I was looking for some Sapphic excitement, but I didn’t have a specific plan…maybe flirt with a few girls, find one who delights me and exchange some moves and sweet saliva on the dance floor.

The gritty one with the accent was not my first choice. I had only just begun to scope out the scene when I started talking to her. She was sitting by herself across from my friend and me, so I felt obliged to say a few words. “You’re from Paris? J’ai été à Cannes…” The French connection extended the conversation far beyond the usual superficial bar talk.

While Frenchie was checking her cell phone, I asked my friend, “So is there anyone here you find attractive?”

“Yes, but nobody who’s like wow. What about you? Do you like the French girl?”

“Yes, she’s OK, but I’m not really attracted to her. I mean, she’s attractive, but not enough to hook up with.”

Although I wasn’t really into her, our bilingual conversation had me hooked. We only covered a few topics in about 45 minutes—details and opinions that don’t typically surface in bars unless I’m with someone I know. Sometimes it seemed like we were on a date. At other moments I felt as if we were a couple of straight girls getting to know each other as friends. Then she bought me a drink and asked, “What’s your sign?”

I tried to explain my non-monogamous philosophy and when my bisexual identity was revealed. She said glibly, “Oh. Guys must really like you.” “Yes, but that’s not the only reason why they like me,” I said.

She said I was “volatile,” then asked if she offended me. I don’t think she understood the meaning of the word volatile, but so what? She wasn’t my type. Yet we had a lot in common. We’re both Leos, and we adore cats.

I thought about my new cat while Frenchie was in the bathroom. She was gone for a while, so I got up to mingle. I wouldn’t have minded if she didn’t come back, but she did. And as politely indifferent as I thought I appeared, she kissed me at the bar. “I did it because I like your red lipstick,” she said. How unflattering. Maybe she was attuned to my ambivalence. Maybe she was ambivalent as well—or maybe it was the three Chardonnays she’d consumed.

“So do you have anything to do tomorrow?” she asked. I knew where she was leading and I was prepared with an arsenal of excuses. “I have to work, but not necessarily early,” I said. “What’s your apartment like?” she inquired. “It’s a two bedroom, but one bedroom is my office and my friend is staying with me this weekend, plus I just got a new cat and he has to be separated from my other one because they don’t quite get along yet and…” That’s when she said, “I’d like to see your office.”

“Maybe another night,” I said. “I’m spontaneous,” she contested. That was the deciding factor. I had to prove that I’m just as spontaneous. Besides, at this point I was curious about what she looked like naked, and if she was as dexterous with her tongue as she was with her arguments.

We had mediocre sex on my office floor. How did I end up with this horrible kisser with greasy hair and perfumed breasts? She was as sensual as a fish. As I sat on her face, she made loud, annoying, repetitive sounds of encouragement: Hmm mmm, hmm mmm, hmm mmm…I watched my cat through the crack in the door, wondering if my friend was still asleep. This is not the first time I’ve tolerated groping, squeezing and scratching in exchange for a mild orgasm, a new experience and a story for posterity.

No one’s immune to ambivalent sex. It happens to the best of us. If the victim isn’t a stranger, she’s the lover you’re not sure you love, or the spouse you’re starting to hate. You do it because you’re horny and the person is there. You do it out of habit. You do it because you’re drunk. You do it because the excuses against it aren’t any stronger than the reasons in favor of it. You do it selfishly, so you can add a point to your sex log. And you do it unwillingly, so you can satisfy your partner’s libido—or fulfill your marriage counselor’s prescription. I did it for her pleasure as well as for mine. And I did it for you, dear readers. It wasn’t great, but it was something.

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