21 October 2008

This One Was Supposed to Be Light-Hearted

There's an attractive man here who is actually around my own age; I met him on Saturday.  I wouldn't go so far as to call him a cute guy, but he's certainly attractive enough to while away some time with.  So today, which was the first day after Saturday that I was at college for lunch, I put some rouge and some mascara before  I went to the refectory.  And of course he didn't show up!  How irritating.  I probably would have put the rouge on anyway, since I'm so pasty pale, but it's still irritating to feel that I acted out of my ordinary pointlessly.  Moral: don't put on mascara on the off-chance that a cute guy might show up.  Boy, that's one to take to your grave.

But this actually does raise a knottier issue (see?  this is why it's called "This One Was Supposed to Be Light-Hearted").  This man is reasonably sexy, and pleasant enough, but I already know that he's not someone I'd want to get involved with.  And, really, I am looking for someone to get involved with.  It's always been a puzzle to me how to negotiate that difficulty: that is, the difficulty of having immediate sexual desires even as you have long-term emotional desires.  If I want to have sex, that want is quite separate from my wanting to have a partner -- that is, it would be nice to be having sex with a long-term partner, but the fact that I don't have a potential such person around doesn't stop my desire to have sex.  What do you do?  Do you just sit on your sexual feelings, or deal with them yourself, until you find a partner?  That seems a waste of those feelings, to me, and thus in fact seems quite sad.  Or do you have sex with someone you don't really want to be with, which not only throws up all sorts of problems (such as, how do you tell them that?  do you?  how do you extract yourself in some way after the necessarily brief relationship has run its course?), but also is rather sad in its way, because it would be nicer if the sex came with an attachment that was more than simple physical desire.

My best friend told me once that thought is considered by some scientists to be an epiphenomenon, and it's complexities like this that make me believe it.  If I didn't have a consciousness/thought, I'd have no desire for emotional or intellectual connection, and when I wanted to have sex I'd just have it (and probably pretty much enjoy it all the time, since intellectual stimulation or the need to articulate preferences wouldn't be an issue).  But thought and intellect make me want partnership as well as sex.  And what's more, they give me the ability to trouble myself with these thoughts in the first place.  Thanks, nature.

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