Sunday, 16 October 2011

More Wrong Things

Sitting here on the graveyard shift, it's hard to believe that exactly one week ago I was sobbing in my sister's housemate's bed.

We're still talking and there's a lot more of that to do. We keep finding new things wrong with our relationship. Last night Virgil tells me that my habit of eating his food is a really annoying ongoing issue and I have to stop doing it. You have to stop making me responsible for your food choices, he says. It drives me mad. But I only want a little bit, I protest.

We're eating sausage and sauerkraut in a small Austrian restaurant. A couple on a date are sitting a foot and a half away, pretending they can't hear us. I feel humiliated and compensate for this by attacking Virgil. I tell him that he is wrong-headed and out of order for trying to psychologise me. Then I tell him that he has spoiled dinner and I want to leave and stop having this ridiculous conversation.

Having said what was on his mind, Virgil (bless him, the sod) keeps trying to take my hand over the table. I am immune to this because I feel hurt. I tell him that I'll be less upset later and we'll talk then. We get up to leave. It's like trying to fight through a thicket of pine furniture. We are laden with shopping and bicycle pannier bags. Virgil keeps trying to carry mine for me and to give me his new, just bought jacket with the tab still on it in case he wants to return it to wear. I imagine the couple on the date talking about us after we leave.

To keep warm I am wearing a pair of corduroy trousers that he has just bought and an old jumper with the elbows gone out. When we leave the restaurant a man comes and says: Got a light, boys? ...and girls?

I love to feed people and to be fed. I love to share food from a menu. If Virgil has a cake, a pudding or an icecream I want a little bit of it. If he has a coke or a lemonade I want a sip. I don't want a whole one and I can't just have a tiny bit and leave the rest. I resent Virgil's churlishness, his not wanting to share with me and his finding me annoying. I hate the way he spoke to me in the restaurant.

I wish he would feed me sometimes. He hardly ever shops or cooks unless it's for himself. Is it my Jew-ishness or the house I grew up in where there was always some communual food? Cooking for someone is a demonstration of love and care. I think loving thoughts about Virgil as I go around the local supermarket, selecting the plastic cheese, Muller rice and the sweet, crunchy granola I know he cares for. There should be a special word for what you feel when, coming home tired, you find that someone has cooked. If it's not enough that he doesn't do this, he could at least share his treats with me.

I would share with him (if I bought those things).

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