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Moscow Babylon February 20, 2002
The Art Of Disappointing
By Mark Ames Browse author Email

I've been disappointed by a lot of things lately. For example, crabs. I haven't had a case of crabs in god knows how long. A clear sign that I'm not doing my job. Crabs have provided me with solid column material in the past. I used to keep a museum of the ones I'd plucked on a piece of white paper taped to the wall in front of my desk, to remind myself why sex sucks.

Crabs are like women: when you want them, they're never there; and when you don't want them, they're sucking your blood and crawling up your balls. But seriously folks...heh-heh. Hey, do we have any women in the audience tonight?

Disappointment is in the air. When it comes to the art of disappointing, particularly those of the ensnappered gender, my game is getting good.

Take this cry of uncle:

"Don't be so nice, Mark."

That's what Lara kept telling me last Saturday night. No, not telling me, but begging me. Begging me to be the pig she'd believed I was.

"Be mean, be more like a man. Don't be so sweet, Mark."

"But I want to MARRY you," I whined. And I meant it, as far as I can recall.

"No, no, no! Be mean to me, Mark. Like you are in the newspaper."

"But I don't WANNA be mean. I wanna MARRY you. Can't you SEE? I LOVE you."

We'd met following a halyava I was treated to earlier that evening by some PR babe named Anna. Afterwards, the details are hazy.

The haze began to build on Friday, during a dusk-till-dawn binge on the Northern Alliance's finest (which made me itch so violently that I suspected poppy-crabs). At the halyava on Saturday, still warm 'n fuzzy from the poppy, I consumed several mixed cocktails and a shot of wormwood-loaded Absinthe. That's when I met Lara -- and decided we had to marry.

"You're not really mean at all," she said. "You're just a sweet guy who pretends to be mean." She knew the eXile -- she had expectations, that it would all be much more interesting and violent.

Her disappointment was monumental, crossing over to what a neutral observer might call "disgust."

We rolled up to Real McCoy, the spawning pool that has become a favorite eXile haunt for its 2-for-1 whisky-colas and turbo-powered 210-ruble Long Island Iced Teas. And the gaggle of interchangeable sluts that always seem to dance near the entrance.

At one point, I remember knocking Lara's Long Island all over her leg while trying to toast a table of bawdy Arabs. I only remembered this because I found a card the following afternoon with the name "Ali" written on it, and three phone numbers. It all came back in pieces.

I kept loudly toasting the Arabs. After some initial embarrassment on their part, they graciously invited me to sit down with them; we toasted God knows what for Allah knows how long; then we agreed that I'd come over to Ali's for an evening of homemade couscous and politics.

"We're not extremists, Mark," Ali told me. And I agreed! Of course they weren't! We were cousins! Blood brothers!

My peace & love shtick was too much for Lara.

"Can't you just be a little bit mean, Mark? You're everyone's friend."

"I LOOOOVE you, Lara."


"And I love my Arab friends!"

She gave me one more chance -- she obeyed when I pushed her into a taxi ride home with me. It was the only thing that impressed her.

"Yes, be more of a man, like that."

"Lara, I want a girlfriend just like you. Let's forget all this bullshit, MARRY ME!"

"Foo! No!"

'Twas a time when I didn't think sex was sex without a healthy dose of bedroom violence -- satisfaction came when they complained, with that repulsive pride, about their cut lips or the bruises on their asses. But folks, that was a lifetime ago. When I wrongly assumed that HURTING women actually HURT them.

What happened? Three years ago I contracted giardia and, about the same time, my first bouts of penile erection dysfunction which has since become an eXile trademark.

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