…to Sail The Seas of Cheese

There comes a time for every man…

Firstly, we are boys. You ought to understand that from the start. We’re tall, some of us, we’ve grown hair in our secret places – and some unfortunate of us in our not so secret places, we’ve even started to lose some hair; we own houses, or rent them, but they’re ours; we drive slower than we used to, and we do other things slower than we used to as well – which is sometimes good, and sometimes not so much, but we’re not the ones to ask about that; we give sagely advice, and contrary to much of that advice, some of us have even assisted in creating little squealing, shitting, joyous versions of ourselves.

But make no mistake, no matter how much we resemble men, we are boys. It is an irrefutably universal truth. Accept it.

Just to clarify though, don’t you fucking dare tell us that we’re boys. It’s our job to admit that – to ourselves as well perhaps – and we’ll do that grudgingly, if at all, but do. Not. Tell. Us. Please, lest you subject yourself to an explosive anger, or worse yet, a protracted and raging silence… in fact, it is best to just keep your mouth shut at pretty much all times. Really, it’s safer this way.

Lessons would be well learnt from mothers of men, from past masters – or past victims, depending on which way you look at it. They’re too kind though, to teach these lessons early. Let the little dears have a few more years of blissful ignorance. Let them dream of Ryan Gosling.

You know, the greatest deception in modern history comes out of Hollywood. It, they, are called Romantic Comedies. Oh, yes, of course, you know, we know, they’re all make-believe, escapism, gel-coated, easy to swallow opiates for the desperately lonely and hopeful.

Incidentally, this is where fantasy novels, sci-fi films (hell, even time-travelling superhero comics) will win every time. They’re far superior forms of escapism. No one secretly believes that they will actually come true one day… ok, some people do, but they meet weekly at a private table in the back corner of a military/gaming bookshop, and discreetly pull their undies on over their jeans, and giggle. Unlike romantic comedies, they don’t produce an entire culture of the deeply delusional.

It is not that the gullible masses think that they will meet Mr. Right and, after a whirlwind romance, live happily ever after. They know that they’ll probably never meet him, and if they do, after the whirlwind romance, it will not all be golden sunsets, and lowered toilet seats. But somewhere in there, they do believe that they’ll meet Mr… eeeeeeeeeghhhh! Wrong Answer. No, you’ll meet Mstr, masquerading as Mr. and the struggle that ensues, that follows the three weeks of rampant sex on a beach in the tropics – or at least at Coolangatta – is not one of learning to operate the toilet seat for yourself, it’s of learning to come to terms with the fact that you’re now married to/cohabiting with the little boy you never wanted to have… that’s why you got your fucking tubes tied… and now all that worry free beach sex has got you right where you don’t want to be.

It’s all over now, emotional immaturity reigns, most commonly manifested in a taciturn refusal to talk – especially if it concerns feelings. Don’t try to understand this, anymore than you’d try to understand how two blokes became the closest of friends following a couple of nights sitting in silence around a campfire. It just is. We’re not going to explain it – after all, that would require fucking talking.

There’s no going back to that blissful ignorance, and don’t look at us like that. We’re not taking responsibility for the way things are. We shall take no responsibility at all in fact, we’re too busy yearning for the endless summers of yore, when the only worry was whether mum would notice the dollar we’d nicked and spent on a distended paper bag, bulging with 1¢ lollies, or if there were enough bricks under that plank of wood for us to clear the creek on our bikes.

What? Oh this? It’s a remote control helicopter. Isn’t it fucking awesome?

Listen, there’s no use in getting upset about us coming home with remote control flying things, chainsaws and convertibles. It doesn’t matter that we live in an inner city studio apartment, have no room for aerial manoeuvres, no trees to fell, and can never get above 53km/hr. We need them. Need them. And we don’t give a shit that we can’t really afford them, after all, we’re irresponsible; we’re boys; we’re living the life of a seven year old… with a lot of pocket-money… enough, we don’t want to hear it, mum. No, we won’t fucking talk about it.

There comes a time in for every man boy… it’s nearly here. It’s fucking Christmas. I’ might not be any more interested than any self-respecting alcoholic in getting up early to dash into the living room and see what Santy Claus left in my stocking, but in the lead up, well, I’m back to being seven once again.

Family? Time off work? A glut of prawns? Pfft. It’s. All. About. The. Presents. I can’t stop thinking about it. It’s all I can do to stop myself looking in the other side of the closet, where I know something is hidden away from me. It’s a dire strain not to take out the things I bought for other people and play with them. Jesus, I might even have to buy myself toys in the meantime, just so I don’t expire from desperate anticipation.

No, I have no shame… ok well, that’s not really true. I have lot’s of shame. Some of it’s reserved for the therapy couch,  some of it becomes lies that tell truths upon the written page, and some of it is festering away in my black little heart. But none of it, none of it, has anything to do with being excited for the season of giving getting.

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~ by Gethin A. Lynes on December 14th, 2011.

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