Monday, August 28, 2006

On the having and eating of cake

Just finished a challenging chat with K pre-burning man.

At Harbin, I finally gave her what she had been asking for, namely, a very clear picture of the other less than platonic relationships in my life. She wanted openness. The problem, as she understood it, was that she kept bumping into that part of my life unexpectedly, and it hurt.

Except now whenever I mention anything about anyone in my life that isn't someone who's just a platonic friend, K gets... pissy. I casually told what I thought would be a funny story about a bad date. Nope. Pissed her off. Yes, we were just lying in bed talking, and maybe that wasn't a moment she wanted to hear about it. But my fear is that, really, she'd like to think she can handle me seeing others, but in fact, she can't. She feels what she feels, and she feels she wants me to herself.

Tonight she was clearly not in a good mood. Turns out my casually mentioning yesterday that I was seeing C to go to the Marin Farmer's market (C's been a good friend to me, and I want to build the friendship) and see another friend of mine (who's been a lover, but with whom I seem to be just friends these days, albeit snuggly friends) didn't go over well. She didn't like that I finished up our chat to pick up C's call. And tonight she wanted to talk about our time at Burning Man: She needs us to either go as a couple, or nothing. Because she can't deal with the transitions. If she thinks I've been off with another chick, she'll loose it.

I admit, it would suck for everyone if she came by my tent at the wrong time. Bad scene. And I don't want to hurt her.

But I really have no expectation that I'd meet someone and hook up. That scenario seems unlikely. Though I know a lot of that goes on. I'm just not so slick at the meeting of and bedding of chicks. Although I will be walking around mostly naked, which generally helps my cause. At least, it's the strategy one of my brothers recommends: "To get girls, you just have to take your shirt off. I have to actually talk to them."

I wanted to go out there with all my options open. Maybe we'd be together, if that felt right, and maybe we'd spend time apart, if that felt right. I have no idea how it's going to feel out there. So I went open to whatever.

But K can't handle being with me and then not being with me. And I'm a bit nervous about being out there in such foreign circumstances on my own with no one I'm close with to help me acclimate. I know I'll want to be with her, and had looked forward to sharing much of the experience with her.

It's just that, I imagine meeting some cool chick from the bay area and hitting it off. And it seems I'm about to promise K that I wouldn't pursue it then, under those circumstances. And part of me fears that, I'll be cutting myself off from a lot by promising to be exclusive with her going in. But I don't want to give up all access to her for 5 days. I'll need her, I know. Just to reconnect with reality.

One thing is now clear: K and I are reaching the limits of what is possible for us. I can't become her exclusive boyfriend. She can't handle being with me when I still may see other people.

And we can't be just friends.

This will be painful.

In the short run, it looks like we're going to be a couple through Burning Man. I hope I can keep my promise to her. I really have no idea what I've just promised her.