Something I’ve Never Known

I lived in Manhattan. All the trains except the G train go through Manhattan, and in Manhattan the trains are always crowded. For the first few stops into the outer boroughs, the trains still tend to be crowded. Then people start getting off. Occasionally people get on, but mostly they get off. With each stop, there are fewer people until there is no longer a crowd but just some individuals.

One day, I was on I don’t remember which train going I don’t remember where, but I was on a train which wasn’t one I typically took heading to the outer boroughs where I didn’t typically go. It was one of the trains where the seats were two lines of benches facing each other. We rolled deep into the outer boroughs. Eventually, there were only a few other people in the car and there was a couple sitting across from me. Two young people. I would guess them to be about twenty-one or twenty-two. The woman was asleep, her head resting on her boyfriends shoulder. Her boyfriend looked down at her, and, with great gentleness so as not to wake her, brushed back a lock of hair that had fallen across her face.

I was charmed by the couple who were unaware my presence. Then, without warning, I began to feel very melancholy. A young man once stole a car to see me. Another would hitchhike from Canada to New York City. A man once threatened to throw acid in my face if I didn’t marry him. I’ve known plenty of passion from men, but never tenderness.

  1. Fojap, that ended dramatically! I was still expecting more.

    • fojap said:

      There wasn’t really more. It’s just a moment that stood out in my mind.

      At the time that the guy who threatened to throw acid in my face said that to me, I had never heard of it. It doesn’t really happen in the U.S., or at least not often. Since then, I’ve read about it happening elsewhere and I think I would have been really scared and maybe even gone to the police if I realized that the threat could be real. Instead, I laughed in his face and told him that he had just convinced that he was too much of a jerk to ever date.

      In the past I’ve tried to write longer things that were intended to be books, but the effort always petered out after a hundred pages. One reason I think blogging works for me is that I can do it in short bursts. I don’t need to write two hundred and fifty pages about my relationships with men. Instead, I can just do a lot of short little vignettes.

      If I ever get to my college years in my memories, you will probably hear about the guy that stole the car. Not a bad kid, but really confused at that time. He didn’t wind up in a life of crime. He eventually met an older woman with kids, moved in with her and became a house husband.

      • I will be looking forward to those stories, you are superb story teller.

  2. said:

    Please just wait and he will arrive when you least expect him. I have always chosen men that are incapable of romantic, tender gestures and I convinced myself I was happy and worked HARDER to keep their attention. I was ridiculous. Finally I have found it all in one man. Only took me 39 years. HUGS !

    • fojap said:

      Oh my, can I ever relate to that. My ex-husband was not a bad man overall, but he was not capable of displaying affection or being supportive. He had been abused as a child and I don’t think he lacked feelings, he just wasn’t open with them. I’ve always said that if he had moved to New York where I had family and friends it might have worked out, but since I moved there and was isolated I needed more than the typical amount of support from a man and instead I received less. For a long time I blamed myself for not being stronger, for needing and wanting affection. I didn’t work harder to get his attention, but I did work harder to try to be more self-sufficient.

      • said:

        I do believe you have succeeded! HUGS!

  3. Not that I know you in personally, I know your internet presence, but from what I can glean from that…I think you deserve that which has eluded you. I am sure it it out there. That 2 of 3 guys mentioned, had gone to great lengths just to be with you, says a lot. There are few women that men would climb mountains, cross deserts, and raging rivers to be with.

    …I have seen all manner of jerks out there capable of many levels of scumbaggery, but have never yet seen a guy that would threaten to throw acid in someones face. I can’t even imagine what kind of person would do that. Well, religious wacko might fit the bill…

    +1 for liking your writing style. You have a way with telling your story that is captivating. Like Mak, I was roped in, expecting a journey, and got let off at the next stop 🙂

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