I am intrigued by a sight I see more frequently now on the streets: a straight couple are walking side by side or with the woman in front and the man reaches out and pats his partner (usually twice) on the bum. What in the world is this to mean: to reassure her that he is hers/there or a boast to the rest of us: this fine ass is mine?
No human being, even the most passionately loved and passionately loving, is ever in our possession. On the pitiless earth where lovers are often separated in death and are always born divided, the total possession of another human being and absolute communion throughout an entire lifetime are impossible dreams. The desire for possession is insatiable, to such a point that it can survive even love itself. To love, therefore, is to sterilize the person one loves. The shamefaced suffering of the abandoned lover is not so much due to being no longer loved as to knowing that the other partner can and must love again. In the final analysis, every man devoured by the overpowering desire to endure and possess wishes that the people whom he has loved were either sterile or dead.
– Albert Camus, The Rebel
He was made for me. Me! Look, this ring, he gave me on our first night. You hear, our first night. It was his mama’s. OK! His mama’s. He gave it to me. I was made for him. My heart, my life they are his. We belong together. We were meant to be together! OK. Together! So how dare you come here and try to take my man, you home wrecker? Go get a man of your own, fucking bitch.
Me, bitch? You think he’s your fucking property?
Yes, you fucking whore. He’s mine. MINE! And I’m his woman. Not you!
Your man? If he’s your man how come it was me he was fucking last night?
Jorge? JORGE! Is it true? You said you belonged to me! You lied?
Pah. No man belongs to any woman. They belong to us all.
She and he stepped off the train ahead of me and I couldn’t miss the figure. She wasn’t shaped like the oft cited hourglass. Rather, she defined it. They carried on an easy lovers’ patter but she looked like his big sister. Her swaying hips bumped into him every few steps. He had the kind of walk that said ‘Don’t mind me, I’m a nonentity”.
She wore her deep blue jacket tucked in tightly at the waist. You could tell she had been watching those TV fashion shows where women are spurred to tuck it in at the waist. It suited her well it must be said. Her hips were quite round but not overwhelmingly so, just enough to make you want to put your arms around them. He put his arm around her waist. It was he who would have a way with her tonight. Yet he had the kind of body that should not have set a filly on heat.
Her skirt stopped just above her knees exposing two shapely baseball bats. To be sure, her lags were sturdier than bats but more elegantly so. Her walk mesmerised me. She and he got on the escalator. She had the step above his and laughed at something funny he had said. As he turned towards her, I caught sight of a pale florid countenance bounded below by the beginnings of a double chin. He had the kind of face that can’t set a night on fire. He put his head on her bosom. Ten years ago he wouldn’t have stood a chance. Why now? The hourglass came back to mind.