“You need sex,” Caden the Contractor tells me as he chips away at the tile in my kitchen floor, removing the broken tiles so that he can later install new ones.
I smile in response. I can see where this conversation is going; I’ve had it before, with other men. Still, I go along with him, to see how it plays out. “Really? You can tell that about me?” I ask.
“Yes, you’re giving off pheromones, it’s obvious that you haven’t had it in a while,” he answers.
“Oh, excuse me! I’ll try to keep my pheromones to myself!” I say, acting embarrassed and smiling at him.
He laughs and says, “No, it’s ok, you can’t help it. But seriously, you should call up your single girlfriends, and go have a wild night on the town. I can see how tense you are.”
I straighten up, realizing that my shoulders had been a bit hunched.
“See! A person’s body needs sex, to keep the hormones regulated, and to keep things balanced—a doctor told me that—otherwise, you’re susceptible to getting sick and your body’s all out of whack,” Caden says.
I cannot believe this guy. He’s been fixing small things around my house for three hours and suddenly, he’s my best friend and knows what’s best for me. I can’t believe this! Then again, I can. I’ve heard the same rhetoric from guys at bars who have known me half as long.
“Really?” I ask, like I believe him. (I don’t.)
“Yes! And women can get sex so much easier than men. Call your girlfriends and go out tonight! Doesn’t have to be anything serious, just some fun,” he continues. “It’ll give you something to talk about.”
And blog about! I think about Naughty Nadia; she’s be down. But, nah, the last time we had a wild night together (a couple of years ago), I woke up with a hangover that hung on for two days.
So instead, I answer, “All my girlfriends are married.” I wonder if he’ll tell me to go to a bar alone. Gee, that’s safe, what could possibly go wrong?!
“Ya, I’m married, too. But I haven’t gotten any from my wife for four years now. Which, I like to think I’m good at it; I’m a pleaser in bed. I know people say that divorce is better for children than adults staying in an unhappy marriage, but I have a special needs child, and for him it’s better that we stay together. Divorce would just tear him apart,” Caden says.
How convenient; use the children as an excuse to stay with your wife, but make it obvious that the marriage is just one of convenience. Wait, did he say, “from my wife?” Does that mean that he may have had sex with someone else?
Suddenly, I wonder when my tenant Ed will be home.
I mutter something sympathetic and move to the other room, determined to be busy and unavailable for conversation. However, I’ve tried this tactic all day and he continues to talk to me from the other room, drawing me back in. I’d have to be rude or hole up in the bathroom to ignore him. Of course, LATER I thought that I should have gotten out the vacuum cleaner; that would have stopped the conversation!
He draws me back in with the comment, “You should go online and find a guy. Just be up front, let him know that you just want sex.”
I laugh. “I tried online dating—each guy was crazier than the last one! And I don’t do casual sex. If I did, I have this guy friend…well, let’s just say that he got drunk the other night and told me exactly how long his dick is,” I say.
“That’s kinda desperate, don’t you think?” Caden asks.
I’m speechless. Really. Admitting to a stranger that your wife hasn’t put out in four years is ok, but discussing dick size is desperate?
“Shouldn’t you be wearing safety glasses?” I ask him to change the subject, but also because chips of porcelain tile were flying around. I’ve worked for big companies that require PPE (personal protection equipment) for every job; I’m not used to seeing someone work without safety glasses.
“No, I’ve done this for years, and so far, so good. OW! I may need a bandaid, though,” he tells me. He holds up his finger, which has a piece of sharp tile sticking in it. When he pulls that piece free, the blood drips out onto the floor.
I run for a bandaid. When I return, he removes pressure from the wound, and blood squirts out.
“I think I hit an artery,” he says.
“Do you want me to drive you to the hospital?” I ask and hand him some Kleenex to put on the gash. I take big breaths and try not to look at the blood.
“Naw, I can drive, just get me some electrical tape, so I can bandage this up,” he says.
I roll my eyes. “I’ll get the surgical tape from the first aid kit,” I say, and I do.
He leans close to me while I’m wrapping the wound, “Well, this is exciting, isn’t it?”
Deep breath. Don’t think about it. “I faint at the sight of blood, usually. I’m trying not to,” I tell him.
“Oh. Let me clean up the kitchen before I go, then,” he says.
I don’t know whether to laugh or scream! “GO!” I say. “I’ll clean up. Just—go!”
After Caden left, I think about what he said. Do I really need sex? I’ve been celibate for about a year now. Nah, I’ll go for a run—then I don’t have to worry about crazy guys and whether or not they’re secretly—or not-so-secretly—married!
I make a mental note to make sure that someone else is around when he returns to finish the tile. I’d rather not tempt fate; or Caden!