If there's one term I hate more than anything else it's "go with the flow." (Okay, there are others as well, "grow up", "calm down", "it's not you, it's me" etc etc). Going with the flow is not part of my essential personality makeup, and I see no reason why it should be, either. And if you notice, more men than women use this term, because it's the kind of term that lets you have a bird in the hand and two in the bush, if you know what I mean. It's a cop-out term, what you give the other person just when you've kissed/made-out/had sex for the first time, and they're watching you, slightly guarded because they know what's happening next, but still allowing themselves slowly to uncurl in your arms and they say, sort of like it doesn't matter at all, "Um.. so where is this going?" and you extract your arms from where they were, move your hand away from running it through the other person's hair and you sigh and light a cigarette and start to look for your shoes and say, "Let's go with the flow, okay?"
And so it is. (and so it ih-iss. Good song, by the way). They call you a couple of times, perhaps you even hang out again. But they don't uncurl around you any longer, except once, when the two of you are out, and you're drinking and you're making them laugh so hard, they stop and look at you with love-filled eyes. And you can hear them thinking about you, about the two of you and how perfect it would be and you let them come to you and be kissed and make gentle jokes about them and run your fingers over their knuckles and they (since they are so comfortable) try asking you again about it and you clear your throat and lay down what you had known all this while. "I'm really, um, not looking for a relationship." And you see the shutters going down on their face, the walls are up by the time the words are out of your mouth and they smile, crookedly, and say, "Ya, that's cool." And hang around a little longer then say they have a headache and leave. And you don't call them the next day, and they don't call you and this goes on for some time and in about a week, perhaps less, you know it's over.
Relationships. High school was simpler. Dating was simpler. You asked someone out ("Will you be my girlfriend?" Or boyfriend, if you were progressive) and they said yes and you were dating. The last time I was in a relationship began in second year college (oh, so far away! Why have you forsaken me, dating gods?) and then K asked me out, a day after we kissed for the first time. None of this, where are we going bullshit. Grarh. Well, okay, ya, there was a bit of where are we going, but not tremendous and I remember being enough in control then, less scared I think, to tell him straight out that I hated people who played games with me, and if he was going to then he should just go and look somewhere else.
Now we have at last count: a) a fling b) a scene c) dating d) seeing someone and e) a Relationship. What's the difference? I'm damned if I know. I know a fling, that's easy, when you're just fucking around, no strings attached, no emotional involvement, no expecatations of a regular Saturday night date. This is all very well if the person you're with is not the kind of person you'd hang out with in your pjs and watch DVDs with, but just very attractive and with not much to say for themselves. You know, the hot and silent variety. Like soup. But not like biryani.
But if you have a pj-wearing, how-was-your-day-asking type fling, then you're in trouble. Usually, from my experience, these are the emancipated, sensitive men, raised to believe the same things you were and so they don't want to be fuck-ups any more than you want them to be. So they'll be all straight with you in the beginning and say, "Yeah, I'm not looking for a relationship." and you're like, "Okay" but in your head you're thinking, dude, you're so wrong, because we are clearly perfect for each other. So you think you're dating, they don't really know what they're doing and by the end of it, when you have the "talk", it's back to square one.
Why do guys hate labels so much? I love labels, everything I have or do or think, has a label. Life used to be about black and white and all these sneaky shades of grey have suddenly appeared. Pearl grey? Satin grey? Grey like your grandmother's hair? WTF?