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Dog Day Afternoon

It’s July 2005. We’re in a room at the Renaissance Hotel, splayed naked next to each other after another good, sweaty romp. B. reaches across my body and grabs his small metal pot pipe from the nightstand and begins to toke up. He was (still is) a heavy weed user. To this day the smell of burning marijuana conjures memories of B. in all our various incarnations.
We start to have That Conversation. You know that conversation you want to have involving The L Word, but skirt around the issue instead of hitting it straight on? Even at this deep point in our affair we’d never said The L Word to each other; it seemed inappropriate and just plain pointless. We were both married, and neither had designs on the other.
So the Conversation slithers instead into one about the “depth of feeling.” He says, “I love my wife.”
I reply, “Great! Absolutely! You two have been married a long time. You really have something there.”
“I love my kids,” B. says as he takes one last drag on his pipe. I quickly respond, “Fantastic. And you are a great father to those four kids.”
“I love my dogs,” B. says, staring blankly at the ceiling. I’m now sitting astride his hips with a sheet pulled up to my chin, shielding my nakedness from a conversation that is obviously getting uncomfortable for him. I look at him quizzically and say, “Well, that’s great. I love my dog, too, but it’s different.”
He is massively stoned. The room reeks of pot and I wonder if I’m on a contact high because I ask the unthinkable, the impossibly stupid question I fear I already know the answer to:
“Do you have any love for me?”
“No, I don’t.” I feel the air immediately leave my lungs. In the now 20 years I have been his mistress I had hoped he’d developed some feelings for me. But, no, it was his Irish and Gordon Setters over me, paws down.
I leap from the bed and start gathering my things; B. heads into the shower. I dress as quickly as I can — the black lace top, claret-colored sweater, the swishy tulle skirt, all bought for this particular assignation — wanting to bolt from the room before B. emerged from the bathroom. But I was too slow.
“You look so pretty,” he said as he toweled off beside me. Maybe he is trying to calm the waters. Or maybe it’s the pot talking. I sling my bag over my shoulder and stride purposefully to the door, never looking at him. He grazes my right elbow as if making a gesture to stay. Stay. Sit. Come.
“Just give me some space,” I sneer, opening and then pulling the door closed behind me. Down the elevator, past the hotel’s registration desk, and into the parking garage I still could not catch a breath. And that’s when it happened:
I broke down into tears. Had I just given up on B.? Ended an affair I thought I’d never quit?
Many months later, I’d get back at him in an interview in The Chicago Tribune.
B. and Molly. What do you do with a man who loves his dogs more than he loves you?

B. and Molly. What do you do with a man who loves his dogs more than he loves you?

Fiona: The other dog I apparently didn't measure up to.

Fiona: The other dog I apparently didn’t measure up to.

Categories: Affairs Infidelity Marriage Relationships Uncategorized

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Exit 4A

A former mistress (26 years, on-and-off) describes the good, the bad, and the ugly of her long-term affair. Conclusion: Affairs aren't necessarily destructive if kept in the correct perspective. Our experience enhanced BOTH our marriages.

That is, until his marriage ended and we began to love each other. When the affair morphed into a relationship, well, that's when it stopped being fun for me. We have now irrevocably split.

Lately I've been writing about the man who took his place in the "off" years of that 26-year-long affair. He was a dynamic sexual partner but we, too, now have irrevocably split.

These are our stories.

2 replies

  1. I wonder if he ever saw the article in the Trib? I have to be honest with you…sex has been nothing but trouble for my my whole life. A few moments of intense pleasure immediately to be followed by prolonged awfulness. For me or for her or both.

    1. Thanks for reading and commenting! At the time I knew B. subscribed to the other Chicago newspaper, so he would not have seen it unless I’d send it to him or in other ways pointed him towards it. We were going through one of our separations at the time — after “Dog Day Afternoon” we would not get together again for 2 yrs — so I sent it to him at his home address, he being unemployed at the time, in a plain envelope and with No outside identifiers. I wanted him to know how much his comment stung me. Stung me hard.

      I didn’t get, nor did I want, a response from him on that article.

      Thanks again for your male perspective.

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