1. How I almost bored my friend to death

Lee_to_the_Rear-CU1k_8695.jpgHaving lunch with one of my best friends in restaurant called ‘U deda’. I’m eating way too much ‘baked cheese’ (vyprazany syr by the way) I’m headed for the cholesterol exit.

I say: ‘You know, we only talk about women, people we know, Slovak mentality and money.’

‘So? That’s what we want to talk about. What else would you want to talk about?’

‘Many things.’

Disbelief in her eyes mixed with hubova polievka (mushroom soup) on her spoon.

‘Like what then? We always talk about these things.’

‘I don’t talk about anything else, because I don’t want to bore you.’

‘But like what then?’

‘Right now I’m thinking about a question on Quora. Did commanding generals actually participate in battle during the American Civil War?’

‘Ok, we can talk about that. What’s the answer?’

‘There are four answers so far. All of them claim that commanding generals were safe out of harm’s way.’

‘And were they? Our waitress also seems to be safe out of harm’s way. What’s taking her so long?’

‘Well, it depends. First of all there are many different kind of generals. You had generals commanding brigades, say something like 2,000 men, those ran a good chance of getting themselves shot. Then there were divisional generals who commanded several brigades. Safer than being a soldier carrying a musket, safer than being a captain or a lieutenant, but still, divisional commanders got killed too sometimes. Then you had corps commanders who commanded several divisions. Those got killed too from time to time. The north lost Reynolds on the first day of Gettysburg. Sharpshooter. Headshot. Fell off his horse and was dead before he hit the ground. Then you had the actual commanding general. And yes, those were safer off than all the others, but still. The South lost Albert Sidney Johnston at Shiloh in april 1862. He was directing the battle on horseback, somehow got hit in the leg by a stray bullet, didn’t realize it and bled to death in the saddle.A simple tourniquet would have saved him, but ironically, he had sent his personal physician to take care of some wounded yankee soldiers.’

‘How can you not know you’ve been hit by a bullet?’

‘The adrenaline. Usually you feel it the next day.’

‘So commanding generals were at risk?’

‘Sure. At Gettysburg the Confederate artillery so overshot the yankee lines that they were hitting the rear. They could have killed Meade, the commanding general. At Spotsylvania general Lee tried to personally lead a desperate attack, but his men would have none of it. They started shouting ‘Lee to the rear’ and he had to move back before they plunged into the battle. So yes, he ran considerable risk of getting killed.’

I notice the generous attention span of my friend has now been drained as much as her Pilsner, so I stop.

‘Interesting. Really. It’s interesting, but I don’t know what to say to it.’

‘I know. It’s fine.’

‘There’s this guy on YouTube roasting guys’ Tinder profiles. Have I told you about that? it’s brutal, but good.’

Hey, I gave it shot.

PS The statue at the restaurant ‘U Deda’ sort of looks like general Albert Sidney Johnston.

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2. Klara Kamikaze, the depressed Croatian girl

She tells me she loves to sell trips and holidays on the beach in Croatia, but now she’s working for Amazon as a financial analyst. She’s studied French literature in Zagreb, so now she communicates with French buyers and sellers every day. She doesn’t like, but her new job title ‘sounds better’, there’s more ‘honor’ to it. Selling holiday formulas on the beach is also not stricly legal it turns out, but still, she loved that job, she loved talking to groups of tourists, even though she’s an introvert. Talking to groups gives her energy and she has no stage fright. Talking one on one stresses her a lot more.

We talk a bit about Proust, Flaubert and Houellebecq. That’s clearly where her passion lies. Her professor in Zagreb translates Houellebecq to Croatian. To my surprise she says that her Croatian is not that good. We communicate in a mixture of Czech, Slovak, Croatian and Slovene. She understands Slovene very well, because as a kid she lived quite near the Slovenian border and her tv antenna picked up the Slovenian television programmes better than the Croatian ones.

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She says her therapist told her not to care about what other people think and to simply change her job.

I doubt she will do that any time soon, and she will continue in her job to reap the imaginary ‘honors’ of working for Amazon. It’s baffling how much we are willing to compromise our own needs just because of what we think others will think of us. They usally just don’t care either way.

Personally I find there’s a lot more Schwung to selling holidays on the beach than working for Amazon.

She also complained that Slovaks invest way too much time in dressing to impress.

She must have meant the women. The men either wear ill fitting tuxedos or trailer park outfits or eighties gym attire.

Which brings us to:

3. At any time be the true expression of who you are

Betka -new employee of IBM as of the first of March- tells me she went out with a guy -she used a much more denigrating word than ‘guy’ in Slovak – who had clearly been reading about how to seduce women, but didn’t know how to apply the theory. Talking to him felt unnatural and his touches also felt ‘off’.

Why not just honestly state whatever the fuck it is you want, even if it’s just fucking you want? Like if you want a cuddling friendship state you want a cuddling friendship like the one in the movie l’auberge espagnole.

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State what you want and:

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4. A relationship will only be as Good as the Sex

That’s what this article claims.

And I quote:

‘I believe that the best sex and the best relationships are one and the same. Amazing sex—soul dipping, erotic, eye-gazing, toe-curling sex—can’t be had with someone we only lust after. This type of sex can only happen when we have submitted to one another.’

And I agree.

Which brings us to:

5. Women respond to exactly how attracted you are to them

Women have an uncanny radar to detect just how stunned you are by them. They are not very aware of this themselves, but I swear it’s true.

A woman will respond to the level of attraction you feel towards her.

If you’re faking the attraction or if you’re only lukewarm about her, she’ll feel it, unless she’s desperate and not very experienced, she will pick up your mood and it will have her throwing up walls with the skill and speed of seasoned German infantry.

If you are genuinely blown away by a woman, keep pursuing her, treasure the feeling, it’s rare, it can’t be faked and it happens for a reason.