“You have no idea what you’re doing, do you?” says a boy, pausing mid kiss to ask.
He’s talking about tongue, and he’s absolutely right, because I’m not very good at tongue. I often get it wrong because I’m a bit scared my tongue might be weirdly big for some reason, but everyone’s too embarrassed to tell me and the shock of its girth might make him recoil and dump me on the spot and then tell all my friends.
You’re expected to do what feels natural when being physical with another person. This is bullshit. What feels natural in a physical encounter with another person is to put all my clothes back on, eat some snacks and then leave.
I am cripplingly aware of every physical part of myself, hate all of it and really I just want to ask whether the other person has noticed my flaws yet too, like the fact one of my ear lobes is detached and the other one isn’t and frankly its thrown my entire body symmetry off and I’m so sorry, I’ll be going now, where do you keep your snacks?
But he’s also right in a wider sense of not knowing what I’m doing. I am absolutely, entirely clueless.
I quit my job again. I buy diaries, write important dates in them and then lose them instantly. I don’t think I’ve ever opened a bank statement since I opened a student account, but the font on them is red and in all capitals, which I assume means everything’s absolutely fine.
Every time my debit card gets approved for something I watch the word ‘approval’ come up and think, someone at Santander is definitely not doing their job thoroughly.
I tried to top up my oyster card from a ticket machine when my debit card was declined.
“Maybe it’s just not recognising your card, give the chip a wipe” A helpful bystander chirps.
“Oh yeah, I’ll try that!” I say, politely wiping my debit card against my thigh, knowing full well that unless leg friction puts £50 in my account, increasing the clarity on my debit card chip is probably going to cause the ticket machine to implode.
I can’t even look after my own health. I’ve had a buzz all hayfever season and I’ve only just realised it’s because of this:
I’m wearing two pairs of pants because I forgot to take off the pair from the day before. There are cups of tea in my bedroom so old they’ve formed entire ecosystems with political structures not unlike our own. I’m scared to listen to my own voicemails. The closest I think I’ll ever come to owning a car is making one out a packet of Transform-A-Snack crisps. Which technically I don’t even own because I nabbed them from a boy’s house.
Time is treading on and I’m watching people starting to get their shit together. It makes me feel scared. I’m feeling pressure to get my skates on. And then take them off again, because life is barely manageable with regular shoes on.
“So why did you leave your last job?” Potential employers will ask.
“Because I was too comfortable” I’ll say, which is true. By too comfortable I mean I arrived 40 minutes late almost every day and cried at my desk until my boss offered me a tissue and a Werther’s original.
For my next job I think I’ll be the person who keeps inexplicably approving my debit card. They seem to be the only person more clueless than me.