“Let me tell you, Eva… it will be difficult for you from now on.
You have to make one and only choice – whether to climb the ladder (and look down on them), or… go down.”
… You will meet boys in suits, with jackets slightly fitted at the waist (in order to make them look taller), with shirts in shades of pink.
Their one and only act of being romantic boils down to choosing the wine with one very short and jerky gesture, “Chardonnay!”, which is supposed to mean that they are avid connoisseurs of white wine…
Ooh, yes, and paying the bill.
And that’s all.
Afterwards, in the toilet of the bar, looking at the mirror with half-closed eyes and fixing the lapel of their jacket, full of confidence.
That they are men.
From that breed, the rare breed.
You will meet the same breed in suits, with fancy watches, with nice jobs and enviable positions… men who will give you one of their business cards with a gesture well worked-out, they will wait for everyone to calm down before they start telling their stories of how they passed their exams in prestigious universities, how they are two or three degrees or skills ahead of everybody else at the table.
Ahead of everybody else put together.
Put together, you will hear them criticise severely their boss, who “has no particular skills, doesn’t take the right decisions, but is the owner, on the other hand, well… a Bulgarian!”
Put together, THEY all – these shiny and elegant rehearsed smiles, they will be one insufficient ego, desperately chased after in shiny lease or company cars, they will be boys, there will be empty compliments how beautiful your curls are, there will be bars, there will be popular alcohol, there will be plenty of ice, … there will be ambitions.
They will dream for more than they have, they will have less than they want and they will give exactly as much as they can bear!
There will be quotes from books and films – cheap and regurgitated, which have filled up their beautiful vocabulary, acquired through Facebook posts, as well as their poor imagination.
They will tell you funny stories from their student’s life, you will hear how they “Can’t talk right now, (Bro)!”, and you will ask yourself whether… they really know that stories from “One Thousand and One nights” isn’t just a joke.
You will be leaving with that particular face of a woman who is thinking about what to wear the following day, staring absentmindedly through the window of the car.
What a pity.
What a pity that the one who is driving has no means of seeing the reflection of your face in the wing mirror.
He would understand! Vaguely, however.
He would vaguely guess the answer to the question which everyone is asking you:
“Why are you on your own?”
Because you cannot tolerate being an occasion for a cheap quote, a cheesy photo…
You are not mass-production, you don’t want to listen to jokes, you… You want to be told stories!
You will remain silent about those things which are not taught at a private university, paid for on credit.
Let me have their privacy, for real!
Businessmen are not formed through the straight creases of their trousers and the fashionable shirt is not a guarantee for elegance! Simply because pink doesn’t suit everybody!!!
The position on their business card is not their personal signature.
And their signature, without the name of the company which they work for, is not worth a damn!
The fact that their name is registered somewhere doesn’t make them leaders.
A good position doesn’t always include the title “manager”!
In fact, “manager” is a title, used to quench someone’s thirst to sound serious and it rarely implies what it actually means.
Criticising the person who gives you the opportunity to do something meaningful in your life doesn’t make him a bigger fool than you are yourself!
You will know that these ambitions, dressed in suits, call a night, spent under the starry sky, an old-fashioned and unaccomplished act of being romantic.
Not because they are ashamed to be romantic.
But because they are unable to!
There, under some obscure sky! There is nobody to see them, see the showcase of their new shoes (or new wheels), nobody to applaud their speeches, learned by heart and composed of their stale phrases.
And you will be on your own.
You will choose to do so.
You will feel sad when they accuse you of believing in fairy tales and princes and one day you will get tired.
You will get tired of explaining.
Men, in that specific form and condition in which they can be affirmatively called such, are very few in numbers, very few on display and very few… in fact.
Whether they have a personal tailor, or they wear a leather jacket, it’s all the same and in both cases they look irresistibly elegant.
They can probably afford a shirt form the most expensive boutique in Europe, but if it doesn’t suit them, no matter how fashionable it might be, they won’t wear it.
They are no jokers!!!
They would gladly share their jacket with you while you are making ridiculous attempts to count the stars and they wouldn’t hesitate to correct you that you are actually… counting them backwards!
They wouldn’t hesitate to be romantic, even at the cost of looking silly, because to them it is all the same whether they are being watched by a thousand eyes, or just yours.
They would laugh with you! They would talk until the morning comes!
They would admit being tired!
They would admit having been defeated!
They would fall in love!
Without explaining themselves about their silence and their difficult character, whatever young hysterical ladies have been grumpy about around them.
Around them, there are hardly any girls who don’t understand the silence, discarding a chipped fingernail or a tearful request for a walk in the shopping centre.
They aren’t men who will explain who they are, nor will they try to justify being themselves.
They will patiently bear their character as well as the consequences, resulting from it.
Whatever they work, they will work a lot.
They will criticise vehemently, and not like cowards, protected by the security of their virtual profile, but rather – straight in the eyes of the person who has drawn the winning ticket to meet their furious gaze.
Such men do not hide – this is why they always keep their head up high.
Such men do not run – this is why their step is steady.
Such men smile rarely, because it’s rarely that someone deserves their smile.
Some people call them surly.
You call them “princes” or “notorious heroes” – again according to your text, and don’t try to justify your words.
Realise that you have two options – being the woman of somebody (the name on the business card) or being…
The woman NEXT TO somebody. Where THE WOMAN and HIS NAME are spelled with the same capital letters.
PS: If they ask you again why you are on your own, tell them this.
Text: Eva Koleva