We'd just come home from attending Nude Night, an art show dedicated entirely to the human nude. The crowd was fantastic – stylish, hip, artsy, SEXY! We had a ball! Unfortunately, none of our vanilla artsy friends could join us due to prior commitments and we didn't think of putting out a "hey we're going to be here" call on our swinger site. Never the less, it was a great time. The frustrating aspect of it was that it was still pretty much Vince and I interacting with each other. Now he LOVES to people watch and now that we're establishing what he finds attractive and unattractive, let's just say this place was a smorgasbord. There were probably about 300 people there when we arrived and at least twice that by the time we left. Practically all of the ladies went all out to look great. The men too looked absolutely dish-y to me, but I find myself always holding back because I don't want every time we speak to each other for the conversation to be about other potential sex partners.
Also, Vince has a greater tolerance for crowds than I do. When I find myself constantly being jostled or bumped, trying not to spill my overpriced and served in a plastic cup cheap-ass wine, and can't see what I want to fucking see because some clueless foursome has decided right there is where they have to park themselves, well, I get a bit annoyed.
But the frustrating side was watching all of the groups -- people talking, laughing, touching, and being part of the scene, not just observers. I've never been a watcher, always a do-er, and this is part of our challenge. It's the same frustration I had at Trapeze. And once again, Vincent is having a wonderful time, checking out the ladies, looking at the art, being with me.
To back up a bit, Vince and I have been together for almost 15 years. (July 1st is actually our first date anniversary, and yes, I make sure we celebrate both that one AND the wedding!). When we first got together we both had pretty busy social lives. In addition to his day job (where we met) he was and still is a musician and had gigs almost every weekend. I'd go out and play the perfect groupie to his bass or lead-guitar playing Rock-God-ness. I was a professional actress during the day and spent my evenings either in community theatre plays or getting my graduate degree. In other words, though we were madly in love, we and especially me, had tons of other social interactions. Furthermore, in my case, those interactions almost always had a sexy, double-entendre, undercurrent. Always.
Even when we were engaged and the first four or more years of our marriage, I had plenty of opportunities to flirt, quite graphically, with men (and in a way, women) who gave as good as they got. And whether Vince realized it or not, he was on the receiving end of plenty of women's' "oh-my-god-he's-hot" lists. Perhaps what they considered "sexy aloofness" or "he's totally into Ivey and that's soooo hot" attention was simple cluelessness on his part, but either way, he had the benefit of the vibes.
Then, we changed. In both our cases, quite abruptly. We started our own business and I suddenly spent every fuckin' day ALONE. It was also at this time that my weight started to surge upwards, my hormones went haywire and our sex life really started falling apart which is a post for another day. Vincent, on the other hand, was working pretty much three (sometimes four) jobs to keep the money coming in while we built our client base. For a true introvert like him, who recharges his energy by being quiet and alone, this was grueling.
In a nutshell, we spent the next 3 years each in our own version of hell – me in practically solitary confinement, him with no chance to go to his "man cave" and just get it back together.
After he finally quit the last day job and we became 24/7 self-employed, we evolved into a pretty boring couple. We were together all day every day but we stopped going out except on occasion and only with one other couple we were friends with. We used to joke about how we were "too young" to be sitting in front of the TV on any given Saturday night getting ready to go to bed at 9:30. I lost contact with all of my former theater friends. Vince's gigs became fewer and farther between.
So we've recommitted ourselves to going out and doing things. Like last Saturday when we met up with some folks from the swinger site. We met them in a little town about an hour from here and had a fantastic evening. We were invited out by an exhibitionist/voyeur couple, joined by a soft swap couple who were friends of the first couple, and also joined by a very hot but already a bit tipsy 26-year old whose boyfriend wasn't available. The good news – Vince found Mrs. Voyeur (who was having her 40th birthday) and Ms. Tipsy absolutely hot and desirable. This is a big deal folks. (For the most part, up till recently Vince thinks I'm hot and everyone else is an also-ran.) I also found those two to be quite attractive and certainly piqued my "curiosity." J Vince thought the guys were nice, funny, and respectful (a far cry from Bill) and though I wasn't salivating, I wouldn't kick either one out of bed! The downside was that neither of us had any chemistry at all with Mrs. Softswap. But we did discover something surprising: though Vincent found Mrs. Voyeur attractive, the fact that they were both "you can watch but not touch" was a bit off putting. "Why fucking bother?" we opined. We can watch people have sex on TV and if we've finally found someone we're both interested in fucking, why would we want to frustrate ourselves because of someone else's "hands off" rule? So we decided on a nice "had a great time" email but didn't ask for a date.
Ms. Tipsy on the other hand, was another matter entirely! Not only was she pretty WITH glasses (something she and I share) she was great at bantering -- direct, funny, flirty but not vulgar, and overall, a fun chick to be around. I usually avoid the young ones because I figure at 43 and 46 we're too old for them. And maybe we are. She said we were "great" and "hot" that night but didn't respond to our follow-up email. Then again, maybe she just sobered up! Either way, it opened my eyes to some new possibilities and helped clarify for me what Vincent is looking for in a potential playmate.
So since our recommitment to socializing as well as our foray into swinging, we usually go out every weekend. We've rediscovered that we actually enjoy dance clubs though I'm the one who likes to dance and Vince still prefers to be the Rock-God on stage. We are going to more events (art shows, friend's parties, theatre) than we have in years. We go out at least once a week to our local hangout where we are enriching our local, vanilla connections as well as finding that those can have a fun, sexy undercurrent and still remain "respectable." Vince is learning that he is actually quite attractive to the opposite sex and they really ARE flirting with him (trust me, honey, none of the ladies are that interested in your new Humbucker pick-ups, they are interested in you.)
As for your Ivey, I'm waiting for the moment when we cross over from observing to participating. To me, that's really what even the swinging side of this is all about – to embrace action, to experience people and moments, and to participate in this wonderful life we're given. Not sit at home on our asses on a Saturday night wondering where the hell the time has gone.