I only date older men: those with dash and flair and pizzazz. Men of sophistication and wisdom, who have stories to tell.
So, I was horrified to find that, like younger men and, indeed, like whining children, these men are still capable of sulking.
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Shug threw himself into a spectacular sulk on our sixth date. A whopping great huff. A right cream puff, as my dad would call it.
He was round at my flat for dinner and I was totally relaxed in his company. I’d also had two glasses of wine so I thought it’d be a good idea to let him know the nickname I’d given him.
Now, decency and plain common sense forbid me from telling you what the nickname is. It wouldn’t get past the editor. I apologise as I know you’d all be howling if only I could tell you, but…I can’t. It’s bad. Oh, but it’s funny.
Anyway, we had just finished dinner, and I was perched on the arm of the sofa, drinking wine. I had that reckless Rioja-glow that usually precedes fatal errors of judgment so I thought, here goes...I giggled and told Shug I had a funny nickname for him. All my friends are using it, I said.
‘So what is it?’ he asked.
‘No way! You’d kill me.’
‘Ah come on.’
‘How bad can it be?’ he laughed.
I looked down at Shug: funny, clever, sophisticated man. Will he go in a huff if I tell him? Surely, he’s not the type to flounce? Surely, he can take a joke? I glugged some more wine and then proudly announced, ‘We call you Shug The xxxxx.’
I was laughing then stopped, fast. Shug’s face had gone dead white.
‘Are you serious?’ he asked.
‘Yes,’ I said. ‘I mean, I don’t know.’
Shug rose to his feet. ‘I cannot believe what you've just said to me.’
‘It wasn’t me!’ I said. ‘It was The Chief! It was his idea!’
Shug lifted his jacket from the chair, then thought better of it and put it back down. ‘That word, Julie. That word is not funny.’
He launched into a lecture about the evolution of that word and how it’s bad, nasty, foul. And not funny. Then he sat back down, glaring at me.
I didn’t say a word. I just lifted the wine glasses and went into the kitchen. I closed the door behind me and started washing the plates and glasses. Let Shug cool off. He’s annoyed, he’s delivered his wee lecture, he’s made his point. It’ll be fine when I go back in.
I really hoped it would, as I know that if I go back in there and he still has a petted lip on then my temper will snap. I do not tolerate huff-huff-cream puff men.
I had an ex-boyfriend – Terry Boy – who once sustained a record-breaking sulk where he refused to speak to me for 10 days. We lived together, for heaven’s sake, and yet he managed to avoid speaking to me for 10 days.
He’d sleep on the couch and walk past me in the hall, nose in the air. Ten days! All because we had a silly fight in The More Store about finding the right jeans for his son.
He wanted the boy to wear those wee skater-dude baggy jeans with the chain across the pocket. Whereas, the boy and I were itching to get out of bloody Maryhill Shopping Centre and down to Byres Road for the West End Festival.
When Terry Boy couldn’t find the right size of skater jeans he exploded and screamed at me. In The More Store. For heaven’s sake, if there’s going to be drama, let it be in a classy setting. Do it with style.
I once tossed a glass of red wine in an ex’s face across the table in a posh Shawlands restaurant. Style! Apparently, after I’d flounced out into the night, the staff besieged him, demanding to know who’d pay to have the silken wallpaper cleaned.
So, it was poor form to have a domestic scene in The More Store. Maybe that explained why he then prolonged the huff for 10 excruciating days. After Terry Boy’s spectacular display of petulance, I swore never to put up with sulking freaks again. If you’ve got a problem, spit it out. So, Shug had better not give me any of his nonsense when I go back in there.
When I opened the door, Shug was pacing the floor and he scowled at me as I came in. My patience broke.
‘You still sulking?’ I asked.
He stopped his pacing. ‘I’m not sulking, I’m thinking.’
‘Well why don’t you go home and think.’
‘I’ll do that!’ he said and put on his jacket.
Not to be outdone, I snatched the irises he’d brought me from their vase. ‘Here,’ I smacked them, wet, into his chest. ‘Take your £3 flowers with you!’
Shug stepped into the close. ‘It’s a shame this had to happen,’ he said, ‘because I really liked you.’
I slammed the door.