jeudi, décembre 22, 2011

The eroticism of discourse

Now, doesn't that sound like an Eric Rohmer movie?

Rohmer, a product of the Nouvelle Vague, famously liked to have his beautiful young characters talk -- a lot.

Perhaps it's the fact that I saw a few of them in high school that explains my lust (mais oui) for intellectual conversation.

With men.

Not that I don't enjoy a good debate with the intelligent women in my life. Bring it on, sistahs.

My statistics teacher (who made a semester in purgatory just bearable) had never heard anyone ask if validity could be applied to a monkey tribe.

It's just that it doesn't have quite the same charge, somehow.

It's possible that, having grown up in a world of academia still mostly dominated by guys (and tell me that still isn't true, I dare ya) I'm used to them setting the terms of debate -- and responding, agent provocateur that I am.

"Pick me, pick me" said the slightly pudgy girl in the peasant skirts, discussing the double-entendres in Renaissance poetry in a seminar with her highly crushable mentor.

Around our table in the dining room, parquet floors and stained glass relics of a more polite age, politics and history, art and rock music were all blood sports.

The the big 19th-century table where we ate our dinners, though circular, was still dominated by my father, with his multilingual command of history, and his sometimes biting wit.

All speculation aside, I'm starved for conversation with men who can give me a run for my money, intellectually speaking.

It's not that I'm trying to be seductive. It's just that I feel so very alive when my mind is fully engaged.

I know that there are women, and men out there, who feel the same way. There's probably some kind of name for this. Could it be called the New York Review of Books fetish (update that for me, please?)

You know it's gotten bad when the topic of the effective tax rate gets me all shivery inside.

Yet given the polarized state of dialogue in this country on some of the issues that matter the most, I choose my victims carefully.

And while I might find more of them in urban areas, I'm not a kid anymore. I can't hang out in bars with sexy bespectacled guys riffing on Rimbaud and whether Ron Paul would really rid us of the Federal Reserve.


Maybe I'll have to see if the sexy guys come to me.

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