The arena of socialising is so very important to my kind. On the one hand this environment is a happy hunting ground for the acquisition of fresh targets for the purpose of administering my malicious machinations. The social environment also provides me with ranks of appliance from which I can draw fuel and also to involve in my schemes and triangulations to draw fuel from you. The issue of going out also presents me with opportunities to reinforce who is in charge in this relationship. It allows me to undermine you, disappoint you and control you and invariably, as with everything that I do, fuel will flow.
A typical instance of this occurring might involve one of our kind receiving a call from you during the course of the afternoon.
“Hi, how are you?” you ask pleasantly.
“Busy, busy what is it?”
“I am just reminding you that I am going out tonight, okay?”
“Well I did not want you forgetting like you did last time.”
“I did not forget, you just didn’t tell me about it.”
“Well look I am not getting into all of that now, that was last time. I just wanted to make sure that you will be home by 6pm as I need to be there by 7pm and I need you to look after the kids whilst I get ready.”
“Can’t your mother look after them or something?”
“No they are out and anyway, Michael is not well. He has been off school all day and I don’t want a casual childminder looking after him, I want it to be you or me.”
“Well if he is that ill perhaps you should cancel your plans?”
“No. I am not going to. I do not have to because you are available to watch him. In any event, even if I wanted to cancel I cannot. I can’t let my friends down, this is an important occasion.”
“Are you sure there isn’t somebody who can look after Michael, I wanted to go to the bar this evening, we have completed a major deal here.”
“No. My sister is out of town and the only other people are neighbours and registered childminders and it is not fair asking non-family when one of the kids is ill. I don’t like it. It has to be mum or dad looking after them.”
“Okay, okay I get it, it has to be one of us.”
“Yes and it is going to be you because I am going out. Okay?”
“Sure, fine 6pm you say?”
6pm arrives and I am sat in the bar explaining how I brought the deal to the business and I saw it through. Several junior colleagues are listening intently seeking to curry favour with me. I am sat on my throne, my subjects paying homage. I glance at my watch and order champagne to toast the deal. The evening is just getting started and I have my eye on a pretty accountant who I have not seen before.
I feel my ‘phone vibrate and pull it from my jacket pocket. Your name is on the display. I smile and let it slip back into the pocket as I pay for the champagne and begin pouring it for those assembled with me. I feel the ‘phone ring again and stop. I continue my conversation and feel a succession of vibrations as a few messages land. During a lull between my anecdotes I wander over to the toilet and whilst there I check my phone. There are three messages from you.
“Hi, I hope you are on your way. Call me please xxx”
“Where are you? I am trying to get ready.”
“This is totally unfair. Where the hell are you?”
The fuel hits and power surges through me as I feel the frustration from those messages and picture you pacing through the house trying to get ready as you are subjected to the demands from the children. I do not turn my phone off, I am ready for further vibrations and messages as I look in the mirror, smooth my hair and give myself a winning smile.
“Think you can tell me to be a childminder do you?” I ask the mirror.
“Nobody stops me from going out.”
I return to the bar and grab my champagne flute as my phone goes again. I do not even bother to look to see who is calling as I know and the power rises inside. As I begin to talk to the pretty accountant I savour the fuel that will be coming my way. The looks and words of admiration from the beautiful bean counter all the while my mobile ‘phone buzzes and vibrates away like a trapped wasp, conveying to me your anger and annoyance at being kept at home. I know, empathic person that you are, that you will not put an evening out ahead of your ill child and once again you will martyr yourself. I know from our earlier conversation that there is no prospect of you calling someone else in as a child minder and you will be left at home alternating between crying and calling me all the names under the sun. Knowing that I have been able to do what I want whilst keeping you at home underlines my dominance and affirms why I am the superior one. Your repeated messages and telephone calls just feed me more fuel as once again I win this battle. I sometimes wonder why you even bother but I am glad you do, after all, I need the fuel from your reaction to my control.