Saturday, August 16, 2003
So, like I said yesterday, I woke up feeling different about it this morning. Little worrisome things came to mind, like can she press charges? I mean, I did engage in sexual acts with her body without her explicit consent. I suppose, if I had a good lawyer, he or she could argue that her suggestion I pursue a relationship with Kurt in her original letter implied a certain amount of sexual use for the body. Of course, if whatever technique was used to swap our bodies ever becomes common or even well-known, the legal system will go absolutely insane trying to establish who's who. Some old guy will swap bodies with a young man, refuse to switch back, and then try to argue that he shouldn't be charged with murder because he's the victim, what with his body being dead and all.
On the other hand, it could also absolutely destroy any type of racism, sexism, ageism, "lookism", any ism you want to name. That's the utopian, John Varley view of it - where a person is just a person, and all the silly ways we judge them without getting to know them are just matters of personal preference. Of course, I'd still want Michelle or whoever helped her to admire the brave new world she created from a jail cell for involving me without my consent. There has to be something really illegal about this.
Anyway, I was thinking about that when Jen called this morning. Apparently, her boyfriend made other plans for today (helping a friend get a two-week jump on Moving Day), and she had an extra ticket to the Boston Breakers' semi-final game, and wondered if I'd like to go. I figured, why not? Sure, it's only women's soccer, but I'd never been to a playoff game before.
It was actually a pretty nifty experience. The Breakers play where Braves Field used to be, and something like 10,000 fans showed up. The Breakers lost on penalty kicks after two "golden goal" overtimes (I gather FIFA or whatever organization runs soccer worldwide doesn't like the term "sudden death"). But Mia Hamm (or, as she's known in Boston, "Nomar's finacÃ©e") played on the other team, and soccer's fun to watch in person. It's terrible on TV, since the field's so big and the ball can move around it so fast when the camera's trying to do a closeup so you can see the look on a player's face. It's kind of draining to watch, though - unlike most sports, it just never stops. When a ball goes off-side, a new ball is given to a player for a throw-in within three seconds or so, with no stopping of the clock. And watching a ball go off someone's head and bounce fifty yards... That's gotta hurt.
It was kind of a surreal experience - not just hanging around with Jen during the weekend, wearing shorts and a t-shirt ("you dirty up well", she said), but watching women playing professional sports. In some ways it felt like the whole world had gone nuts and I was the only one who realized it, who knew that I was supposed to be a man and that sports was a male-dominated profession, with everyone else just going along like things were normal.
And it kind of makes my situation look a little less desperate. Sure, this isn't the sort of thing people normally associate with girls (yet - nine or ten thousand fans certainly suggests that it's not just a fringe thing any more), but they're doing it anyway. So there's no reason for me to do things - or avoid doing things - just because they're not what someone expects when they get a look at Michelle Garber.
Friday, August 15, 2003
Oh. My. God. I needed that.
I've been sort of cranky all week, above and beyond "I'm in the wrong body and there's nothing I can do about it". It couldn't be PMS, since it was just after Michelle's body had its period. Everything just seemed to irritate me. Even stuff that had absolutely nothing to do with this whole girl thing.
I almost blew Kate and Jen off, but what was I going to do here at Michelle's house? So we head out to Coolidge Corner and on up to that upstairs theater.
Now, I've got to be honest - Swimming Pool is only an okay movie. The first half is kind of neat, in terms of the relationship between Sarah and Julie, but in the latter part, it just gets silly. Then it pulls the surprise ending - most of what you just saw is just a book that Sarah's writing! - which is no surprise, because in the last act, everyone was acting stilted and artificial. But, Ludivine Sagnier spends a good chunk of the movie naked, and let's just say she pulls it off. The sexy accent doesn't hurt, either. Here's the thing - it wasn't just the skin that did it. It was the character's (and actress's) compelte comfort with her body, and the very French, you're-opinion-doesn't-mean-shit-to-me attitude. Just like, yeah, I've got a killer body, and I'm going to enjoy it. By the end of the movie, I was fidgeting in the seat, Michelle's nipples were pretty hard, and I could have sworn the Coolidge guys had turned off the AC. By the time I got back to Michelle's apartment, I needed a cold shower.
Never made it. I had chosen a sort-of-clingy dress out of Michelle's closet this morning, and getting it off seemed to mean touching every erogenous zone on Michelle's body. Once it was on the floor, I took a good look in the mirror, and there was Michelle, hair all sweaty, breasts trying to jump off her chest, mouth half open... I hadn't taken her shoes off, and when I took a step toward that mirror, everything swayed so nicely. Better than Mademoiselle Sagnier, if I say so myself. I gave the breasts a little squeeze, and it felt so good I dropped to the floor. By the time I was really thinking clearly again, well, I'd made it to third base with Michelle. Several times. I lead the league in triples, if I do say so myself.
And, boy, do I feel better. I suppose you could look at it as "giving in" in a way, but it also was a victory over the tension. I'd been living in Michelle's body, but I'd been spending every moment fighting it. But after I was done, I felt calm for the first time since waking up in Michelle's body. Even good, physically. I laid down on the floor and the weight of Michelle's breasts felt kind of nice; her whole body was tingling, and it felt nice. Sleek, and aerodynamic.
I fondled Michelle a little, then stood up and looked in the mirror. Michelle's body didn't look much different, except that I was smiling at it. I'll probably feel different about it tomorrow morning, but right now, Michelle's body doesn't quite feel like a prison. Right now, it's kind of like when your parents drag you out for vacation, and you hate it, but there are fun parts.
I just want to say, diet soda sucks. The reason for needing to get this out is that BioSoft gets pizzas for the employees every other Friday, but because I had to sit around and make sure that the interviewees didn't rob the lobby blind (they apparently haven't filled that job yet), Janet offered to bring me some from the break room before it was all gone. Which was nice, but unfortunately, Janet has an excellent memory for an old gal, and remembered that Michelle was a vegetarian. So she brought me a couple slices with mushroom and a Diet Coke. Can't say I was thrilled with either of them, but at least the mushrooms are kind of tasteless. Diet soda, though, is just an insult - it tastes just enough like the real thing to mock your taste buds. Ha ha, it says, you don't get a real Coke because Michelle was afraid that those 200 calories would be what makes the difference in terms of being able to pull a pair of jeans up over her ass.
I'll just have to make sure I get a gigantic real soda at the movies after work. Kate was able to talk Jen into Swimming Pool, although I think it's just a matter of that having the best start time.
Thursday, August 14, 2003
Arrgh. No west-coast game tonight, but apparently three nights of watching TV until one have messed with my rhythms. Or Michelle's rhythms. Whatever. Anyway, I'm not close to tired despite having to work tomorrow.
So, while trying to get tired, I've been surfing the web, and I hit some message boards that I'm a member of, as "Martin Hartle". I haven't been reading them much lately, in part out of self-pity - who cares about talking movies, comics, TV and baseball when you've had your mind stuck into the body some woman you've only met once and told that you've got to try and date your best friend without telling him or anyone you know the truth? But I'm bored and while it's tempting to get a six-pack and knock myself out that way, I don't know what Michelle's tolerance is and what if I get drunk enough that calling Kurt and telling him everything sounds like a really good idea? Or even worse, calling my mother and telling her everything? Eats you up inside, it does (like Yoda talk it too you makes). But, anyway, I had some time to kill and started checking those boards out.
The big thing I noticed - no posts from Martin Hartle in a month. None. I'm going to choose to look at it as a good thing - that it means the letter from Michelle is probably at least close to the truth - she's in my body, and isn't terribly interested in continuing my life, so she's not posting on message boards as me. It's a stretch, but more of one than if the conspiracy theory is correct, and there's another Martin in my body, and he just stopped posting for some reason I can't guess. It's not impossible - I stopped posting, obviously, and for all I know this hypothetical other Martin has met a girl who occupies all his time. But it's less likely.
Anyway, I pondered just jumping back in, especially on the comic board where I use an alias, but better not to risk it - what if Michelle decides to make my presence known again? Or if somebody wonders why my private email address is now firstname.lastname@example.org? Or why I have nothing to say about Seattle?
It sucks. For all that people say no-one knows who you are on-line, you still have to change what you do because of your real life.
Wednesday, August 13, 2003
So, is Comcast going to pro-rate their billing to not include yesterday since I didn't have any internet service? I doubt that.
Kurt and I spent the evening at the Brattle Theater Monday, seeing a double feature of The Thing From Another World and The Man From Planet X. It was kind of neat; they had film critics on-hand to talk about the connection between the Cold War and the atmosphere of those 1950s sci-fi movies. It was a fun night out, almost not really a date - we had supper at Bertucci's beforehand, and spent the half hour between the shows just sort of talking about our jobs. It's funny, because when he used to hang out with me, he had nothing but irritation for his job as a technical writer, but to hear him tell it to "Michelle", he's a vital part of his company, and he takes great pride in making sure everything's clear. And there's an obvious difference in how he characterizes he paycheck to the friends he went to college with and a pretty girl who only graduated high school and works as a receptionist.
I don't know how long I'm going to be able to avoid kissing him, though. I only got out of it Monday because as we were walking back to the subway station - and I'm not kidding about this - we walked straight into a streetlight. He wasn't really hurt, but it bloodied his nose a bit, which would have made a kiss good-night somewhat unpleasant even if I were looking forward to it. Of course, the reason he wasn't looking where he was going was because I'd worn something which showed some cleavage. But I swear I didn't maneouver him into it, even if we were holding hands.
Yesterday was just a crazy day at work - BioSoft is evidently looking to add a new programmer to their staff (where was this job opening two months ago?), and they scheduled a bunch of interviews for yesterday. So there was always some new person in the lobby, or people calling to confirm times or get directions, or who needed to be announced, shown to different staff members' offices. I swear half the men were trying to hit on me, too - I know when you're just trying to make conversation because you're nervous about the interview, and I saw very little of that.
Shouldn't have stayed up for the ballgame last night, though - West Coast road trips are hell on us fans of East Coast teams, as we wait until 1am to see how the game went. I've been just kind of zoning out all day today. Heck, when the UPS guy came an hour ago, I actually signed "Martin Hartle" because I wasn't really thinking. Fortunately, "Martin" can be made to look sort of like "Michelle", and it was as illegible as most signatures are, but it's something that could trip me up. What's really amusing is that folks at the office think my handwriting must be awful, because my "Michelle Garber" signature is a total mess. I can make it look good if I take a little time, paying attention to what I'm writing, but nobody signs their name like that - they use quick strokes, oftentimes not even looking. I try to sign Michelle's name that way, and, well, you can definitely tell the first letter is an "M", but don't give me any more credit than that.
Monday, August 11, 2003
Hmm... I wonder if someone's intercepting all this on Saturday, and then on Sunday I can't access Blogger (or, more importantly, Baseball Primer) from home. Verrrrry suspicious.
If this body is an artificial construct or a clone, though, at least whoever made it went light on the mestruation. I have to admit, after a week or so, I was getting worried about that. Visions of blood just gushing all over the place ran through my mind. I can't say it was a surprise, since Michelle's birth control pills are thoughtfully colored red for the past three days, just in case looking at them didn't disturb me enough. I avoided taking them at first, figuring I wouldn't be sexually active anyway, but I've had enough female friends to have heard it mentioned that you never know what's going to happen - you could be drunk or attacked, and then where are you? Especially since I don't figure Michelle (if such a person exists) would want her body back if it's pregnant.
Speaking of women's bodies, Fox showed a promo for Eliza Dushku's new show (Tru Calling, I think the name is) during Futurama or Banzai last night. Well, not really a promo for the show as much as "check out Eliza, isn't she hot?" It kind of disturbed me that I didn't get terribly worked up by it. I'm not going to say that I didn't feel anything, and what went through my mind certainly wasn't "I wish I looked that good! Maybe if I lost five pounds..." It was as if somehow the message got from my eyes to my brain, which responded with "yes, I would like some of that", but got lost afterward. Maybe my mind was trying to send a message to organs which just aren't there any more and it didn't get re-routed to what was there. I mean, maybe Michelle's nipples itched once. Hitting random Boobies links on Fark didn't produce much more.
But, then again, I didn't try any Weeners links. My dad always did tell me not to ask questions if I wasn't ready to hear the answers.