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I Would Seriously Have Sex with Thomas Cromwell Right Now

February 1, 2014

Well it’s already Freburary and that means we’re just two weeks and change away from me turning 34. Gross! The only reason I’m acknowledging this birthday’s existence and permitting it to happen is that I’ll be spending it in Mexico, getting my smug wintertime tan on by the ocean, shaded by the extremely necessary hat I’m going to buy next week (it says COCK and there’s a picture of a rooster!!), reading a novel and drinking 34 margaritas. I had wanted to make them with a bottle of the tequila that Gus Fring uses to kill all those cartel guys, but Google insisted at every turn that it was a fictional brand, so I’ll have to go with my second choice: whatever the duty-free shop is selling.

Unfortunately, before the people of earth unite in joyful, crapulent celebration of my Mexican birthday (Spanish: ¡cumpleaños Mexicanos Meaghanos!), we all must endure the calendar’s most loathsome offering: the Valentimes.

Valentine’s Day is a mandatory opportunity for adult couples to exchange $7 cards, feed each other chocolate covered strawberries, and have romantic pre-ordained intercourse in a bepetaled hotel bed (or at home, whatever). Despite the adult nature of the occasion, there was, and I assume still is, an equally confusing and contrived version for kids as well. I don’t know how it’s done these days, but back in my day, the parents (=mother) of every child aged three to twelve for some reason had to acquire a book or box of valentines. These were assorted small cards each of which featured either an age-inappropriate, outdated-to-a-point-of-meaninglessness expression of affection (“You’re one hot tomato!”) or an age-inappropriate unforgivable pun related to the picture on the card (“You’re MEOWY special! Be mine!” [with a picture of a cat winking suggestively]; “You DRIVE me crazy, valentine!” [with a picture of a car running over a psychiatric patient]).

On the evening of February 13, you would choose one card for each person in your class, and then, using the class list that had been supplied by the teacher, you and/or your parents (=mother) would address each card, making sure not to forget anyone, and the next morning you would take them to school and hand them out. Naturally, that scene got incrementally awkwarder as you got older and by grade six it was an excruciating social nightmare with unspoken rules and hierarchies and secret hidden meanings and complex body language semiotics and exclusions and cliquery and attempted connections and crushed hopes etc.

To this day I don’t understand what the point was of any of that. And now, since I’m not part of an adult couple (despite being one hot tomato!), I am not invited to participate in the $7 chocolate-covered intercourse of my peers. Actually, just hours ago, I had my heart broken by news about the only man I’ve ever loved: Thomas Cromwell as depicted in the historical novels of Hilary Mantel.

I first met the T-Dog in Wolf Hall, where, after a few tense pages of getting his ass kicked, he began his career as a professional outsmarter-of-douchebags, cool-thing-sayer, and wealth-amasser. The word “awesome” gets thrown around a lot these days and can be used to describe anything from a photo of fast food to a successful debit transaction, but Thomas Cromwell is fucking awesome, in the original full-strength sense of the term. Dude walks casually into every situation and knows exactly what to say and do to get the outcome he requires and/or desires. He’s a true captain of industry. He does, gives, and is the business. It tends to take me a while to build a relationship with someone, but I hit it off with Tom right away. By the end of the novel, I’d started planning our wedding (simple Anglican ceremony, big reception with open bar, summer 2015). Bring Up the Bodies just sealed the deal on my love. In my mind I was all like, I would totally date this person. If he bought me a drink I would actually hang out with him past the moment of finishing the drink. By George, I would seriously have sex with Thomas Cromwell right now–provided it was Mantel’s Cromwell character and the relations were conducted in the present day, not back in the 16th century where everyone was crawling with lice and syphilis. This was by far the most romantic thought I’d ever had about anyone.

I was pso psuper psyched all through December and January because I’d read that the final novel of the trilogy was coming out this March. I had a little reminder on my whiteboard to pre-order it, lest a single unnecessary Cromwellless day befall me. Although I was disappointed that I wouldn’t be able to hang out with him on Valentine’s Day, I looked forward to our spring reunion. What’s a few weeks, right? But then, earlier today, while attempting to find out the exact publication date of the book, I discovered that it has been pushed back into 20fucking15. Cinnamon cocks, that’s like next year or something!

I humbly beg the people of England, in particularly the interviewers and reporters and other types of literary harassers, to please leave Hilary Mantel alone so she can finish writing this book and send it to me. Thomas Cromwell is my soul mate and I’m not getting any younger.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. HUnter4086 permalink
    February 3, 2014 10:51 am

    Historical men are the best. They are safely deceased and not around to take umbrage at our womanly (flattering) interpretations of their behavior. It’s the best.

    I’d “do”, as the kids say, Antoine de St-Exupery, and like righthisminnit. Not that he is currently appearing in any historical fictions that I know of. This assessment is based purely on the book ‘Wind, Sand, and Stars,’ plus the deliciously pudgy middle-aged (and French!) image that popularly appears in articles, and on old francs before the Euro destroyed that bit of pornography. I even dated him briefly in high school, in my imagination only, ie. right where it counts.

    On a slightly related note, in Grade 2 I received a Valentine from my “crush” (as did all 29 other students) and chose to believe that Goofy with a broom saying “You sweep me off my feet!” actually meant something real. Sad yet interesting how this tendency sets in so early.

  2. Jennifer Madden permalink
    April 17, 2014 8:35 am

    I love this post more than anything. I’m glad I’m not the only person lusting for Cromwell. I had to restrain myself from throwing my underpants at his Holbein portrait at the Frick.

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