DiscoverHumor & Comedy

Unsatisfactory Women

By

Worth reading 😎

One discombobulated email leads to a fascinating front seat into the perspective of our protagonist (for lack of a better word.)

Synopsis

Michael DaCosta comes home to find his girlfriend Jenny has moved out. She has left no note, no explanation, just vanished. He emails her but receives no reply. He emails her again and again and gets into the habit of telling her about his life, his adventures, his new women, his secret attitude to everything that happens to him. Her lack of comments encourages him so he is more honest and explicit than he could ever be with anyone else.

This is an honest portrait of a certain kind of man who must present an appearance of decency to the world, who can only be honest about his views and plans to the 'ideal' woman he imagines he is talking to.

When he is sure she is not coming back he embarks on a series of relationships which his callous nature and disregard for women ensure will fail. He even gets married and has a daughter but cannot stay faithful. One day his wife says she thinks she has seen Jenny in a coffee shop. Michael stakes out the coffee shop until he meets her again. That meeting gives him the beginnings of an insight into his own nature.

Much like the title suggests, this narrative explores the journey of an unsatisfactory life. Mike, who is both our narrator and protagonist, believes himself to be somewhat blameless in all of his unsuccessful relationships. as far as he is concerned the women were all wrong for him or just flawed within themselves. This mentality and lack of responsibility leads Mike on a path where time is moving but he doesn't seem to be. Physically he grows but mentally he freezes in a bachelor-like mindset.


The author allows us to truly view what goes on in the mind of an individual with little to no empathy for women and who I might be bold to say is rather sexist. His view of women is based solely on their value to him as a caregiver. This exploration of sexism within relationships and on the ignorance of the men contributing to these ideologies was so refreshing to read. The format of this novel made me fall in love with it even more because it offered a certain intimacy and vulnerability that I have not felt before.


Beyond the complexities of gender and its roles within relationships, I enjoyed the highlighting of the never-ending search for satisfaction. This proved to me to be one of Mike's biggest and most relatable character flaws; he can never be satisfied and I have to say that is somewhat a flaw of the human condition. I believe that although Mike had many flaws, he was just like any of us at some point. Young and unaware of our actions and their consequences. The lesson to learn from this however, is that there comes a time when it is necessary and mandatory to take responsibility for your actions.


This novel kept me entranced like a car-wreck. I did not want to look away because of pure curiosity but i knew that every line I read, Mike would surprise me with his nonchalant attitude. This was an entertaining and thought-provoking read, I recommend!

Reviewed by

As a poet and writer there's nothing i enjoy more than readers' perspectives so here I am, being that extra bit of insight for authors out there.

Synopsis

Michael DaCosta comes home to find his girlfriend Jenny has moved out. She has left no note, no explanation, just vanished. He emails her but receives no reply. He emails her again and again and gets into the habit of telling her about his life, his adventures, his new women, his secret attitude to everything that happens to him. Her lack of comments encourages him so he is more honest and explicit than he could ever be with anyone else.

This is an honest portrait of a certain kind of man who must present an appearance of decency to the world, who can only be honest about his views and plans to the 'ideal' woman he imagines he is talking to.

When he is sure she is not coming back he embarks on a series of relationships which his callous nature and disregard for women ensure will fail. He even gets married and has a daughter but cannot stay faithful. One day his wife says she thinks she has seen Jenny in a coffee shop. Michael stakes out the coffee shop until he meets her again. That meeting gives him the beginnings of an insight into his own nature.

From: Michael DaCosta

Subject: where R U?


Jenny


What's going on? Where have you gone?

When I came home I found all your things gone. What's it all about? We didn't quarrel did we? I mean we don't quarrel. It can't have been because I was a bit grumpy about dinner last night can it? I thought you would know that I wouldn't want anything heavy before a gig. That's not unreasonable is it? I know I didn't mention it explicitly beforehand but I think the joy of living with you is that you always know what I need before I even say it. Don't let's throw that away.

If it's not that, then I can't think what it can be. Please come back and we can talk it over, or at least phone me. Don't let it fester. Let's talk it out as we have always done. I promise I'll try not to be so 'temperamental' in future but you know what musicians are like.


Mike


From: Michael DaCosta

Subject: no reply


Jenny


Why no reply? This is not like you. I am beginning to be afraid something is wrong. Are you ill? Have you gone to your mother's? Is she ill? But it's not like you to go without saying anything.

I just can't believe it has anything to do with my not wanting dinner the other night. Gosh, I didn't throw it at the wall, did I? OK, I might have been a little peremptory but I'm so used to your being good at supporting me. Perhaps I was a little disappointed that you got it so wrong that time. But please don't keep this up. You're just not the type to sulk. Let's accept the fact that neither of us is perfect and let's talk it over.

I'll be out tonight but you can get me in the morning, at work if you like. You know I'm always at my desk by 8.30. Don't worry about Joan, I won't tell her anything, or anyone else at work. I hope this is only temporary.


Mike


From: Michael DaCosta

Subject: no reply


Jenny,


I can't believe you're doing this to me, after all we've been to each other. What's happened?

I talked it over with Ralph and Jane. They are as mystified as I am. They said they thought we were the perfect couple.

One thing Ralph said - when he quarrels with Jane (and they do it all the time) she brings up every little misdemeanour he's ever been guilty of. I said you weren't like that but our little spat over your dinner seemed so trivial to me I wonder if there's anything else you're not telling me about. So, please tell me. Even a criminal is told what he's guilty of.

Tell me my crimes.


Mike



From: Michael DaCosta

Subject: no reply


Jenny


Won't you even tell me why you hate me? I refused to eat your dinner and sent out for a takeaway. Is that what ended our relationship after all the years we've been together? I know I'm not perfect but honestly I don't know what I can have done to make you walk out on me. Unless...

Have you met someone else? I know I've been a bit preoccupied recently what with work and the music etc. but you have been back late a few times when I was expecting you to be home. Now I come to think of it: steak and chips before I was about to perform, suggests that perhaps your mind wasn't fully on our relationship.

Could you at least respect me enough to tell me the truth? If there's someone else, well that can be the end of it, but I think you should be honest about it.


Mike


From: Michael DaCosta

Subject: no reply


Jenny Jenny Jenny


What is going on? You know I could never manage without you. My clothes are a mess. I can't find anything in the flat. The wonderful sense of order you brought to my life has vanished. I live in chaos, squalor. Mrs Thingski can't iron and she refuses to wash my handkerchiefs. What am I to do without you? I live on fish fingers and frozen pizza.

I'm sorry I suggested you had run off with someone else. I know you are not like that. I was just trying to provoke a reaction. I'm trying desperately to get you to respond. Just let us talk about it. That's all I ask.

Have you changed your mobile? Every time I ring it, it's switched off. I must have left you a dozen messages. Look, I am really sorry – for what, I'm not sure - but I am truly sorry you're gone. Give me a chance to make it up to you.

I know I always promised you a trip to South America. We've both been so busy, but I think I could take some time off this summer. What do you say? Let's try again.

Love


Mike



From: Michael DaCosta

Subject: no reply


Jenny


I really don't know what's the matter with you. I never thought you were the type to bear a grudge. I bumped into Indra yesterday. She said you seemed to be jealous when I danced with her at Andy's party last Xmas. Could that be true? You never said. Why can't you say if you've got something to complain about? Indra and I danced, that's all. Maybe I kissed her under the mistletoe. Isn't that what you're supposed to do at Xmas? It was just party fun. She said we had a row afterwards but I don't remember anything about it. I imagine we were both a bit drunk.

Was that it? I never took you for the jealous type. If I promise never to flirt with another woman will you talk to me again?


Mike


From: Michael DaCosta

Subject: no reply


Dear Jen


Well it looks as if you don't want anything more to do with me. It would have been nice if you could have said so and not put me through all this, but hey, what's politeness between friends?

I've booked an Easter trip to Buenos Aires with Joey. Think of it, two bachelors on the pull among all those lovely Spanish ladies. Let me know if you want me to bring anything back. You know cashmere and alpaca are dirt cheap out there and the chocolate is meant to be fantastic. If I don't come back you'll know why.

I'm really sorry it had to end like this.


Adiós


Mike



From: Michael DaCosta

Subject: from Buenos Aires


Hi Jen


I was just wondering if you were still mad at me.

It's such a pity you couldn't be here. Joey and I are staying at a splendid hotel in a street just a few minutes walk from Calle Florida with its wonderful shops. The leather goods are fantastic. We've both bought jackets. The woollen goods are a terrific price but you have to be slim. Everyone here is about half the size of Brits. I have seen the most beautiful handbag I think you would love - it's red leather with a wild Aztec pattern sewn on in different colours. Write me one little email and I'll bring it back for you.

The parks are so romantic with Jacaranda trees and Bougainvillea everywhere and creatures that sound like giant crickets singing in the trees. We took a river trip from Tigre into the delta north of Buenos Aires and found a really charming restaurant. It's so romantic, all the houses and restaurants in this area are only accessible by boat.

In a few places there is just the hint of danger. I'd love to live here but there's a chance we might die here. But before I die I have to tango!



Mike


About the author

I have worked in IT and as a technical writer and recently I completed an MA in Creative Writing with the Open University. This is/was my first novel and have now written several more but don't really know how to go about marketing them. view profile

Published on September 01, 2020

Published by

20000 words

Genre: Humor & Comedy

Reviewed by

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