They call it No Man’s Land-and it is somewhat aptly named. There are men in it, from time to time, but when you’re in it, you certainly don’t want to be. I first heard the term in baseball- a tipping point between bases when you might as well go forward, because retreating to the previous station is likely to result in disaster. I assume it probably has some sort of real world derivation-referring to an area that is controlled by no one, and thus no rules apply.
I didn’t start out intending for it to happen- she was charming, funny, and whip smart, and she was bawdy, and funny, and could make a sailor blush at times. She was pretty, of course- not in a conventional way, but in a snap your head around, what the heck was that sort of way, like when a shortstop dives to smother a ball in the hole and throws the guy out at first. But it happened, like a solo home run marring a strong 9 inning effort.
When you pursue any girl, of course, you have rivals- some corporeal, like the guy who sleeps next to her, or the guy who makes her laugh more than you do – and some less real, like the ghostly presence of the last guy who broke her heart, and, somewhere in the background, her father.
Sometimes, you don’t even know you’re losing, and then the game suddenly ends.