I’ll be the first one to admit I don’t know why I chose what I chose to be the title of this post. Which is really to say 99% of the titles of my posts have absolutely nothing to do with the actual content. It’s probably a sin for a writer to come up with the title of their post before actually writing the post, but I rarely pay any mind to what grabs people’s attention. I let the content speak for itself, because the headline is usually just some song lyric.
It’s worth mentioning, I feel like. Actually I feel like most things are worth mentioning. Like for instance, right now I’m listening to The Weeknd. It’s turned into the music I like to write to. It used to be Circa Survive, and on occasion I still mess around get down to some Circa while I write. Some people find it weird that I write while listening to music, and again, it’s probably sinful to let the music I listen to affect the tones. But at the same time, I create my own tones, so it doesn’t really matter, I don’t think.
My work days typically correlate — or at least I think they do — to when I write. I assume this is due to driving for such long periods to and from work. There’s just no escaping reality when you are alone. Well, unless you have drugs, but I don’t do that shit anymore. I take for granted just how often I’m by myself, because being alone has grown into my comfort zone sense of normalcy. Even when I’m at work, sometimes dealing to a full table, I’m alone. By myself on an island. I have these cup-of-coffee relationships with strangers, just long enough for them to like me, then I say thank you and good luck and it’s on to the next dealer. When I finish my set of tables, I’m off to the back patio break area to smoke cigarettes by myself before going out to the floor to do it all over again. And before I know it, the night is over, and I’m back on the road to enjoy another hour by myself.
When I was an early teenager, there was this show on HBO called “Freshman Year,” which was mainly stories of racist, redneck white kids getting into fights, girls detailing their first blowjob experiences, and jocks living the cliché high school dream. I was fascinated by it, the same way I was fascinated by Rugrats when I was a little boy and Even Stevens when I was 10 or 11: It appealed to my specific age group at that time.
One episode of the series dealt with depression, notably kids dealing with the harsh reality of being gay at that age. Their parents were more understanding, because the kids being interviewed were just typically confused, like most everybody is at that age. It’s hard enough to grasp the concept of existence at 14, let alone being different than everybody else.
But anyway, one of the dads said something that’s always stuck out in my head, made-for-TV as it may have been. He said, “It’s like he’s suffocating in a room full of air.” I didn’t experience depression until I was 19, and I still don’t know what it’s like not to be, even at age-24, but goddamn that phrase makes so much sense to me. I think, based on my strengths, I’m built for a profession that involves dealing with people (literally in this case). I’m so good at pretending like I’m outgoing that it wouldn’t make sense for me to act otherwise. I’ve already come this far that I don’t know what it’s like to be anything other than what I already am.
On the ride home from work tonight, I was thinking about what I would say to eulogize my best friend Trey at his funeral, which is both funny and weird, because he’s neither dead nor do I think about anyone else’s death nearly as much as my own. But I was genuinely thinking about it, because I’ve always felt the polarization of him either dying way too young, or living to be a very old, heavily-tattooed man. Either way, I’m saddened by the idea that, no matter which scenario it is, I will outlive him. Along with the idea of my mom dying, or never again sleeping with a woman, my best friend dying is definitely one of my ultimate fears. If nothing else, that’s love.
I think a lot about love, even though I survived my entire childhood without it, and haven’t had it in the last half-decade. I contemplate it because it’s not there, for once I have it I don’t want it. I’m extremely lovable, because, let’s face it, I’m not stupid and I’m not the worst looking person in the world. But I’m equally unlovable, because, let’s face it, I’m not stupid and I’m not the worst looking person in the world.
One of my major issues is that I know what the real thing is. I know what it feels like. I know how it sounds, and what it looks like. Somewhere along the way, along this road of fucked up twists and irrational happiness, I vowed to myself that I would never love again unless it felt the same way. I waited 18 years before I jumped into the real thing, so I’m afraid I can handle another 18 before that feeling decides to manifest itself again. That’s not my choice, I don’t think, because back to my childhood I viewed myself as that guy who would get married young and have kids and do the whole happily ever after thing, but I’ve seen a million times how it works when people rush into it. I can only speak from my own experience, and my experience tells me I’m the most legit mutherfucker out there, and I can only settle for the most legit woman out there. That may be unattainable, but if it’s unattainable then I’m going to stay alone for the rest of my life. I’m not really the compromising type.
So I wait. And while I wait, I write. One day, probably not too deep in the distant future, I’m going to read this and think I’m out of line. I mean, last night I went on an actual date. With a real girl. I don’t even remember the last time I went on a date where it was actually called a date. I can’t remember a lot of things, and that’s probably for the best. I remember all things I don’t want to remember, like the nights holding hands, making love in the winter, the things no one is ever going to know about. I won’t let them know anything, because I’m too cagey. I don’t want anyone to know anything about me. The less information, the greater the possibility for anything to be possible. Every tidbit I expose of myself is a problem, even on here. You can’t love me for the person I am because I won’t let you. You can only love the idea of me.