So, this is about to get embarrassing and I may blame that on the fact that I am drinking alone at the moment, because if I was actually having a real audience with you it may not be so embarrassing… [You know how that goes, out with people doing the intoxication bonding thing, replete with gushing and hyperbole. Then you wake up in the morning and you realize you were not actually in the market for new best friends, and WTF is that person’s name crashed on your sofa? You can pretend you are unfamiliar if it makes you feel better and concentrate on my confessions if you like.]
Have you ever had an experience that just rocks you to the core? Like the deepest part of your soul and you are sure you are permanently marred and scarred?
Okay, well this isn’t one of those but it is in the same general genre.
I am an unusual person. I am not saying that to be all eccentric and cool – I am just weird. Nothing about me is much of what people expect and, frankly none of it is what I expected either. I don’t actually mind this, and even though as a rule I am sort of hardwired to resist change, I generally adapt pretty quickly and adeptly so I can adjust for my weirdness. Mostly.
One of my weirdnesses has to do with the kind of people I like to hang out with. Okay, I mean people I like to go out with. I cannot bring myself to say date because, well, I don’t know, I don’t think I “date” and I find the word user unfriendly. [Dating is not our generation’s strong point. We’re an era that’s good at getting laid.] For lack of a better or more accurate euphemism, we will go with ‘hang out with.’ So, the type of people I like to hang out with… Well, this is supposed to be a true confession after all, so let’s get to it. I like brains. Yeah. That is right. But not just any kind of brains. Complex, innovative, unusual and creative ones. Brains trump just about anything else I can think of (with the caveat that there are some issues that would still constitute a deal breaker – like smell.) I know everyone says they like intelligent people, but they don’t all mean it. And you can tell this by who they hang out with. Seriously though, I have tried the other strategic approaches – hot dude, party dude, generic dude. Just did not work. I want my ‘Einstein on the beach’, as it were, maybe with a cold beer in his hand… no mutual exclusivity for me. Like Adam Duritz described, “an eggman on and off the wall.” I want multi-purpose. That comes from brainz.
Now, owing to my unusual and perhaps slightly rigid preferences (and circumstances), I do not meet lots of people that make me go “Hmmm….” (Sorry C&C.) On the occasion that it has happened, I have been so pleasantly surprised… Well, herein lies the confession. I met someone through a seemingly random connection via my writing. It seemed like the most amazing thing. I believed that this crazy connection was so unique- because I wanted to believe [see this podcast for the scientific rationale for how and why we make fucked up decisions based on what we want to be reality…] that it was as amazing as, like, um yeah, fucking destiny.
Anyhow, ignoring the warnings of one of my yoga gurus who had recently discussed in general terms the imbalance of euphoria and the requisite bummer that will follow… I bit. Big time. I believed… and I listened… and I was seriously and legitimately impressed. Smart. Well-read. Political. Creative. Curious. Dissatisfied. Articulate. Diverse. Complicated. Funny. Did I mention, smart? Yeah, I thought so. I could not have written a more ideal character. (Plus he was kinda cute, too.) It was great fun.
Now, I mentioned the whole weirdness about dating? Multiply that exponentially by about a million and you might get close to how I feel about the virtual connection. Tenuous at best. Total bullshit at worst. So, what do I think is the solution? End the virtuality and make it real. Right? Uh huh. (If you think you know where this is going, you are probably right.) At the suggestion of going to frankly, great lengths to trade the virtual for the real, things seemed to be even more promising. I was legitimately hopeful. Optimistic that I would be meeting someone so cool… Not like I was banking on him being “The One,” whatever the hell that means, but something different in all the right ways…
Suffice it to say that none of the ‘meeting’ went according to plan (and I thought I knew why – but I don’t. How surprising.) Still, in a true moment of glory, I made something of it anyhow, turning a devastating disappointment into a wildly fortuitous (completely unplanned) weekend. After the fact, I remained hopeful for another chance to see if these brains had the merit they appeared to, because I really believed that no one would go to such great lengths if they were not being legit. Who does that? [Oh, by the way apparently lots of people do.] When I selectively shared this situation under total minimal disclosure, everyone was like, “Uh… yeah, people are full of shit.” “Did you check it out?” “Did you do this… that…” No, I didn’t do any of it. And just like the podcast above, I refused to believe the obvious, to see the very clear indicators that perhaps I was blinded by brains. [Again, I say, who does that?! Yeah, yeah, I know, lots of people.] I wanted everyone, and all indications of a problem, like being internationally stood up, to be wrong. I wanted to be right; Occam’s Razor be damned. Or something. [Still not sure if this was my covetous longing for brains or my ego at work here.]
The end was ugly. The dis’ of the century (yes, I know we are only nine years in, but I win for the first decade because this is my story) coupled with unpleasant internet evidence that indicated ‘amazing coincidences’ came from another M.O. altogether, brought out the worst of my neuroses. What did I do? What could I have done differently? What is wrong with me? Of course, rationally I know it really cannot be about me, but who the hell cares when you feel that shitty? It did help to get counter evidence presented to me but only a little. In the end, I really liked this person. Whatever.
I was actually thinking things like, “What if I never meet anyone like that again?!” Whining and moaning and overlooking the fact that, fiercely intimate email and phone calls aside, I had not met him. So, really how can one moan over what they never had? Well, they can, let me tell you… (and I’ll just grab another glass of Cloudy Bay if I am even going to go through with this post.) I kept saying it was because of the total mysterious ending… the disappearance. But it was not that. No ending would have been acceptable. There would have always been one more question, or stone to turn over, or inconsistency to examine. Pointless. The reality is, if it is not the answer you want, it is never going to be the final answer. And I have to applaud him, in a mostly genuine way, for knowing this.
And that is what I get for wanting brains. The allure was so intoxicating that my diagnostic skills totally failed. I told my mom that perhaps I should just hope for a functional cerebellum. She advised that I “aim higher,” as I had already tried dating someone whose primary skill was balance and the ability to mostly remain upright.
Maybe I should. Is it totally depressing that I fear the unavailability of highly functional cerebral cortexes? I am thinking I should just start eating brains and quit trying to ‘date’ them. Zombies seem to get a lot of action these days. I know this. I saw Shaun of the Dead:
“Look, I don’t care what the telly says, all right? We *have* to get out of here. If we don’t they’ll tear us to pieces, and that is really going to exacerbate things for all of us.”
You know, everyone has an idea of what their life might entail. People who say they don’t are full of shit. And so, yeah, I have to say I wouldn’t have predicted this life – but whatever. Here I am, and this is my true confession: I was blown away, I anted up, I went all in, I busted. [Or he called, choose your metaphor of preference.]
I still want brains. I still believe. But I will adjust my strategy in the future… so as not to “exacerbate things for all of us.”
Well I guess you left me with some feathers in my hand
Did it make it any easier to leave me where I stand?
I guess there might not be too many who would stand beside you now
Where’d you come from? where am I going?
Why’d you leave me till I’m only good for…
Waiting for you
All my sins…
I said that I would pay for them if I could come back to you
All my innocence is wasted on the dead and dreaming