embarrassing

Rock Bottom

Even though I’m now a fifth year senior and in a new relationship navigating mishaps and humiliation left and right, I’ve been neglecting proper blog documentation by watering down the amassing tragedies as being not quite tragic enough to write about yet.  And sorta because I forgot about this blog for about a year…  But mostly the watering down thing.  Mostly the watering down thing, that is, until this past weekend, when a tragedy so pathetic, so utterly lame, occurred, that I could no longer ignore my duty to the web.

If you read my last post, you already have a hint.  But, let’s be honest, you didn’t.  So buckle up.

I’ve spent a lot of time in college trying to evolve myself from a closet YouTuber to a Pro-fessional Videographer gal.  It’s taken some time for me to learn the jargon of my trade (or how to escape conversation fast enough before people find out I haven’t) and to develop my technical skills, but I’m getting there.  One of my latest duties-to-learn has been the glamorous world of location scouting, which actually sucks ass.

So, anyway.  My teammate, Alex (aka “Cobb”), and I had been in talks with a local musician for about two months to make her a music video.  Indoor locations were out because bureaucracy is the devil (hear, hear!), so we decided to find a spot in the mountains surrounding Boonetown.  The plan was to find someplace with a waterfall where we could film without any casualties.  Taking a few suggestions from Alex’s brother, we resolved first and foremost to scope out the “Bertha” of waterfalls: Trash Can Falls.  (Did that joke hit?  It’s supposed to be about having a crappy name.  Oh shoot, I should have gone for trashy!  Something like “Marguerite.”)

Starting the car to leave for the Marguerite of waterfalls went well enough, but not much else.  Due to causes entirely unrelated to our chronic irresponsibility and inadequacy as human beings, we were sort of in a rush because it was sort of the day before the shoot.  Partway there, it began to rain, plus Alex was driving like a blind animal, so we were lucky to even make it to the site alive to begin with.  After that, we got onto the trail and I was forced into keeping guard while he took a leak in the forest, also like a blind animal, which was pleasant.  Raindrops and pee were crashing down all around me, but I still felt hopeful that my dreams for the day wouldn’t.

It was a short path, but a wee bit treacherous.  The rainfall (and urine) did not help the cause, as the trail was already dominated by puddles and muck.  A little ways into the trek, Alex pointed down a steep semi-trail/semi-dropoff toward a huge rocky platform and said, “what about that?”  I looked at it for about two seconds before definitively knowing that it was not going to work.  But I didn’t want to hurt his feelings, so I tried to say it delicately.  “That is not going to happen, Alex.”  “But–” he began.  “No. We are not f***ing doing that,” I stated politely.

He laughed, probably, or got tensed up and sad (what’s the difference, am I right?!), and abandoned his post to finish the trail.  When we made it to the top, we saw a few collegiate hooligans in swimsuits, hanging around, drinking beers, and then jumping intoxicated off of a 15 foot rock face into murky construction-site-puddle-opaque waters.  For a second, I worried that I was going to have to jump off of it to impress Alex.  I had already gotten out of it the last time I visited by having mother nature pouring out of my uterus into a pad that would have exploded up with water like a giant turd in my pants if I had jumped in.  But this time, there was no such pad.  Every piece of me was saying, “I don’t want to do this,” but, if he was bold enough to do it, I had appearances and my own pride to keep up with, and I was going to have to do it.  He watched them and, to my surprise declared, “that is a horrible idea.”  This meant a) that I was off the hook, and b) that I would have to prove myself in some other way.

We spent a few minutes watching our intoxicated peers climb up the rock, say they didn’t want to do it, and then get peer pressured into doing it by their friends, and somehow not die.  (That’s the thing–at some of these waterfalls, people actually have died.  They really have.  And yet…here we all were.)  I decided I’d get my pride by jumping off of a diving board into a big pool or something later.  It felt great to know that I would never put myself in a situation like that, willingly jumping into a murky waterfall pool in the mountains.  In a lot of ways, I was superior to all of them for being so wise.

Turning back, Alex motioned toward the initial spot once again.  I still knew it was a terrible idea, but since our first scout had been an utter failure up to this point, and because I needed to redeem myself for being a total wiener for being too scared to jump off of Trash Can Falls, I decided to give it the benefit of the doubt and explore it.

Phone at the ready to snap some pictures of the spot, professionalism was coursing through my veins.  We climbed down some treacherous tree roots and rocks before we came to a clearing of sorts–a plain, gently sloped, gigantic rock face bordering the stream.  The hardest of the trail was behind us.  Eager to impress and show off my adventurousness, I took the lead and crossed down toward the –WHOOP.

Shit!  Damn it!  Arms flailing, I searched for something to hold on to.  There’s nothing to hold onto!  Ahh!!  I thought.  Then, for the 14th time or so in the past two years that I’ve wondered it, I wondered if I was about to die.  Am I about to die?  This is so embarrassing.  Aaaand yep, that’s the edge.  Wellp, guess this is the–

CLUNK-SPLASH.

And that’s when I hit it.  Rock bottom.  (…How’d that one land?  Eh, a literal rock bottom? Hey-oh!)  (No, but actually, I fell into a gorge.)

ravine

Photo used without permission from Thomas Fore. Edited by Alex Cobb.  [Circle: me, rectangle: phone.]

There were no alligators.  There were no deep river rapids.  I had landed in a shallow section of water less than a foot deep full of rocks, and at its most treacherous, litter and algae.  My bones were not broken, which kinda pissed me off.  I had literally just fallen into a ravine.  I deserved some battle wounds besides a bump on my shin and 5 scratches on my knee.  How else was I supposed to make people give me attention?  Boobs?  I’m too ashamed of my body!  But anyway, despite the intact bones, it actually did hurt and I was a little shaken.  But I still stood back up, much like a firefighter who rises from a pile of rubble after a building collapses around her, and gathered my bearings.  I looked up to Alex, expecting him to ask if I was okay.  “Where’s your phone?!” he yelled.  Dammit, Cobb.

There’s a saying about how what goes up must come down (haven’t heard of it? oh, I’m not surprised, oh ho ho *adjusts glasses pretentiously*), and the terrible truth of that is that if you say the phrase backwards you get to the point that I had fallen down and was going to have to climb back up.  And so, with reluctant nerves, I took off my $5 traction-less cheetah print shoes (a professional location scout staple), threw them back up to Alex, and began my return climb, amidst opposition.

I imagine that I looked something like Bear Grylls accomplishing another great feat of survival, but if I didn’t, I don’t want to know.

When I made it back out, I was feeling pretty happy about being alive.  But once that wore off I was able to go back to my normal hateful self and look at the world with eyes full of darkness because, of all of the things I thought would mess up the scout, slipping down a rock face into a river because I was wearing bad shoes while it was raining and I was on a mossy rock wasn’t one of them.  It was totally unexpected.

My iPhone was lost in the accident.  The location scout was a failure.  I was no longer superior to the trash can jumpers.  I had dirt in my butt.

But at least I had proved myself.

I felt a little better because when we got back to the car, Alex realized that he had forgotten to turn it off and left it running the whole time.  Again.  He laid out a cardboard slab for me to sit on, enjoying it all way too much, and we began our return journey.  I confided in him that the only thing that would make it better was making a funny Facebook status about it.

The status was an abysmal failure, bringing in less than a third of the likes of my post prior about shrimp with lobster sauce.

So here we are.  The blog.  Y’all thought you could get away with not caring.  I will not go without my honor, and a second chance at garnering sympathy and attention.  The writer in me is back, and she is ready to tell her story.  Even when you don’t want to hear it…

One day, I’ll return my cheetah print shoes to Target and use the $5 to boost my post, so that you HAVE to see it!  Then you’ll see!  Then you’ll all see!  And scroll by!  And I will be out of $5 and a nice pair of shoes!  Even though they’re hard to match to clothing anyway!  But, I digress.  The point is:  I’m back.  Stick around, sweet readers.

P.S.  Shoutout to Alex Cobb, for a temporary replacement phone, and to Mr. Darius Hillard, for always encouraging me to keep up the plight with this blog.

 

Advertisements

Couples Skate with a 50 Year Old Man

Greetings once again friends!  It is time for our semi-annual clandestine gathering on the internet that is basically just me typing into a void and hoping for the best.  I haven’t written in a while because I have actually been busy, but as fate would have it, I finally got sick, and as I was lying here in bed with only my phlegm for company, thinking about how I really want a chicken biscuit but cannot obtain one, I thought, “I should tear down my self-esteem on the internet again.”

But really, life has been awesome lately, and I hope things are well with you all too.  I’ve been getting really involved at school, made some new friends, and rediscovered my passions.  But, as the rediscovering implies, it was not long ago that I was in one of those funks of non-passion and bleakness that we all slip into from time to time as the years go by.  It is always after I’ve climbed out of the rut and looked back that I realize how incredibly stupid the reasons I had fallen into it were, and find myself laughing.  Humanity, right?  Ahh, yes.  We’re all so dumb.  (Don’t argue.  I need the collective support.)  Anyway, one of my most recent funks has become approachable, so I’ve decided to share.

Some backstory–I love skating.  It’s my life, dude.  I just like to get on my board and shred down pipes while my friend films on a DSLR  for vimeo with a dope alternative song edited in and a sunset out of focus in the background.  I have 12 posters of Tony Hawk in my closet, and all of them are funnier than this bit.  (But actually, my skateboarding experience is generally limited to when I was rolling on one on my stomach in second grade.  I was sucking on a Blow Pop.  Then I flopped over sideways onto the driveway and scraped a subsequent circle of skin off my cheek.)  (2 days before picture day.)  But even though boarding is my life, I find that ice/roller skating is something I love even more.  It’s something I have always been inclined towards, and hey, pretty good at.  So if ever the chance comes up, I’m game to go.  But, in college, because of a lack of interest and financial stability, and personal hygiene on my part, it ain’t always easy to find people to skate with.  So, when my friend presented me with the opportunity to go roller skating with her youth group, even though I knew I’d have to keep an eye out for holy water so I didn’t burst into flames, I capitalized on it.  It was the perfect chance to try to sneak into a group picture I could later use to pretend I have a lot of friends.  (And to skate.)  Plus the theme was sk80s night, and I absolutely adore excuses to dress up and look insane.  AND it was a rare occasion to pretend I was Apolo Anton Ohno for like, 3 hours.  So, I went.

After paying $9, or half of my monthly paycheck, to get in, we went over to the skate counter to barter our shoes for skates with decades of history and dead foot cells in their soles to begin our adventure.  It was a nice rink–sort of like an abandoned warehouse that someone was storing old crap in with poor ventilation and no water fountains.  I felt…at home.  Safe.  Like I belonged.  After tying up our skates, we took to the rink, but something was wrong…it didn’t feel as easy as it used to be.  My foot was going places I never wanted it to go.  Had I lost my touch?  I couldn’t have.  After all of my big talk about being a natural?  No…it had to be the skates.  It couldn’t have been me…  And I know what you’re thinking, reader, “ha ha, it was her.  shouldn’t have eaten so many ho-hos.”  But you’re wrong, because I was right, because I am awesome at skating, and upon inspection, the right skate, like everything else in the building, looked like it had been chewed up by rats and was broken.  So I got it fixed and then took to the rink the way I should have from the start–like a graceful flying peacock, and it was awesome.  Things were still going my way.

Now, since we had gone with a youth group, there were a bunch of people there my age.  But I guess that it wasn’t enough, because the Cupid Shuffle still ended up being just me and 6 or 7 children.  I don’t know what it is about getting old that makes people stop loving roller dance numbers.  Perhaps the fear of judgement.  Perhaps the exhaustion.  Perhaps being honest with themselves about how the Cupid Shuffle starts out as a fun activity then turns into a horror show of sweat and pain and denial as you want to escape the repetition and the B.O. of your next-door neighbor but refuse to let yourself because you’re still clinging on to your childhood.  I don’t know.  Any of the options sound like fair game to me.  But even if they didn’t contribute to the dance portion of the night, the good thing about having people around who were my age, even if they were on the outskirts, was that there were plenty of cute fellas to pursue.

So while I was alone in loving the Cupid Shuffle, there was still a chance for flirtation and romance.  I was dressed to the nines in a sweatband and high-waisted shorts–the kind of shorts you see on a girl and think, “oh, she shouldn’t be wearing those shorts.”  It didn’t even matter at the end of the races, which were also pretty much just me and 6 or 7 children, that my 8 inch zipper on the side of the shorts had come completely down without my knowledge.  From the angles that didn’t allow that in view, I was lookin’ pretty fly.  It was only when the couples skates began that I started to feel a void in my soul and wanted to self-waterboard.    Feelings of forever alone and “no ones loves me” coursed through my veins.  But, as per usge, I reacted by making a joke of it.

The combination of flyness, doing something I love, and crippling loneliness meant that I wasn’t really worried about what anybody thought.  I needed a distraction from the dark cloud looming over my heart.  So, in keeping with my nature, I started being obnoxious.  There was a referee of sorts there who was skating around, manning the rink.  He had to have been about 50 years old.  He had a hooked nose, salt-and-pepper hair, and the frame of a thin farmer who could have been on Courage the Cowardly Dog as an innocent who gets eaten.  His job, from what I gathered, was just to keep kids in line so that they didn’t turn the family-fun activity into a coliseum of carnage, as children have a tendency to do.  He was doing a well enough job, it seemed.  Anyway, so when the couples skate came on, partially to entertain my friends, partially to entertain myself, I would wait until he had skated out of view and then hold my hand out longingly after him, allowing my brows to furrow with emotion and heartache.  I did this to others as well–anyone who looked like they didn’t fit the role of me wanting them, except for those under 18, because that would be too wrong even for me.  I was delighted with my game.  It was so blissfully stupid.  Until Mr. Referee skated up to me and held his hand back.

I wouldn’t call myself stunned, but I hadn’t anticipated this.  I knew I couldn’t just deny him.  After all of what I had done, I had brought it upon myself.  I initially went for move play it off, but he looked so nice and well-intentioned that I knew what I had to do.  So, I looked back to my friends, then to him, and then accepted his hand.

And friends, here is where the real problem comes in.  I was so dead inside at this point in my life that as I took his hand, I wondered if maybe there would be a spark.

I WONDERED IF MAYBE THERE WOULD BE A SPARK.

HE WAS 50.

WHYYYYUYUHDNSNSDNA

Do you understand why this is so traumatic?

I WAS 20.

HE WAS 50.

THAT’S OLDER THAN MY DAD.

THAT’S OLD ENOUGH TO BE A GRANDPA.

WHEN DID I BECOME THE WOMAN AKIN TO PARIS HILTON OR SOME OTHER POP CULTURE REFERENCE THAT IS MORE FITTING?

WHO AM I?!!!

Readers, this is a detail previously unreleased to everyone in my life.  I am trusting all 2 of you to appreciate that.  And, y’all, my parents read this blog, so I hope you understand the gravity of the situation when I say that at least one of you needs to think this is funny.  I am putting everything on the line here.

Anyway, normal paragraphs resumed, as I skated along with Mr. Referee, disgusted with myself and wondering if I needed medication, I realized that this was my first couples skate.  And then I remembered my first slow dance.  (See blog post #6.)  I wondered if maybe this was just how my story was supposed to go.  I had rejected so many guys in my life for so many stupid reasons.  Maybe my comeuppance was that no one was left, except for this 50 year old man.  And since, for the record, upon hand-to-hand contact, he could not stir my loins (I’m so sorry, family),  I would eternally be unsatisfied until he died in like 5 years.  I bet he’d hold his hand out to me the same way he did when he asked me to skate before he croaked.  (This is why I can’t be in youth groups.)  Anyway, as we circled around the rink, I knew I deserved it.  It’s what I got for making that holding my hand out joke, and all of these sacrilegious jokes, and for saying “shit” one time on the trampoline when I was eleven.  It was only fair, I concluded.  On the bright side though, every time we skated past her, my friend was dying.  (Edit: Wow, that sentence sounds awful.  For the record, I mean dying in terms of laughter, not literally.  I would never joke about death like that, especially not 6 sentences ago.)  The point is: the time Mr. Referee and I were spending together was really something.

But as with all things, it had to end.  When the couples skate finally came to an close, Mr. Referee thanked me and gave me a very sincere smile, and I realized how much it must have meant to him.  I felt like I was the ghost of a girl he once loved in the the 80s.  It made me feel a little better, and also also like taking ten showers.  When the next couples skate came on, he circled the rink watching me like an unintentionally creepy bird before he went in for the kill.  I declined without regret this time, and went about my evening festivities.

The last hour or so at the rink was a lot of fun, and I skated my heart out partially because it needed to be disposed of and partially because I didn’t want Mr. Referee to catch up with me again.  I was skatin’ away from my problems with a purpose.  And I do mean it.  When I woke up the next morning, I felt like I had the worst hangover of my life.  Or at least, I assume.  I’ve never actually been hungover, I think, but trust me, roller skating makes for as crazy a night as the bottle.  Probably.

But back to the story.  Avoidance techniques were in high gear, and I resolved to preoccupy myself more with the health and building code violations that wreaked the warehouse rather than with the incident of half an hour prior.  I skated with my homie and the other friend, and we held out until somewhere around ten.  When the night ended, we were all greasy, exhausted, and smelled like old socks, but it felt good.  So we returned our foot vessels, hit the road, and prepped to retire for the evening.  On the ride home we fell into silence, each wading through her own individual thoughts.  Mine naturally gravitated toward the couples skate, and the quiet gave me clarity.

Skating with Mr. Referee taught me that people are good.  Even if I was being a scrub about the whole thing, and if I was actually the pervert in the situation (by Jehovah…why), what he did was a nice gesture.  It also taught me that you don’t have to hold hands with someone if you don’t want to.  Just give them your time.

That’s something we all should do for each other more.  Give our time.

So, the moral of the story?  Wellp, it’s all in the last paragraph.  I’m just really used to including this phrase before I figure out what the moral is.  So I guess we can put some other general life advice here to keep the structure alive.  Hmmm.  How about…always look at a sandwich before you eat it.  You never know if it will be moldy, and even if the mold doesn’t make you physically ill, when you finally walk into the other room with some light and see it on the other half of the sandwich, it’s pretty unnerving.

Here’s hoping you never eat mold or an old man’s nether regions out of guilt.

Anyway, as always, thanks for reading my most heartless and risqué post yet.  I swear I’m nicer in real life.

Regardless.  Buenos noches, my loves.

Melanie

127

ISO: Filter

Hey all!  Welcome to post seven.  This entry is probably going to be a little more sporadic than usual because I had other intentions for what I wanted to share today that didn’t play out, so I scraped this one together last-minute.  (The other thing will have to wait until next week…stay tuned.)

Tonights episode is more a scene than an actual episode in its entirety.  However, it plays an important role in a much larger story regarding the horrors of the pursuit of Collegiate Romantic Interest #2, so I have decided to give it its very own hayday.

(Oh, P.S., to ensure title comprehension, “ISO” in this context means “in search of.”  Excellent.  Let’s move on.)

I have always been a victim of being in the wrong place at the wrong time.  Or rather, not being aware of my surroundings and doing something stupid in the wrong place at the wrong time.  Or really, just generally, regardless of place and time, being stupid and wrong.  Todays story revolves around one of these incidents, in the context of what will soon be a recurring theme in these stories: failed courtship.

Now, it was a common thing during the course of my infatuation with Collegiate Romantic Interest #2 that I would be somewhere on campus, talking about him with one of my friends, and he would walk in the door or pop around the corner or vaporize through a wall and suddenly be there.  I took this at the time to be a message from the gods, the divine–an act of fate (and also hypothesized that maybe he was a supernatural being of some sorts, which ensured that I really needed to capitalize on this crush because even if he was one of the lame kind of supernatural beings like a True Blood vampire or something, it would still be really awesome) (unless he turned on me or was actually just hunting from the get-go) (although really, even if it worked out I would either have to get super old while he stayed young or turn into a vampire and just be alive for sooo long, like never get to die or take a nap again, talk about exhausting); but now I realize that it was a warning.  And even though I knew, even then, that it was risky to conduct private conversations about him in public, for whatever reasons–ignorance, earnestness, the thrill, a chance TO FEEL ALIVE–I continued my behavior.

So I was with my friend in our school’s Student Union, which basically is the hub of student activity on campus.  I’m pretty sure these two events occurred on the same day, so let me paraphrase, very briefly, the conversation that had ensued earlier that day.  It was something to the effect of this:

       (In class)

       CRI2: Look at this lol!

       Me: Omg lol how funnie is that!

       Evil Spawn of Satan:  Ummm look, I’m a terrible human being so I’m going to be super blunt and embarrass you in front of everyone. Do you, like, like each other?

       (at the same time)

       Me:  Yes   CRI2:  No

       Me:  

       Me:  I have to go to the bathroom.

(End scene)

Yes, friends, the dialogue has been altered for safety reasons, but the message is the same.  It. was. terrible.

And the solution?  To talk to said friend about it in the Student Union.  Outside of a popular eatery.  I mean, by Harry Potter logic, it makes sense.  Hide something in plain sight, right?  If you need to discuss the coordinates of a horcrux, do it in the Butterbeer place in Hogsmead or whatever.  Because it’s busy, it will drown out the conversation.  By all strains of logic, it should have worked, except that it wasn’t busy in the student union that day, and that the logic was stupid for me anyway, because I wasn’t a witch going against a super-wizard apocalyptic villain, so no one was going to be spying on me if I tried to discuss my crippled love life in private in the first place.  The point is: it was a terrible decision, and a terrible location.  And though moderately populated, it was only populated with patrons who were respectful and never rose above using their indoor voices.  Nerds.

So we sat, and I mourned.  I don’t remember what I said to my friend exactly; I just remember that it was bad.  I may have even uttered such sickeningly vulnerable things as “I thought he was the one,” or “I’m heartbroken,” or “I’m going to find that girls family and brutally murder them all.”  The details are hazy, but clear enough for me to remember that it was a horrendously dramatic and thorough outpouring of emotions.

So it shouldn’t come as a surprise that when I saw my friend’s eyes widen and drift to the upper right, then turned around to see Collegiate Romantic Interest #2 standing in the doorway, I almost went into cardiac arrest.

I didn’t know how much he had heard, nor what its implications might be; I only knew that I wanted to kill myself.  So, I turned around and ran down the hallway screaming, “NO! I’M GONNA KILL MYSELF!!”

Turned down a hallway littered with Suicide Prevention Awareness posters screaming “I’M GONNA KILL MYSELF.”

Yes, friends, not only had I reacted like a 12-year-old cartoon character, but I also had screamed a phrase deemed offensive by an entire organization that seeks to help people, in the organizations homeland.  The guilt was palpable.

In the end, I learned that College Romantic Interest #2 had only been passing through to the staircase, and likely had not heard much, if anything (though I still don’t know if he heard the screaming), so my outburst was for naught.  I also learned what it’s like to get dirty/appalled looks from innocent bystanders (f ’em all, YOU DON’T KNOW ME).  In that part of the student union, anyway.  Everything passed, and the extent of my feelings was kept a secret, and I was able to walk away from that particular part of the student union pretty much unscathed, and totally relieved.

The moral of the story: remember where you are before you run screaming down a hallway.  Also, not everyone makes jokes about death with such ease and disregard for human decency, so maybe start working on establishing a filter.

Anyway, brother has been waiting on me to take him to Wal-Mart, so I must take my leave.  Let me just go over my conclusion…  Alright, no attempt to apologize for belittling real problems, loose tie-back to filters, and no closing joke.  Seems about right.

As always, thanks a ton for reading, and I’ll see you next Thursday, amigos!!

Your amigo, I hope,

Melanie

~Peace out~

The First Party

Greetings once again my sweet readers!  Wow, can you believe we are already on the fourth entry?  Some of you have come to your senses and realized that I’m a moron and left, but others have stuck along for the ride, or maybe even are getting on this super lame train of pathetic life stories late, and either way: I welcome you.

For those of you who were around for last week’s post, you know that I just turned 21.  Yeah!  Alcohol!  Drugs!  Anal sex!  Are those things 21 year olds do?  I wouldn’t know!  Inside of this fine-ass cellulite-laden body I am still a toddler.  But anyway, I tried alcohol for the first time, and before I continue, I just want to know who exactly got this whole thing started.  Okay, so I get that eventually you get a buzz (personally I just got the symptoms of a pancreas attack) (am I an 80 year old woman? maybe), but who in the hell tried this crap, thought “ah yes, my intestines are burning and my throat feels like I just poured motor oil down it,” and thought it was a good idea to keep going?  I would like to experience being drunk, but not at this cost.  The shots I had were one of the worst things I have ever tasted in my life, and I once accidentally brushed my teeth with diaper rash ointment.  It’s not even like candy where it’s bad for you but it tastes delicious.  Tequila tastes like poison.  I can’t go through that again.  I just wish I could bypass my taste buds and inject it directly into my bloodstream.  That’s one thing heroin addicts got right.  ANYWAY, all of that being said, I will probably do it again.

My experiences with finally drinking alcohol made me reflect back on a past of making up lame excuses not to, sipping on Hi-C while my close friends became alcoholics, and resisting peer pressure from my parents.  (Because I know the question will inevitably come up, I waited to drink until I was 21, most basically, because I wanted to prove to myself that I could.  Blah blah it’s very important to me that wherever I go, I don’t compromise who I am just because other people want me to blah blah.  Pretty much just a self-control exercise for 21 years, it’s ok not to understand, my friends didn’t get it either.)  So, one of the first things that came to mind as I took that first drink, after “EWW,” was, “wow, parties will be easier now.”  I would be able to blend in better, and to appear to like the same things as my peers; I wouldn’t walk into the room with a social handicap.  I wouldn’t panic or rely on old tactics.  I had set myself free.  I’d only ever re-live incidents like those at my first party one more time–in this blog post.

And so it begins: the story of my first party.

Now, I’m not really a partier, but I never thought of myself as completely socially inept.  Until my first party.  You know those moments in your life where everything is going good, and you just feel on-top-of-the-world and confident?  Where you feel like you’re finally becoming the person you always wanted to be?  That’s how I was feeling.  Until my first party.

Set the scene: ambiguous break, sophomore year of college.  My friend was going to the beach to visit some of her friends, most of whom I’d never met and those of whom I had, didn’t know well.  She invited me to go too, and, under normal circumstances, having already been all over the tri-state area in the past week, and not knowing her friends, and not liking parties, I would have said no.  But, as legend has it, a cute boy I had recently met was in the cards, and so, even though I wouldn’t even admit it to myself at the time, even though he could not have given two dead rat feet about me, even though I “was not crazy,” I went for him.

I don’t remember the order of the events leading up to the party very well, so we’ll just cut right to it.  Evening.  We were in a 4/5/6/7/8 (details, again, hazy) person apartment of all boys.  The alcohol had been supplied and the attendees were on their way.  This wasn’t a really big party.  It was probably less than 20 people, but there was music, and there was alcohol, and it was ratchet.  I remember that a number of the individuals there had begun to pre-game.  Dreading the inevitable pressuring and guilt tripping that had always accompanied my aversion to alcohol, I knew that I would have to act fast.  Over the years, I had developed a number of avoidance tactics.  Except, they weren’t really tactics.  It was more of one single tactic, and that tactic was to do the first thing that came into my head instinctively and without question.  (Advice: this has a 10% success rate.  Avoid at all costs.)

So, back to the story.  I fared well through the pre-gaming, asking questions and maybe making one half of a person’s arm laugh, but I couldn’t stop myself from wanting to escape.  Almost all of the guests were there, and as the pressure gradually rose, I gradually shifted down on the couch.  If I had known more people, or if Cute Boy was more attainable, maybe it would have been different, but at that point in time, all I could think about was how I was like one of those Animorphs shifting back into cripplingly shy and scaredy-cat me from childhood.  But I wanted to fight it.  So, I thought, I’ll just act drunk.  I’ll pretend I’ve been drinking.  I’m a bit off my rocker (or should I say, off my…walker) (ha-ha I’m 80) anyway, so I wouldn’t even have to try that hard.  My sober could pass for intoxicated.  Just be cool, Melanie!  Just relax!  But my body betrayed me.  I continued to scoot down on that sofa until I was almost perfectly horizontal.  I could have gotten up and gone to the bathroom.  I could have pretended that I was getting a very important phone call and gone into the hallway.  I could have, I don’t know, tried to talk to another human being.  But no.  Instead of doing any of those things, I laid down on a couch in the living room, the center of the party, and feigned sleep.

After I had closed my eyes and established myself, I thought that maybe I could actually fall asleep.  I was really tired, and that might be a little bit less pathetic.  But my ears were alert, and my body drenched in self-loathing, and everyone knows that it’s hard to sleep when your mind is full and your stomach is empty and with alert ears and being drenched self-loathing.  (There is a reference to some childhood story in there that probably no one will understand but I’m leaving it.)  I waited for the standard “is she sleeping?” you always listen for when you’re pretending to be asleep that makes you tense up and put on your best fake sleep-breathing for a few seconds until you can determine whether the questioner believes you or not.  It came.  They believed.  The party carried on.

Anyway, so I’m lying there, motionless, running through all of the things I could have done other than faking sleep, thinking about all the things I could be saying in the conversation next to me had I not trapped myself in this lie, and really questioning why I couldn’t have just been awkward sitting upright, when I start hearing these noises around me–a little pop, some tiny whooshes, more pops, some shuffling.  A small hollow ball hitting the ground.  A small hollow ball hitting the ground?  And that’s when I realized, they were playing ping-pong over me.  I wasn’t just the kid who had pretended to be asleep to get out of socializing at a party, I was the one who pretended to fall asleep and then got used as a ping-pong ball net.  I had never felt like more of a loser in my life (that’s definitely not true, as future tales will reveal…but this was about a 6.7 on the Richter-Lameass scale).  It was at that point that I realized that this was much less of an alcohol issue, and much more of an I’m-an-idiot issue.

After that, in one of the first not-ridiculous moves of the evening, I used the noises from the ping-pong antics as an excuse to wake up.  I decided to have a better attitude.  So, I talked to some people.  I was feeling a little better.  There was one girl who was quite friendly, so I just tried to focus on socializing with her and this one other dude.  Then she tried to make out with him, so I tried not to focus on them at all.  My friend was dancing with another girl in the corner, and they called me over, so I took the escape.  I am an awful dancer, but I do love to try.  We all tried to shake our hips properly and it was a disaster.  The girl from earlier had joined us, whose pants were now so low in the front that her downstairs lady hair was showing.  I remember seeing it and thinking, “oh no,” and then trying to decide if one of us should tell her or not.  We didn’t.

I think at this point I returned to my sofa.  The tides were turning–apparently a different cute guy had noticed me.  My friend said that he had been asking about me.  “She’s pretty cute, but…is she okay?”  Yes, that is me.  The equivalent of the person you see with a great profile in the cafeteria then they turn head-on and there is a third eyeball in their face and like four teeth coming out of it and a prematurely receding hairline.  I guess my attempts to blend were not as successful as I thought.  After that, we had our first pass-outer.  I was feeling a lot less scared now, just focused on understanding the conventions of the American youth, plus I was friends with pass-outer, so I volunteered to help.  I walked into the bathroom and saw what looked like a giant inebriated fetus/chipmunk hybrid lying on the floor.  He was mumbling and looked about as pathetic as I did on the couch.  We had to take him to the other room for some reason, so we tried to lift him, but he was starting to throw up, so he leapt from our hands and waddled away and his pants fell around his ankles and he just waddled right out of them the rest of the way down the hallway and threw up.

So by then, the party was almost over, but also not over at all.  I kept trying to remind myself that this is what fun is supposed to be.  The penguin waddle, the body hair, the random people trying to kiss each other left and right.  I finally understood that people inebriate themselves at these things not for recreation or sport, but out of necessity.  After a series of text messages, I finally convinced original Cute Boy #1 to pick me up and save me.  I thought of it as an escape, but it ended up really just being a new way for me to end the evening making myself look like a complete imbecile.  Out of the frying pan and into the ice-cold ocean, naked.  As in, I met new people I knew even less, and he wanted to skinny-dip.  Oh, and even so, he was definitely not on the same page as me in terms of I-like-you-ness.  That is another story though, so I will leave it for another day.  All I will say is that after the embarrassment of that, the return to the party was almost a relief.

My experience at my first party taught me that parties are weird, that I don’t know how to be a youth, and really made me question why I have not yet been medicated.  I’d currently still rather go swimming (not naked) or roller skating than to a party, but maybe my journey into alcoholism will give me a new perspective.  Who knows?  The future awaits.

Anyhow, I am amazed if you’ve made it this far, and want to say thank you, thank you, thank you again for reading.  I hope you’ve enjoyed tonight’s posting enough to stop by next Thursday for another tale of embarrassment, pity, or just plain tragedy.  You are all awesome for being here.  Stay beautiful, friends.

Melanie

yo

IMG_8894

The Beginning of an Era

Hello dear reader, whomever you may be–whether you got here by accident, on purpose, or through some terrible fate like being a member of my family and having a sense of personal obligation to click on this: welcome.

It is 10:52 pm on a Thursday night and I sit on my living room sofa with a hair clip jabbing into the back of my skull and a gnat flying around my head.  The hair clip is small, centered against a part of the cranium closer to the neck that juts in, not too forceful–a mere nuisance.  The gnat, however, is much more than that.  It is a violent creature that will no doubt push me to the extant of my humanity as the night progresses on.  I do not know why she is here.  I only know that she is.  (I use the pronoun “she” because I sexed the gnat before beginning this blog post.  Determining the sex of small insects is one of my many rare talents.)  Perhaps we will forge a friendship.

Is this how I thought we would get here?  No.  I always imagined some sort of jazzy, pivotal event kickstarting the beginning of my blog.  Some current romantic encounter gone astray.  Or at least something with a household appliance catching on fire.  But instead, I have dedicated the first paragraph of my entrance into the blogosphere with a soliloquy to a gnat, and a misuse of the word soliloquy.  (The gnat has by now abandoned me.  Three hours of unwanted company and now that I need her she’s gone.  Typical gnat antics.  The truth is that she probably died.  They have a short life span which, as I grow older, I find myself envying.  No college…no post collegiate career…no IMPENDINGLY DOOMED MARRIAGE!  The gnat is back.)  Not the entrance I’d hoped, but an entrance nonetheless.

Accidentally Tragic has been on my to-do list for a number of years now.  I have a lot of stories that I’ve wanted to do something with, but hadn’t quite determined what yet.  But as I sat here to-night I decided it was time to determine.  So here we are.

I’d like to preface my tales with a few things.  First, I promise that the stories you find here will be true.  Any and all embellishment, I will own up to.  (In the earlier introduction, all is true except that I sexed the gnat.  Sadly, I do not know how to determine the sex of small insects.  I hope that we can move on now that this is out in the air.)  I know JK Rowling said that just because it’s in your head doesn’t mean it isn’t real or something, but I think that’s bullcrap.  I want my real stories to be real, so you’ll get real.

Next: I am a freak of nature, and a disaster.  But I also think I’m really awesome.  I’m writing a whole blog about myself, duh.  So the inevitably, horrendously, self-deprecating humor and odes to death: don’t mind those.  I am about to turn 21 and have big plans of turning to alcohol to deal with my crippling insecurity and emotional instability.  Ask anyone who isn’t close to me; I emulate responsibility.

And finally, I’ll get down to the realy-reals and give you my reason for doing this.  Other than wanting to capture and share some stuff that I think is pretty hilarious with people who hopefully will think it is kind of funny too, it’s because I think that embarrassment is exactly that thing which makes us human.  Yeah, yeah, there’s love and all that crap, but embarrassment is the key to it all.  Think about it–people who truly love you, it’s hard to get embarrassed around.  Unless they’re trying to embarrass you, which in itself is the ultimate sign of love.  Embarrassment keeps us humble and questioning.  There’s nothing good about being 100% certain 100% of the time.  And embarrassment–it happens to everyone.  Whether they disclose their experiences when it’s time to share or not: every single person in the free world has at some point or another been embarrassed.  It’s just genuinely a part of who we are.

And finally finally, I’m posting and sharing and celebrating these embarrassments because I’m a firm believer that being able to laugh at your failures makes you invincible.  Embarrassment teaches us to laugh at ourselves, and at each other, and to not take everything so seriously.  And in a world of so many messes, it’s just great not to take things seriously sometimes.

So, join me on what promises to be a probably too personal, somewhat interesting, and at least good-distraction-from-what-you’re-supposed-to-be-doing-y journey.  It’ll be sort of like reading into someone’s diary without them ever knowing that you did.  Disturbing, but twistedly satisfying.  Let me satisfy you.

Yours truly,

Melanie