Saturday, February 9, 2013

My Inner Child is an Idiot

Recently, there was a big hullabaloo that mostly existed in my head. No, that’s not true. It started in my head, but then it took over my entire day. It started with a text from someone named Jenny.





My first thought was, hmmm, I don’t know a Jenny. And that was that. If only that had remained that. A few hours later, while I was reading comments on another blog, a blog I much admire, it hit me. It had to be her. I had received an invitation from an amazing writer to meet on Skype to talk a bit. Perhaps the missing apostrophe should have been a clue, but when you go from dismissal to euphoria in .3 seconds you tend to overlook the details.
I’ve recently started blogging myself, and I’ve been following her, because I have a lot to learn, also she’s funny, socially conscious, and other good crap. I’ve been reading her posts religiously and I’ve left some comments that may or may not have been witty, and in that instant, it became clear that she was so overcome by my budding efforts that she couldn’t waste a moment in reaching out to me, to discuss my soon to skyrocket writing career. Of course a second later I was equally convinced that this was ridiculous, it was all in my head and it couldn’t possibly be her. That’s the feeling I should have gone with.
But no, I thought. She liked some comment I made. Or else she wants to berate me for writing mean things about my cat. I know she likes cats because she writes about hers sometimes. Only she writes nice things about hers, because apparently they never pee on her stuff; or on her person. So I’ll have to make her understand that although I say mean things about my cat, I never do mean things to my cat, even though she has peed on my head while I slept. Twice. Two times. Yep. And still I feed her. Because I’m stupid.
So, I’m shaking, and I’m running around, and I get my sister on the phone because I just cannot do anything, I can’t even Skype because I don’t have Skype, so there’s the whole business of downloading that to deal with (which was really an effort, and in the process I allowed the download of like twenty random programs or whatever they’re called) so I had to have help. In defense of my stability, the first thing I said to my sister was, “I’m probably imagining this. It couldn’t be real.” But I didn’t feel like I was imagining it. I felt pee-my-pants-happy. Which I did not actually do. So maybe technically I wasn’t. Can you be pee-your-pants-happy if you don’t pee your pants? Yes. If you don’t have to pee.
While I was failing miserably to download Skype, I reverse 411’d the number the text came from, and it was indeed a Texas number which was evidence. The text was sent by Jenny from Texas. There can’t be more than one. I’m not a crazy person at all.
So finally Skype is working. I’ve created a profile, entered Jenny’s contact info, and fumbled with the keyboard until finally, the person who has asked so kindly to speak with me is revealed. But it’s not her. So now I’m crushed and bursting with humiliation, because I’ve dragged my sister into this which makes her a witness. But wait! Maybe the picture was taken when she was a teenager, or on Halloween, or on a day when she just really wanted to show off her boobs. But no. Still not her.
My poor sister is still on the phone, and I imagine her writhing with empathetic embarrassment, because really, how much of a fucking moron can a person be? I’m instantly and severely depressed. I manage to get off the phone so I can cry, and have some xanax and a beer, because somehow I’m out of liquor. It’s a bad day to be out of liquor, but my shame won’t allow me to venture out to the store where I sense the whole world is waiting to mock me for my hope and stupidity. Clearly, I should go to bed before I do anything else humiliating and anyway, it’s almost 3:30 in the afternoon and I can’t take anymore.
I realize that the whole thing is ludicrous. I will never be a writer. No one whose work I admire is ever going to admire mine back. Everyone who has ever complimented my writing either lacks taste or lies, either out of pity or pathology. I will never accomplish anything that I want to accomplish. And all I’m really doing by blogging is rendering myself unemployable.
I finish my beer, the one I cracked open while I was frantically trying to install Skype. I start uninstalling all the useless programs that I had inadvertently piggyback downloaded in my earlier fucking flurry of emotion. I was feeling good about figuring out how to uninstall all this crap by myself, because technology is evil, but that day it was my bitch. Until I accidentally uninstalled something I needed. Now everything on my screen is too big and the stuff on the edges isn’t there; it looks like it would if you pressed your nose directly against a book and tried to read it. FYI, you need your graphics drive.
Of course, I had another beer. I kept going back and forth between wanting to sink forever into misery and feeling a little ok, maybe even slightly amused. My sister posted a cute thing on Facebook about how 90% of kids get all their awesomeness from their aunt. That’s me. And my friend texted to make plans for us to spend the next leap year at Disneyworld. So my day clawed its way a little further out of the toilet.
So much so that I was able to consider the idea that it wasn’t so stupid. I mean, it was really stupid, incredibly stupid, almost brilliantly stupid, but maybe that’s good. Because maybe, even though it didn’t work out this time, it will eventually. Even though it isn’t true right this second, now I know that I believe it could be true someday, even someday soon. And that’s heartening, because as much as I hear that one must believe great things are possible, I am not naturally an optimist. And as stupid as it was, I believed.
And believing? Being that idiotically hopeful? That’s kid shit. It’s awesome. Like when you were little and you just knew you were going to grow up to be an astronaut/rock star/firefighter/veterinarian, before you got to the point where you started ruling things out. Can’t be an astronaut if you get sick on the teacups at Disneyland. Can’t be a vet if the sight of an animal bleeding makes you want to cry. Can’t be a rockstar if you’re tone deaf. Yeah, there’s some wiggle room there. And I could still be a firefighter. As far as I know.
But for those twenty minutes, I was not ruling anything out. In spite of the lingering embarrassment, it was a really good twenty minutes. So good for me. Kind of. In an unfulfilled, humiliating way.
P.S. To Jenny who sends enticing Skype related texts with no regard for the consequences: I’m not that happy with you. Lose my number. 
P.P.S. To Jenny the hilarious and socially conscious Bloggess: I’m not dangerous. I just get excited sometimes.