Last night was a difficult night. I was surfing the Internet and I saw a thumbnail of a video. In the thumbnail a guy was holding a gun. The thought occurred to me that this was a video of someone shooting up a public place. When that thought occurred sexual excitement arose within me. I felt afraid and did not look at the video. Several minutes later I was eating a late snack in the kitchen and thoughts that someday I would shoot up a public place washed over me. They penetrated me. They discouraged me and wreaked havoc on my psyche. I went to sleep.
I woke up this morning in a good mood and went to work. Work was light again today and I enjoyed it. During the day Crystal told me a story about when she was visiting her mom in an assisted living home. As I was listening I was working on a project and I began, without noticing, pointing to the page with my middle finger. I interpreted this as one power, the power over me, flicking off the power over Crystal.
About a half hour later I was at the copier thinking how bored I was. I was about to mention this to Crystal. At that moment Crystal brought up a conversation. She told me the movie The Other Guys was a social commentary on high CEO pay and shrinking incentives for the average man. Ideas like these are stimulating to me. I noted the coincidence.
Just before lunchtime it had been slow. No one was coming into the store. I thought about going to lunch. As that thought entered my mind customers began coming in. For the next thirty minutes I had a strong desire to go to lunch but couldn’t get away from work. This is common. The powers that be will give me a desire I can’t satiate. They annoy me. They tell me they are testing my congenial ability under difficult circumstances.
At lunch I chose Jack in the Box to eat at. A woman was filling up on orange soda. When she tasted it she spit the soda out and poured out her drink. “It’s not working is it?” I responded. As this statement faded it began to take on new meaning. I had been making notes in the car about my story and the statement was a statement on my story project. It’s not working. As I walked to the bathroom I overheard the woman tell an employee the orange wasn’t working.
For years I have thought that colors mean something, signals between the powers that be. They didn’t explain anymore. When I heard that statement a thought accompanied it that colors represent different aspects of my personality. Orange not working was meant as a signal that a part of my personality was performing improperly.
On my way back to work I saw a Harley Davidson motorcycle. I have been noticing Harley Davidson memorabilia and dealerships lately. It reminded me of a near death experience I had in college. I was riding on the back of my roommate’s motorcycle. Afraid of looking to familiar with him, I had my hands placed behind me on a bar instead of wrapped around him. As we got close to our apartment he sped up rapidly. I began to fall off. My legs went from the down position to parallel with the pavement, my back and body falling off the back of the motorcycle. He felt the weight change and slammed on the brakes. This sprung my body back onto the bike. I looked behind me. One car length behind us was an SUV. Over the years of my illness it has occurred to me that I didn’t survive that near accident. I’m dead and in purgatory.
After work I decided to treat myself to sushi. I often go places by myself. I see a movie. Go to dinner. Go out for drinks. The couple of friends I have are usually busy. I try to make the most of it. I pull up to the sushi restaurant and go inside. The hostess asks me how many. I say just one. “Just one.” I’m cognizant of the social stigma every time I say this.
The hostess seats me behind two girls finishing their meal. As I wait I watch them discretely. One is highly attractive in the standard way. The other is plain but pleasant. As I overhear them it is obvious the attractive one has the dominant role in their relationship. The pleasant one orders the same desert as the attractive one. The attractive girl says confidently “Wait. Are you sure? You like that?” The pleasant one responds timidly “Yeah I like that.”
I want to say something to these girls. I try to talk to strangers whenever it is socially feasible. The voices and thoughts say this is how I should behave. When they are attractive girls the impetus is stronger. I’d like to have a girlfriend soon.
I have a general idea of what constitutes a good opener. Commenting on your surroundings is a good strategy. I’m also aware that what you say is not as important as how you say it. Body language and tone are the most important aspect. It is hard to artificially manufacture confident body language and tone. I sit and wait for a comment to come to my mind. Blank slate. Desperate I say the only thing that comes to mind. “What are those things?” Asking about the desert they are eating.
When conversing with new people questions should generally be avoided. The ideal way to talk is to swap comments. I don’t have this skill. I often revert to asking questions.
There is an awkward period where the two girls are surprised and are trying to figure out if I’m talking to them. The attractive one takes a bite of her desert and does not look at me. The pleasant girl halfway turns around and stumbles through an answer. It is some kind of ice cream wrapped in something. I don’t learn what. It is obvious by their demeanor they see my question as an intrusion. I avert my attention to other things in the restaurant.
A young woman walks into the restaurant and sits with a family already seated. She begins to rub on a young man sitting at the table. They are obviously an item. It is a dinner with the man’s parents and sister. I watch them trying to be discrete but the man notices a few times. The man is confident. He frequently teases the woman in a congenial tone. She laughs. He wins points in my book. As I watch them the man embodies what I’d like to be. The couple seems to work well together.
After dinner I text Tim. “Do you want to try and get something together with Brian tonight? Go out and have a few beers.” I use proper punctuation and grammar in my texts. It is a trademark of mine. He replies he has plans and I text Brian. No response leads me to call Brian. I leave a voicemail.
With my friends busy I get dressed to go out. I decide to go to a bar I frequent, The Fox and the Hound. I go out the back door of my house. The thought occurs to me to take an Ativan so I’m less anxious. I know I’ll be drinking. This is against the medicines recommendations. I go up stairs and take an Ativan anyways. When I arrive at the bar it is 9:00pm. The establishment is unusually busy. A NCAA basketball game and a UFC fight are both playing on the T.V. screens, neither interests me. I order a bud light in a bottle. I drink from a bottle because I drink slower that way. I always limit myself to three drinks when I go out. Years ago I wasn’t always so responsible. I take to the patio away from the noise. I smoke a cigarette. I group of people are smoking cigarettes close by.
I have read books on how to attract women. They outline a general strategy that when executed well has a high chance of working. The strategy is to enter a bar or coffee shop and talk to everyone, approach groups, and lead the conversation. Make humorous comments and draw attention to yourself. Outlandish apparel is suggested. One book calls it peacocking. After making the rounds you approach the group with the girl you’re attracted to. In the group dynamic you establish yourself as the alpha male while friendly teasing your girl. At this point if all works well the girl will be attracted to you.
At my current development I can approach couples and people alone easily. Groups I have not approached. I see the group smoking cigarettes and can’t find the courage or the words to enter the conversation. The group goes inside leaving one girl alone outside. “Watching the fight?” I ask. “Trying to,” she replies. I try to engage her a little but I’m using questions. She is staring inside at a T.V. and is preoccupied. I give up. She leaves and a guy comes out and we talk. He is English. He lives in Houston, because he works for the oil industry. Nothing interesting or original comes out of me. The conversation stagnates and he goes inside. I’m getting discouraged when my phone vibrates. . .
Monday, February 17, 2014
I feel guilty that I've read books on how to pick up girls and in my desperation bought into some of the things they had to say. If I could do it over again I would turn to psychology on how to become more desirable instead of a group of men who's sole purpose were a lot of one night stands. I don't think what they said was necessarily invalid, it just wasn't very ethical. Dr. Burns' "Intimate Connections" is the book I'd turn to today if it were necessary. Fortunately a wonderful woman saw something in me and decided to pick me up. That's correct, there was a total role reversal when I met my wife. The meeting was flawless, magical, and memorable. I thank God every day for my wife.
As for talking to strangers, I'm no longer searching for something so I don't find it necessary. What a relief. It took a lot of emotional energy to do that and although I do have some stories to tell because of it I think overall I would of done better to not stretch myself in my growth as I did. There is a sweet spot for growth, where you feel stretched a bit but not overwhelmed. I think I over did it.