Saturday, December 23, 2006

Into The Abyss

The guy who does the wages asked what time I started and what time I'll be finishing. It was another 13 hour shift. He asked if I was going to take a 30 minute break. I frowned, like what's a 30 minute break? One of the other chefs said, "A break? That's what the ladies get isn't it?"

There are no breaks. It's hard work. Eight and nine hour days now seem short. You get home feeling exhausted.

There was a party I'd been planning to go to all week, but at the end of the day I just couldn't bothered. Friend called around at about 1.30 am on her way to the party and The Dreaded One decided to go. I stayed in. Had a vodka and sent a text message saying that if it was really going off, let me know because I am a little less sleepy all of a sudden. Text came back saying it's a pretty good party. 2.30am. Fuck it. Here we go again.

A short time later I'm dressed and fired up for a night out. There's a huge queue outside the club. I think about trying to get in ahead of everyone (name's on the door) but the bouncers look a little psychotic and the queue's moving pretty quickly anyway. I take my place. Best not to draw attention to yourself with guys like this.

Friendly face comes out of the club. Girlfriend of a DJ friend. We say hello. Huge hug. She's outside to stand in line with a friend who happens to be the person right behind me. We chat. There are laughs. The friend puts her arm through mine, and I like it. I like the warmth of her skin, the feeling of another person's touch. The bouncers are giving people grief so the girls link their arms tightly through mine so that we don't get separated. Kind of place it is - girls allowed in, single guys there's a problem. So we stand there like this and I just like it. I like how casual it all is. I like that there was a time in my life when I wished I had friends who would hug me at random moments, for no apparent reason. I like that now I have a few such friends.

What I don't like is that I don't let enough people in. Seeing me stand in that queue, what you'd see is a reasonably approachable guy. Real friendly fucker who knows people as they come and go, has these two quite gorgeous girls on his arms. What you don't see is the solitude. Why can't I be this guy in the nightclub queue more often?

More talk, more laughter, and I remember another time at a bush party with this very girl. Mentally I was in quite a bit of trouble and I just needed to be away from the party. The Dreaded One and I grabbed our stuff to leave. The Dreaded One got caught up saying goodbyes but I was already walking away. I heard this girl ask where I was. I knew she wanted to say goodbye but I turned my back and walked away. I realise now that she's been trying to get to know me better for a long time now. Tonight, the touching, the holding on, some line had been crossed. I asked her and her boyfriend over for dinner some time, and she was really happy about that. Thank fuck some people persist. She could easily have written me off as unlikable, but tonight she was getting Mr Charming pants. It's what she's going to get from now on.

And then inside the club, bypassing all the house-head scenesters we make it downstairs to the psytrance room, and it's fucking brilliant. Everyone is there. So many hugs and smiling faces. I spot The Dreaded One's friend and she hugs me even though she left my house an hour or so earlier. She gets The Dreaded One's attention and she bounds up from the dancefloor and also hugs me, glad that I came after all. There are doofing friends everywhere. Occasionally a hug so enthusiastic you're almost bowled over by it. Suddenly I can't recall the day's fatigue because the music is thumping and the dancefloor is rammed.

Earlier in the day a waitress at work told me that I often look quite sad. No sadness tonight. Just that dumb-arse grin on my face as I dance and dance. Something happens on the dancefloor, and I'm this guy randoms want to talk to. It can be annoying because I'm there to dance, but it can be fun too, and tonight's all fun. I see the girl from outside, the one who held me, and she's smiling from across the dancefloor, and I smile back. I feel fantastic because I am surrounded by friends and some strangers who would like to be friends. A girls flirts. A guy cracks a joke. Tonight, everyone wants to be my friend and it's a great feeling.

Then a big guy I know from all the countless parties comes over. He's huge, big personality to match his physical dimensions. He comes over with a girl. "Hello my friend," he booms in his usual way. Then to the girl, "Have you met Mike Streeton? This is Mike Streeton."

I know Mike Streeton. He's a mutual friend. Alas, I am not he.

"Why did you call me Mike Streeton?" I ask.

"Because you are Mike Streeton."

"I'm not Mike Streeton."

"But I have always known you as Mike Streeton."

I realise that he is not trying to be funny. He is quite off his head and has had a serious memory lapse, but it makes me think: maybe this is what's happening with everyone. Maybe it's not really me they want to know but someone they think I am. Maybe I'm not Mr Charming pants at all but some pretender, a complete fucking fraud. Because the waitress was right. Most of the time I'm alone. Most of the time I look quite sad. Most of the time people don't know what the hell to make of me and leave me alone.

Right. Therapy over. Think my point is simply that outwardly I need to lighten the fuck up and let a few people in.

Overall, I had a blast last night. Haven't really slept and there's a rumour of a small outdoor party on today. I want to go. I want to be immersed in the music. I want to swan dive into the abyss. No pretending there; that's just how I am.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

oooooh i know all those feelings boy you explain things well