My coworker looks like a woman from another time. She has long, thin hair which she wears half-up, twisted into a bun and fastened with a vintage hair comb. Her complexion is vaguely tubercular–pale with shining eyes and livid spots of color high on her cheeks.

I knew a guy with tuberculosis once. A disease I thought was dead. He was a Jewish skinhead–the anti-racist kind that mostly wore the look to start fights with people. I met him under a bridge. My friends were all drinking and I was smoking pot because I didn’t drink then. One of them got too drunk and ended up spending most of the day passed out, dribbling vomit onto a maxi-pad we had put under his chin because it was the only thing available. He regained consciousness enough to tell us to call the tubercular skinhead, who came and made my drunk friend dance to wake him up.

The drunk friend would later be my dom for a few months. He was a natural. I flew out to California once, partially to see him because I missed the playtime and the sex. He had a girlfriend though, so he felt guilty about fucking me. He still did, it was just with regret. We’re still friends. He’s an artist now and doing well.

I had another dom around the same time. One of the nicest people I’ve ever met. I don’t talk to him much anymore but we still catch up occasionally over social media.

I met him through another friend of mine during a very messy time. I was living alone then and, because of my habit of dating multiple people at the same time without telling any of them, going through several break-ups at once. When I ate, it was mostly ramen and birthday cake, and all my alcohol came in boxes or comically large bottles. I lived equidistant from my favorite bar and my second favorite liquor store.

I feel sad when I think about the friend that introduced us. I think I lost a lot of those friends when I got sober–not because they didn’t want to be around me if I wasn’t high or drunk, but because I got really fucking weird for about two years. I stopped talking to anyone or leaving my house or accepting invitations anywhere. I just didn’t see the point. After a while, people tend to take that kind of thing personally. We’re still friends on social media, but she doesn’t hit me up when she’s in the area.

I don’t know. Looking back, it’s all such a mess that I get lost in it sometimes. It’s paralyzing. I guess that’s the anxiety too though. Sometimes it’s the past, sometimes it’s the future, but it’s always just this circular inescapable thing that keeps me from being able to do anything until I’ve thought the thing the whole way through. It’s hard to explain. I guess if you get it, you get it.

Advertisements