So I’ve been feeling pretty down this month. I haven’t really even had the energy to write, which is why it’s been so unusually quiet around here. And it’s always a bad sign when I can’t write.
After much soul-searching (read: playing video games into I went into an almost zen-like trance), I have finally come to recognize my problem: I’m lonely. Not lonely like the protagonist of a romance novel, where they’re only lonely because they haven’t gotten laid in a while. No I lonely as in I literally go weeks without seeing another human being. Other than my parents, that is, who are shooting down the luge track of senility so fast they don’t count anymore. This came to a head when I went to the awesome, awesome show Aeterno Elementum back in early November. These are guys I’ve known for about a year now, and who I’ve written numerous glowing articles about, one of which even got published in the local paper. It was while interviewing several cast members in a crowded greenroom that it hit me. I was suddenly feeling very ill-at-ease, and I felt as if the entire room as judging me like some kind of inquisition, it was an eerily familiar feeling that I haven’t had since my depression went into remission in 2007.
The spoken word and I have never really gotten along. In fact the Howler Monkey has been known to have far more coherent conversations than me. That said, I’m not completely devoid of charisma and I dare say I have a bit of charm. I’m not Morgan Freeman, a man with a voice so powerful he could tell me the moon was actually just a cardboard cut out floating overhead and have me believe it, but I’m also not Jack the Ripper either, I communicate in other ways besides murder and written notes (though those are my favorites). After all I’ve had my fair share of dates, I even
conned convinced a couple girls that I was actually charming enough to pursue a relationship with. They sure as hell weren’t into me for my body, I’ll tell you that.
The difference was that way back in 2007, I was around people constantly and so my social skills were constantly kept practiced, and gave me plenty of opportunity to refine those skills as well. Up until I joined the surprisingly full club of writers who dropped or were kicked out of college, I was pretty comfortable around people. Then began my wonderful journey to do what I as born to do; to write. Thus began this blog way back in 2010. Cut to nearly three years later, and I’m so close to accomplishing my goal of creating a sustainable career on my writing that I can almost taste the Pulitzer Prize. Unfortunately in those three years I’ve spent most of my time on the computer…writing. Alone. The only real socialization I get is with my parents and good (and only) friend Hali.
Unfortunately they don’t count. No disrespect to Hali of course, but there’s an art to talking with strangers or acquaintances. It’s easy to be charming when you’re hanging out with your best friend, because you’re relaxed. There’s no pressure to impress, no holding back your vast arsenal of dirty jokes, no uncomfortable awareness of your own behemoth body as you try and make yourself look presentable. (That last one is probably just me. Probably the second one too.)
Like everything else, being social is a skill, some of us are born with an innate talent for it and then there are those like me, who still retain the ways of our ancestors and dare not leave their caves. Like our ancestors though, we are social animals and that lack of social activity has been to my detriment, without me even realizing it. So what do I plan to do about it? Throw myself into a mosh pit and have small chat while they smother beneath my immense girth? Probably not.
Honestly I have no idea. All I know is that I need to do something about it or risk going completely mad. I’m the Man in the Iron Mask, trapped behind a cold shell of detached computer algorithms and glowing lights. I just hope that when I finally take the mask off, I don’t find the face of Leonardo DiCaprio underneath!
I know this isn’t usually a thread about my personal grievances but I needed to write this all down so I appreciate you all reading. Thursday I’ll be back at my normal routine, writing about writing. Thursday I’ll be tackling troubles with dialogue and the critical importance of dialogue in a story.