It’s Not My Party But I’ll Cry If I Want To, Part 2

August 20, 2011

I’d Like To Tell You All About It

“I really wish I was less of a thinking man and more of a fool not afraid of rejection.” -Billy Joel

The next night, I’m feeling under the weather. I consider skipping Wolf’s party. My throat is soar, my eyes are scratchy, and I have a slight cough. But how could I miss this? What would it say about me? No one would really even notice, but I would know. Besides, all of the ridiculous drama that I imagine will climax tonight will make for a wonderful story to share over drinks with friends. So I ready myself, and get in my car. I’m pumped. I feel a little adrenaline. A little anxiety. Dread is the exact emotion I’m feeling actually. But whatever. Who doesn’t have a precise fear of the unknown? What’s on my mind, you ask. Well, I’ll be meeting Dalton for the first time, which frankly doesn’t sit well with me no matter which way I angle it. He’s predetermined to hate me. I have no idea how I’m supposed to begin to interact with him. We’re sharing what in some way belongs to the other. I’m nervous about seeing Wolf and meeting his other “boys.” It’s immature, but I’m genuinely curious how I compare. I don’t really care about seeing Turtle or Warren, but I am anxious about what they might say to or about me. I know what I’d say to either of them; something along the lines of “oh, hey.” And while I’m considering all of this, one thought lingers above the rest. It’s like a constant static shock somewhere near the top of my spine. What will I say to The Writer? I promised myself to talk to him the next time I see him. Talk about everything. And that time is tonight. I don’t know where to begin. What I have to say is simple. The situation? Not so much.

I start my car. Before I switch gears into reverse, Clark calls. Relieved, I turn off the engine and remove the keys from the ignition. “Hello?” “Hey buddy, what’s up?” I used to hate it when people called me buddy, but Clark has the kind of authority where it doesn’t bother me. “I was just calling to check in with you,” Clark continues. “Oh, I’m just heading to Wolf’s party,” I tell him. “Cool, me too. I’ll see you there then,” he says conclusively. “Great! Can’t wait.” It’s extremely comforting knowing Clark will be there. He always has my back one way or another, and my back is going to be rather exposed this evening. Especially because I’ve decided not to drink, given my not feeling so hot.

I arrive at Wolf’s about an hour after the party kicked off. But the sun is still glimpsing over the horizon…a sign that I’m here too early. I knock on Wolf’s door, and no one answers. I hear people around back though, so I let myself in. My eyes dart around searching for Turtle first. Turtle has the temperament of a scorned overweight junior high cheerleader, and while he doesn’t pose any real threat to me, I’d prefer to steer clear. Number two on my search-and-avoid list is The Writer and/or his ex. I haven’t met Dalton, but I’ve seen pictures, so I know what he looks like. I feel some kind of weird kinship with him. He’s what came before. Deep down, I pray to whatever someone like me would pray to that Dalton flaked out and The Writer would come solo. It would take a lot of stress of the agenda I have for the evening. And it’s not too much of a stretch, especially considering Wolf and Dalton never really seemed tight. And finally, Warren. At this point, I’ve come to believe he’s insane. Like truly unstable. As luck would have it, not a single one of them is present. By the time I make it through the house and onto the back patio, I know I’m in the clear. That’s when I realize…my anxiety about who would be there was misplaced. What I should have been worrying about was who wouldn’t be there. I don’t recognize anyone except Mr. Wolf, and it’s his party.

Wolf and I haven’t really spoken in a couple weeks, and all of a sudden I feel guilty. Other than a couple of simple misunderstandings, he’d always been very genuine and kind toward me. Not to say that I plan to rekindle our fling, but I displaced frustration I had with myself onto him. My shoulders tense up and my breathing becomes shallow. That’s when Wolf notices me. I do have impeccable timing like that. “Hallo, you!” I give him a weak smile and a strong hug. “Happy Birthday,” I muster up with appropriate sincerity. “I see you’re cooking. Your favorite!” I inch closer. “Well, grilling but yes.” He has to correct me. If I wasn’t so uptight at the moment, I’d find it charming. I even go as far as to grin but imagine my expression looks more like a wince. As more people arrive, Wolf greets them, and I stand, watching for a moment unsure what to do with myself. I lean on one leg and pull out my phone, pretending to text someone like I used to do at high school parties where no one wanted to talk to me. I’m literally making myself crazy. My shoulders are so tense, they’re practically touching my ears, and I think of more things, more reasons why I can’t free myself from the man I care for so deeply:

16. He’s the only person I’ve ever liked sleeping next to.
17. He made me fall in love with cuddling.
18. How weak I’ve become to not give that up.
19. How hard he tries to do right by me.
20. How often he fails.

I hear a laugh. That’s when I snap out of it. Clark and Noah are sitting at the table right behind me. My chest heaves a heavy sigh. I slap on a smile, which I hope is big enough to blanket my enormously exposed insecurities. “Hey cuz,” Noah says with a wink. I bend over to give him a hug before embracing Clark. He hops over to sit on the cooler, offering me his seat. “You’re the best,” I tell him. “What have you been up to?” He asks me. I tell him about New York and we talk family matters, which calms my nerves. Then Noah interrupts to introduce a friend. “I don’t think you’ve met The Model,” Noah says. I turn to shake his hand and nearly swallow my Adam’s apple. The Model is gorgeous. Perfect teeth. Perfect hair. Perfect skin. Perfect jaw. Everything. The reason I’m really so faint though is his uncanny resemblance to Jake, the first boy I ever fell for. Same facial hairline, beauty mark on the same spot on his cheek, exact hue of his eyes. Noah elbows me, getting the wrong idea. The Model, just like Jake, is way out of my league. And for those of you tuning in, I’m buried under a mountain of someone else’s emotional rubble. “H-hi,” I sputter. “Nice to meet you,” The Model says, making me feel much more comfortable. The four of us carry on some conversation, and I mostly say things that make me feel stupid. I actually feel kind of drunk despite not drinking anything but water.

When I feel I’ve worn out my welcome with the people I know, I do the rounds…only to discover I know no one else. I recognize a couple of lesser-known actors, who I have a lot of respect for but can’t summon up the courage to introduce myself. Everyone’s mingling, so I lock myself in the bathroom for a few minutes. Where is The Writer?

21. He uses wipes instead of toilet paper.
22. He only takes baths.
23. If he was here, I’d probably be just as quiet. But I’d be content just standing beside him.
24. He expects me to wait.
25. But doesn’t care if I don’t Read the rest of this entry »

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Klub Kinder

July 2, 2011

“There are two things people want more than sex and money…recognition and praise.-Mary Kay Ash

Likely off eating shrooms in Palm Springs with his friends, I haven’t seen The Writer since before he bailed on my party. But it’s the weekend, and true to my fiery young gay spirit, I’m ready to drink, dance, and get dirty! I call Trick Bradley, who answers with a prolonged “Hey.” First, I tell him that Turtle won’t be messing with us again and that Clark assured me that Turtle would apologize to us in person the next time we crossed paths. “Oh,” he says. “Did I tell you about the text he sent me when I got home Thursday night?” “No!” I exclaim. “He said, ‘I hope you enjoy your tragic fake friends.'” I bust out in laughter. “Is he serious?” But there’s more. Trick Bradley forwards me this message he got from Turtle some time after Clark “talked” to him: “You weren’t the one I was mad at the other night, I was just hurt that you ignored me because I thought we were going to hang out this week. I thought you’d at least text me and instead I run into you with The Writer’s friend? He was the one who really escalated everything by putting himself in the middle of something that was none of his business. And he took you away from me in the middle of our talk. That’s what pushed me over the edge. And I was drunk so…” There are just no words! “Did you respond to him?” I ask. “No. Should I?” “Definitely not. He’s like half ape, half mean girl.” I’m so embarrassed for gaykind that someone this immature even exists that I nearly forget to make plans with Bradley. “Wait! We have to go out tonight!”

Just before ten, I go through my wardrobe. What to wear? I consider a few outfits but ultimately decide I don’t feel like changing. However, I want to make a splash so I throw on a little black cardigan and my pink shades. A few minutes later, Bradley picks me up in his dad’s car. “Where’s your car?” I ask. “It’s in the shop,” he answers. “Oh. What happened?” “It crashed.” “It crashed, or you crashed it?” I inquire. “Technically, it crashed. I wasn’t conscious,” he shares. “Oh my god, what happened!” “I fell asleep and woke up crashing into the car in front of me going 95 miles an hours,” he says. Usually, this would be a rather alarming story, but in Bradley’s case it seems pretty typical. “Were you drinking? Were there cops?” “No the other people like got out and were like it’s fine. They didn’t want to call the cops I guess. But I wasn’t drinking, I was just like super tired,” he says. I shake my head, then facepalm.

Twenty minutes later, we’re in a gay bar that’s pretty low key. We each down a cheap drink, and I’m abruptly bored. Desperately so. So much so that I text Dan. “What are you up to tonight?” He tells me he’s in the bar next door–it has a good dance scene on Saturdays, so I tell him we’ll meet him. Hut when we go outside there’s a swarm of people waiting to get in. “I don’t do lines,” I inform Bradley. (This impatience is left over from my years in New York.) I text Dan and let him know that there’s a line AND cover, which is unacceptable. I grow impatient waiting for a reply, so I check out the bar patio wall. It’s perfectly hoppable, temptingly so. I look at Bradley, but he doesn’t catch on. Then I get a reply from Dan. “Tell the promoter you’re my friend.” Marvelous. I make my way over to the promoter and introduce myself then inform him that I’m a friend of Dan’s. “Nice to meet you,” he says. “I don’t know who Dan is.” Annoyed, I apologize and start texting Dan again when Bradley speaks up, “Oh. I know that guy.” The guy holding the list hears him, and his face lights up. “Hey! How are you?” Bradley does his oblivious act, flirting with the guy for a minute or two. He doesn’t really acknowledge me, which is fine because the guy is so into Bradley that we get to cut the line and get in for free.

I run into Dan the second we walk in, and he’s zealous as ever about our reunion. “Nice cardigan!” He says enthusiastically. “Where’d you get it?” Before I can answer, someone taps him on the shoulder, and I use the distraction to take refuge outside on the patio. Unfortunately, Turtle is also on the patio and as much fun as a public apology might be, I decide it’s best saved for another time. I grab Bradley and lead him to the bar where we take a shot. I leave the bartender a fat tip, and he starts to flirt with me between pouring drinks. Unfortunately, I’m fairly certain he’s straight. On the bright side, he tips me off to the open bar and promises to hook me up with a strong drink. Seven minutes and five dollars later, (see, I am an excellent tipper!) I’m double-fisting two drinks, one of which I pass to Bradley before grabbing a third, and we run upstairs.

Having chugged half of my what is essentially cranberry flavored vodka on the way up the stairs Read the rest of this entry »


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