I'm trying to keep busy. I really am.
I've noticed that the days when I have made plans to meet an actual human being are the days when I feel the most calm.
So Friday I met a co-worker for a cocktail while I waited for a girl date with a woman I met on Craigslist, who is also looking for friends in the area. It was a fun hang, and the bartenders were interesting. One of the servers is actually from Thief River Falls, MN which I've heard of, but am not sure why. Everyone was worried about me meeting a stranger from Craigslist and were pretty sure I was going to end up dead in a gutter or missing my kidneys, but I assured them I'd watched Craigslist Joe the night before, so I knew how to survive. And maybe even get a movie deal out of it.
Then I met the woman - we'll call her Sunny - and we had another beer (well, she just had 1/2 a beer, but I'll forgive her because she was too beautiful to judge) and some gastropub food, and we talked about how we ended up in So Cal. She's from NYC and has been here two and a half years, but met her serious boyfriend early into that stint, and therefore has neglected her female social circle. I'm hoping we hang out again sometime. Preferably after I'm medicated again.
I wasn't ready to go home after she left, so the co-worker was kind enough to come back and we watched a bunch of drunk people bounce around on the dance floor. I also met a gaggle of gay men who were very very young, very very pretty, and very very drunk. One of them looked exactly like Neil Patrick Harris (minus 20 years). I got a couple of their numbers, but am quite sure that A) they don't remember me and B) they are too young to provide a satisfying hang should I even get the chance to try. The servers were all very glad to see that I'd survived my incredibly dangerous encounter with a mid-twenties IT professional. I just shrugged and flexed my biceps to show them how I'd managed it.
We walked to a couple more bars, but it was late enough that everyone was obnoxious instead of charming. I was interested to see a taco stand outside the back door of one bar - good idea for selling 2 a.m. tacos to people trying to sober up enough to drive. The co-worker bough some food, and while he was in line, I ended up talking to some other very young, stoned surfer types.
It's universally true that Californians believe their state is superior. Everyone insists I will never want to leave now that I'm here. Which is funny because there hasn't been a moment in the last month that I haven't wanted to run screaming back to Minnesota. The only things holding me back are the rent I've already paid for August and September, the psychic reading that told me I'd feel this way for the first two months, and the fact that I haven't eaten at In N Out yet.
Oh, and August in MN means that it's almost September, which may as well be December for all the summer that's left.
I was telling the stoned surfers that I've been attending some outings with groups I found on Meetup.com and one of them was all, "Dude, my mom totally loves that website. All her friends are from there." I think he meant to convey that Meetup.com is really awesome for some people, but what he actually conveyed was that I'm a hell of a lot older than him. I'm in the category of women he associates with his mother.
Yesterday I woke up with a hangover-style headache which was weird because I wasn't drunk at any point the night before, but I rolled with it and slept most of the day. Then I started another marathon of The United States of Tara on Netflix, a show about psychiatric disorders which helps me to feel a little less crazy. I also decided to treat myself to lunch and a movie, but none of the movies looked good, so I wasted several dollars in the book store instead. I looked for books about dealing with anxiety, but those invariably make me want to murder small children. I don't want to meditate when I'm focusing on keeping my stomach away from my tonsils.
Today I met an acquaintance for lunch and hated every second of it. I'm not sure if it's the guy I don't like, or the fact that my stomach has become permanently lodged in my throat and is a signal that I might freak the fuck out and enter Full Blown Panic mode at any moment. Outside the restaurant, a large group of flamboyantly dressed Latin folks congregated, and we eventually learned that it's some kind of holiday in Bolivia today. They were preparing to parade around the outdoor outlet mall. I've never seen so many long braids in one place, and I kind of wanted to cut one off and take it with me. I'm going to avoid introspection about that desire. I think that's for the best.
Finally I remembered that a friend recommended vitamin B6 for anxiety, so I ran to the world's most Hispanic-packed Wal-Mart and bought some. Hopefully it will tide me over until my psychiatrist appointment on Friday, because for a few minutes today, I found myself wondering if I was going to end up in the hospital again.
Then Scary ate one of the ear pieces on my ear buds and I spent ten minutes trying to fish the cheese grater looking piece out of her mouth.
So aside from the crippling anxiety, it was a pretty good weekend.