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Sunday, September 2, 2012

Social Anxiety And Javelin Throw Stances. Yep.

I've been writing this post in my head all weekend and busting at the seams to turn all these rambling thoughts into somewhat a comprehensible narrative. I'm attempting to steal some time now before my brain explodes.

I went out with my pops for birthday fun. His birthday was this weekend and I wanted to do something with him for the occasion. Birthday fun means beer for birthday dude and exposing him to the awesomeness that is the one and only Captain May I. I was jazzed up about this occasion, but just as I suddenly found out the extent of my fear of heights when we attempted to sit in "top of empire state building" seating at the baseball game earlier this summer, I also found out the extent of my social anxiety in this particular occasion. It may be becoming more and more clear that I have issues. 

I was meeting Dad's new lady friend. I am actually a fairly shy (socially awkward) person in what we call the "real world" so meeting new people can cause my nervous, twitchy mannerisms to come to light. Awesome. Dad wanted to meet earlier so I was meeting him at around 8pm. I messed up the time that the band started so it was the three of us in a semi empty room for an hour and half before the band was supposed to play. We say our hellos and I realize I don't have my phone. This WILL NOT do. This day in age our smart phones are our "I am incredibly busy right now and I don't even notice this horrendous awkward silence thing that's going on" distraction devices. I nervously take everything out of my purse (duffel bag equivalent) which is a daring move on it's own. I am making such a spectacle about not having my phone it's really quite ridiculous. It is then decided that I will walk to the car to look and in precisely 3 minutes my dad will call my phone.  It's all about the details, people.

I am reminding myself to breathe on the block walk to my car. Let me share some of the highlights of my little pep talk:

Don't say anything stupid. Don't do that thing that you do when you're nervous. You know. When you talk loudly about things you think are funny and no one else does and then you just trail off to a mumble and pray someone changes the subject. Or when you purposefully point out you are nervous. Yeah. don't do that. That always leads to embarrassment. Oh. And you need to limit the amount of times you put chapstick on. No one has lips that are that chapped. What is wrong with you? Good golly knock it off! If only I could meet people through writing. Psh. Like a misfit teenage boy nerd on a dating site? Really?? You're better than that. Man up. Or Woman up. Ha. I should share this thought if the opportunity presents itself. Actually...no. Don't do that. You might need professional help. 

So, two things. 1. My nervous brain is kind of an ass when it comes to pep talks. 2. While I'm mentally preparing/kicking myself, I see a friend out in front of the establishment.

Little does he know the "situation". Because apparently meeting someone new has now become a "situation". I try and carry on a normal conversation, but because I am a such a ninja at masking my feelings (not) 30 seconds into the jittery conversation I get the: "Are you....alright??" And I put the two question marks because literally that was how it came out. I was so awkward at that point in time that I may have concerned people a bit. I swear I don't do drugs. Maybe I need to.
Whatever. I explain the situation the best I can, but really it's quite ridiculous when you describe it out loud.

I open the creaky door completely aware of myself like walking into church late during a sermon. This may be the only time I compare walking into a bar to going to church. I'm just as surprised as you are at my attempt to compare the two. We laugh off the fact that I HAD to have my phone and I see my lovely father has ordered me a beer. I drink that sucker like it was water at the end of a trek through the desert. Classy, right? Totally healthy behavior.

Not sure if it was the one beer or the fact that I could breathe a sigh of relief that I was actually meeting a really nice person, but the anxiety wore off and I was able to function like a semi - normal person for most of the evening. And I kept my chapstick habit at bay. So that's good, right? Even if I replaced it with pulling random objects out of my purse, like a super ball and a velvet pencil. Oh, I had a Hot Wheel car and a Polly Pocket in there too. I'm an adult. 

Remainder of the evening had some interesting moments but I'll give you the short version.

I was hit on by a chick that my dad knew, which led to a version of fatherly protection that I never imagined I'd see.

I kept an eye on my dad who was glaring at the extremely drunk loud mouth at the other end of the bar. Dad doesn't have much tolerance for ignoramuses.

Different weird drunk guy on the dance floor stood an inch from the stage frozen in some sort of a javelin throw stance for an entire song. What the heck dude? He had brought a beer out and was sloshing it all over earlier, so I took it upon myself to take it away from him and put it on the table behind us. Apparently this one interaction between the two of us gave the green light for him to make an extremely inappropriate comment to me between songs. It was appalling enough for me to look at him in disgust and loudly say, "NO! GO!" He was lucky my dad was not in earshot or he may have gotten more than he was asking for.

Oh yeah. Creepy Old Guy was in attendance as well, but he kept his distance.

All in all it was an interesting evening to say the least. Self induced mental and physical exhaustion is creeping up on me so I'm excited to get back to my normal boring life for awhile.

At home where I am generally safe from "situations" and am not at risk for a chapstick application overdose.


  1. Leia I am also very awkward with strangers but instead of being quiet I cant stop speaking. I never make any new friends because strangers always think I am completely crazy.

    1. As Jimmy Buffet says, "If we weren't all crazy, we would go insane." :) Oh well. That's why we write!