“Ramser, you need to stop being so transparent!”
“Always putting your feelings out on display is seen as a feminine quality.”
Again, why?
“You need to make her chase you.”
This is stupid.
“You need to stop meeting people at the bar.”
I don’t do anything but work. At a bar.
It went on in that vein for fifteen minutes. Or maybe only five. It felt like a century. My co-workers are concerned that I’m off my game. On the days when I believe anyone actually cares, I still hate hearing the speech about how I should just be happy. Because it’s so fucking easy. I know I’m not 100% right in the head. The beginning of winter always kicks my ass. So does early April. It’s just how shit goes. I drag myself out of bed, slam an energy drink (we all know which one) and wait for the caffeine to blast me into my happy space. It’s worked for how many years now?
I have two enemies. The first one is my own brain chemistry and my tendency to catastrophize. I fall into a bad mood pretty easily. Especially during certain times of the year. Halloween and Easter seem to be the worst for me. Getting on medication would require seeing a psychiatrist of some sort. Not my idea of a good time, but maybe it finally actually needs to happen. The second enemy is my tendency to catastrophize and obsess. I can make a bad situation horrific just by thinking about it for too long. Do I call someone or don’t I? They must be done with me for good this time because I haven’t heard from them. Work is slow now, so the business must be shutting down. Sounds fucking crazy, right? Sometimes I can tell, but sometimes these things are cleverly disguised as rational thoughts in my head.
Whatever the source of this perpetual mental shitstorm, sometimes I am just in a bad mood and I need to ride it out. Things get dark for a bit, then they get better. It isn’t always fun. Actually, it’s pretty much never fun. Two things keep me going. First, you can only see the stars once the night gets dark enough. My son, my friends, every good thing seems to shine brighter when I’m drowning in the inky black. Second, I choose to fight. I can always kindle a little bit of anger over the way things are (or the way I am), and I get a lot done when I’m angry.
I am allowed to be in a bad mood. Sometimes I just need to be allowed to hate the world for a little while. Dishes still got cleaned. Coolers stayed stocked. I was pleasant to customers. I don’t want to cause anyone distress. In fact, I have essentially been wired to help people. Part of my mood was because I was aware of a problem I cannot help fix.
As for the conversation from a few paragraphs ago- I know there is a game between men and women. I know there are rules. I just don’t understand any of them. I say fuck those rules. I will be open and honest and genuine and understanding. I will weather whatever storms come my way. I burned every bridge but one. If it doesn’t work out, I will swim.

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