I never thought I would be very friendly with Redhead after she said blog writing seems kind of egotistical, but that's behind us, I guess. She has low self-esteem and anxiety and drinks to get away from it. I have another friend whose life drove her to heroin (she's clean now, thank God), so next to that drinking seems like a positively healthy solution. One time I contacted her to tell her that she should read my blog, and found her experiencing a severe hangover. We talked a bit and I said something to the effect of, "I'm always here for you." And she was like, "Want to go get food?" And I had to be like, "Crap, I'm in Idaho." I felt so guilty, even though I was there for my great-grandfather's funeral.
She mentioned recently that she never invites me to hang out with her and her friends because they're always drinking and she doesn't want me to be uncomfortable. I said I didn't care. The only drunk person I've spent a meaningful amount of time around was my friend Ashwin, and being in that state just exacerbated his sweet and friendly persona, so I actually liked it, as awful as that is. Anyway, she invited me to watch a movie with them, but I wasn't able to go. She thought I had bailed on her and I could tell she was mad even though she said she wasn't. A couple weeks later she invited me to "beer and board games", and she said she could pick me up but she wouldn't be able to take me home but one of her other Mormon friends probably could, and if not I could sleep on her couch. As innocent as I am, it took me a while to figure out why she couldn't take me and why a Mormon would have to do it. I gave her the address and she went to the wrong side of the street and we didn't see each other, so she thought I had bailed on her again and she sent me about fifteen angry messages.
We got that straightened out and during the car ride she said she was just feeling super stressed because a guy she liked was coming and she hadn't had time to clean yet. I said she seemed happier than in class, and she said that was just because of the anxiety attack making her talk fast. We arrived and she asked if I could carry some stuff. I said sure because I'm just that nice. The back seat was full of stuff so I assumed it would be some of that. Instead, she popped the trunk and brought out a bag of limes and a case of beer for me to carry. As I followed her up the stairs to the apartment, I almost wished someone from church would see me and think that I was being bad. Then I could reap the benefits of society's warped admiration of vice without actually doing any of it. Alcohol holds no temptation for me because I know that if I ever touched a drop I would drink myself to death.
We were the first ones there, and the guy she likes showed up a few minutes later. With the gift of foreknowledge I paid attention to her interactions with him to see what sort of indications she gave of her interest. Result: nothing, zilch, nada. Afterward she asked me what I thought of him, but my opinion is totally neutral. The most I can say is that, other than being human, he didn't give me any reason to hate him during our brief time together. She said I was no help and I asked why she needs my opinion anyway and then she stopped responding to me. But going back to that night, we played several rounds of Jenga and then we played this game called "Aggravation" which was particularly aggravating for her because the other five people there chose to gang up on her. It was probably about halfway over by twelve thirty when my ride and I left. Throughout the night, of course, Redhead and the other two non-Mormons drank beer with limes, and she gradually started to smile more and laugh more and just generally seemed relaxed and happy.
Until the next morning, I'm sure. Sigh.
Mormonism: Inside and Out
Today and tomorrow are General Conference, of course. I'll probably write about it next week if I feel like it.