pretend confidence

Week number 2 in this new city will soon be a whisp. what have i learned in these past 2 weeks?

i’ve learned that i am not sleeping nearly enough to function at the level i am required to function.

i’ve learned that i should try to get more sleep.

i’ve learned that i can move anywhere in the world and i will still take my anxieties with me. my anxieties can go anywhere they please. they will probably outlive me.

i’ve learned that self-confidence is as foreign as it’s ever been.

i’ve learned that there are fleeting moments when i can pretend that i have confidence, which is not a new realization. i am just trying to make it more durational. but there is always a situation where i am put to the test.

take today for example. i met this woman on okcupid and after a few emails, she suggested we talk on the phone. which was frightening to me.

So I wandered around Cambridge for miles and miles, taking in the new landscape… and walking and stalling, avoiding that call… until i managed to find a cafe, with a table from where i called her.

And we were having this very awkward conversation, with many awkward silences.

and then the pretend confidence surfaced and i invited her to meet me there, right there and then, knowing full well what dangers awaited me. and she accepted the invitation.

and soon we were sitting across from each other. trying out different strands of conversation. and i think we were trying to read each other.

i could tell that things were going badly, but the pretend confidence voice spoke again and I suggested we go somewhere else for dinner. and she said, ok, let’s.

so we went to this seafood place in harvard square, and she took out a spiral notebook and wrote down a note that she was wearing ear plugs. and she showed me her ears to prove it.

i wrote in her notebook my question “why are you wearing earplugs?”

and she said that she needed to wear earplugs when she was tired and hungry. which seemed to make sense.

and we continued making conversation in her notebook through the entire dinner.

most of the written conversation was in response to a question she repeated like a chant (on paper).

“What do you think?

of what, I sad.

“What do you think?”

I don’t think I think.

“What do you think?”

I can’t separate one thought from the next. It’s all one vast slab of thought or no thought.

“What do you think?”

“What do you think?”

“What do you think?”

“What do you think?”

i had run of things to not think about.

and then she said we should get going. she was going to take the bus. and i offered to drive her. and she wasn’t sure what she wanted to do, and then she decided she wanted to take the bus, but the bus did not arrive and i ended up driving her home.

and for the entire ride, i could sense this energy draining and i could not tell if it was me or if it was her, but it was palpable.

we did not make much conversation.

and by the time we reached her apartment building, i had nothing left. all of my pretend confidence energies were depleted.

as she was leaving the car, the pretend confidence voice asked if could kiss her goodnight.

now what the hell was that about? it’s something that should just happen, not something that requires asking permission.

but the pretend person felt like that is what non-pretend people do. the pretend people hears about this all of the time.

as for me, i have no idea how to read people, or speed-read people, or even misread people.

so in my uncertainty, i caved into the pretend me.

and she turned back into the car and we kissed for about 10 seconds. and then it ended and she left.

it was then that i realized that my breath probably tasted/smelled like tuna (my lunch) or salmon (my dinner). like a dead fish that had washed up somewhere off of Cape Ann.

while driving back to the house where i am staying, through these strange massachusetts streets, fuming that my pretend confidence had crossed the line. all of my instincts telling me that this person had no interest in me and had no desire to be in my presence for a second longer.

my pretend confidence was clearly trying to humiliate me. why could it not leave well enough alone? if it had accepted date #1 ending at the bus stop, it would have been the perfect first date.

and now I am completely completely exhausted from essentially me trying not to be me. this pretend confidence… could not survive the endurance test. almost, but not quite. i give it credit for trying.

because i guess it is good to be tested once in a while. i just wish that one day something organic will spring up in me.

but really, how is it possible for one person to really know what another person is thinking?

i know that people can. i see it in movies. they must be real.


About The Lost Pedestrian

In my wanderings throughout the moments/days/years, I try in earnest to find the mystical within the mundane and the mundane within the mystical, oftentimes confusing one from the other. I have wandered and roamed through many a city, many a town, in a state of wonder and bewilderment, without necessarily going anywhere. I am easily lost, but eventually found. (I am guessing you have just found me). My sincere hope is that you will find Something in this warehouse of thought, memory and false memory, words, numbers, tangents, murmurs, echoes (lots and lots of echoes), voices, dreams, and other paraphernalia.
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