Stand By Me

by theappliedprocess

“So what’s the matter with you? Sing me something new. Don’t you know the cold and wind and rain don’t know, they only seem to come and go away.”

My week started great. Last Monday, on my day off, I repeated last week’s pattern to a point and met ‘Mexican Paddington’ and ‘The Queen of the Dammed’ for lunch at the same Korean fast food joint we had met 6 days prior. This time, I was much more relaxed. I hadn’t had my usual anxiety episode with ‘Nickle’ and things were going great.We made plans to meet later that night for couple’s dinner.

After lunch, I walked over to Smythson of Bond Street on 56th and 6th to purchase a 472 dollar Kelly green leather bound notebook for ‘The Cock of the North’. As I’ve mentioned, he’s leaving the city to move back home for health reasons, and me and my coworkers decided to get him something special. I then walked back with ‘Mexican Paddington’ towards his office but first we made a pit stop at Barney’s. I spent a pretty penny on four pairs of socks and was surprised at how my spending habits have changed. I was questioning the price of good design, and could not manage to be as careless as I was before and spend $300 on a shirt. What’s going on with me!? I suppose it’s a good thing, and I think it all has to do with dating ‘Nickle’. He makes me look at things from different perspectives and come up with new convictions.

I left Barneys and took a train towards Chelsea to go look for stuff for my Halloween costume. I got off the A train at Madison Square Garden and decided to walk over to the free clinic and get my usual check up. I had no specific reason to do so other than I wanted to eliminate the window period since last time I got tested so I could be as clean as a whistle for my man. Again, he makes me want to be a better person.

After reading about 30 pages of the book he’d lent me a few months ago, I got my results. Clean as a whistle indeed. I texted him a picture of my bandaged finger and told him the obvious news. I left the clinic and walked to some costume shops on 23rd street and scored more pieces for my ensemble.

Having a few hours to kill, I stopped by the movie theatre near Union Square to watch 50/50. It had been a while since the last time I had been to the movies by myself, and I’d forgotten how good it makes me feel. It is empowering. The movie, despite being great, was unbelievably depressing in so many levels. From the story itself to the production, I found myself getting sadder and sadder. It also made me think a lot about my babe because one drunken night I’d ask him how he felt about terminal diseases and he didn’t take it well. I, of course, do not want that for either of us, but I did think that no matter what, I’m sticking around. After all, I’ve always ended up being a good nurse to those close to me.

I left the theatre and walked to the art store to purchase more accessories for the weekend festivities. I ran into a couple of friends who coincidentally were going to join us for dinner, and told them I’d catch up with them later. As scheduled earlier that day, I met my papa at Urge for a couple of drinks before walking over to Peels.

Dinner was weird. It was really fun to hang out with everyone in different circumstances, last time ‘Nickle’ had met this group of friends it wasn’t the best, and I wanted to change that impression. The food, however, was horrible, and the service was even worse. After staying there long enough to close the place, we all decided never again. It was expensive, and other than the company, it was not something I’d ever want to repeat. The lesbians, ‘Mexican Paddington’ and ‘The Queen of the Dammed’, went home to have lesbian time. The boyfriend and I took the rest of the group to Swift for a few more drinks. We didn’t stay much longer. We had a few cigarettes and a few nice talks and left for my place. Bed ensued promptly.

Tuesday, having neglected my house guest the whole time she was here, I started my second day off by having brunch at Five Leaves with ‘Titi’ and then continued to look for the final touches of my last costume. Sadly, thrift store shopping proved futile and managed to disappoint me yet again. Instead, I put my college degree to use and went to the garment district, purchased three yards of tacky stretchy sequined fabric in different colors, and went home to make my outfit. For the parade I’m going to be one of 6 or 7 Richard Simmons hybrids (I’m thinking black face).

Later that evening, I had plans for dinner and a show with the babe. I sewed till the last minute and left my apartment around 7 pm. I met ‘Nickle’ and his friend in Union Square and we walked to Rai Rai Ken for some noodle yumminess. We then walked to Webster Hall, but realizing the show wouldn’t start for another hour, we continued walking to Phoenix for a pre-gig drink. A couple, literally, of ‘Nickle’s’ friends met us there and the night really began.

As mentioned, we had a show to catch so we only stayed for a bit. Then we returned to the venue for the performance. It was fun and funny both at the same time, and the thing I appreciated the most is that my love took the time to plan it out.

Wanting an unnecessary nightcap after the show, we marched to nowhere where we did just that. Have a nightcap. His friends left and we headed to Brooklyn. Another pit stop at The Abbey, another brief anxiety attack, and then we passed out.

Wednesday morning I woke up a bit hung over and spent from the attack. I went to work and had lunch with ‘Titi’ who was leaving later in the evening. My day was going really good, actually, despite my psychological issues, and for some reason shit just kept happening left and right. For instance, I found out that ‘Fixie’s’ man was breaking up with him (again!!), but had forewarned him via email. The man scheduled the break up! Also, ‘Jose Maria’ informed me he might have to move back to Greece in January because he hasn’t been able to find a job. A part of me wants to slap him! I am aware it’s hard, but not impossible, and to be frank, I think he’s just not really trying hard enough. Last but not least, it finally dawned on me that ‘The Cock of the North’ is leaving, and I’m having a slight problem readjusting to my new boss and the work ambiance.

That night I had plans with ‘Fixie’ to get wasted and blur the shit day he was having. ‘Nickle’ had said that he really wanted to see me, even if just for a bit, because he was feeling really good about us. Without a doubt I obliged. Like I mentioned, I was having a good day and I wanted to make it even better. He picked me up at the gallery and we walked to Solas for a few rounds. I hadn’t eaten, so I also ordered delivery whilst at the bar. ‘Fixie’ was going to call me when he was done with his ex and on his way to me. Surprisingly enough, he called me about half hour before expected and I rushed to meet him without any time to eat my freshly delivered food. I had invited ‘Nickle’ but he wanted me to have one on one with my friend, so he said he’d meet later.

We met outside my place to drop off our stuff and headed to The Abbey. We followed the plan we’d deviced and started drinking more and more, shots and beers, at a steady and constant pace. My babe met us after going home for a second and taking care of some personal business. When he got there I was clearly intoxicated. My head started fucking with me and I started having anxiety. What can I say? I really don’t know what to say… wish I knew how to change it (other than the obvious “don’t drink”).

For this instance, my anxiety revolved around being with my boyfriend and one of my best friends, two people who I love, and two people who I feel are way more relationship material than I am. I stupidly started convincing myself that it makes much more sense for ‘Nickle’ to be with someone like ‘Fixie’ who is more sane and can handle relationships better than I can… and it all went downhill from there. We eventually left and, in the confines of my apartment, I made my anxiety attack more public. Again, my babe calmed me down. Again, I felt stupid and feared that he one day will get sick of me. Again, I more and more firmly believe part of the anxiety has to do with a chemical imbalance. Again, I’m confused.

Thursday morning I woke up feeling a bit better. The night had passed, the anxiety was subdued, and after my almost-daily sexy time with my hon, I went to work. Again, he surprised me with plans for a play at BAM that night. He picked me up and, in the midst of a rainy day, we headed to Brooklyn. I was really tired and, although the play was lively and entertaining, I snoozed off a few times. Nevertheless, I was feeling better. I like having dates like this with my boy, dates where all we do is hang out just the two of us and do dinner and a movie, or some other cliche chain of events.

On that note, after the play we walked over to a cute little French restaurant a few blocks away and had a quaint little dinner. Escargot, beet salad, and fish, I believe. I wasn’t in a big plan of drinking because it’s been too tiring and taxing on my anxiety, and I want to keep it under control so that it doesn’t interfere with me and my babe but… I’m an alcoholic, and I’m also in a relationship that was about to turn a month old, so of course drinks ensued. First, we went to a bar a couple of blocks away, then I believe we went home, but we might’ve stopped by The Abbey. I wasn’t drunk, I just can’t remember.

Friday I had a relatively early day. I had to meet with ‘The Lady of Derbyshire’ for more filming of the Marfa documentary I’ve been helping her make. This time we interviewed the women in charge of Art Production Fund who sponsored the project. It was, as has the rest of the project been, a unique experience. Both girls were such characters. Their outfits, stark black and designer clad from head to toes, along with their strikingly straight hair, was a nice contrast to their welcoming personality. They were both superbly nice, and completely helpful and enthusiastic about the project, which was surprising considering it’s hard to come across people like that in the art world.

The interview ended at around noon. I called ‘Nickle’ since I was close to his work and met hit at his office where he introduced me to all his coworkers who, as expected, loves him and has heard wonders of me. I’m still not tired of this. We were going to grab lunch, but we didn’t due to lack of time. Instead he drove me to work.

The day went by ridiculously fast. That night, we had plans to meet at the office for some farewell cocktails for ‘The Cock of the North’. Not everyone who should’ve showed up did, but a couple who weren’t necessarily supposed come to came, and it all turned out nice. ‘Nickle’ met up at some point, because he wanted to say a proper goodbye to my boss. They’ve really hit it off right away, and it’s a shame we didn’t get to have more time to hang out ensemble.

I got a bit emotional. I drank myself stupid and reminisced on the days a year ago when I first started working here… Oh how I’ve grown with them.

One by one we all started leaving. I was given the task of making sure everyone left at an appropriate time. Despite being wasted, I believe I did a good job and, at around 11 pm, we were out and on our separate ways. Me and ‘Nickle’ went to The Abbey for a nightcap and then home. Just like a depressingly melancholic feature film, I was the last one to go. I shut the lights off, set off the alarm, and walked our the side door. Me and ‘Nickle’ went to The Abbey for a nightcap and then home.

As with most of my time in this earth, this week proved to be a series of ups and downs, but somehow none of it surprises me anymore. I’ve come to terms with the good and the bad in my daily routines. Yes, anxiety is a big part of my life, and a part that I’ve been dealing with on my own. The scary issue now is opening up and dealing with it with someone who wants to be there for me through the good and the bad. I just need to convince myself that there’s people out there who feel just like me.

“Stand by me, nobody knows the way it’s gonna be.”