There’s a leather-and-Levis organization in town called the Misfits, and I’ve always harbored a semi-secret crush on the group as a whole. If the Houston-area gay community were a high school (and sometimes I could swear…), the Misfits would be the varsity football team — they even have stylish leather vests with their logo on the backs in lieu of letterman jackets, and frankly, I think I would look adorable in one.
The Misfits themselves apparently agree: Some of the members have been talking me up to the
quarterback president, who in turn has been reaching out and encouraging me to pledge. Officially, I am flattered by their interest, and I’ve promised to give the matter serious thought. Behind the scenes, however, I’m acting like a teenage girl who just received a care package from Taylor Swift.
Alas, not everyone in my immediate circle is as thrilled by the Misfits’ inclusivity as I am. Cross, who’s normally very supportive of whatever weird shit I get into, was like, “Huh. Well, they do have an event coming up, so they’re definitely going to need some warm bodies to help run the show.” Awesome. But I will deal with him later, since the foil currently demanding my attention is that guy from the sober leather club who went all After-school Special on my panic disorder, and who is the opposite of amused with my Misfit potential.
“This is NOT putting your recovery first,” he yelled, when I inexplicably told him the Misfits were trying to recruit me. “You’re going to hang around in bars with them and get triggered, and then what?”
I tried pointing out that several of the Misfits don’t drink (including my buddy Doc, who, back in the day, took it upon himself to babysit me during benders, and who also kept a running list of everyone I inadvertently insulted and/or offended, so that I could offer formal apologies the morning after). Additionally, I reminded him that I still hadn’t decided if I even wanted to join, but he wasn’t having it.
“You’re really putting yourself in a dangerous situation,” he continued. “And have you even considered how this will affect your anxiety?”
Ah, yes, I thought. My anxiety. Mustn’t forget how deeply concerned he is about that.
And I called the Misfits president to announce my intent to pledge.
I’m going to look so fucking cute in my vest, you guys.
PS: I shared this story with Simon, which led to the following conversation.
Me: “There are people in my life who are never going to be who I want them to be. But if I’m not comfortable with who they really are, I’ve got to wonder why I feel the need to have them in my life at all.”
Simon: “I have seriously been waiting the entire six months we’ve been working together for you to realize this.”
Me: “Dude… we’ve been working together for over a year. We had an anniversary in April.”
Simon: “Oh, I don’t keep track of dates. What’s important is the present, the here and now.”
Me: “Wow. Way to get out of buying me jewelry.”
Simon: “Honey, it’s going to be at least 20 years before you’ll get jewelry out of me.”
Me: “Then on my 20th recovery birthday, I expect a doorknob on my finger.”
Simon: “I’ll be happy to glue an actual doorknob onto a ring for you.”
Me: “You know I would totally wear it if you did that, right?”
Simon: “Just tell everyone I went to Jared.”