Young, hung, and full of vitriol...

I can't offer works of staggering genius, but what you will get are my sometimes funny, questioningly intelligent, frighteningly vitriolic, occasionally shockingly sweet, but almost always charmingly grouchy ramblings on music, film, politics, society, pop culture, literature, queer life, travel, Kansas City, and the mundane, yet surreal aspects of everyday.

I'm a queer punk country boy in his late 30s, who has settled back in the midwest after a decade or so of living around the country. My boyfriend, MJ and I moved to Kansas City a couple of years ago after an insanely surreal life in rural, southeast Kansas. This is my attempt at getting back into writing after a longer than anticipated hiatus. I'm still a bit rusty, so be gentle with me...A bottle of wine, some Barry White, and a can of Crisco usually does the job.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Boyfriends Keep The Cats From Eating Your Face, Right?

There have always been jokes about how much I dislike people, how antisocial I am, or my ever increasing level of snarky grouchiness. The problem with this, however, is that it's becoming less amusing and more about an ever increasing level of social anxiety.

I spent nearly 6 years living in rural southeast Kansas, where my social life was rather limited. I became frighteningly self sufficient in the entertainment department. The internet, some beer, good music, and a bit of porn, and I could fool myself into thinking I had some semblance of a social life. Pathetic, huh?

Moving to Kansas City six months ago, I knew there would be a level of adjustment. The fact that I was still working 100 miles south of the city and was away most of the week made my weekend socializing that much more fun and interesting. Now that I have resigned from my job and I'm up here full time, I am faced with a hell of a lot of free time. MJ works 50-60 hours a week, so I'm frequently on my own again for entertainment. After spending a chunk of money and effort to move up here, I find myself passing my increasing idle time with...the internet, music, and booze. I get offers to do things somewhat frequently, but being a one income household, money has become a bit tight and I can't rationalize spending money to go out when it could be used to purchase groceries, gasoline, or cheaper, larger quantities of alcohol.

Well...that's the main reason/excuse. See, despite being a relatively fun, full of life guy, I still have to force myself to socialize. It doesn't come naturally to me as it does to MJ. Once I'm around people and relaxing, I can be the life of the party. Getting to that point, however, is a white knuckled, mule kicking, pain in the ass. The more time I spend alone, the more freaked out I get by social situations. Going to meet someone for a beer, or hanging out at someone's house is a terrifying prospect for me. I can't count how many potentially great social engagements I have missed out on because I couldn't face them without some kind of security blanket (ie: MJ).

On top of the complete wasting of social opportunities here in Kansas City, it's beginning to affect small, trivial things. I put off going to the grocery store. I get butterflies in my stomach when I have to interact with people, whether it's while shopping, running errands, or even going in somewhere to pick up a carry out order. It's even gotten to the point where some nights I hope MJ has gotten a ride home with a coworker, so that I don't have to leave the apartment.

I'm sure that I'm exaggerating things a little bit as I am prone to do. It's not as if I'm some scary shut in out of a Dean Koontz novel, swathed in a terry cloth robe, who will claw my eyes out if I have to deal with the cable guy. It is, however, something I think needs addressed. My hope is that it's a more a symptom of boredom and being a bit bummed about not having a job, combined with my natural shyness, and not some pathology rearing it's ugly head. I'm trying to withhold self prognosis until I find employment or enroll in school. I keep thinking that once I'm feeling more comfortable and sure of our situation, I'll be a wee bit less crazy.

DISCLAIMER: For those of you in KC. Please don't assume that if I can't do something with you that it's a result of this. It may just actually be that I'm flat broke...Fat boy's gotta eat...

Post Script: I just spent 20 minutes talking to our maintenance guy about dogs, the neighborhood, the complex, getting together with the other tenants for a bbq, and maybe going and grabbing beers maybe MJ won't have to keep our pets from dining on my soft parts after all...


  1. I suffer from the same thing. Xanax has made an amazing difference for me, but I still need a plentiful dose of "me time" to compensate for any social activity I undertake. My current dorky thing is I put off calling someone from church to be on a committee as I was assigned to do because I don't know them and I HATE talking on the phone.

  2. I have that issue too. I DESPISE talking on the phone. I'm so awful about that. MJ isn't too great with being alone a lot. I got used to it living in Iola, so it's not much new for me

  3. I used to feel that way quite a bit.

    What really helped me was writing down all my fears in advance - the things which were holding me back from engaging socially. Usually they were dire predictions of how I'd feel or things I'd encounter... it made quite a difference reading them back and seeing they were all generally untrue predictions.

    Everyone's different, but yeah, seeing all that evidence in my face really helped me realise there's not so much to be scared of after all. :)

  4. I can totally get where you are coming from. This was something that has and still is affecting me at this point in time. You get in a comfort zone and it's hard for you to get out of it. I thought moving to East Texas was going to help me out on this but quite the opposite so we have made a conscious effort to move back into the city and get things on the way. I think with you as it did for me is just getting out there and getting a job first thing. Once you get that you can get some what of a routine and then branch out and do other things. That's what I have had to do. There was a point in time I couldn't even drive without freaking out. Chin up brutha things will get better.