Monday, August 20, 2007

A new hope

It is time, I am afraid, for a change in plans since Drew Barrymore hasn't called. And I don't mean Natalie Portman, although she is pretty much all that and a bag of chips.

No, I think my next option is the psychiatrist I worked with in high school. Not because he was good and kind and helped me, but because he danced with Lynda Carter.

My short balding psychiatrist really danced with Wonder Woman.

Apparently they were both at a party, he wanted to dance with her, so he asked her to dance. And they did. He asked her husband first to make sure there would be no ruffled feathers. He's not stupid.

I went to see him because I started having three recurring worries in high school.

First, I was worried I'd start doing drugs. I'm not sure why. I can't stand taking Advil even, but for some reason I was worried I'd start snorting and smoking anything available. Maybe I thought the only way I'd find friends is if their minds and mine were blurred by drugs.

And I was terrified by the idea of losing control of my mind. It's one reason I don't drink even now, although I also hate the taste. I am sure that the loss of control is very unappealing to me, a person who has little control of his body. I wonder if the fear of drugs was because I knew subconsciously that I was losing control of my body?

But that does not explain why on earth I thought I'd do drugs. I do keenly remember sitting in church in front of a guy in the grade ahead of me and being terrified he was going to stick a drug needle through the pew into my back and get me hooked. Really.

Somewhere out there Nancy Reagan ought to be doing a happy dance because she convinced me drugs are evil.

I was also worried I might kill myself. No surprise there, high school sucked.

But I would never hurt myself, not a fan of pain, and I would be afraid of taking drugs. I might do it wrong and just wind up making myself throw up, which is a fate worse than death.

Of course, being dead would make my life easier (hee-hee). But it would be pretty uncool for my family and friends. So I would not do that to them.

In the end, though, I just don't want to be dead. Not scared, just not ready and awful curious.

I got lots to do, and I want to see how this all turns out. Does our hero get the girl? Who is said girl? Do doctors cure Friedreich's ataxia? Does Star Fleet ever form? Does the big guy (not Mr. Carlson) ever apologize or at least offer an excuse or an explanation?

Finally, I went to see him because I was scared I was gay. I didn't want to be gay because there were things one does with women that seemed awfully cool. Still do. Yes, I know that is kind of illogical to worry about being gay and be attracted to women, but logic, high school and worries don't mix.

The absolute absence of amorous attention must have overpowered the logic of the situation. Not that I tried to stir up any myself. That was where the shrink came in.

After trying to convince me I wasn't gay, he offered to bring in a woman to prove it to me. I recently told my mom that I didn't think he was just going to pick me up a prostitute, and she was more horrified because it meant he had some girl on call.

I declined his offer because just the idea was motivating to my masculinity. In retrospect, maybe I should have accepted. I would not only have got some (although I still don't know what some is) but also have an excellent story.

So with that lane closed, the shrink tried to get me to ask some girl out, any girl. He would say: Is anyone at school cute. Sure, I'd say, I like Amy, but she has a boyfriend. As long as there is no ring, go for it, he advised. I didn't. I haven't seen anyone from high school in years, but I did notice in a class update somewhere that Amy was married to the guy she was dating in high school.

I also didn't take his advice when he wanted me to ask out a secretary at an office I was at for the summer. She was probably 35-40 and I was 21.

I think, though, I am ready to do as he suggested. The problem now is that most of my women friends do have rings. I wonder what he'd say to that: As long as there is no kid, go for it? Or maybe he'd just offer me a prostitute. It would be unkind to refuse again.

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