I recently went to a bar for a friend’s party. I’ve decided I’m never going to these things anymore, unless these two criteria are satisfied: 1: I know more than one person. 2: The volume of the music is low (unless I arrive pissed, in which case it can be loud). The volume was blaring. I was sober. And I only knew one person. That meant I needed to be ‘on’ all night. Because after you’ve had the initial catch-up with the one person you know, you’re then on your own. That means you need to be affable and drag-out conversations to avoid being alone. Y’know, latch onto people. Which is really hard when you can’t hear what anyone’s saying.
‘Oh, it’s over there’.
I then walked over ‘there’. I walked with intent through the crowd as though I looked like I knew where I was going. Like back to my friends or something. I found another group. In the end I just mimed and nodded. At one point I kept miming after the recipient of my miming had left. I even used my hands to animate the conversation, a bit like a miming clown. I then burst into hysterical laughter, as though the person I was miming to told a joke. That’s when people starting looking at me.
‘Who is that guy anyway, he’s making me feel weird’.
‘I don’t know, he was just, kinda, there’.
That’s when security approached, ‘Excuse me sir, can you please stand over there, you’re making these people feel weird’.
‘I just need someone to talk to. The only person I know has already gone to the dance floor. And I can’t hear what anyone is saying’.
The guard walks me away, ‘C’mon mate, let it go’.
‘Oh right, sorry’.
I gave the partygoers a sorry wave as I was ushered to the corner. I then walked into a bin. The music stopped. Everyone kept their distance. I then pretended that someone called me on my phone. That’s when I was asked to leave.
‘But this is my scheduled night out. I didn’t want to come, but I try and make an effort from time to time. If I had my way I’d spend my time reading the paper, watering my plants and trying to woo the neighbourhood cat into my flat’.
‘C’mon mate, take it outside’.
I pretended to keep talking on the phone. But my phone was on the floor. So I was really just talking into my hand. And because I was so nervous, my mouth was moving rapidly. A bit like I was chewing. Chewing into my hand.
Oh shit, it’s happening again.