It all started yesterday, when I was cruising Borders for something on trauma and dissociation. But first, I had to take a wicked piss. I wondered if anybody noticed me taking the elevator to the second floor instead of the stairs. I'd been reading that morning about how the body releases endorphins in high-stress situations such as trauma, including long-term imprisonment and torture. Such as, e.g., my childhood. Given that endorphins are basically morphine, and that they're also released during strenuous exercise, and moreover, that I will have had 19 years of stone-cold sobriety come the first week in May, I didn't want to fuck up my stainless record of being drug-free for nearly two decades by working up a sweat on those stairs. Drug-free, that is, if you don't count my addiction to Ativan, which I've been taking religiously for that past year so I won't kill anyone. But that's different. Doctor's orders. So to speak.
So where was I? Oh yes, on the way to piss like a racehorse. But even in this extreme state of bodily need, I still had time to stop and check the message board outside the restrooms, or as they call them in the less euphemistically inclined UK: toilets. And there tacked to the cork -- mirabile dictu! -- I spied this:
A Free Presentation to the Community
Sponsored by the Boulder Psychotherapists Guild, Inc.
Understanding the Highly Sensitive Person
Oh wow, I thought to myself, no one else being presently in evidence, this ought to be good! And ripped the flyer down, sending pushpins flying everywhere. I wondered if that was why they were originally called "flyers." But no matter. I would read it in the bathroom, or "toilet," as I always piss sitting down whenever there's any choice (there usually is, if one is willing to wait patiently), so as not to promote undue exertion and the inevitably attendent and untoward endorphin release mentioned above.
However, something distracted me, possibly the prodigious proportions of my own penis. I was amused to receive a spam recently inquiring whether I was prepared to "Handle a Really Large Dick." I thought (again to myself) why yes, I do it constantly. There was a time when I was younger that I used to piss standing up. This is when I was taking large quantities of non-prescription drugs, and therefore less concerned about, one might even say desirous of achieving, the endorphin effect. But I never just zipped down my fly and hauled it out that way. I would rather unbutton my jeans, zip down, pull up my shirt tail, pull down my underpants, and you get the idea, do it like that. One day this guy standing next to me at the adjacent stall was presumptuous enough to inquire why I did it did it like that. "Why don't you just zip down your fly?" he asked. "Do you see that keyhole in the door over there," I asked back. He agreed that he did. "Well imagine," I said, "attempting to pull an Anaconda through it." That shut him up. Presumably he knew what an Anaconda was, even though this was before they made the movie.
Just the other day -- yesterday perhaps -- I was chatting with a friend and I mentioned how much I admired others' ability to produced straightforward exposition, a skill I have never fully mastered. "Nonsense," she said, "you're an excellent writer!" But it was precisely the present sort of broken-field narrative you're reading here that I was referring to, so I discounted her compliment accordingly. People will try to trick you into believing all manner of partial truths about yourself. My policy is to always listen politely but never to get sucked in. So to speak.
Excuse me for a moment. I have to go re-read Portnoy's Complaint.
Anyway, it wasn't until last night that I fished the Highly Sensitive Person flyer out of my back pocket so I could read it to Jeneane in the course of our usual four-hour nightly debriefing on the highlights of each other's notable experiences during the foregoing daylight hours. I should emphasize here, as you might otherwise speculate, that there is nothing the least bit sexual in our relationship. This is a welcome relief, given the demands placed on me by less understanding, less attuned, and yes, less highly sensitive women. The worst of these, in my experience, are certaint calligraphers with artistic pretensions, who for reasons I fail to fully comprehend, insist upon calling me at odd hours of the day and night to ask whether the erectile dysfunction resulting from my four-hundred-dollar-a-day Effexor habit is "still giving me trouble." It's not. But I never dignify these crank calls with a reply. I hang up. Why is it that some individuals never seem to accept that it's over and it's time to move on.
"Move along. Nothing to see here ladies and gentlemen. Move along..."
Of course, as I've already indicated, there's plenty to see, but being a person of impecable integrity, I feel no compunction to discuss such intimate matters with a virtual stranger. Stranger than you can imagine.
At any rate, I say to Jeneane, "Hey, get a load of this," and I give her the relevant background: Borders, the bathroom, the bulletin board, the Boulder Psychotherapists Guild, Inc. sic, etc. In short, Understanding the Highly Sensitive Person. The flyer continues...
Appreciating the Trait in Children, Students, Clients,
Spouses, Colleages ... and Oneself!
A Presentation for Consumers and Professionals
Now, I dunno, maybe it's just me, maybe I'm being over-you-know senstitive, but consumers? Excuse me? Did they maybe mean lay persons? Not to be over-you-know harsh, but it's just possible that the problem is not poor word choice but rank stupidity. I tend to notice these things in my environment and to reflect on them deeply.
But let's, you know, as they say in Scream III, move on...
Are you sometimes overwhelmed...
[I couldn't type any more of this shit. maybe later.]
To be concluded! Watch for the exciting coming segments on...
- Children of the Corn, Part 13;
- Attack of the 50-Foot Narcissist;
- Dissociation a continuum, as with pathological and "healthy" narcissism -- you know, like that dry heat;
- Yani, the dirty fuck;
- Highly Sensitive People -- for Sensitive, Intuitive, Creative and Spiritual Persons; (retch!);
- Message Board for Odyssey of the Soul; (bletch!);
- Trauma, total disgust and the grinning rubber pig mask.