Monday, October 16, 2017

green means go

I wake from the same nightmare as always. And I resolve to get on with life. But it doesn't work.

I've stopped drinking. Because it occurred to me that someone who is chronically suicidal probably shouldn't get drunk. I stopped one morning, a few weeks, or months, ago:

I was trying to write a suicide note. Never have before. I have written post-survival suicide notes, after the fact reflections. Never occurred to me to write something before hand. What would I even say? To whom? Nobody fucking cares.

I am talking to a friend about this. I say, plus it would be the longest suicide note ever. The only way any of this makes sense is with the whole story. He says, write a novel. I say that'll take years. He says what difference does it make? You're dead anyway.

And he adds, what a fun line, when they quote me on the book-jacket, “...the longest, tenderest, most heartbreaking suicide-note ever written.”

I say you're trying to trick me into living. We laugh, sitting on my bed, covered in each other's cum. Little-gallows / humor. This is the four-poster bondage bed I had hung myself from, weeks before. We both know this and laugh a little harder, or maybe a little sadder.

I say, I'll have to stop drinking if I'm going to live long enough to do this. He says, go for it. Why not?

With him in my bed, relaxing in the closeness of our bodies, my inevitable suicide feels funny, warm even. Like an ocean, a promise that no one will break.

Today, none of this is funny.

Today, I grab the same strap I used months ago and hang it from the beam in the studio. I get a little box, stand on it, and adjust the strap so that it just tightens around my neck. I undo the clip. Step down and go get some hand cuffs. I figure, if I decide to try and save my life after kicking the box away, the hand-cuffs, should be enough to ensure my death. And then it occurs to me, if I'm gonna hang myself, I don't need to stop drinking. I can have a whiskey and coffee before I leave you. You know who y'all are. You know why. I don't need a fucking note.

This is not how I imagined my death. A year or so ago, Minka and Justin and I had already agreed that when the time came, I'd be fucking some teenager or two with Minka, and Justin would put a round in the back of my head. But, that was a more hopeful moment in my life. Today, I'll settle for a whiskey and coffee.

I don't stop crying on my way to the Oxxo on the corner. I am still wearing the home-made see-through dress and lingerie from last night's sex club. It's the middle of the day. I figure if I get trans-bashed, it doesn't matter; I'm dead anyway; I'd prefer to go out fighting. I buy a bottle of expensive whiskey.

A few older men stare at me with a look equal parts rage and desire.

I walk home. Pour myself a glass. Boil some water for coffee.

My phone buzzes. It's a message from a super-cute, depressed tinder-girl I haven't met yet. We start chatting over whatsapp. I tell her I've been crying all day. She says she's bipolar. She mentions Fight Club. I mention that I've been meaning to crash a self-help group. She suggests codependency, for variety (I'm not sure of what). Sounds good I say.

I pour out the glass of whiskey and turn off the stove. I google CODA Mexico City and come up with a meeting a few blocks from me. I figure, I'm dead anyway.

I hop on my bike. I'm terrified. I'm not sure if it's the idea of going to a codependency meeting in the sluttiest outfit imaginable, or if it's riding through La Doctores at dusk with my garters and bare ass hanging out of my not-there-anyway dress.

I get to the meeting. It's jam packed. It's their monthly business meeting. The tears and last-night's make-up probably clue everyone into the fact that this is my first time. People I don't know hug me. Tell me I'm valuable and important. I cry harder. And then they tell me to go away and come back in an hour for a catharsis meeting.

I walk out the door and sit in the gutter, feeling like I belong.

An hour later, I walk into the meeting. The business meeting is still going on. Even though I am practically naked, it's so hot and crowded I start to sweat. I turn to leave and a young man grabs me and says: stay, the meeting is going to start soon. So I stay. Everyone stands in a circle holding hands. Prays to the god of their understanding. And then everyone starts to hug. I am still sweaty. People hug and kiss me anyway. Everyone is happy. I feel weird. The room is so smiley and creepy.

The meeting starts. The moderator says that because there are a couple of new people they are going to direct their comments to us and share how they ended up here and how it has helped them. I am uncomfortable and dubious. I certainly didn't want to be the center of attention while I crash a self-help group. I am asked to stand and introduce myself. I do, smiling ridiculously. Some guy beside me does to. And then the whole place is transformed into a kind of charismatic church.

One by one several people, mostly women, go to the podium and tell their story, all of which begin with unimaginable harm in childhood, followed by oedipal tragedy as adults, and finally end with empowerment and community.

A loud, sexy, fat woman talks about how she has hurt everyone she has loved, how shed beat her daughters and humiliated her husband. She takes responsibility for herself, even though he was a drunk who beat her. She cries and talks about how she has learned to love herself and stand-up for who she is.

Another woman talks about how she raped her little brother as a kid, and how she learned to rape him from her dad and uncle who burned her cunt with cigarettes.

It goes on like this. A frail bird of woman talks about being raped by an orderly while in the hospital for anorexia. He removed the catheter. The fuck.

It goes on. Narrative after narrative of violence, violation, humiliation and redemption. It's the most engaging cinema I have seen since the 90s. Admissions of any wrong-doing or harm evoke laughter and affirmation. It's the child-abuse, incest, rape scene from Natural Born Killers only the future is brighter, and the irony is for us, not the spectators.

Some men speak too. I tune them out. They preach. Why are men always such assholes?

Towards the end of the meeting, I notice the gorgeous teen-age girl across from me looking up my skirt a few times. I blush. It feels so transgressive. Right at that moment, I hear the moderator say, “Evelyn, we have a few minutes would you please go up to the podium and tell us why you are here.”

I want what these folks have. I want to belong. I stand up and walk to the podium.

I am crying before I even open my mouth. I say, I don't know how to … I give a bullet-points summary of violence … of failure … I say, “this afternoon, as a joke, I thought I'd come here instead of killing myself. I say, I will probably do it anyway, I doubt that there is an answer for me.”

I look up, all the women who spoke are staring at me. All of them have tears in there eyes. I feel like they know exactly what this feels like.

I sit down. They clap.

After me, a young man, shaved head, bomber jacket, mma hat, covered in tattoos, walks to the podium. This is his first meeting too. He looks so rough and strong. I resent him immediately. He's beating her I'm sure.

And then he starts to cry. He has beat her. She has beat him. And he talks at length about the failed relationship he's been living. I love you; I hate; fuck-you; leave me alone; please don't leave me. Etc. But he says, “that's not why I am here. I'm here because I haven't slept in days. I'm here because I can't bear it any longer. I'm here because if I don't get better soon, I will kill someone. I have panic attacks at work. They won't give me medical leave. I will kill someone. I want to smash my train into the one in front of me. I'm a conductor on a suburban rail line. I don't want to hurt anyone ever again. I don't want to hurt anymore.” He is sobbing like a child. I want to hold him. To tell him it will be okay.

After the meeting I am sitting on the curb smoking a cigarette. He sits down beside me.

Evelyn, Right? How are you? What a weird question after hearing exactly how I am. Fine. Happy. This is crazy. Fun. Yeah. Best night out I've had in a while... And so on. I really related to what you said about...And so on.

The ladies start to trickle out onto the sidewalk. They are all smiles and hugs and advice with the both of us. Or they are stern and tell us about God.  And then we are alone. Looking at each other...

As soon as we are back at his apartment, the first punch lands hard against my brow … He's easily half my age. Outweighs me by 20 or thirty pounds. But somehow he can't gain advantage.

He seems to be targeting the ridge above my eye. My guard must be dropping. Blood starts pouring into my eye. He knows this is blinding me, distracting me. I have to close the gap, I think.

I target his leading leg with kicks to the knee and thigh. Theses are landing full force. I am wearing combat boots. But he doesn't drop his guard. He steps back and then tries to rush in; but he telegraphs everything. I catch him with a front kick to the face. My heel hits his chin and he falls straight back. I'm on top of him punching down onto his face and the top of his head. I'm just trying to get him to reach up so I can go for an arm bar. He does, trying to push me away. I pull his wrist up against me and start to swing my legs over.

And then it occurs to me, I don't want to win.

I follow through with the arm bar but let his hand slip out when he resists. He scrambles up and rolls on top of me. I let him mount, let him slip through my guard, and then he's raining punches down on me. I keep him a little destabilized with my legs so he can't hurt me too bad. And then I slip out, put my legs around him, and pull him close to me.

Okay, you win, I say. He's panting. His pupils are wide, wild. My blood is all over him. And he reaches down and kisses me so tenderly.

I grab his round ass and pull it into me. He slips his mouth past mine and buries his lips in my neck. I reach up and grab him by the throat, and he cries out a little.

He says I've never done this before. Done what. Fucked a guy. I'm not a guy. You know what I mean...

I role him over. Spread his legs and wrap them around me. You know, I say, when I said I'd fight you for top, I wasn't serious. I really just wanted you fuck me, while I resisted.

He looks embarrassed. Me too he says.

I slowly reach down and undo his belt and pants. Slide his clothes off. His cock is perfect. I put it in my mouth. Reach my fingers around his balls and squeeze. He is nearly screaming. I climb on top of him, straddle his chest, and slide my cock into his mouth. Choke him with it. He masturbates while I fuck his pretty mouth. The perfectly pale ridge along the top of his upper lip, curls.

And then he starts to cry. Pushes me back. And tries to hide his face with his hands.

I lean forward and kiss him gently. I will hear three words from you, red means stop, yellow means careful, green means go. Got it? He's still crying. I need you to says one of those three words.

In between sobs, I hear him say green.

I whisper over and over as I fuck him all night. It's okay to fuck the pain away. I'm not sure if I am talking to him or to me.

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