I don’t have the heart to tell him that I’m not an alcoholic, or have ever been. In fact, I rather enjoy drinking. Vodka martinis with those cute little olives when I’m feeling like Marlene Deitrich, Dewar’s on the rocks when I’m feeling like John Wayne. I let him think that I’m in recovery because it makes our relationship feel legitimate somehow, like we share something other than towels and toothbrushes. I don’t tell him that I frequent the happy hours.
But now sitting at this AA meeting I wonder even how much I can take. We’re on vacation and this is our time away, but the oh-so-fabulous thing about AA is that ex-alcoholics are everywhere: in Outer Bumblefuck, PA driving your kids to school, in Newark pushing your pot that you still smoke because it makes you feel young and rebellious, in Memphis cutting your grandmother’s head open to work on that tumor, in Florida your boyfriend who plays crappy guitar and cries writing lyrics about Asian genocide (but has never written a song about you).
Everywhere, everywhere- alcoholics, recovering.
And not a drop to drink.
Ohp, here comes the tears, and snot which will inevitably end up absorbed onto the sleeves of my tshirt. I love this tshirt. And I hate doing laundry. I’m not sure if I love or hate this person on my arm though.
“You are a good girlfriend. You are a good person who does nice things. You even donate blood regularly. You are going straight to heaven after this.” This is what I tell myself.
I wonder how his other girlfriends dealt with this. The last one had been a dyslexic stripper with fake tits and an underbite. This would be fodder for resentment, but there was the whole booze thing, and blah blah blah. Sure, I have a nervous tic where if people yell, I squint my right eye tight like a pirate who’s just sat on something I’d rather not say. The squinting usually pulls my mouth into an unflattering grimace and then the squint eventually turns into a fluttering ADD wink. I feel that’s pretty minor though. At least my tits are real. And I can spell.
Joel McHale would say this is an upgrade for him.
Though I can’t help but think he’d be more fun drunk.
After he rolls off me, I know I can count to 10 and he’ll be fast asleep. That’s just how it works. I lay there and “ooh” and “ahh” and the louder I say said “ooh”s and “ahh”s, the sooner I can go to bed. Let’s face it, we spent 8 hours in the car today with cramped knees in a sea of McDonald wrappers and rather then get the romantic walk on the beach I was hoping for, we were in a florescent-lit windowless room talking about strength and persistence.
Let me tell you about strength. When a 200 pound man falls asleep on you and you see the drool river a-comin,’ you find strength. And when you get snuggled in at last just as he finds himself with a hard on, you come to witness persistence.
I get out of bed, and put my sweatpants on. (Okay, they’re really his sweatpants but they’re unofficially mine.) I dig through all my fabulous outfits packed, now wrinkled, and find something to cover the stench of an unsatisfying night. Sitting outside of a cheap hotel in a plastic chair with 4 airplane-sized plastic bottles in your lap really puts things in perspective. Certainly, this isn’t Cinderella’s castle.
Not yet, at least, as I open a fifth.