Thursday, November 12, 2009

slip of the tongue

There are things said that can never be unsaid. This is a universal certainty, and we have all heard them or said them. We have all been the perpetrators and victims of them. And usually they aren’t lies, they are the truth.

Sometimes the truth needs to be told. We need to tell the truth to either be honest with ourselves, or honest with someone else. We need to get these burdens off our chest, the secrets that sit in our stomach. The guilt that presses against our heart.

But sometimes we need to keep them to ourselves. Some truths should just remain untold. Sometimes, instead of telling someone you are in love with them, you should just take a drag from your cigarette. Sometimes, instead of telling someone they aren’t ever going to measure up to their expectations, you should just buy them a pint of beer. Sometimes we should just let honesty fester inside us, because honesty isn’t always a good thing. Honesty is just a way to balance out the lies we live off of. And most times, it’s those lies that keep us going.

I try to be honest with myself, but like everyone else, I have to maintain my delusions in order to survive. I have to have these fanciful thoughts, these romantic aspirations, these beautiful reveries, in order to move ahead in life. Without them I have nothing to look forward to, nothing to fool myself with, nothing to keep me running. They are like the oil in my engine, and without them I might break down.

But recently I’ve been on an honesty kick. It’s worked for a while, but last night it bit me on the ass. I told a girl how I felt for her. That my heart, my delicate, brittle heart, was bursting for her. And this was the wrong thing to say.

Because we had more than just romantic notions for one another, we were close. We were friends. We talked all the time. We played scrabble on line. We made jokes. We got each other’s jokes. We like the same TV shows. We like quiet silences.

Last night I should have been quiet. Silent. We would have enjoyed that more.

But I'm on an honesty kick. And I had to get it off my chest. So I told her. I told her. And I don’t know where it will take us. If I have ruined everything or not. But I told her because it is how I feel and I would rather her know now then in five years in a sappy letter that begins with “how have you and the kids been getting along?”

So yeah, I fucked up. And I don’t think she feels the same way. At least not how I feel. So where is our friendship now?

I fill the void of her, unconsciously, with other women, with alcohol, with my studies and writing and any pharmaceuticals I can get my hands on. But when all is said and done, and I sit alone and the truths of the world begin to sink inside the hollowness of my gut, it wasn’t cigarette smoke that filled me up, it was her. So I told her.

And I shouldn’t have.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I admire your ability to lay yourself bare. I think it's an important aspect of writing that makes an immediate connection with your reader. Whenever I attempt it, I feel completely retarded as if my emotions at the time were inappropriate in the first place and admitting to them, a weakness.
I will continue to read your stuff. It's really good.
-Richmond Tetzlaff

4:25 PM EDT  

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:gray matters: by jkg is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.
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