When I Need A Pick Me Up, by my friend Ryan King

Friday, March 6, 2009

These Friends Of Mine ...

So I'm on the outs again with Grim. Last Saturday night I told him and the group that I didn't know who I was going to see Watchmen with because I had a few groups of friends who were extending invites. Some of them are the New York Geeks, about whom I blogged when the New York Comic Con came last month and dinner and fun was had and pictures were taken. Another group is my longtime ago D&D group when we used to game in the building overlooking Central Park South (good times--until the DM had a hissy and kicked all of us out of his apartment one night, never to game again).

So there was the lure of new friends, the lure of old friends, and the comfort of current friends to choose from. Plus MFTD wants to see it with me too, so I invited him to come with me and as soon as I figured out which one one of these groups of friends. He said yes, which was cool. So which one to choose?

I decided on the current friends, which includes Grim, and informed them that MFTD was going to come so we needed a time and place--which we hadn't decided on yet (although the other friendgroups had).

Then this morning I get a phone message from Grim who said he had heard negative reviews from people who liked the original graphic novel so we should think about changing our plans.

And I'm like, what the hell? It's bad enough that he gets to decided what the group is doing, but now he's going to decide that the group is not going because HE heard negative reviews?!? What the hell are we, totally without our own brains?!?

So I called him back and got his message system, in which I informed him by voicemail that 1) Surely he's not making a decision based on what someone else thinks, and 2) jerking me around is one thing which I can handle, but it's not okay to jerk me and the friend I want to bring to the movie as well. AND another friend I was thinking of bringing.

And let me add here, ladies and gentlemen... I had also invited The Past Girl yesterday night to come with us on Saturday. It was another "friends' gathering" which she seemed most comfortable with before. I mean, I did have to try again, didn't I? When my courage came back? And she was receptive enough last night as we traded texts, but she ended up putting me off again and said she'd give me the answer today. Which I still haven't received. Which is just enough to tell me that she's too nice to tell me to stop asking her.

So yeah, I was pissed with life in general and with Grim and the power he kept asserting over me. I should never have chosen them to see the movie with. I should have known they'd yank the football away just when I was about to kick it. Or I should say GRIM would.

So I went to the gym and while I was busy, you know what happened? He called my phone and left the following message; "Consider yourself off the invite--you and your 'friends.' "

Ain't that a bitch? What are we, twelve????? He's effectively kicking me off the playground because 1) I differ with his opinion and 2) I have other friends than him?!? Are we THAT petty? Are we THAT immature?!? Why ... why yes, I think we ARE! Does he REALLY expect me to count on him alone for friendship when he's bound to say we all shouldn't go to a movie because HE heard negative reviews?!


I'm not going to respond to his message. I'm not texting or emailing or anything. The next time "they" want to get together with me, Grim can be the one to approach me and tell me how he's made their minds up for them to re-invite me into the group.

But who the hell wants to be a part of a group like that anyway?

Not me anymore.

EFF them.

Big stupid bully.

And to think I once took HIS advice about how to be a friend! Just because he helped me move furniture twice and lent me a buttload of money, and is a mancrush of mine, doesn't mean I have to be his friend forever.

He owes me an apology. I want it. Or I'm OUT.


Alan said...

Meanwhile, no response from The Past Girl since Thursday. That's pretty obvious, innit?

GrizzBabe said...

Yeah, the balls in her court now.

Trixie said...

You really don't need friends like that. I was going to suggest..go see the film 3 times with the three different groups! Now it can be just two.

Alan said...

And that's just what I did, Trix! I went yesterday with MFTD, and today with my old D&D buddies. Great times both times. Grim missed out on having my company. Too bad for him.

Scott said...

He sounds like a control freak and a total nightmare. You did the right thing. Don't even get upset about it. He had no right, so don't dignify it by getting upset.

Alan said...

Well Grizz, she texted me on Sunday apologizing for forgetting that I had invited her. She did this because on Sunday early, I texted her to tell her that she probably wouldn't have liked the movie anyway, and I wished her a good day. So ... she "forgot" that I invited her. Okies...! But I can't seem to stop trying as long as she doesn't actually tell me "No, Alan. Do not ask me anymore." My brain keeps telling me, there's a chance I'll hit the right combination of asking her out and she'll say yes. My next step is to ask her to pick something to do and let me come tag along. That's me avoiding asking her full out for a date. I want to try to keep it simple and unthreatening. I want to get close to her and then let it progress from there. And I keep trying because I believe she could be perfect for me. Especially if she's avoiding telling me to bug off. I need someone as considerate as that. Someone who wouldn't just shoot me down. And if I were actually making her life hard right now, I really think I'll make it all better once she gets to know me.

See? I do have some confidence in myself. I do believe I've grown in the past five years. I do believe I'm a good guy.

So Scott, yeah, he's a total control freak. It's the other side of his coin. A friend in the group, call him The Cop, who Grim may have confided in because they've been friends for twenty-thirty years, tapped me on how he was doing because The Cop is away in another state right now and he cares about Grim's loss of his on/off girlfriend to cancer. So I spilled the whoile scenario, and The Cop pleaded Grim's case. He confirmed what I also know to be true. Grim is a stubborn, rigid, inflexible Alpha's Alpha--to the point of psychosis. In ALL the years that The Cop has known him, Grim has never shown emotional "weakness." But behind the control freakishness and the stupid temper and his extreme Alpha-maleness is a boatload of crazy compassion. Grim has done it for The Cop and he's done it for me. And he'll do it for anyone he cares about.

You want to know who grim is like? Go see Watchmen. Grim is Rorschach.

So on Monday, Grim put out the call, asking what we were doing on the next game day. When it had already been established that I was going to take up the helm and run my campaign. But it was Grim, so he wasn't going to ask me personally if I was going to "come back to the group" since I ditched them on Saturday.

So I stewed, and I thought, and I simmered--The Cop's words ringing in my head. The Cop wanted to play. And the others wanted to play. I had to ask myself--would I let Grim decide for them anymore?

My answer was no. I responded to the group. They wanted to play? I asked them to remind me where we were. They chimed in beautifully. They WANT to REALLY play! They remembered details that I LONG forgot. And then, in chimed Grim. With a haughty recap from his character's perspective full of humor and memory and enthusiasm.

I gave him an out and he took it. We play this Saturday. And I will once again overlook Grim's boorish, immature behavior. Because it is what it is. The Cop has been putting up with it for 30 years. I think I can do the same.

And maybe one day, I'll therapize him out of the blue, and show him something that he needs to see.

And maybe some day, he'll see it.

GrizzBabe said...

What kind of childhood did Grim have that he now can't show emotional weakness? How incredibly tiring it must be to always have to put up a front.

But you're a good man, Alan. You did the right thing.

Also, I know of one couple where the husband was gentle but persistent in pursuing his now wife. She had to tell him to back off a few times and he had to settle for friendship for a good long while, but she eventually came around.

Just try to be her friend at this point. Maybe once she's had the opportunity to feel comfortable around you and to think of you in "that way", things might start to change. In other words, let her set the pace. But make sure the door is open if she ever decides to walk through it.

Coaster Punchman said...

"What are we, 12?" Apparently, we are!