Sunday, January 27, 2013
New Sensitivities - Thoughts On Having Less and Less in Common With the World
The rattle of bulk-bin pop music over the speakers greeted me as I bought two tickets for two beers. I have really been trying to lessen my drinking over the past few weeks, and so I thought - "Well, I'll have a couple of pints with dinner, then call it a night."
After $4 worth of the worst pour of a Guinness I have ever seen in my life (us Guinness drinkers are a picky bunch!), I hesitantly began to make the rounds.
Much of the party came as shocking to me, and only a few years ago, it probably never would have. The girls I knew from work - the nice, girl-next-door types - were suddenly transformed into people I didn't know. Drunk before the party had even begun, decked out in dresses that looked more like lingerie outfits than anything, heels as high as the ceiling; and the guys, drunk as well, prowling about the venue and flirting in between drinks. I had lost interest in the event as soon as it had begun.
Now, years ago, this would have been fantastic. The old me would have been drunk as a skunk, enjoying the flirtatious atmosphere, and living as though tomorrow was a very distant thing. But last night, I simply was bored. I had trouble even making conversation - it was all so everyday, and none of it interested me.
By this, I do not mean to come off like some hipster who sat in the corner and was too cool to talk to anyone. I simply am clumsily trying to explain how I felt last night, surrounded by all the things that used to be the bread-and-butter of life. Without Christ in my own life, this used to be all I had in a sense - a kind of misguided Epicureanism that knows the "gods" or God exist and simply don't care, and life is about jumping from pleasure to pleasure.
It sounds stupid, I know. But I was saddened to see so many of the girls I know at work cheapen themselves, sell themselves short, to simply give in to the whims of fashion. I was tired of hearing the conversations about work and little else. Prizes consisting of more TV's, more gadgets, piles of chocolates and sweets, and all the things that can make us feel better for a short time, or take our minds off of the reality of our own existence.
Needless to say, after those two half-pints of Guinness, I left early and went home to bed. My heart ached for the company of my wife and my puppy, my family. I felt I had nothing more to say, unless I simply drank like a fish and dove in to the frivolity.
I ended up feeling like an old man inside as I drove home around 8 in the evening, laughing a little as I gazed at the car radio clock.
Honestly, I don't know what to make of all this - but much of this kind of partying just doesn't appeal to me anymore. I love a few fine ales with good friends, but last night was something completely different. I almost can't describe it without falling into a kind of Senecan-polemic against it all. But it felt hollow. All I seem to be able to think during these times is, "Is this it?"
I know the inevitable response of "Lighten up Jason" will be forthcoming, and I can understand that too. I do need to lighten up sometimes, I'm sure. I'm not always sitting here stonefaced and serious. I just simply am finding less and less pleasure in the old things that used to be so pleasurable. It's a feeling that I haven't the slightest clue what to do with - it almost feels like I am drying up.