Last Saturday was horrendous: not only did lover drag me to Jaipur, he also forced me to wear a bra. What a cruel, I know. That, however, is not the point. Early into the night, as we were seated at Jack’s, lover asked why I was being “so quiet”. Not wanting to confess that I had been thinking about WarBook and cephalopod footprint fossils and counting bases and eggshells ON A SATURDAY NIGHT OUT WITH HIM, I merely gave him a shrug and said that I was getting impatient waiting for my drink. After more minutes of silence from me, he asked if I could see myself interacting with the other girls who were at the table with us.
I looked at the girls (still thinking about WarBook and cephalopod footprint fossils and counting bases and eggshells), looked at lover, looked down at my hands, and then looked back at lover. I sheepishly shook my head ‘no’.
He laughs, quite condescendingly, then proceeds to tell me that I’ve been corrupted by my flatmates. And that I’m no longer normal.
Now the thing is, I am very aware that my friends and I are one dysfunctional bunch and that we tend to influence each other’s behaviors and personalities more than we care to admit. But I see myself to be the normalest and most reserved among us because unlike them, I still have my inhibitions. Thus, I am actually normal…when compared to them.
This doesn’t really pose as a problem because save for lover, they’re the only people I hang out with anyway. I’ve long given up on trying to make friends out of my co-workers (those people who give me blank stares and surreptitiously shuffle away whenever I say hi to them) and all my college friends seem to be pretty determined not to invite me to their little collegy reunions for fear that I might do something not normal and embarrass them. I mean Christ!— four years have passed since I humiliated Clem at her 18th birthday party by chasing her around barefoot and shrieking “Titi! Titi!”. Get over it and forgive me?
Moving forward, I like to lead myself into thinking that I’ve hit the jackpot with my current friends. Not only are they totally cool and amazingly intelligent people, they also fill the two qualifications I need in friends: one, they have to be borderline alcoholics; two, they have to live in my area. Yup, I’m happy with my pals. But being told by the person you love (and who supposedly loves you) that you’re NOT normal? It kinda makes you stop, think, and re-assess.
So when I woke up on Sunday, it was with great resolve that I shall be normal. Or attempt to be normal. After failing to bug the lover to a state of consciousness (because I was bored on a Sunday morning and needed someone to talk to), I got out of bed, went into the bathroom, sat on the toilet, and started making a mental list of steps to take towards normalcy. I named the list “STEPS TO TAKE TOWARDS NORMALCY”.
Twelve seconds later, it hit me that normal people don’t do what I was doing.
Feeling guilty for failing so quickly, I went back to bed and prayed. I figured that that’s what normal people do on Sundays. And then I carried on with my list:
STEPS TO TAKE TOWARDS NORMALCY (rough draft)
1. I will stop speaking LOLkittynese. There is nothing more not normal than bad grammar and misspelling such basic words like ‘why’ (whai), ‘like’ (liek), ‘there’ (thurr), and ‘liar’ (lier).
2. I will not be pre-occupied by WarBook 95% of the time. Not only is it unhealthy, it’s just so…geeky, and in a bad way. The other day, I impulsively gave lover a hug and instead of telling him how sexy he is, I said: “WARBOOK!!!!”
3. Find a new less-shitty and worth-the-stress-and-exhaustion job.
(Huh, where’d that come from? Look, emergency evacuation!)
4. No more cracking jokes that only cause people to stare at me in horror. I will normalify my sense of humor and never again shall I think that randomly inserting Sheryl Cruz into a conversation is funny.
And that’s my super short list. I know it’s not much, but I’m kinda not sure if having a list with more than four items in it is normal?