So before I got sick with...dysentery... (wink, wink) I was able to go to Ben's meet-and-greet for his 20-year high school reunion on Friday night.
Luckily, this time, his high school girlfriend (who wasn't even in his grade, but crashed the 10-year reunion and was trying to hit on him - it was pathetic) didn't show up, so that was a plus. And it was hilarious. All of the wives that Ben's friends had been married to 10 years ago were gone, with new replacements. And lots of bitterness on the part of his friends toward the exes. One of his buddies, we'll call him Roger, who we've seen a few times over the years when he had business and was passing through SLC (when we lived there), has this huge Santa Claus beard.
I was like, "What's with the beard, Roger?"
He's all, "It's a 'Screw You' to the ex-wife."
"Oh, she hates beards?"
"But what does it matter if you aren't married anymore? Isn't that hot and itchy?"
"I'm going to wear this beard until my son is 18 and I don't have to pay child support anymore."
"How old is your son?"
"Um, oh. Okay... Your new wife is okay with the beard?"
This other guy, we'll call him Nate, was talking to us about some kind of personality test online. He's like, "I'm a PTSDEG. It means I'm like this and like that and blah blah."
"How interesting! I love that kind of stuff!" I said. (I really do. I just can't remember what his initials are or what they mean.)
"Yeah, it's taught me so much. Like, just by looking at you and your body language, I can tell you're really introverted."
"Um, not really the word people use to describe me..."
"And hold up your palm toward your face, with your fingers together."
"I can tell from the length of your ring finger that you are really, really good at math. Am I right?"
"Um, noooo...I'm pretty crappy at math."
"Well, maybe you think you're crappy, but you're really not."
This same guy, when he introduced us to his girlfriend, said, "This is my partner."
Ben goes, "Like, your partner that you work with?"
I stared at Ben. "No, babe, like, his life partner."
It was so funny.
I was having a really good time - I love conversing with people, even though they're strangers. It's just my deal. (So, no, I am NOT an introvert.) Everyone was so friendly and outgoing and really interested in Ben and me and our life... And I was interested in them and their lives! I was like, "These are great people!!" I had this deep heart-to-heart with a classmate of Ben's that had just left her abusive husband of 18 years and moved home with her grandma and started a dog-grooming business... It was great.
But after only a couple of hours of chit-chat, Ben was like, "Well, we'd better get home. Gotta put the kids to bed..."
I looked at him like he was crazy. "But Benny, your mom said she'd do that! This is so fun!"
"Eh, I'm tired. We'll have fun tomorrow. Bye, everybody!!" he yelled over his shoulder as he dragged me out the door.
I punched Ben in the arm when we got in the car. "Ben, why on earth would you want to leave so early to go home and put the kids to bed? I'd much rather talk to people than put our kids to bed!! I HATE putting our kids to bed!!"
"I was getting uncomfortable. Everyone was drunk."
"What? No they weren't!"
"Oh, they totally were."
"Well, I mean, they had drinks they were drinking from, but I thought they were just 'buzzed,'" I said, using air quotes. "They weren't, like, falling all over and yelling and laughing really loudly or anything..."
"Kar, only drunk people in the movies are like that. These guys were drunk. I know them. They aren't usually this outgoing and friendly and fun."
I was shocked.
And then I made a little connection from long ago. From my days in high school. When we had basketball games, or hung out to play board games, or watched movies as groups of friends, people always asked me if I was drunk. And I never was. (I actually have never tasted alcohol. It just wasn't a huge temptation for me.) And I was always like, "Why would you think I was drunk???"
And now I get it.
OR. Here's another example. I was in drama club in high school, and one of the parts I had to play was a drunken wench (a Shakespearean play). And I asked all my friends, "How do I DO this? I don't know how to play a drunk person!!" They all responded with, "Just act like yourself! You always act like you're drunk!"
So, apparently, being jovial and outgoing and spazzy is the characteristic of being drunk. Good to know. Good to know. Maybe this is why I'm so bad at first impressions...people must think I'm totally drunk all the time. Hmmm.