My legs feel heavy and I want to go home. My ass is numb, and I want to go home. Alcohol and nicotine pulsing through my brain, and I want to go home. I wonder if anyone’s ever overdosed on nicotine. It seems unlikely but not impossible. I’ve been sitting on this curb for 3 hours, trying to sober up, and I want to go home. People still shuffling in and out of the house from where I’d just come, still trying to reach the mystical plateau. That tiny cliff at that top of the giant hill that is just enough but not too much. Everyone chasing the light while hanging out in the dark. Everyone on the same fabled conquest of substance; trying to get it without letting it get you. Isn’t it funny that we all go out and push, push, push to get to the point that I’m at now, and then all we want is to go back down, walk backwards down that hill so we can get back to the familiar?
I vaguely remember calling a taxi a few hours ago but hadn’t been able to convince myself that it was time to go, it was time to stop doing shots, time to quit doing lines in the bathroom; but I’d missed my chance. I’d probably missed my only chance to get back to the only place I wanted to be right now. Safe and warm, curled up on my bathroom floor. I hear car doors opening and closing. I hear engines starting. Why am I not friends with those people and why am I not leaving with them? Lying down might be a good idea, the spins have taken hold and mixed with the taste of what must have been 100 cigarettes and whatever I’d been drinking in there, it all begins to blur.
We all tell ourselves while we’re punishing our bodies to free our minds that it’ll be a good story, it’ll be something that will make our friends laugh, regardless of how awful the things we did were to get it. Right now, I don’t give a fuck about my friends or what they’re going to say when I tell them about how awful I feel. I don’t give a fuck because I can’t; I’m focused too hard on not freezing to death. I start to think about the snow on my back, and the cold burning feeling on my skin. If the snow was still melting on my skin, I must be alright. The house behind me is still full of people. I wonder if they’re ever going to stop. The sun will come up soon. It has to. I wonder if that’s the signal everyone inside is waiting for. The sun is up, we have to leave now.
I sit up because my back is soaking wet. The cold had felt good when I first laid down in it, now it was just another reason I needed to leave. I try to stand but decide it’s a bad idea and sit back down. My ass feeling like it was separated from it’s long lost twin and then reunited. Inside may have been the better option. Thinking about it now I don’t know why I came out here. Did I think that if I just came out and sat down that somehow, through some sort of magic, someone would come and take me home?
I can’t breathe all that well through my nose, it’s gotten worse as the night has worn on. The lines I’d done with that girl in the bathroom weren’t helping my current situation. She’d led me in there holding my hand. I thought I was going to get laid. The reality of the situation was completely different. At the time it had all been about pushing the limits, I was fine then. Barely drunk. What’s better than a pick me up? What I know now is that it wasn’t a pick me up. It wasn’t what I had thought it was at all. I ended up doing a small line of Oxycontin on the bathroom counter. This doesn’t mix well with the amount of booze I had been drinking. I knew this wasn’t the best way to keep the party going, but I couldn’t help myself. Oh what I’d do to go back in time. My legs feel heavy, and I want to go home. My ass is numb, and I want to go home.
The house is surrounded by tall pines in all directions. I know this because when I wandered out to piss earlier I’d almost gotten lost on my way back in. It’s funny the details that don’t transfer over from sober to inebriated. I walked up the front steps and noticed the tall pines and hell, I’d even driven through them on my way up here. I mention this up because I’ve already thought about just walking out of here, but I’m almost positive I’ll end up as one of those people you laugh at on the news who is found 50 feet from a highway frozen at the bottom of a tree. My subconscious is trying to kill me, and I want to go home. I feel disconnected from everything, and I want to go home. The sky over the mountains is turning purple, cold darkness is giving way to light. The sun is making it’s way west. The lights on the fronts of the houses are fading, no longer the only thing providing light in the infinite darkness that is this night. I feel my stomach beginning to figure out that it’s only sifting through different types of alcohol and maybe some jell-o from those terrible jell-o shots. I’m almost certain that it’s getting ready to break free of me and find a better owner. Someone who takes care of it.
It seems like things have gotten quiet. I can barely hear the music inside. I was almost positive that someone would call the cops and I’d be waking up tomorrow in some county jail with ten other drunks standing around waiting to be released back into the wild. I’d almost welcome it right now. A night in the drunk tank for the ability to still feel my fingers. I want to stand up. I want to go back inside. I know I could at least find a small corner somewhere to lay down and just sleep all this off. I am soaked to the bone, the curb I’m sitting on isn’t getting any softer, and I want to go home. I can barely feel my legs anymore and my only thoughts are about my bed and how warm my house must be, and I want to go home.
There’s no sound now. There is nothing I can see moving around me. I feel my eyelids begin to feel heavy. I want to sleep. I want to just sleep it off. I’ll wake up in a couple hours and be sober enough to get home. I’ll be sober enough to be able to know where I am. I just… want… to…. sleep.
Tyson Perry blogs his short stories at tysonshorts.blogspot.com