It’s a quarter after one …

It’s a quarter after one, I’m not the least bit drunk and the only thing I really need right now is a slice of Pontillo’s pizza.

I’m a simple girl with simple needs.

I went out tonight with my sister and her friends to Richmonds, a bar/restaurant owned by a friend from high school. I confess: I was excited to go out. I mean, how often do I go out in public and talk and have fun? (We figured it out tonight: not counting the reunion and McGraws last week, my last venture out was last July 2011, when we went to Shamrock Jacks to see my uncle play.)

I know, I know. I talk a big social butterfly talk. But I’m really just a little caterpillar who prefers to be snuggled in a cocoon.

Don’t get me wrong. I had fun tonight. It was fabulous to see our friends who own the bar; they’re fun, gracious hosts. I got to spend some time with someone I haven’t spent actual time (as opposed to Facebook time) with since … well, last summer. And my sister’s friends are also fun, and we had some laughs with (well, at the expense of) a group holding a get together in the bar.

It’s just that tonight’s fun felt a little forced, if that makes sense. What I really wanted to do? Have a beer, kick back someplace quiet, talk about something meaningful (like a book I’m reading or whether zebras are black with white stripes or vice versa), eat food and then go home,  put on my jammies and watch Big Bang Theory reruns.

I know. I bitch a lot about getting over my “under a rock” mentality and how I need human interaction. But guess what? Human interaction is overrated.

I like being out and being social and having fun. But I remember now why I only do that once or twice a year. It’s exhausting! I don’t know how people do it weekend after weekend or night after night!

I guess I’d rather laugh myself silly watching “New Girl” with Bandit while we eat goldfish crackers and I paint my toenails. I confess that I like not talking to people for days, because talking to people exhausts me (and I expect for some people that when I talk it exhausts them, too, but that’s another story).

I read in a book once that introverts build up social energy by being alone, and they spend it in the company of others. Extroverts build up social energy being with people, and then they spend it alone.

If that’s true, I’m clearly an introvert. When I have a reserve of social energy, I’m the life of the party. When I don’t, it’s all I can do to carry on a conversation with someone I don’t know (and even with people I do know) – which is kind of how tonight went. It was fun for a while, but it soon felt like I was forcing myself to be charming and witty when I had nothing charming or witty to say.

When things get to that point, I just open my mouth and let words come out so that there’s no dead air.  Yeah, that’s really pretty. And since I’m not even really paying attention to what I’m saying, I have no idea what’s going to come back to haunt me later. (“Really? I said that out loud?” … yeesh, I need a muzzle.)

I’ve been invited out for three more outings in the next three days and I’m going to have to decline them all.

But that’s OK, because guess what? I realize finally that when being alone is my choice, it’s OK to chose solitude. It’s when I’m alone because there isn’t any other option that I have a problem.

Tomorrow, I’m grabbing one of the dogs and hitting the place I feel most comfortable: the cemetery. I need the company of strangers for a while, strangers who don’t need me to carry on a conversation. (Although maybe we’ll stop by and chat with Lottie for a while. Wouldn’t want her to feel neglected.)

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