It’s always good to see friends that you haven’t seen in a long time. Talking about family and old stuff you did is nice. But it always leads to the question, “So, what are you doing now?”
How am I supposed to answer that?
Option 1: Pure honesty. “Well, I kinda had a breakdown a few years ago, and ever since then, the federal government has been paying me to stay away from people. Every now and then I get my shit together enough to put out a book. Honestly, Paul gets my shit together enough for us to put out a book. If there were no Paul, I wouldn’t have remembered to brush my hair today. By the way, don’t look at the back of my head. Also, I’m not a good role model for children what with sleeping for 20 hours at a time and all the suicide attempts. Oh, you didn’t know about those? Yeah. The band-aids on my neck aren’t a kooky fashion statement. But I haven’t thought about killing myself for, oh, weeks now at least. Did you know we have 6 cats? Oh, you have to leave now? So soon?”
Option 2: Sort of honesty. “I’m writing full-time now. It’s good, but I miss being around people. I’ve had some health issues, but I’m doing better now.”
Option 3: Straight up lie. “Well, our books have done so great that we’ve been able to pretty much retire. We’re looking into a second home now. The band-aids? I’m having a little work done. I’m getting to that age, you know.”
Jenny Lawson‘s book about mental illness needs to come out already so I can just hand copies to people and go, “Pages x thru z pretty much cover me.” That would make it so much easier. Hopefully, I can get a bulk discount. Or maybe she’ll be nice and offer a crazy people discount. I would qualify.
I dreamed we found 2 cats who then had 18 kittens. So, we had effectively found 20 cats. Paul was horrified. I was surprisingly calm about it. They were all oreos. Luckily, it was just a dream.