I can’t believe I fucking lost.
I storm out of the room with the kind of ferociousness you would expect to see out of a caged lion who is ready to eat. I’m not particularly athletic but I hopped a couch that sat between myself and the exit with the grace and precision of an Olympic hurdler.
At that moment I needed to get out of there. I needed to be away from all those eyes fixated on me.
I stormed down the hall toward my dorm room, entered it and then slammed the door as hard as I could to show everyone how angry I was.
I couldn’t believe it.
This was all mine. No one else’s but mine. Everyone in that room knew it was mine.
But I lost.
And I lost bad too.
In college I didn’t drink – to be fair I still don’t – so going out to a bar for Twisted Tuesday or Shitfaced Sunday didn’t have the same appeal to me as my dorm-mates. Did I hope to go out and find ladies? Of course! But there is this feeling I have inside that prevents me from attempting to make a move on a girl that is intoxicated, it’s call a conscience. And I wasn’t in a frat so going for it anyway wasn’t something I was going to do.
Most of my nights at bars resulted in me standing by a bar, making awkward eye contact with girls and then looking at the floor for the rest of the night.
When I recognized there was a new stain on one of the pool tables at a bar we frequented I knew that I needed to make a change so I decided to stay in most nights.
Also, un-diagnosed depression may have been an issue too.
We will never truly know.
When my friends did go out that meant I had the entire suite to myself and I took full advantage of it. I would do whatever I wanted like sit on the couch in the common area and watch episodes of To Catch A Predator and that’s pretty much it.
After that marathon was over I would find my way into my room where I would throw the TV on, work my forearms to increase speed and make loud grunting noises that would all end with my wiping myself down with a towel. Guitar Hero gave me quite the workout.
I’m not proud to admit this but I got to the point where I could play songs without looking at the screen at all.
I think that should’ve been the sign that I was depressed.
I was probably the top ranked Guitar Hero player in the dorm, if not campus at that point in time, which was a glaring neon sign with an arrow pointing to me that said “this guy doesn’t have any kind of social life. Stay away, Ladies!”
And they did.
I didn’t care though. At that time I was in love with my friend’s girlfriend who liked me for me. We enjoyed the same interests, we both played Guitar Hero, we both stayed in at night and grew closer to one another forging a strong bond that eventually led to mutual feelings and things being said to me like, “another place and another time we could be together.”
Well in two minutes it will be a different time and if we go out into the hallway it will technically be a different place so I don’t understand the issue.
Clearly I’m not always the best friend.
Sometimes she’d catch me standing by a window looking out into the parking lot and she’d ask, “what are you looking at?”
And I’d say “I’m looking for a DeLorean.”
None ever showed up.
One day she came up to me and said, “Hey! Guess what?”
You broke up and we can run away together? I thought to myself.
“We are having a Guitar Hero tournament!”
“Sweet.” I forced out of my gritted teeth.
Then it hit me. If I win the tournament and that $50 Taco Bell grand prize I could woo her with my skills and we can run away together and eat…uh…Taco Bell!
I’m a helpless romantic.
Finally the day arrived and a mess of college students stormed our dorm to participate in a tournament that I was destined to win.
I caught my love’s eye and she smiled and gave me a thumbs up. This was my chance and I wasn’t going to screw this up.
The tournament kicked off and I flew through my opponents leaving a wake of people with much better social live’s behind me to sit back and watch my hours, weeks, months of practice come flying through the animated figures on the screen as I mashed the guitar-shaped controller with ferocity narrowly escaping defeat at the hands of a valiant opponent.
I turned around to see her smile at me, she was proud, my heart was beating out of my chest. I was winning her over.
Then it happened.
I was in the finals and I muffed a note in the beginning of “Freebird.” Of course it was “Freebird.” The quintessential epic rock song that taunted musicians – not that I was one – around the globe forever with drunken requests being hurled at them while they performed onstage no matter how far removed they were from Lynyrd Skynyrd.
It was the perfect amalgamation of wasted-time and love-lorn combined in a cauldron of piping hot regret. I did all I could to muster up the amount of points needed to overcome this devastating mistake and I couldn’t. I felt the mood in the room shift and I knew I was losing but I had to do everything I could to win.
I could kick loose this power cord. I could punch this guy in the face. I could run out of here crying.
For some reason option three was what I chose. I slammed down the guitar on the table, barely shook my opponents hand and then hopped a couch with the grace and precision of an Olympic hurdler.
If I did have any kind of social life before tonight I surely committed social suicide with this tirade.
I slammed my door and hid-out trying to calm myself down.
There was a knock at the door.
I got up and opened it and it was her…and him…and then I looked outside to see if there was a DeLorean.