Afew years ago a great friend of mine, Reba (I consider her a sister), said that she believed that the tough act that I put on was just that, an act. There might be something to that. The fact of the matter is that, I am quite adept at the act of fighting, and I’ve put more than my share of people in the hospital for retaliation purposes. So at least THAT part of it’s true.
But, as for the rest of it, she’s right.
It is an act, a facade designed to keep people away from me so that I don’t have to feel like I need to protect myself. I’m just as vulnerable as the next bald guy, I’m just better at hiding it. Fact is, I have my down moments of insecurity and frailty just like everyone else. Everyone has their own tales of people fucking them over, and I could argue that I have a few more Professor Moriaritys than the next guy, but that’s really just an excuse.
I don’t take emotional pain very well. I suppress it, I refuse to deal with it. I tell myself that I simply don’t have time for it. I don’t care about rejection from those I don’t give a shit about, but to be rejected by someone that I’ve opened up to is a mind-fuck for me. And every time it happens, it feels like the first. A comment made by the right person will eat at me for weeks, though I show no outward signs of distress. I’m good at that. (Just for the record, Reba’s comment didn’t hurt me at all. It was a comment that I remembered a few years later. Nothing more. =) )
My childhood taught me to keep that shit to myself, because no one wants to hear it, but even more no one could use it against me. My wife is the sole exception to this, but for some reason, I don’t feel I could share all of my bullshit inadequacies with her. She has her own demons to deal with, and I feel like I have to help her shoulder those. I’m sure I don’t and she’s well enough equipped to deal with them herself, but I do it anyway because that’s just my way. Or maybe I just to do it to avoid my own issues. Whatever.
I’ve always been this way. I’ll suffer silently and allow you to suffer openly so that you know someone is there for you. My wife is there for my melt downs (and there have been many, including the one meltdown leading to a suicide attempt that ultimately brought us together), and that’s all that really matters to me.
I say shitty things to people and do shitty things to the same people, because I simply don’t want many people around me. I can associate with people online via Facebook and Twitter and somehow the idea that I have a block button gets me through when people say stupid shit. This is a better alternative, in my opinion than knowing them in person and wanting to shoot them in the face because they pissed me off. Prison sucks.
Reba also made a comment about my appearance being part of the act. She worded it a lot more beautifully than I just did, but I don’t really remember what she said because I had 3/4 of a bottle of Bacardi in me and was about to watch Jackass 3D. “Get Bane drunk then put him in public.” Seemed like a great idea. All I remember of that night is drinking, passing out and waking in the theater with a 10 foot cock on the screen and texting my wife.
On the appearance point, I have to respectfully disagree with her.
My appearance is that of a 30-ish bald guy with piercings and a very prominent tattoo. “The very definition of hardcore” as another friend of mine put it. What the fuck ever. My head is bald for two reasons, every male on my mother’s side is bald, and when I was 17, I made a bet that it would grow back if I shaved it.
Joke’s on me. It fucking didn’t. Fuck you genetics.
The piercings are really simple. I had had my ears pierced before and never really put too much to it because it was done by a chick I was trying to sleep with (unsuccessfully, I might add) with a gun that didn’t hurt. When I decided to pierce myself, years later, I reopened those holes with a safety pin. When the pain hit me I literally got rock hard. My penis swelled to proportions unseen before (and by this time I was an unabashed whore, so I thought I had seen it at it’s largest) and when the pin made its way to the other side of my ear, I climaxed. I wish I were kidding.
Since then I’ve moved on to other piercings. At one point I had no less that 11 piercings on my head, all done with the same safety pin. even did a YouTube video of myself piercing the cartilage of one of my ears. And yes, I climaxed at the end of the video.
I did the lip piercing because I saw that Joey Jordison from Slipknot had one and thought it would look cool. I did it in the center, but then had to take it out, because whenever I would drink through a straw, I would dribble on myself like a god damned stroke patient. So I moved it to it’s current location and there it’s remained ever since. It has since become the lip-equivalent of my wedding rings, when I take it off, I feel naked. My wife joked at one point that my lip ring held my personality. I feel like it sometimes. I feel like if I take the lip ring off, that I get all docile and domesticated.
My tattoo on my right forearm is a picture I found on 4chan, of a faceless guy in a suit with a smoking gun, laughing. That is what I pictured myself to be at the time, and I suppose I still do. It was a gift for my 30th birthday, having never gotten one before. I rationalized it as the manifestation of the 2 sides of my psyche. The “John” part is the suit. The “Bane” part is the smoking gun, and the eyeless, laughing face. Or, it could just be a picture I found on the internet, devoid of meaning. You decide.
I don’t know what I wanted to accomplish by writing this. Maybe all I really wanted to do is dispel the myth that I’m this well put together person. Fact of the matter is, I’m just as damaged as the rest of you. I’ve just made survival an art form. A bloody, fucking bullshit hassle of an art form. Because, in reality, the only differences between me and the 14 year old doing a livejournal bitching about her college life where Daddy pays for everything is;
- 18 more years of experience fucking my life up
- and the serious honest-to-goodness fact that I really haven’t given a shit in a long time.
For better, or for worse (but mostly worse), this is me. But, I’m trying to be better.