This chemical reaction is unavoidable, my friends. I mean, unless you’re a sociopath, but if you are, then you’ve got other chemical imbalances to deal with. For most of us, though, we are going to go through this chain reaction of addiction, obsession, rejection, and eventual detox, several times throughout our lives. It’s the one drug they can never make illegal, because it can’t be manufactured, bought or sold. It’s woven into our human fabric, as irremovable as our DNA. The primary motivation most people do things is to gain the attention of someone who will give them this high, and that goes for the things we consider “good“ as well as the things we deem punishable by death. This chemical reaction is so strong it turns the previously sane and steady, into crazy, impulsive stalkers. People die every single day at the hand of a high that has begun to sour. There really is no way to prepare yourself for coming down from this kind of a high, and no, it’s not fair, but I hear ice cream and cold showers can help.
Last night I was in the throes of one of these such highs, caught up in the pulse of these same very chemicals soaring through my veins, desperate for a fix. Unable to sate it in the way I desired, I put on my sexy underwear (I only have one piece of “sexy” underwear. It’s a red, demi-cup, push-up bra from Victoria’s Secret that I bought for a scene I had to do in “Acting School” where I had to seduce this fucking gorgeous actor- I’ve never actually worn the bra in any of my real life sexual escapades- okay, “escapades” is a bit misleading…) Anyway, tangents aside, I’ve got on my sexy underwear, my red bra, that is, and I turn on some sexy music and I drink a little more and, yeah, I pull out the camera… on my cell phone… and I begin to take pictures of myself. I push my tits together and I lay on my bed and I sit in front of my full-length mirror and I touch myself and when what’s done is done, I e-mail them to myself. I look at them and I actually feel pretty sexy. I wonder what every man I know would think if I sent one of these pictures to them. I try to imagine each of their reactions, both what they would actually say, and what they would really be thinking, feeling, and doing.
Next, I upload the pictures to an e-mail that I have addressed to myself and I begin to pen a letter to the cause of my latest bout of chemical reactions. In this e-mail I tell him exactly what I am thinking, as plainly as possible. By that I mean, I tell him how glorious I find his dick and that it’s the first dick I haven’t refused to blow, that it’s the first dick I’ve ever hungered for. I tell him I’m not looking for anything serious (a half-truth) and that I want to have sex, a lot of sex, with him. I tell him I have attached some photos of myself to persuade him into my bed. I sign it with X’s and O’s and send it off… to myself. A dry run.
In the morning I look at this e-mail and again contemplate sending it. I’m such a curious little cat. I want to know what his reaction would be, almost as much for my writing purposes (a study of character, so to speak) as for my own personal edification, but I don’t send it and for a few moments I feel really good about this decision and then I regret it and then I feel good again. It’s those damn chemicals screwing with my system, I remind myself. Best not to do anything rash.
The next day I have a dentist appointment. I am supposed to go in and have one of my three wisdom teeth pulled. I am a nervous wreck, of course. The last time I was at the dentist I was getting a filling and I passed out and almost gave my dentist a conniption. I had to talk him into finishing the appointment. So, I get there, and I am sitting in the waiting room waiting, of course, when my dentist walks in.
“Hi.” I say.
“I’m nervous about this.” Says my Dentist.
I laugh at this, because I’m not quite sure how else to react and I half-joke (but not really), “Me too! What a coincidence!”
It’s his turn to laugh now, “Well, I know why you’re nervous, but it’s not normal for me to be nervous.”
“Uh. You’re not really helping me here, doc.”
We all laugh like we’re at some goddamned Comedy show and he disappears behind the curtain, while I wait some more.
Finally, the nurse comes and calls me in. I laugh as soon as she does because- who the hell knows- and she either compliments or insults my hair, hard to tell with the accent. She sets me up in the dental chair and clips on my paper bib. She puts the foreign utensils on a platter next to me and leaves me to wait some more.
I begin thinking that I am probably going to die during this routine procedure. I am going to die a virgin and I think how badly I wish I had someone to have sex with to distract me right then. This is a new coping thought for me. Usually I would want my mother or food… now it’s sex. Look at me, growing up. Shoot.
The dentist walks in with my chart in hand. He smiles and says, “Good news.”
And I think… not bloody likely.
He says, “How about we don’t do this?”
“Uh. Sure,” I say, “but don’t we kind of have to?”
I can tell right at this moment that this dentist is not in the mood to cut into my gums and yank my teeth out with me passing out every two seconds, but I also know that I really need to get my wisdom teeth out because they are crowding my already too crowded teeth and making my gums bleed every time I brush.
He says, “Hang on. Let me look at your chart again and finish up with this other patient.”
He leaves me freaking out. I am not going to be able to convince myself to talk my dentist into cutting these teeth out of me. I mean, I am an actress and a writer so I’m pretty much a professional at getting myself to believe in imaginary circumstances, but this is one real circumstance that I just cannot get behind. I do not have this in me.
So, I sit and I wait…
Eventually he comes back in and says they’ve got an oral surgeon coming in next week who can put me under the sweet sauce and cut out all four at once- I resist the urge to correct him and say “Actually, I only have three” and instead agree that that would likely be for the best. Let’s get the professionals in here.
And off I go on my merry way.
That night, still hung-over on my urge to forget this dental stress by sexing it out and still caught up in a quandary as to whether or not to send this sexy e-mail to my chemical reactor, I decide to go see him in a show he’s in at the local Improv down the street. I battle with myself and argue that I will look desperate or something equally undesirable, but reconcile it with not giving a shit- I’ll do what I want and it’s not about him- or so I tell myself. I just like free comedy- or so I tell myself. Actually, no, that last bit is true.
I get there and I see him and we hug and it is an intimate hug. This other kid comes up and is talking to us and I am introduced and he starts talking up my chemical reactor’s improv skills, saying he’s got “the eyes” on stage and I jest that he’s alright and the kid asks if I’ve seen my chemical reactor’s "bedroom eyes" and I smile coyly and say yes and that they are very nice. We all high-five next because of this and this bit of action has me laughing for days in retrospect at the glorious oddness of it.
We go into the theater and I feel suddenly unsure of where to sit. He is certainly making no effort to invite me to sit with him, so I invite myself. “Can I sit here?” And he says of course I can, then spends the next 15 minutes standing in the back, while I rendezvous with his nicer and more socially accommodating team-mates. He comes back and sits and then they are announced up on stage. The show is good. Funny, mostly. They sit back down and the next team takes the stage. A few times, I feel like he’s looking at me, but maybe not, either way I am enjoying the show and I get a good laugh. The show is over now and we are standing up. He asks me if I am sticking around, but his question is cut off by someone else’s and I never get to answer and I stand awkwardly unsure of answering in delayed time or just leaving. We walk out and I prepare to say goodbye, but he gets caught up in a conversation with someone else on the steps. I wait at the bottom of the steps to say my goodbye, but when he finishes with the conversation, he walks right past me and out to join his group to receive notes. So, I leave and walk quickly home, nearly running. Trying to get as far away from the rejection as I can.
I think to myself how much of an asshole he is, all the while, watching my phone because maybe he will text or call to see where I’ve gone. He doesn’t, of course, and I am suddenly, decidedly grateful I never sent him that sex-mail and I feel at least half of the chemicals retire from my blood stream.
It’s strange how it comes and how it goes. I think “I deserve better than this” and then I think “But I still want this” and then I think “But I’m just going to get hurt” and then I think “But I'm already hurt.” The chemicals wane and grow, wane and grow, until you meet your next chemical reactor, and even then, at times, you can be doubly charged. Two chemical reactors inside you, waning and growing, waning and growing, fighting to take control of you. I have no answer on how best to reason with these beasts, except to ride them out like a mechanical bull or tie yourself down on the floor until you’ve sweat it out.