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Thursday, August 01, 2002

 
Human -- I had two horrible moments yesterday, that I really should write about here. The dilemma is always, of course, how to relate the horribleness without making myself feel so horrible that I realize that you really ought to find something nicer to read.

The first came when I saw someone I used to work with. We'll call her "Heidi," since that's her name. I hadn't seen her in 11 months, since I quit my last job. We worked together there for two years, and were quite close; friends, even. In nearly twenty years of full-time employment, I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of real friends I've made at work. James Doohan's hand, at that.

Anyway, there we were, yesterday, meeting again after 11 months, and I of course said "Hi," and everything you say in a situation like that and then there was this endless, eternal and awkward pause and then --

And then she did, like, the "I'm going to hug you now," body language thing, and I hugged her back, but it was just a weird moment. We had been friends and worked closely together for two years, and while a hug seemed appropriate in my head I wasn't quite sure. In some way, I was denying something basically human and I am quite sure, in some way, Heidi must have sensed this and wondered what the fuck was wrong with me. Or, even worse, her. I don't know, it probably seems small and inconsequential, but I feel like I did something horribly wrong in that moment, like something was lost. A piece of my humanity.

The second incident was even worse. I'm realizing now that it was so horrible that I can't even write about it yet. Just a moment that I wish I could go back and prevent.

This past 24 hours, really, has been quite awful.

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