This weekend I flew into Washington DC for a birthday party. I figure, what’s the point of being a young professional in your 30’s with no kids if you can’t jet across the country for parties from time to time. Despite the 4-hours of sleep on a red-eye, fighting with Amtrak, DC Metro, and just the general suck of the infrastructure in this city I am crazy happy that I made the trip. To be honest, I’m trying to figure out a way Anna and I can come in for a party next week where I might be able to show off my fire dancing skills a little (if I can figure a way to transport a 5’0″ fire staff on an airplane… I wonder if that is on the TSA “no-fly” list).
I’ve really found that I enjoy coming back to the District from time-to-time. I hated living here (seriously… hated it) but the people I know here are some of the greatest humans I’ve ever encountered and they know how to party and make someone feel welcome. I have a certain level of comfort with them that I don’t often experience. As an introvert I usually hate big social events and I even had to retreat to a quiet corner a half dozen times last night just to recenter myself. It is exhausting meeting new people, I’d much rather have a small intimate conversation with close friends than be surrounded by bodies and noise.
If I’m really being honest though, there was something else on my mind from early on. I have known all week that I would be meeting a bit of a liberty internet celebrity crush of mine at this party. Having a physical, sexual attraction to someone is easy but it is often little more than fantasy in the beginning and I think one advantage of meeting people online is quickly moving to real discussions and an opportunity to develop an intellectual attraction of substance. As a poly, open, anarchist I often have to retreat to the internet to find like-minded people and because of that my social skills are often sub-par.
I found myself nervous (which is actually kind of rare) as we started talking and I was oddly aware of my mannerisms and voice patterns. The conversations we had were absolutely what I needed though. To just sit back and talk to someone about dealing with jealousy, rules we have in place with our partners, how we came to our views, and where we see ourselves in the future was a highlight of my trip. It is rare I can talk to someone in person because I spend half the time defending my personal choices or going over basics, to have a personal conversation about life from a non-judgmental person was something that has been missing from my life. I only wish we would have had more time to talk and dive into even deeper subjects and see if this can blossom into a real friendship. Of course, the idealist creative side of me is forecasting way into the future…
So, this little patch of swampland continues to redeem itself despite sitting at the center of all that is wrong with society. One of the lessons from my bike ride last summer was that people matter and that people are good, and that is why I like visiting DC, the people. I’m sure I’ll be back soon you ugly, muggy, toxic, sad, power-thirsty, hive of scum and villainy.