This Town Ain't Big Enough

Let me tell you how talented my friend Kaitlyn is! I was having a rough night last night. I mean rough. And she turned it all around.

I crawled over to meet Kaitlyn at a little restaurant, looking forward to having her lend her voice to our project, when who should I run into but a gaggle of my old friends who are now famous scenesters and who, as a result, don't talk to me much. There they were, sitting there giving me sidelong looks, tentative "Hey"s and half baked "How's it goin's?". Included in the group was a very nice girl who I asked out earlier this year. Well, she had a boyfriend, which is fine, and she probably wouldn't have been interested in me even if she were single at the time, which is fine. But the problem is, every time I've run into her since, which happens often since we have mutual "friends", she acts all uncomfortable around me. Her boyfriend, whom I have never even met, but who I'm sure is a really nice guy (I mean, he ended up with her, right?), doesn't even look at me. So there she was sitting with my old friends, who also happen to be musicians, booking people, gallery owners, you know, blah blah, again looking all uncomfortable. I wish we could just be friends without all the hullaballoo. We seem to have a lot in common. Sad. I don't know why it is that I always feel like I've pissed my own bed when I walk around Portland. I feel like everything I say, every little joke I make offends people. I feel like they gossip and it comes back to me. Once, a friend I met for dinner told me that before I arrived a girl who was at the table with him went so far as to say, after
she found out I was joining them for dinner, "Eww, Mike Johnson's coming? He asked my friend out!" Hmm. Note to self: asking girls out is a CRIME. So I'm always paranoid these days. This town just isn't big enough. I'm a pretty congenial, sincere guy. I don't know. I suppose I come off a bit goofy, a bit sarcastic, which puts people off sometimes. I'm a hard worker, which puts people off too maybe. Most people think I'm funny. I suppose I suffer from the constant feeling that 1) I don't belong, and 2) that the world is just against me. I mean, all I did was ask a girl out. Why the drama? And then there's my old friend who just sits there with a vacant stare while his girlfriend does all the talking, asking me trivial small-talky questions. Why? I mean, all I did was not get as famous as him. Would an honest conversation with me kill him? I have plenty of other good friends who are popular, or who have achieved some kind of success with thier music and they don't act wierd around me. I suppose I'm not on his level anymore or something. Or maybe it's cuz don't have any tour anecdotes to swap or accolades to brag about. OR DO I...?

Ah, but I DO have one thing to brag about: Kaitlyn Ni Donovan sang on my freakin' record! The instant I managed to get away from the popular kids and sit next to Kaitlyn I felt better. My friend Corrinna was there too. The three of us chatted at the bar. And then K and I went up to the studio and she overdubbed some vocals on one of the P&R songs. I mean she killed! It took a few takes, and she really gave herself to the music and went for it. She insisted that I not look at her while she made good use of her sultry, velvety voice. I understood. I get pretty self conscious when people are looking at me while I'm singing, too. She only sang on a couple of little parts of the song, but she breathed life into the track. Just sitting with her in our studio, working on and chatting about music, listening to her sing turned my night completely around. That's what music can do. Turn things around. She played me one of her songs from a mix CD she'd made for me. Fabulous. I forgot all my worries and biked home at, like, 2:30 in the morning feeling elated. Thanks, Kaitlyn. Doing good work does that to me. I love to do good work. Lily was really nice to me when I got home. She stretched and yawned and laid by the window purring while I fell asleep.

So, there it is. But now I'm depressed again. I always feel depressed for, like, three days after I run into those people. Oh well. Sorry to trouble you with a post about my feelings again. More later.