This weekend John and I headed over to Billy & Richard's for their annual Halloween party. This is the second time I've gone — last year I actually flew out just for it. It's always a fun mix of people, and people go all out with their costumes. This year I went as a ghostbuster, and John went as Kennedy Davenport's failed attempt at her sixth season horror runway look — in her words: a "crystalized, glamazon bitch ready for the runway"; in everyone else's: a weird, on-fire looking chicken.
It was super fun, and it was amazing to me to look around the room and see people that last year I didn't know at all, and this year see people that I count as friends.
One interaction marred that though, and that was this one couple showing up a little later to the party, and already a little drunk. I was actually excited to see them though, because last year I talked to them both at length. It turned out one of them, Z., was currently out of work and looking for a new job, in a field that I worked in, and one that my company was actually then hiring in. He asked me some questions about it and we talked for a while or so. His partner, D., and I talked about learning the old languages from our ancestors, and traveling to ancestral homelands after doing family history research. Had you asked me two days ago how I would describe that interaction, I would have said it was great, and that they seemed really fun. We became Facebook friends shortly thereafter and have been in both direct and indirect contact since. I see them from time to time at parties of mutual friends, and Z. and I have talked a few times over apps since.
So it was mortifying when, after they walked in to the kitchen where I was talking to a friend, and we made our greetings, I remarked "omg, this actually the party where we met!" and D. responded with: "oh yeah, what were you dressed as? the guy that wouldn't shut up about where he worked?"
He said it like he thought it was the height of comedy, and he was already sort of drunk, but it's really just eaten at me since he said it. I was so embarrassed. I am so embarassed. Like... I know I talk too much. It's something I chide myself over all the time, probably every day. So like, if I get called out about it, it stings because I know it's true. But this sucked because... I really thought we were having a good time last year! I thought we were bonding over mutual interests. And the only reason I was even talking about my job is because Z. asked me where I worked, and then got excited because he wanted to apply there, and kept asking questions about it.
It's just I look back at the night, and like... I was so nervous at the time. I didn't know anyone besides John and was having all the normal fears of being a newcomer at a party where everyone knows each other and worrying that no one would talk to me. So it felt like such a victory when, at the end of the night I felt like I'd made some new friends and had been able to hold my own in a situation that would have sent me fleeing years earlier. So to suddenly have the whole encounter recast... to imagine the time between then and now, seeing them at parties, whatever, to now picture them thinking "oh great... this guy again." It's just so shitty.
And the more I think about it, I know HE is in the wrong in this situation. That he was just plain rude for saying something like that. There were ample moments for them to leave or talk to others last year, and most of the conversation was driven by their questions. And in the time since, I went out of my way to try to help Zain out — I got his resume, I sent it to people at my company, and I followed up and sold him to hiring managers. None of that did or could have benefitted me — I did it because I thought they were cool and I wanted to try to help.
So yeah. It stung and remains this blemish on an otherwise great weekend.
Anyway. You can't win them all I guess. This morning, Aimee and I were talking about costumes and what not, and both remarked on how much we enjoy it when people get into it. People who put some thought and effort into it, ever (or maybe especially) if the end result is super niche and few people get it and the pay off is low. So many people had NO clue what John was supposed to be, but it felt like such a home run when Colin walked in and screamed, and then shouted "She has CRYSTALIZED!"
It's funny though, I don't really think of myself as one of those people — Halloween always feels like I'm just pulling something out of my butt, super last minute, but as I saw costumes from years past on Timehop this morning, I realized I've got more than a few successes under my belt.