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You got some OCD, bro?
Bro, me too, bro.
I was at a party recently and I got stuck talking to a guy who mentioned to me a few times that he had OCD. The guy wasn't necessarily a bad guy, just a bit too conversationally intense for me. But my conversation with that guy made me think about this post I wrote about a year ago, titled, "You got some OCD, bro?" That post is below.
A few years ago, my sister tried to get me to talk to one of her friends who had OCD. He does strange, obsessive stuff around toilets, she said. I also do strange, obsessive stuff around toilets, so no judgment there—but I declined the invitation.
I’ve always considered OCD to be a weird thing to bond over.
I think of it a bit like this: one morning, you wake up to a text from a number you don’t recognize. It’s from a guy who says he’s been dating your girlfriend. He has screenshots of texts, pictures of them together, the whole 9 yards. It’s undeniable. She’s cheating on you. He says I’m sorry man. I didn’t know either. I just found out, too. She played us both.
You’re heartbroken. Devastated. Angry. Gutted.
To me, trying to connect with someone because of OCD sort of feels like trying to become friends with that guy. “Ah fuck man. I can’t believe she’s done this to us,” you text back. “Want to grab a latte? I know a nice little cafe on the corner of Val Vista and Riggs.”
You grab your coffees and find a table in the hectic, bustling cafe.
“So she… uh, cucked you too, huh?”
He nods. “Sure did,” he says.
You hesitate. The silence lingers as you search for something to say. You softly blow on your coffee and you meekly take a sip. It’s too hot.
“How about those Bears?” you ask.
“The Chicago Bears.”
“I don’t watch baseball.”
“I’m more of a zorbing kind of guy.”
You’re not sure if that’s a sport. Maybe it’s T.V. show or some kind of religion. Maybe he’s just fucking with you. You take a shot in the dark. “Ah hell yeah man. Have you been zorbing for a while?”
“Yeah man—since college.”
More silence. You see him staring out the window at a white Tesla that’s double-parked. It dawns on you that you don’t remember his name. Maybe he never told you. You take another sip of coffee. Still too hot.
“Did they win?”
“Did who win?”
“That bears team.”
He looks at you. You stare back at him. You hear two friends laughing and joking at the table next to you. You clench your teeth and audibly growl. You stand up, suddenly, gripping your cup of coffee like a baton. You walk towards the front door and a guy loitering at the entrance holds it open for you. You pick up the pace. You begin to jog. By the time you’re through the door, you’re running. But—even once you’re outside—you don’t stop. You don’t look back. You realize you’re still growling. Somehow, you find yourself on a freeway on-ramp. At this point, you’re sprinting full speed, southbound, onto the gridlocked 405. You hear Rejoice, by Julien Baker, playing softly in the distance but getting louder with every step. Tears start to stream down your face as Julien’s voice grips your ears and completely overwhelms your soul. You throw your head back and let out a harsh, screeching cry to the heavens. “I REJOICE, I REJOICE, I REJOICE,” you weep. You zero in on a white Tesla about 20 yards ahead. “That’s the white Tesla from before!” you exclaim. It’s not. You shatter the driver’s side window with your fist, grab the driver by the back of the head and pull him close. “The Bears lost, 29-27,” you whisper in his ear. You kiss him softly on the forehead. “The Bears lost. 29-27.”
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