Chapter 1: Drunk & Lost

Glen's Memories (COVER website)

Everything is going my way tonight, and it feels great. I know it’s possible to engage with this beautiful girl and convince her to believe anything I want. Maybe she’s destined to be my wife or someone that’ll fill me with hope—Facebook Official. Who am I kidding, though? My family wouldn’t like it. But then again, I haven’t cared to share things with them for a long time.

Drunk and lost, perhaps trying to find “the one” in the bars and clubs of Montreal’s nightlife is what’s so confusing about where I stand in the world. Sometimes, I don’t know who I am. After all, one can see that in my photos, stories, and careless behavior on Instagram.

Honestly, fake people are everywhere. It begins on social media until it transitions into the reality of now. Finding myself following Insta models, scrolling through Facebook, and making Snapchatvideos, I’m no exception to the misconceived ideals that are presented in 2014—from Montreal to every other corner of the globe with a Wi-Fi connection. But despite the posts of “living my best life”and captions of “the journey being greater than the destination”, I’m immature. The funny thing is, I’m going to be twenty in a few months—technically an adult by society’s norms, even though it doesn’t feel that way in my mind.

Having met this beautiful girl with the essence of life inside her, I fail to have a sense of direction for myself. Am I good enough to indulge her on the dance floor? Is it possible we’ll make love? Or am I imagining bullshit that will never happen? I don’t really know. But I don’t expect you to either. If I’ve learned anything worth bringing up to people, it’s this undeniable truth: women want a man. And that’s what I’ve been trying to be for almost two decades—a “man” with nothing but love to share. It’s a struggle, an identity I’ve chased since my youth.

Looking back, it’s something that reminds me of Glen’s Pool. After all, the memories of swim team and water polo are glorious times I can never forget. Even though I realize it’s hard to imagine what it might’ve been like to grow up back then, I loved it because it was an era just before smartphones. It was before the internet overpowered how I perceived my self-worth. I had a childhood without the modern distraction of notifications. Every day, I miss it a little more. But currently in 2014, I’m a hot drunken mess who goes out on the weekends. Let’s just say I’ve been partying so much that I know Saint-Laurent Street, the Old Port, and Crescent like the back of my hand. Romantically, I considered downtown Montreal to be my lover as I’d be there with impaired judgement—a vicious cycle I’ve given up trying to break. But everyone has a story with feelings true to nature. It doesn’t matter if it’s online or nowhere to be read by anyone. Come to think of it, I wish it were possible to hear all of them. But this story happens to be mine.

Talking to you as a college student who has tried to do everything right, to listen to my parents’ guidance, and follow society’s beaten road of expectations—I get what it’s like to feel stuck without any chance of escaping. Maybe, in typical fashion, I’ll sound out of line to a few people. But isn’t it fair to point out there is something unoriginal about going to school, getting a real job, buying the latest iPhone, reading posts, watching YouTube videos, drinking way too much coffee, and striving for nothing else in between? I know what you’re thinking—this is what everyone does. After all, what is the problem with wanting to be just like others? Nothing, except nobody ever told me it could lead to depression. It sucks. But then again, that’s why I’m inspired by people out there who are crazy about life and never buy into the endless nonsense of social media—the extraordinary ones. It’s as pure a heart as you can ever find. Maybe they’re elusive to most humans. Either that or I’m too drunk for my own good. I should just go pass out.

But trust me, they exist. I’ve fallen in love with them, befriended them, and learned from them. I felt lucky enough to be included in their slice of the universe (even if it was for a short time).

Hopefully, because I’m young, I’ll meet a kindred spirit like that again. Relationships are my true obsession. I live to connect with people who strike me emotionally at the core and refuse to leave. Even if they do go, I feel them everywhere I travel—no matter where in the globe. It’s a presence that’ll forever be worth hanging onto when things get hard. She was extraordinary. And as I discovered, what’s important to the “extraordinary” is the rush of never accepting things for how they are—to dare life to throw whatever it has at you. Evidently, they go beyond a screen.

The depressing reality is that indulging in the cheap thrills of Montreal’s nightlife led me to lose a special person who once meant everything. Until this day, I still can’t help but imagine our Facebook statuses changing to “in a relationship”, uploading photos to Instagram every month with captions like “ride or die”, and seeing the world as travel vloggers. It’s a fantasy illusion whenever I’m drinking. Between you and I, my mental health suffered from trying to compare myself to those with blue checkmarks. Partying is one hell of a drug, and I’m an addict.

Since the consequences of my actions caught up in the end, I feel like the moments this special person and I shared are now gone. Even if we lived in the rhythm of a house song in the middle of Ultra or Tomorrowland, there’s nothing I can do—hence, why I’m drunk. But when I scroll through her photos, I’m back in my youth. I remember Willy Travenson, my best friend.

Without really knowing it, Willy’s personality taught me a lot. He was charming. But more importantly, Willy was the luckiest guy I’d ever met. Life had a way of opening doors for him when to others they would’ve been closed. After all, for years it was crazy to recognize he had advantages I never did. Why couldn’t I be like Willy? Why couldn’t I love myself? And why did I have this need to be “cool” if I never understood the significance? I don’t know what to believe anymore. But one thing was evident: I had to let go. It was time to get my shit together. And it was also time to say goodbye to this beautiful girl tonight to fight for something real.

Embracing a technologically driven era where being fake will get you popular, the world often seemed like an adventure and a nightmare. But although I have a lot of material to share in my writing, my mind turns off as I enter the past. Funny enough, I might have what is called a delusional imagination. It always kicks in whenever I’m piss drunk and act like I’m in a movie for the Snapchatvideo. And most nights when I’m in an environment I don’t belong in with people I’ve met over a hundred times, I remember the special person I lost that’s now a light in my dumb heart. She lived with this passive indifference to social media and was completely original. I worry about her too much. Maybe this special person is waiting for me just as I’m hoping for a miracle. Or maybe she’ll never forgive me for the way things happened. Nothing compares to what we had—the promise we made. Don’t get the wrong idea; I realize that I could’ve phrased this gracefully if I were sober. But it’s a little hard to edit myself. This is who I am.

Reflecting endlessly, there was something mysterious, insightful and brave about this special person. It made the pursuit of dreams enrapturing. That’s what the extraordinary ones do—they inspire, find a place in your heart that might never die, and change your perspective on things to create a better world. Even though it sounds crazy, it’s what gives me hope for the past to repeat itself. But despite all this, a part of me will always be lost. Maybe it’s because writing is difficult for me to do. It’s embarrassing to open up, yet I don’t have talent like Michael Jordan or people on sitcoms. And I’m sorry if I romanticize heavily like a poet—I can’t move on, and have no other way to figure out how I got to where I am tonight. So, perhaps I’m trying to overcome my depression. Hopefully, you’ll want to join me on this little quest—it’ll be nice to have someone out there willing to listen. But even if I never connect with this special person again, I know that I’ll always remember what we had together. I’ll never forget our New Year’s in her black jeep where the beautiful uncertainties of life brought about a love greater than anything in the movies.