Throughout the interview, Houston periodically asked, “How are you doing? Are you OK? Can I get you some coffee?” I said I was fine and kept apologizing for being so messed up. I drank three tall glasses of ice water, firmly believing the more water I drank, the less crazy I’d feel. I told him I should’ve let him get high and that I should’ve just watched and laughed at him. Instead, I was thinking, this is how Maureen Dowd must have felt after eating a few too many bites of that candy bar.
Instead of fighting it, I decided to just go with it and stop trying to feel normal. Although I kept thinking PLEASE LET THIS BE OVER SOON.
Houston politely offered to walk me to what may or may not have been my home. A straight 15 minute shot down the street. I said no, because I was already embarrassed and far too embarrassed for all this embarrassment to continue. On my way out, he told me one of the most Google-searched phrases is “how to feel less high.” What was he trying to say? On the way home, I got “lost” five times. Each block looked more mysterious than the next. A guy in a white pickup leaned out the window, “Are you okay sweetie?” Oh God. Clearly zig zagging down the street at 4:30 in the afternoon is not the sign of a well-adjusted human being. The more I tried to walk a straight line, the more I zig zagged. No block looked familiar, despite being highly familiar with my surroundings. Finally I stumbled upon the right street and blissfully turned left.
By 10 p.m. I was finally feeling quasi-normal. But not enough to venture anywhere.
The next day I wrote Houston an email telling him I’d survived.
He rang me up the next day, laughing.