Friday was a mess. Things are rough with the world right now at large, but even that’s managable in a “I can only do so much” sort of way. The Big Problems are not ones that fall on my shoulders, and even smaller looming ones really aren’t something for me to solve. They are things I can help to solve, and I do make some minor attempts, but on the whole? I can’t do anything about the bigger stuff until I do more about myself. I know I’ve made progress in the past year and a half. My current webcomic is going decently, even though attempt to continue work on other comic projects has kind of stalled because of the nihilism that presses against my psyche every waking moment of every day. Attempts at socialization are going. They’re going slowly, but that’s still progress. Any attempt at romantic entanglements have stalled, but that’s okay. Forcing anything like that leads to disaster. And while I am short on cash, it’s the regular kind of broke because I managed to budget this month and not like previous months where my car payment would leave me at least a hundred dollars overdrawn and hoping my paycheck would clear in time to correct things. The major problem, really, is that I am constantly three steps away from these things that I am relatively at peace with to become major burdens on my happiness and emotional state and while these steps reset every day, it’s still far too easy for them to happen.

The first step yesterday (for even though I am posting this on Friday, it was written the day after) occurred when I was working at my day job at the library. A man yelled at me because he wanted to return his paper. It is not really my job to perform this duty, and while I am able to perform it if no one else is available, he could have done so in a far less confrontational manner. Perhaps walking up to me and requesting I take his paper, or just not yelling at me to do so.

The second step was just people on the street deciding that the various traffic laws were not for them to follow. This happened multiple times on my way home and way to my night job at the pizza place. It was busy and I made several mistakes (the sign of a mind already in need of some refreshing) and would have likely been fine for the rest of the night if it hadn’t been for another customer calling in for a delivery. I knew this customer and already did not like them, but did not know this when I answered the phone, when the following exchange took place:
ME: Hello, thank you for calling [pizza place], my name is Mike, how can I help you?
CUSTOMER: DELIVERY?
ME: We do offer delivery based your location.
CUSTOMER: DELIVERY?!
ME: We do offer delivery, but it’s based on where you live.
CUSTOMER: NO, I WANT A DELIVERY. WHY DIDN’T YOU ASK FOR MY PHONE NUMBER WHEN I SAID DELIVERY?
At which point I did ask for the phone number. They went on to be a bothersome customer for an entire three minutes (I can usually handle a call in about thirty seconds, since my social anxiety can be quelled for that length of time) and after I recognized their name and address, previous interactions with this customer came to mind. They have never been pleasant. They have always been pushy and abusive and, predictably, do not tip their delivery driver. I was not a delivery driver that night, but the damage had already been done. This was the third step and I was immediately undone. Most plans I had for the rest of the night and, indeed, rest of the weekend went up in smoke as my emotional state couldn’t handle anything creative or any interactions with new people. I am feeling slightly better now, and talking about these things does help, but I’m still clawing my way back up from the abyss.

Oh, and for the record, this is how most calls go:
ME: Hello thank you for calling [pizza place], my name is Mike, how can I help you?”
CUSTOMER: Hello, I would like to order [some amount of food].
ME: All right. May I have you phone number?
CUSTOMER: Yes, it’s [phone number] (note: we do have caller ID but it’s rarely accurate so we do not rely on it)
ME: Will your order be pick-up or delivery?
CUSTOMER: [answers]
ME: All right, your total is whatever, expect it in [x amount of] minutes.