Autumn had some friends of hers over for dinner the other night. Her guests were an older couple whom I’ve met before. Nice enough people. Arriving at Autumn’s apartment a few hours before dinner was to be served, the four of us sat down in the living room for idle chit chat. I don’t know how we got on the subject now or who was the responsible individual for starting it, but we talked about where each of us had lived and where we were from. I began telling them about my family. Both sides were long time residents of San Francisco. My grandfather Hugo owned three pharmacies and two drug research laboratories in the city. He apparently invented some of the first kinds of chewable vitamins and a kind of lotion to help with poison oak infections. By the time of his death in the early 1950s he was a very wealthy man. My mother went to private Catholic schools in the city exclusively from a young age. By the 1960s San Francisco had changed so much neither side of my family wanted to live there anymore so they all bailed out.

One of Autumn’s dinner guests was particularly interested in knowing more about my Mom. She too went to a private Catholic school in San Francisco during the 1950s and she had a best friend with the same name as Mom.

I damn near fell out of my chair.

After giving this woman more details she was certain my mother was a long lost childhood friend. I couldn’t be so sure. The only thing I could think of was to put her on the phone with my Mom’s sister which I did. The two of them talked on the phone for a good half hour or so. When the call finished she was certain Mom had been the friend she thought of from so long ago.

Man, can my life be any more weird and fucked up than it already is? I mean what are the odds of shit like this happening?

Pleasant conversation continued on into the evening but I wasn’t paying attention. Memories came flooding back into the forefront of my mind. Things that I had been trying to suppress. Family problems, Mom’s terminal illness, Dad’s mistreatment of her, all these things surged up uncontrollably. Dwelling on my family problems made me feel terribly depressed.

I started drinking. There were two bottles of good red wine on the table. I slammed glass after glass automatically until…

Looking up from Autumn’s dinner table I noticed all four place settings had been cleared. There was no food, no guests. I glanced outside through the kitchen window. Pitch black. Last time I looked out there it was still daylight. Over my shoulder I saw the entire kitchen had been spotlessly cleaned. Dishes, pots, and pans were put away. Confused, I sluggishly turned my head to the left. Autumn was standing in the doorway between her bedroom and the living room staring at me. She was in her bathrobe. Her unflinching gaze was icy cold and filled with hate. It made me feel like trash.

Slightly hunched over in my chair at the dinner table I tried to speak. Autumn cut me off. Glaring with pure anger she said, “You were rude to my guests. I’m going to bed.”

“I… wait… what happened?”

Autumn quickly turned around and shut the door behind herself.

Evidently I had done something bad. Whatever my transgressions were I no idea because of an alcohol induced blackout. That has never happened to me before. I couldn’t think. Nothing made any sense. All I knew was, Autumn hated me and my presence wasn’t wanted. I stood up to discover I had trouble keeping my balance. Staggering out of her apartment I managed to make it to my car.

The distance between Autumn’s apartment and my house is slightly over fifty miles. I don’t remember anything from the drive home.

When I finally woke up late in the afternoon I was severely hung over. Worried that I had done something horrible I called Autumn. She was very cold talking to me over the phone. She said my crimes included interrupting her guests as they were trying to talk, and shooting down their topics of conversation. I did not however call anyone an expletive, throw food in anyone’s face, or flip anybody off. So I was just an annoying drunk. Embarrassing, sure. Do I owe her guests an apology? Probably. But did I deserve that kind of treatment from Autumn for my slip up? Driving home that night I could have easily wrecked my car and killed someone. At a minimum I could have ended up in the pokey facing a fat juicy DUI rap.

I feel like my girlfriend doesn’t have much compassion or understanding for me anymore.


~ by factorypeasant on August 16, 2006.

11 Responses to “Blackout”

  1. wow,the last time i gots that drunx
    was when my mums fiance had a 50th b-day party. i was drinking beer then
    whiskey sours then homemade wine
    coolers… blech. i blacked out, missed dinner, then apparently took
    off all my clothes and peed in ALL
    corners of his house. when i came to,
    i was in the bathroom peeing in the toilet. i walked out and saw the guy
    glaring at me. i’ll never forget that
    look. LOL hahahahahahaha

  2. well, under those circumstances you should have got your ass kicked. i’m surprised all he did was stare at ya.

    in my case i was hated upon and didn’t really do anything that bad. i admit i was weak. i should have stayed away from the bottle. my mental state was very poor that night. not being able to think coherently or understand what happened i decided to leave because Autumn didn’t want me in her apartment. that’s the message i got. if i’d been a little less bombed maybe i would have braved the night on her couch. thought never crossed my mind though. all i could think of was ‘i’ve got to get out of here.’

    another fine memory of Autumn.

  3. Been There Pal….


  4. ETW- you are my hero. Shoelaces told me a couple of stories about you and after i heard ’em i was like man i wish i had the bravery to pull shit like that. you ARE TEH MAN. Shoelaces told me about the evening where you told a lady to ‘drive safe’ and he also told me about the sandwich story ‘you want half?’. holy shit you are badass. i’m not gonna steal your thunder, but if you would feel up to sharing those stories here on bill and dave i would be honored. now is the time…

  5. I was with ya, right up to the driving drunk part. Based on what I’ve read… I think Autumn may have more issues than you can deal with, or should have to for that matter. But if you love her, and you think it’s worth hanging on … then more power to you. Being a female, I know exactly how manipulative we can be. But somehow, reading about another female doing it reminds me why men can be such assholes sometimes. Made me think that there are some females who end up paying for the mistakes of their lover’s past.

  6. spared- i hung on with her for five years because i was totally in love with her and she was worth it to me. i was willing to work with her but Autumn’s skill for compromise was entirely lacking. the vast majority of the time we were together everything was about what Autumn wanted. i could go along with it or simply end up sidelined. that was one serious part of our problems. yes, she does have some real issues whether she realizes it or not. eventually i’ll get into some of that stuff and begin to pick it apart.

  7. if a girl gives you severe trouble you should dump her. That’s my word playa’ There are literally like a million other chicks out there. Or more.


  8. BOOZE!!! :
    the cause of AND solution to ALL of
    lifes problems…


  9. Trust me when I say no woman (or man) is worth your mental health). As much as my husband may drive me insane at times, they are quirks I can deal with. The support structure is there, even when we argue it’s usually more about wanting the best for the other person not about getting your own way.

  10. What would Wooderson do? Live by those words and everything else falls into place.

  11. dpc- wooderson? not familiar with him. what’s he about?

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