Weekends are the time when a loner is most likely to feel worthless.
It wasn't so bad when I was a student. Then I could rationalize that I was too busy with homework, family etc. to be going out, dancing, drinking, and otherwise having a good time.
Now if I do anything I must do it alone. Drink alone. Watch TV alone. Go to movies alone. Go to bookstores alone. Only the distant, ethereal companionship of email and irc exists, and even it is loose at best.
During the week life isn't so bad. My co-workers are an amiable group, and although I am too cowardly to socialize much, life goes on, and at least I am in the company of other people. On the weekend, though - well, on more than one occasion I have gone the whole 48 hours without exchanging a single word with another human being.
Not that there isn't anything to do - I could do some writing, or reading, or research, or exercise. But motivation flounders. I find myself sitting idly in a chair, literally doing nothing, like an old man, yet lacking the strength to get up and be active.
The worst part is walking around downtown at night. At night one sees young people, laughing and gossiping with their friends. I have no friends. Seeing groups of them together on the streets and in the subway is a constant daily reminder of how utterly inadequate a human being I am.
I am only young once. To be young, it is said, is the time to let oneself be loose, to party, to have fun, to enjoy freedom. But I do not feel free. I cannot party. Always I am tense and uncertain, ever-fearful and nervous, at ease only by fleeing into the prison of intellect or retreating between the covers of a book.
And so life passes me by. I am a spectator, not a participant. Years from now perhaps others will look back to their youth, to the wild times they had, the friends they enjoyed, the girls they ogled. I will look back---to the isolation, to the loneliness, to the emptiness.
S-youth, Oct. 17, 1997.