It didn’t come to terms with the fact I had severe social anxiety until I was twenty-three years old. That said I always knew my outlook was an odd one. Like A Clockwork Orange my sickness is a spiraled descent into madness. It begins with stomach cramps. Like an Alien churning within my bowels I experience excessive discomfort. But this is bearable, the body can sustain an ample amount of pain, (after all it’s what it’s built for). Stage two concerns communication and it’s break-down. As mute as Silent Bob I have to aggressively will myself to orate with others. If my aphasia persists my mind starts playing tricks on me. At best it’s like Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind; depressing but beautifully artistic. However it’s not always so tragically cheery upstairs. Sometimes my mental state goes Hal 9000. Paranoid that the world is against me I begin to cave in on myself while pushing others away. I enter my Dom like Limbo wherein the world crashes around me.

Sick, dumb and lost in my mind I struggle in my solitude to take hold of reality. My Matrix isn’t an alluring one either. What my illness creates is a self-destructive monster with an appetite. It’s as though I’m Max Renn in Videodrome, infected with an intoxicating evil that begs for me to end it all. Luckily the credits haven’t come yet; something within me has kept the reel spinning.

As I said earlier I recognized a few years ago that my life-long difficulties stemmed from something beyond my control. When I learned about the chemical balance cooking within me I turned to drugs. Whether prescribed or otherwise I was left with Fear and Loathing. Escaping into illusions is fine, but I was going Donnie Darko. It took some time but I’ve learned to find another way. Minimal inebriation, a strict diet and steady exercise build up my defense. Anxiety isn’t something I can ever get rid of, but the beast can be better battled with a fit frame. That’s the half of it, stimulating my intellect is equally important. Reading is great, but writing is better. Forever scribbling in my notebook I sympathize with Jim Carroll in The Basketball Diaries. I’m also grateful to Dave and Sarah here at Blasfome for giving me an additional space to do exactly that.

Last but not least I must point out the significance of cinema. There’s little that has helped me as much as film. Some take me away to picturesque places, and others challenge me to see things differently. No matter what they help and never hinder. It’s My Life at the Movies, and it’s aided in making it one worth living.