You know what bothers me the most, Comfest?
It’s that I haven’t even thought this through yet, and I didn’t want to talk about it yet. Not because I’m being secretive or manipulative, but because I haven’t effing thought it through yet. That’s it.
But instead you follow me around all night like a worried little puppy, interpreting my silence as a worst case scenario. It’s like I can’t win – if I say something without thinking it through, then we’ll end up fighting about it. Keep my mouth shut, and we fight about silence.
It’s like I said, Comfest, it’s just a bunch of really confusing feelings I’ve been having, and I don’t know what they mean yet. But yes, I think it’s fair to say, since you’re making me say it – I’ve been thinking about breaking up with you.
There – see?
Quit throwing my stuff around, that’s – that’s exactly why I didn’t want to talk about this right now.
Ouch! Damn it – cut it out.
Listen to me. Look, calm down or I’m leaving for real. Listen to me, Comfest.
Because you’re doing it right now. You’re being abusive. Toward me, and I’ve been letting you. God, I don’t know why I’ve been letting you.
And the abuse escalates every year, Comfest. It’s a pretty classic scenario.
The first little slap that I can personally remember is the year you were sponsored by a sexual lubricant, and you couldn’t turn around without a giant, pink sexual lubricant ad in your face. Walking in that day, Comfest, it was like smacking straight into a Plexiglas wall.
It wasn’t just that it was a sexual lubricant, just that there were a million commercials for it all over the place. If they’d been Pepsi signs, I’d have thought the same thing – gross.
Pretty soon you stopped greasing the cops or whatever you were doing before, and they decided to start cracking down on outside beer. Because charging six bucks for thirty five cents worth of Rolling Rock was just not a wide enough profit margin for you. You had to have more.
Admit it – that’s where the problem started. Not profit itself. I know very little about your history, but my hunch is that you’ve always turned a profit. No, I think the problem started when you started figuring, if I had twice the people here, I’d make twice the money and it’d be twice as good.
You figured you’d make a lot more money if nobody brought in alcohol at all and had to buy it all at your tents. You figured you were a business and it was normal to want to make money. I mean, you’re making sense. I understand those things.
I remember the old days, that’s all. You know, when I’d drop a blanket and thump down my cooler, and then a few other people would run across me – or I’d have just now run across them – and everyone would spend the day there, using the place as a base camp. The coolers of beer weren’t necessarily about money – though that was a part of it – they were about convenience.
I’ve always loved the taste of my first mug of your beer, Comfest but you know the logistic problem they present. If I try to make them last a while, they get warm and flat. And if I slam them down then I’ll be blurrily draft-beer-intoxicated in just a few hours and I will have also spent a great deal of that time in line.
It seems like you understood that back then, Comfest. You knew that I would throw back my fair share of your giant mugs of overpriced Rolling Rock, so you looked the other way while I offset the price, and it also lent to you a really casual, laid-back air that is hard to find now.
Now you seem tense and distracted, and you’re wearing flashy clothes and snapping at your friends. You’re acting like a guy who went to Los Angeles for the summer and got hooked on coke.
Last year on Saturday night, that’s exactly where I felt like I was, a packed Los Angeles club full of unpleasant people, and very long, slow-moving lines.
What’s with the sunglasses, Comfest? I don’t even know who you are anymore.
Yes, I get the rational arguments. I should be happy for your success. You can’t help it that so many people are showing up because you’re so awesome.
A kid got stabbed just last year. It used to be extremely rare to even see a fight the whole weekend.
You look in the mirror, Comfest. You know it’s not the same.
And it’s because really, you were thinking about breaking up with me anyway. Once you got invited to the cool kids’ parties, you didn’t want to be laid back anymore. Suddenly you realized how to get more people in there and how to squeeze, and so you did it.
Hard to argue, but it’s hard to stick around, too.
Listen, it’s like I said, I haven’t thought it through yet. And no matter what, we can still hang out – you know, Friday afternoon, Sunday afternoon.
But I don’t think I can commit to the whole weekend anymore, Comfest. From my persepective, it’s a classic dysfunctional relationship – it’s harder for me, and it’s easier for you. I don’t know what it would say about me, if I continued to put up with that kind of abuse.
I’ll think about it, okay Comfest? But please, you’re going to have to give me the space I need to do that, to really mull it over.
Don’t be like that, come on now. It’s not really you at all, if you think about it – it’s totally me.