Yesterday, a Saturday, was a day lost entirely to depression. Very occasionally, this happens. Here, I will attempt to document it, and in so doing make sense of it.

I woke up surprisingly early, around ten to ten in the morning. As I normally do, I popped a caffeine pill and lay back down in bed. When it started to kick in, I went to the kitchen and put on the Mr. Coffee before going to the bathroom. Both of those actions are routine as well. Then I got back into bed and started watching the third scene of Anal Play Threesomes. Ingesting a bit of porn first thing in the morning is somewhat routine. A little less than a month ago, I decided to embark on the experiment of falling asleep to porn every night. For the last few years, I have listened to podcasts or speeches at night in order to lull myself to sleep. Without anything to concentrate on, my mind spins off into a million unproductive focuses. A somewhat interesting talk or interview has been my longstanding solution to this problem. Something just interesting enough to focus on and keep my spiraling brain in check, but not so interesting as to keep me up. Every now and again, I try and kick this habit. It is always difficult, always eventually achieved, and always eventually gone back to—just as with smoking. For no particular reason, a few weeks ago, I switched to porn. It is an experiment without a thesis. Not long after I started doing this, I started re-watching a bit of last night’s porn every morning. Yesterday morning, I did this for about 20 minutes as I drank my first cup of coffee.

Then I took another routine morning action: I read headlines and a bit of news for half an hour or so, then scanned a few art blogs for about half as long. When I fully woke up after the first cup of coffee, I knew I wanted to do something today. With absolute certainty, I needed to get out of the house, hang out with some people, catch a movie, go to a park, see some event, something. So I start texting people and messaging chicks on Tinder. Since I woke up early, my chances of being successful are high. It’s not even eleven, not half past noon, so many people will not have made plans yet.

My basic problem is I am still very new in town. Compounding that is that I work for just one human, as his assistant, so I can’t meet anyone through work. I live in a very upscale residential area where almost everybody is in their forties with children. It has been a real challenge to meet people. There was this one cool guy I knew, but he moved to Vietnam. I had an okay roommate at first, but he had a mental breakdown and disappeared. No roommate has taken his place. Long story, that. Sometimes I go to the bars and get trashed and make drunk bar friends, but I am generally too embarrassed the next day to hit them up ever again. There was one cool contractor I met through work, but he just had his first kid, so that’s out, too.

Another problem is I am no good at meeting people online. I’m just too abrasive and direct; my humor doesn’t translate very well via text. It’s just hard to cold call chicks over the phone, what can I say? I start messaging girls that morning, seeing if any of them wanna do something today. None respond, like I knew they wouldn’t. None of my handful of phone contacts in the area are free today, either. I learn all this around noon. It sucks because I want to go out. I don’t want to just sit in my apartment today.

Regardless of the responses, I could just go out to a public place and talk to folks. This is generally a false promise, though. While I do find it relatively easy to talk to strangers at museums or whatever, there is a huge gulf between being able to have one pleasant conversation and using that conversation as a sort of “wedge” to hang out with them. Most people don’t want to hang out with you out of nowhere just because you both ordered the same thing at a hot dog stand. People are generally creeped out by that, actually. I can’t blame them. I feel that they can sense my desperation, my alienation. So I do not want to fly solo at a botanical garden. In the past few months I have tried this, I really have, and the results have been neutral to bad. I know today won’t be different, so I don’t.

However, that lands me back to where I am: alone in my apartment with no one responding positively to my DMs or texts. This is bad. I get anxious and worry that today will be another “lost day.” The one precious day of the week where you don’t work and won’t work tomorrow. I sense I am going to fuck it up. I get really nervous and decide to “write it out.” So I write “Cracking,” which is largely about how shitty the night before had been and about how its shittiness is spilling into today. I write it quickly in a frantic state and it doesn’t kill more than 40 minutes or so. I finish and I feel worse than I did when I started. Maybe it was a mistake to stew in it.

It is now around 12:30. I am starting to get hungry, but I want to not eat until I hang out with someone, as a reward to myself. So I just have some more coffee instead. Then I remember about this chick named Lauren. She is a friend of a friend of mine in city a few hours away. My friend offered to set us up on a “friendship date” because we were both new to the area and feeling alone. I hit up Lauren a bunch of times two months ago, and she just always flaked out so I quit bothering. Seemed weird, as she had a female friend vouch for me. I decide it’s worth a shot again and text her. We chat idly for a bit, and when I propose doing something concrete, she ghosts. I had asked her whether she wanted to catch a movie of “go to a bar and amass a $500 tab day drinking.” Maybe that was a mistake. Hard to be sure. So Lauren is out.

I move on to Instagram. I met a cool couple at a party three months ago and have been trying to hang out with them ever since. The trouble is they are always drunk, so coordinating has been hard. I message him and he tells me he is at the hospital with his dying grandfather. Awkward. I tell him I’m sorry and to let me know if there’s anything I can do. He calls me a “good friend,” which is inappropriate and weird since we have literally only ever hung out once when we were both super-fucked up and have just been periodically messaging ever since. I message his girlfriend, stupidly asking if she has heard about all this, and she tells me they broke up and she hates him now and he’s insane. I tell her I’m really sorry and it feels too weird to ask her to hang out, so I don’t.

My stomach is bothering me, but now I have decided not to eat out of some nameless principle I cannot articulate. I’m sitting there staring blankly into space and my ex calls me. When I say “hello,” she asks if she woke me up. I assure her that she didn’t, and she says I sound like I just woke up. This is a very bad sign because I have been up for around three hours now, and, if anything, have had too much coffee and feel wired. We talk a little about her maybe visiting me. I feel really uncomfortable but I can’t figure out why, so I rush the call to a conclusion. She will visit maybe in early December, but not before. Whatever.

I look around my empty apartment and feel bad. I don’t know what to do, so I check all my news and art sites again. That doesn’t help and I feel helpless. I step outside and smoke a cigarette and pace before smoking another cigarette and pacing some more. It is damn near one in the afternoon now. I check Tinder and nobody has messaged me. I bite my lower lip and start messaging girls I haven’t heard from in forever, the ones whose conversations flamed out early. Yes, it’s a longshot, but hey, girls must feel antsy and nihilistic sometimes too, right? There is one that I think might just be torturing me. We message a lot but she always has an excuse to not hang out. It’s weird. I cannot figure out what her deal is. It’s probably all in my head.

I message that girl on Instagram again asking if she’s eaten lunch yet. She never responds. I decide that I’d be willing to drive to the next state to hang out with somebody, so I text the buddy who “introduced” me to Lauren. No response; she is almost certainly working, being a waitress and all. Fuck. I toy with the idea of going to a bar and just getting day drunk by myself, but that’s a “no.” For one, I haven’t eaten anything. For two, I don’t want to go to a bar by myself and eat a bunch of food before getting sloshed. That just seems weird. For three, I have played this game before. All that happens is I drunk text people and go home alone. I will not meet a bunch of cool people to be friends with forever by doing this. Life is not the movies. Do not go to the bar and make a depressing ass of yourself. Keep it together.

Another cup of coffee and a few more cigarettes and the gnawing hunger is starting to pass into something else. The trouble is there’s nothing to do. I tell myself that this is not my fault. That I really did try and be proactive. I messaged people early in the day, messaged a lot of people, and was open to doing most anything, including driving three hours. There’s cool movies playing, but boy, nobody has ever met anybody by going to the movies. I have learned this beyond a reasonable doubt. And today is about hanging out with people. It is not about going to the movies. I text Lauren again; presumably she has my number blocked by now.

It is not clear to me how, but we are now on the other side of two in the afternoon. I am unhappy. My plans have not worked. I both need to do better and need to not blame and hate myself for all this. I decide to watch some more porn to take my mind off of everything and wait to see if anyone hits me up. Anal Corruption is good. Remy LaCroix is gorgeous. Popsicles are teasing. Then I realize that I am just stewing in it. Reveling in my own misery and addiction. I need to do something. Not just stay at home and binge watch porn. I must be proactive. The difference between successful people and unsuccessful people is persistence. I must keep trying to hang out with people. I have been unlucky and that has been unjust, but I will move on with a smile.

No matter what though, I am already out of people I actually know in the area, or even around it. But excuses are for losers, and boy, am I a winner. The plan becomes to aggressively speed-swipe on Tinder. I have read about this working; it is a numbers game. Moreover, I shouldn’t not do it just for fear that it won’t work. That’s a negative self-defeating thought process that must be rejected out of hand.

I move my computer and my ass back to bed and continue watching porn with one eye and Tinder with the other. This is good and will work. Blow through like 300 chicks and someone is bound to want to hangout. This is called “the law of large numbers” and it is both math and science. It’s 3:30 when I start to feel really tired. I cannot figure out why, but better to sleep now than be at a point of complete exhaustion by the time someone hits me up. I take a nap and wake up at around 4:30. I feel groggy and hungry, but some more coffee and cigarettes gets me feeling great again. I head back for bed and keep swiping with porn to keep me company. At some point, I realize it is dark outside. It’s still not that late, though.

It must be close to six when I realize that I blew it. Speed-swiping while watching porn did not achieve its intended result. I fucked this up. It’s still a bad idea to just go to a bar or a club alone, though. I should have eaten something, that’s for sure. I have some cigarettes and ponder my predicament. It is resolved that I eat something. I cook two hamburgers while watching TED talks about suicide, truly as low as it gets. I finish eating and feel like shit. That was the first meal I’d had in about 24 hours, and it is sitting like lead in my gut. The self-loathing overwhelms me. I blew it. A whole Saturday wasted. Bit by bit, with oscillating failed plans. Why did I decide not to eat? Why is my Tinder profile so shitty? Why did I fail to improve it? Why did I not make plans for today a week or two ago?

I rush to the bathroom and take a ton of sleeping pills. I don’t want to die, but I need the day to end immediately. I no longer want the day to work. I don’t want to read, I don’t want to write, I don’t want to talk, I don’t want anything; I just want this day to end. And like that, it does.