Menu Close

Compersion on Freakmont

In today’s #RandyTales, our hero talks about the various forms of compersion…

I found myself standing on a railing on the world famous Fremont Street on a Friday night – and I wasn’t wearing anything Santa related. Why would I do such a thing?

Because the woman I love loves Alien Ant Farm. And Alien Ant Farm – who I know exactly two songs, one of which is a cover – was doing a free concert on Freakmont, as we locals refer to it. And so, I was going to go out in public after my latest stretch of being emotionally wrecked into a crowd of drunk tourists and Millennials behaving like Gen X’ers at a New Kids on the Block concert.


The term “compersion” is one that I heard related to poly/consensual non-monogamy people. It is gaining joy from someone else’s joy. If it brings my partner joy, it should bring me joy. This requires a lack of jealousy, ego, and dismantling a lot of old ideologies. That’s a lot of work for anyone, much less a grumpy mythical being with a tenuous grasp on sanity. But I have been practicing it in theory for years and now was to put it to the test.

We went downtown with my favorite example of chaos incarnate, Muppet, and Violet – who doesn’t get a pseudonym because most people think that isn’t her real name. We met up with other friends who hadn’t met before, but I got to see the instant connection. I gain that compersion joy when different friends from different periods of my life get around each other – even if it does sometimes result in old stories that I have tried to blot out of my brain get brought back up. It isn’t often that the people I love love each other, but when it does happen it brings me absolute joy.

While we were down there, Muppet somehow scored VIP passes that allowed two of our party (hint: I wasn’t going to be one of them). This was an unexpected win for the twelve year old Goddess to get to see one of her favorite bands up close. As she ran up to the VIP area, I didn’t feel abandoned. That sometimes happens when I go out with someone and I am no longer there with them, but an accessory that could have been left at home. I got to see her come back from a once in a lifetime experience and the sheer joy on her face. How could I feel anything but that compersion?

Another early-Naught’s band I knew from one cover song the did, the Ataris, was opening for Alien Ant Farm. Again – it wasn’t a concert I would have chosen. But our new friend Michael, who we met there, was a HUGE fan. Michael had just moved to Las Vegas and offered to take our picture citing “I’m Asian” as his qualifications. He was also drunk & high. But he knew every word of every Ataris song, and sung it with such passion and feeling you could overlook he was very offkey. And seeing it just filled with that joy I keep referrencing even though I didn’t know a damn thing about this dude… except the Degens are behind in their Asian friend quota.

When the Ataris got to that one song, the lead singer told the story about how he discovered it. He was staying with his grandmother one summer in Florida after his parents divorce. His life was collapsing and he found joy in that song off Don Henley’s “Building the Perfect Beast” album. Another example of compersion – finding joy in something that had nothing to do with anything.

My personal joy took a detour when after three hours, my knees reminded me that 20+ years ago I needed to have them replaced. I had to leave my love, my friends, and Alien Ant Farm playing a song and take a seat inside one of the casinos. It was such a sharp contrast to the joy and love I had been feeling outside. But self care is a form of love, and I knew that had I pushed through – love & joy would have not been heavily on my mind.

But I did get offered a blowjob if I bought a woman Subway. I declined the offer, in case you were curious.

I have been focusing on my own mental issues for far too long. I had forgotten that I am a social creature – an extrovert who feeds on the love and joy of others. It recharges my batteries and fills my cups in a way that I don’t get from any other interactions. I never really realized it was compersion that was doing that for me. Now that I see it more clearly, I am going to stop hiding in my little damaged mind and instead start getting out more.

I’m also going to look into some knee braces.