Friday, June 2, 2023

2 Minutes. Go!

The man stands on the overpass shouting at the traffic. Maybe he's angry. Maybe he's dropping benedictions on the harried commuters checking the time on their phones. There is tension radiating off of him in waves.

He is wrapped in clothes and blankets, all "homeless grey" - this is his disguise. Maybe his protection. 

Maybe the soiled clothes are a moat to keep interlopers away. 

He caught my eye. Just a flash. In between changing radio stations and checking the time. Just one man, alone on an overpass. In simpler times, he might have been taken for a prophet. A seer. Maybe people would have gathered at his feet like Socrates. 

He is fighting a battle. That much is clear. But that's something you can say about everybody. Everybody is fighting something. Maybe this man is fighting himself, the world, addiction. Maybe this man is channeling the voice of God. 

He caught my eye, but I wonder if he caught anyone else's. I wonder if he wanted to be seen. I wonder if I'll see him again on the same overpass. I wonder if people will look when I am the man on the overpass, shrouded in sodden, stinking rags. 

I wonder what my battle will be. 

I'm comfortable admitting something that you won't. Here it is. Given a few different circumstances, a few bad breaks, and some bad luck ... that motherfucker on the overpass is me. Or you. You're not so clean. 

Start preaching. 

Friday, May 26, 2023

2 Minutes. Go!

It's a sound you can't identify, but it strikes a chord deep inside you. Instant paranoia and terror. Some lizard brain reaction. The noise is unsettling in the extreme. It will stop eventually; if it didn't you would go mad. 

You try to block it out by covering your ears. It doesn't help. You wonder if the noise is inside you, and, if so, what that would mean. 

The sound sparks other senses, and glimpses of smell and feeling slip in around the edges of the sound. Nothing can compete with the sensory overload the sound creates, though. You wonder if Russia had something to do with this. The KGB?

You have two choices. Be patient. Or stick a screwdriver into your ear and twist. I'd recommend patience, but, to be honest, I've never tried the screwdriver. 

You be sure to let me know how it works out for you.

Friday, May 19, 2023

2 Minutes. Go!

When the light through the window stops shining, you will die. Until then, you can squint your eyes. Close them. Let the light come red through your eyelids. Pretend you're at the beach. You came here for a reason, so let us our job. We can do the deed and the cleanup. Your loved ones will never know the truth - that you chose to leave them. 

Consider this blessing. Think about how fortunate you are to live in a time when technology can take care of your ... problems. For you. Let it serve you. You might feel like you've been here for a million years, but it was only a blip. Only a century since we swapped out synapsses and organs. You've had an excellent run. That should comfort you.

Don't be selfish. You think you can't die ... that there would be ... ramifications.

But we can fix all that!

Besides, you signed the contract and sold the rights to your leaving. You will air for the first time at 9pm. Every set except those owned by your family will broadcast your departure. You will be honored for your sacrifice. 

Someone has to keep everyone entertained. 

Friday, May 12, 2023

2 Minutes. Go!

She is like the saltwater marshes. She is the sunlight that kisses the ripples when a duck takes flight. She is the cool breeze calming troubled shoulders. She is the giver of life, and there is nothing more important. The marsh doesn't need your accolades, and neither does she. The marsh doesn't question its motive, so why should she?

I am sometimes a Great Blue Heron. Stick legs stuck in the muck. Eyes darting, looking for something moving which signifies life. I am sometimes an otter, who playfully teases the world. I am often the turtle on the log, unable to move, drunk on sun. 

You are the snake in the grass. The Cottonmouth waiting to strike. You have no rattle to warn with. You have adequate color defense, but you carry death in your mouth. It leaks out the corners. You are dribbling poison as you stumble forward. 

None of this will be here in a thousand years. Things are born, die; they are often quickly forgotten. We can't drag the train of our dead with us, we would never be able to move. You will cast off this grief, eventually. At the very least, you will return to the muck where your purpose is clear. 

Friday, May 5, 2023

2 Minutes. Go!

Give me a sharpened stick; I'll gouge my eyes out, roast them over a fire like marshmallows. Then, I'll shove them down your fucking throat. Punch blindly until the bones in my hand are splinters. I have words inside me that can cut you down so low, you'll be invisible. Don't believe me? Try it. 

I'm not a good person. 

I'll lie about you. I'll start rumors. I'll enlist others into my campaign, and I will watch them dance the dance of drunken blood. Put this sugar cube in your mouth, I'll show you God. Then, I'll destroy God and let you watch. 

I'll be God. 

The anger inside me is like shaken hornets. It's tearing my muscle from the bone. Snapping tendons. I'll tell your kids you died cursing them. I'll start a new civilization on top of the rubble. I'll be your God Emperor. How lucky will you feel, not having to make decisions for yourself? We might argue otherwise, but history proves it. 

People love being told what to do.

I'll tell you who to hate. What's happening in the country and how you should feel about it. I've constructed arguments that you an use against your friends and family. You're mine. Your vote is mine, and I will do with it what I want. 

What are you going to do, write a mean tweet?

Tweet away, motherfuckers. The monsters move in the darkness you're afraid to look into. They are gnashing their teeth as you line up for slaughter. Don't worry. You won't feel a thing. Watch some TikTok videos. 

The operation will be painless. You'll be happy once it's over. 

Trust me. 

Friday, April 28, 2023

2 Minutes. Go!

Let the sun heal you, warm on your skin like caramel. The breeze will wash you clean, the flower scent will calm you. Give yourself up like a baptism. This is the way you honor the mother. This is the way you can reset yourself. No chanting or hymns, just wind and sun and maybe a small stream. Maybe a pond. Maybe the ocean, but, wherever it is, you need to be near water. 

Just because you live in a box with temperature control doesn't mean you aren't part of the network - you're a circuit. A microchip. Just like Queen Anne's Lace and cow shit. 

Try to distance yourself and you'll stumble. Too far, and you might get lost. So, get your ass to the forest, the beach, the river. Plug yourself back into the heartbeats all around you. Stop staring at screens for a few minutes and just live. Breathe. 

Think about your place. 

Friday, April 21, 2023

2 Minutes. Go!

You lay in bed, thinking: Please let me die. Please let me die. Please let me die. 

Not that you want to die, but the mantra works - calms the riot in the skull. The thoughts that ramp up, then fall to their deaths. Sisyphus except every time he climbs the hill, he jumps off to start again, broken and twisted and scared. 

Some people have brains that are fair. Some people have brains that make excuses for them, that let them go on feeling like they are the victor. Or victim. And some people have brains that are like Guantanamo Bay. Cold. Heartless. Torturous. Unjust. 

This isn't depression. This is your human condition. This is what happens when you dress someone up and shove them through trauma. This is what happens when your brain blames you for everything that goes wrong, even if it is not your fault. Somehow, your brain will make it your fault anyway. 

You get up because laying in bed doesn't feel good. You go to work because being alone with your thoughts, alone with your failures, alone with the dreams you let fall by the wayside ... man, because you had no choice. 

You can't control yourself, how could you expect to control anyone else. Choking on your selfishness. Hiding from the truths you can't accept about yourself. Looking, squint-eyed, into the mirror and making excuses. You are a tree that hides its inside rot. When you fall, everyone will be surprised. They'll say you stood so tall, looked so strong. Never saw it coming. 

Then, they'll get the hatchets and part you out.