Edges

2 06 2008

This is what it feels like to be free.

    The steering wheel feels light under my fingertips as I carefully match the curve in the road. It would be so easy to slip, a miscalculation, a too-long glance down at the radio. Possible excuses.

            A barbell suspended above my head wants desperately to return. For a moment, I consider letting it fall, where it might crush my skull, tear indifferently through my brain and lie quietly amidst a greying body and ashen faces.

            Words form in pools inside my brain, the synapses of which are waging war. Some with the engineered desires to survive. Some with consciousness.





A Collection

2 06 2008

The windshield collects fog as my tepid body creates some dissonance with the air outside. I fail to flip the defroster on, seeing no point as the length of the drive was only five minutes. The fog crowds the window to the street, filling in from the bottom until I have to sit straight to see out. My girlfriend talked with me on the phone, before I had left the gym. She was going to sleepover at James’ dorm. It was a fun day for her: the supermarket, video rentals and now some cooking and movies in pajamas. A few minutes ago, she said my melancholy is only some manifestation of my envy; that she was out with friends and I was not.

            No person handles being analyzed with much grace. Naturally, I respond that this was an oversimplification, that I was not jealous, but instead lonely. The problem was not what she had, but that I had so little of it. “It wasn’t loneliness either,” I think as I begin, once again, some devolution into a prototypical teenager. I believe, momentarily, that my life is insoluble, rich, and complex. Then, mirroring some prior apathy, I see how well labels can encapsulate a being. I connect the two.

Still, it wasn’t jealousy.

            She talked with me on the phone for two or three minutes. “I could go to the beach,” I mused. I didn’t feel like eating anything, even In’n’out which was, incidentally, about ten yards from where I had parked my car to go to the gym. I didn’t want to bother her anymore, nor did I particularly desire the company of my cousin with whom I had arranged to meet. I was and am still, somehow lifeless. However, I know that I am alive, figuratively, because there are things I want to do more than others. I have some passion. At least, I have less apathy for some activities.

I wonder what she thinks of me. There, a thought, an idea. Something to pass the time.

            My girlfriend is good. No slut or idiot by any means. She has a simple charisma to her, like what one might conceive of as a southern belle with a pan-American accent. Remembers details, diligent, personable, careful, plain-spoken. To know what someone thinks of you, you have to figure out what you think of them. I justify, I apologize, again.

            She rounds out my wrongs with good faith, giving me a clearly defined benefit-of-the-doubt. She knows that my persona is constantly sublimating into something else; that it is semi-cyclical. I worry that she is able to compartmentalize me because she knows my past so well. Like having the book on predicting the weather, she is able to box me in. Like the weather, I have my occassional surprises, to which she learns a posteriori how to respond. Then those responses become programmed in, too. What I’ve painted in the last few sentences sounds cold and impartial, but understand that it is completely the opposite. The system is tailored to me; she knows how best to quell the fits of emotion, to encourage a positive, fulfilling means for their expression. Is it perfect?

            I make many more mistakes than she does. For each time she’s hung up the phone in the middle of conversation, I’ve done it five times. I’m sorry. I have lost interest in this too. The fog in the car has taken the night whole.