evening anecdote

It was three days after Christmas. He looked into the mirror, and said to himself “Whenever I speak to others they have such a sardonic grin, one eyebrow raised, eyes wide and lips curled. They act as though we are both participating in a long-running, elaborate joke. We are, of course, and who wouldn’t want to protect themselves in a situation such as that? But what if, just once, I wanted to let them all see me naked, wanted to let them know what I was really thinking, how would such a gesture play out in such an environment?”

So he put on his clothes and left the house and went to the bar, even though he never drank and never met his friends at the bar to watch them drink. He showed up, and many of them flashed him large smiles – like hyenas they seemed. And he sat down and warmed up a little and made some small talk.

And then he said, to the small group of three seated at the end of the crowded table, which in that moment contained many conversations, “I was just sitting home all alone, lying in my bed, for three days, thinking I would certainly have to kill myself. Thinking that, despite how pointless and cowardly it seemed logically, that all previously constructed storylines certainly led to that one inevitable fate. But then, for one intense, slow-motion moment I thought, no, no – if I could just get up and move, just get up and go somewhere – anywhere – then everything would be okay.”

They all grinned knowingly and laughed. He had been wrong about the anywhere.

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