Tuesday, December 11, 2007

"Its Own Sweetness"-M.Hettich

“I want to do it to that British girl.”

That was my mantra, so to speak, that whole year. It wasn’t a very good mantra, but it was something, which is what I needed. I had been desperately searching for some sort of meaning in my life since the future became now, since they banned public television and radio, since Hollywood had taken over.

My life had become the stuff of post apocalyptic distopian awareness, but nothing exciting had actually happened. No nuclear bombs had wiped out the big-apple, no epidemic diseases had forced humanity into any sort of careful interactive subtlety, no reason to move underground yet. That British girl was more of a living figment, imagined from some interpreted experience I’d had with an exchange student who had charmed me with her wit and then promptly disappeared into a hazy glamorous Neu-American fashion scheme, full of colors and aggressive sexuality. But, those two minutes, when we had talked about the tragic meandering of the plot in some book I had been trying to read or a song I was obsessed with (I actually don’t remember), had stuck with me. It had been my only real interaction with anything tender and feminine in years.

I’ve never been a very funny person. This accounts for my terrible luck with the ladies. I think if I had been able to turn up the silly and turn on the charm, maybe I’d have been able to stop her from getting all herped up and cavorting with the scantly clad pretty-boys I’d recently seen her exploiting, full swing Neu-American rock star.


1 comment:

Wake said...

At this point, most of my old friends had acquired their fair share of S.T.D.s, which scooted them gently up into the upper echelon of society. It was because of this that I was still living in an old, semi-broken, pink house in a segregated post-resort community with a naked face and an empty ego.

This was a fair amount of time after Justin Timberlake had publicly announced that he finally had AIDS to a crowd of screaming pre-teens and post-adolescent sexy-males. Winnona Ryder was loosing it to Syphilis. Most of my friends had only been able to afford Herpes. The few that had the wit and charisma enough to end up with something stronger were drinking Champaign and Whiskey Sours atop The Standard Hotel while their Valet parked cars shined, newly waxed.

I hadn’t been born to survive in this sort of ultra charged sexual climate. Anyway, even though that British girl was pretty much my last hope, I don’t know why I held on to her as an object of affection so long after she went and got all cool. But I did it. And I did it. I did it while sitting at Starbucks, one of the few glamorous locations that still didn’t require S.T. ID or proof of infection. I did while shopping for groceries. I did during the lambent silence just before bed. I spent most of my time imagining she’d show up at one of these places, drop pretense just enough to say “hi”. I imagined that maybe she remembered what we had talked about, so I’d have to pretend I still did. There wasn’t much chance left of that.

“I hear she writes charming pop songs and drives her car aggressively.” Jasmin had said on my birthday, a windy May Day spent moping yet again, at Starbucks. He was my only compatriot left. He had a moustache, which kept him out of high-society, though he was classy enough to be whisked right up. He loved his moustache. He loved it enough that he was still stuck downstairs with me, while the boozing and schmoozing kept itself happy, up on the top floor.

“I hear she likes cats and isn’t afraid to die.” He’d continued.

“I hear she lies compulsively and reads philosophy for fun.” He was killing me softly, probably for his own entertainment.

“Do you still dream in black and white?” I asked, mostly to change the subject.

Jasmin had a rare disease that I’d actually been trying, unsuccessfully, to catch. For a while he had been physically unable to experience color in his dreams. We shared sips of coffee and sometimes I took tentative drags off of his cigarettes, just so I’d have a chance at perversely infecting myself. I thought it was poetic and sort of oddly romantic, our compulsive friendship, my life with the man with the ladies name. Oh, and I was tired of color.

I had been dreaming of nothing but my own vivid death for years.

“Mmhmm.” He seemed somewhat exasperated. “Every night.”

That’s how it had become. I was tired of bright. I was tired of excitement. I wanted Sunday service and pumpkin pie. I fulfilled small but ever-present companionship issues by finding helpless replacements.

When I was a child, my future was full of flying cars and robot wives. I’d sing myself little robot love songs during gym class. I always wanted to dance. Now, my future is now and it isn’t what I was expecting.

Oddly enough, the British girl did end up at Starbucks—imagine that! Birds were singing. There were probably butterflies. She walked right by us, pretending not to notice we existed. I looked at Jasmin, who had stopped mid sentence. He raised his coffee cup, as if to cheers me and said sweetly, “To heartaches and bad tomorrows.”

We had found my new mantra.


I started this blog post as the uncensored musings of a deliberate and life-long nerd. I’ve been all about Sci-Fi for pretty much as long as I’ve been all about breathing and/or growing, and so (as one might expect) I’m having a hard time remembering what exactly it was about Science Fiction that initially tickled my fancy. Maybe it was the robots? Maybe it was the perverted future it seemed my generation was going to be growing in to? Maybe it was the obvious—that I was excited by the idea of space travel, by possible robot friends, by laser-gun-toting-android-killing-badass-detectives, etc… Anyway, I grew up on sci-fi, which makes sci-fi hard to quantify.
I was planning on writing about a new science fiction that doesn’t strictly involve science. I was planning on writing about how science fiction, poetry, absurdist theatre, magical realism, and others have congealed into a new, unlabeled but exciting fiction. I was planning on excitement and extra work, but I’m sick, and exhausted, so I’m going to post a story instead…
I hope it reads well.