|Everything Is A Verb
|December 15th, 2015
What happened to me? What happened to the version of me that never existed? The
articulate and succinct. The thinker turned actor. The one with the pair of eyes that viewed
the world he wants with one and the world he doesn't with the other while understanding
both are one and the same.
The one who always acted from the sanctity of Now and lived in the moment where
everything is a verb.
The competent one.
The one who welcomed conformity because he understood it doesn't exclude identity or,
even more crucially, it doesn't forsake character.
What happened to that version of me that never complained about Facebook? Or never
cared about likes and comments enough to feel hurt? The version who easily identified
with the premise of Facebook that everyone is whole and the platform is there to help
spread that feeling.
Even when the platform fosters envy, competition or used as a tool to drill a hole in the
heart to fill it with "meaning", "inspiration" or "wisdom", what happened to him who saw
this as the unintended exercise of freedom and not as a malicious design flaw? He who
understood that no one or nothing is responsible for how he felt but himself?
The one who wasn't afraid to share his Christian faith.
The calm and collected one.
The one who didn't keep expecting a miracle round the corner to fulfill his (im)material
The one without a social class complex so deep that he was blind to God's blessings.
The one who lived every moment so gratefully that it showed in the way he respected
himself and treated everyone with care.
What happened to that guy?
"He's here to see you."
"Pardon" I say, looking up from my ancient laptop and noticing my white attractive
secretary who could pass for a character right out of the second Season of Fargo.
"Your 8:30? He's here."
"It's 8:17." I stall. I'm trying to gather my thoughts. Why am I seeing him? Did I plan this
meeting? Better yet, why did I approve it? No one wants to see their better version. What
I look up and she's still there. She's waiting for me to say it. This is what she does. She
forces me to spell things out so I don't get to blame her later on. And it works.
"Should I let him in?" she demands a bit loudly and sternly this time. Almost deliberately to
interrupt my self-indulgent inner monologues.
I hate that she knows me this well.
"Why are you dressed like you're in the fifties?" I say, inappropriately and inaccurately - I
mean to say seventies. Maybe, I hoped, this will throw her off and I won't get to decide
"The whole world is full of people who don't make decisions and even the ones that do are
often making poor ones. So, you feeling persecuted for being forced to make a decision, to
"grow up", is nothing new. You are as old as the oldest cliché. But the real question is not
whether or not you should make a decision or even making a right one. It's actually... can
you live the decision? Not live with the decision. That comes later on and is relatively a lot
easier. But living the decision. You get what I'm saying to you? Hey, you listening?" She
snaps her fingers at me.
She's in my mind. The realization hits me like an obvious smell of an unexpected fart.
You're in my mind Fate? I ask, psychically and rhetorically.
"No, you're in mine doll" she sasses me and follows it with a wink and a smile.
"Yes. Please let him in." I say quickly, sitting up straight and looking her dead in the eyes.
It's time I took control of the situation like a man.
She laughs. Heartily. Contentedly.
The kind of laugh that sees the truth before it is spoken. The kind that when you hear it,
you shudder because you feel violated.
"Great, now I'm violating you? What is it with you and sex? Everything has to be about
sex. Why couldn't you have made me a man? Ethnic. Even an animal. No, I have to be
sexually charged for you to ponder your self-referential suppository of an analysis of
which, sadly and this is true, you are sincerely proud. Smh." she says shaking her head
After she closes the door, I hear her talking with him. Immediately, tears of sweat start
swelling on my forehead like a pitiful symphony from an average composer with an even
lesser talent for daring music.
I hear his voice. It's deeper than mine, more assured. I feel his radiating energy already
drawing me in with the gravity of his compassion.
I fight it with terror. I'm not ready. I don't want to be ready. You can't make me.
I hear her laugh. The kind of laugh that's pregnant with approval. The kind all men desire
but only few receive. I could feel her blush with excitement all the way from the ends of
He turns the handle and my heart, like my door, stops just shy of being pushed wide open
- exposed and vulnerable as if on an operating table. While my inevitable protraction
delayed by just an eternity, through the courteous opening, I hear them clearer, sharper
now. Sharp enough to burst my vacuous ego into shards of little pieces of pride. How can
I ever hope to be like that?
She's still talking to him. Still laughing. Enjoying her life as she, I imagine, inadvertently
holds on to his hand to the last possible second, instinctively unwilling to let go of what he
could be in her life if he stayed. But he doesn't. He won't. I won't let him. Just out of spite.
But it's not up to me. So I wait till they finish. I wait.
Fate I start. Why do you have a stripper's name? Perhaps because you like to tease men to
pay your bills. But what bills though? What would you have to pay for monthly, dearly
sometimes I assume? If I paid you every day, if I made a living out of giving you
everything that I have, will you reveal yourself to me, willingly, lovingly? What must I do
to keep you from haunting me, always at the periphery of my grasp? I could stop coming
to watch you perform, I could do that. Do you want me to? What do I want? I mean, I
guess I want what you represent. Which is... what? Love? Attention? But I already have
that. I have friends and family who love me. So, how come you don't like me? How come
I have to pay you to pretend? Do I really need you to show me how to like myself? But I
do like myself.
"Then act like it, fool!" she shouts at me from behind the door and I snap into attention in
time to hear her heels walk back to her desk. Their conversation is over.
How did it end? I missed it. Did he give her what she wants or did he let her down gently?
I can never do either. Who is this guy?