VentilationSubmitted by DaBeast at 2012-05-27 16:34:23 EDT
Rating: 1.33 on 6 ratings (8 reviews) (Review this item) (V)
I'm feeling introspective today. Introspective and more than a tad snarky. This may lead into a rant (your only warning, folks) or this may lead to something depressingly maudlin. Like yourself, I don't know. I'm willing to see how long the mood lasts. If you aren't, then arrivedercci and don't let the door hit you where the mythical deity-of-your-choice split ya. Ta-ta.
I'm in that 'might-have-been' state and it's quite hilarious. I'm in an unexpected place, a juncture I never saw and before I take a step, I've turned around and looked at where I've been. I can see the place in the distance where I stared down the barrel of a loaded gun; that unspent bullet sent me firmly down a road that I had not seen until just that second. It's tiny in the distance and far away, but still I can find it as well as the jagged end to the road that I previously walked. That path has faded over time and distance but it's there, a faint, far-away gleam.
And I can see the funny in it, the sad in it, the lonely in it. In a way, I think it's waiting on me to diverge back to it. There's a funny: along that path, I would have become a truck driver. Mom was one and Pop, too, as well as brother and sister. It could be a lucrative career when seen from the wrong side of the poverty line and that's where I grew up, so I know I would have gone in that direction, eventually. It would have been a way away from everything that I drowned in, a better option than suicide which I never did seem to get right, and becoming one of "Them", which terrified me more than any other thought I will ever have. I would have poured myself into it and my home would be with me wherever I went. My fears would have ratcheted up, though, and I would have been too scared of various things to ever connect to anyone. So, I would have had a dog. Probably a stray mutt found on the side of a lonely road, vetted and fixed to present as few problems as possible, and trained to love the open road almost as much as I still do. I would have eventually bought a house, just large enough for one person, and I would have covered it in bookshelves and enjoy sending my spare time trying to fill them all. I would have retired there, just me and my dog, living inside the words, all beautiful or horrible, grotesque or wise, funny or heart wrenchingly sad. There, someday, I would have died, alone for I'm sure my mutt would be buried long before.
It would have been a life driven by the one emotion that drives us all: fear. Love is fine and dandy when you can find it (or rent it) but fear is the one thing that motivates everybody. I can see that that life was one of being driven by various fears, monsters loose from the closet and roaming about wherever they pleased. I look at this line, though, and I see no better. What is fear but looking down the loaded barrle of a police issued .38 and realizing that there were things you feared more than you did that bullet? It sharpens everything to a fine, straight edge when you see the light gleaming, harsh and bright, from the silver barrel and the darkness inside is not enough to hide the tip of the bullet inside that snub-nosed little monster. The bullshit falls away and everything comes to rest on the tip of that bullet.
I should have expected the gun; I never expected the bullet. It didn't waver and time itself stood still. There was no sound but the beat of my heart. There was only the Issue and that bullet. The bullet told me the seriousness of the Issue, which I had failed to properly gauge. I didn't look into her eyes. Mom has crazy eyes sometimes and I knew what would be in them; the bullet told me what would be in them. The bullet told me many things in those timeless eons between one heartbeat and the next. Things that hurt me, things that broke me, things that hardened me, angered me, and things that would haunt me til the day that I died.
Then I saw the path. Unexpected, unknown until that heartbeat, it stretched away from the path that I trod like a line of silvery light slicing through the untested dark. It appeared when the first fist hit the door, when the voice first yelled through it, when the wall shook and plaster clicked down from the ceiling. The door shuddered beneath it and the path appeared. I feared that unknown path.
But I feared the path I trod even more.
So, I put my back to the bullet and I stepped onto the silvery unknown. It's brought me here, to this juncture, another one that I never saw coming. Will another unknown path appear to me, now, an unknown other option that will lead me into another unknown place? Or will I be stuck here, at the junction, waiting for it, forever?
I don't know. But I'm afraid. What if it shows up? What if it doesn't?
I hate this place.