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Archive for the tag “allegory”

Apt Title

men without women FINISHED png

There is a new book.

I haven’t read it yet, but I’m sure I’ll get around to it, eventually.  I get around to everything, eventually.  It’s a book about men, choosing to live their lives without the company of women.  Yes…straight men, dumbass.  I hear it’s a very good book, as are all the author’s other books.  I even have one of his books lying on my couch, still waiting to be finished, right where I left off reading it almost two years ago.  That was the last time I…

Anyway, I hear the book is about a growing number of men in the world who would rather do without the company of women, than risk the possibility of disappointment, hurt, or sadness that eventually comes with coupling.  For all the good a good woman can bring to a man, there is always the looming probability that with the good comes an even worse bad.  And so, after years of experiencing more bad than good, these men just say no to it all.

I understand completely.

Think of it this way.

When you’re a young man, after a fairly ordinary childhood and adolescence, and an even less remarkable bunch of teen years, you, with little to no experience in life, accept what you, at the time, believe is a most remarkable job.  In your mind, you think it’s the best job you will ever have.  You also believe that you need to sign onto this job just as quick as you can, because you are convinced by the smiling person who wants to hire you, that you will never find another job like this job, anywhere, ever again.  So you snap up that job, reminding yourself every day just how lucky you are to have it.  And while you don’t have much experience with other jobs in your young life, you believe this job will only get better through the years, because, more than any other job in the whole wide world, this job is a keeper.

So, over the course of several decades, with a few random highs mixed in with a seemingly endless stream of lows, you work hard at the job, mostly because, you remind yourself daily, that you committed yourself to the job, come hell or high water, to the end.  Never mind that no one told you going in that the job you thought was your job for life was a job scrubbing toilets and mopping bathroom floors sixteen hours a day, seven days a week, with no opportunity for promotions or raises, or even one day, retirement.  All of that must have been in the fine print somewhere at the bottom of the last page of the contract you signed all those years ago.

Now I know what you’re thinking.  What kind of a job does this to someone?  And what kind of loyalty to such a shitty job could anyone possibly have in a world where there must be better jobs than this?   And if you weren’t thinking that, because you’re a smart reader,  because you were paying attention, and you remember the introduction to what you started reading about 500 or so words ago, you know that this little allegory was not about a job, but about a relationship.  A relationship that conditioned you for all your future jobs… I mean relationships… wherein you would repeat the same patterns and habits you learned the first time around.

Lather, relation, repeat.

Until one day, you tell yourself that it would be better to go without than to repeat the same mistakes and sorrows, again and again, until death you depart this life.

And so you quit trying, because quitting is less painful than losing.

What?  You thought this post would have a happy ending?  And I thought you were paying attention.

 

© Copyright 2017 William S. Friday

The Captain

the captain

The Captain retired

around the twenty-sixth of February

that year. 

He had lived a long life

of public,

and very private,

service to his favorite causes,

among which were rescue,

search and rescue,

and search and rescue

and rejection. 

Upon the announcement

of his retirement,

the Captain was asked what

he would do with his

remaining years on this earth. 

After much thought,

he answered,

“Better.”

 

© Copyright 2017 William S. Friday

Easy


Easy. 

Like a walk to the corner store for a six-pack and pretzels. But someone burned the corner store to the ground and didn’t tell you about it till you got there, then stuck a gun in your back and said,

“Gimme all your beer money, fool!”

So you walk home. 

Easy. 

But that same someone burned your house to the ground and didn’t tell you about it till you got there, then stuck a gun in your back and said,

“Now gimme your pretzel money, fool!”

Easy. 

 

© Copyright 2016 William S. Friday 

Coffee Mandatory

Coffee Mandatory

Coffee Mandatory

 

Just so you know… I never planned to fall in love.

It started out as nothing more than a relationship of convenience. Like sex for a green card or the wash of a windshield for a couple of bucks at a stop light in Santa Monica. A fucking transaction. No emotion… no feelings. Just a need meeting another need. No romance, no flowers… just the glare of a naked bulb at sunrise, and the grunting of guilty pleasure heard on the other side of a thin kitchen wall.

After a while, like with any illegitimate relationship… and enough lying to yourself in the mirror… eventually you decide that maybe it’s okay to take next step… the public step. A coffee house. The thought was innocent enough in your head, “It’s just a cup of coffee. What could happen?”

Until you get there, and you wonder if this is how they feel in Amsterdam… ordering heroin… in a brothel.

At first, there’s that self-conscious thought that goes, “people don’t really do this in public… do they?” Followed by a second thought that you should just go finish your business in the restroom like the upstanding citizen your parents always thought you’d be. But you stay… you take your seat in the big room with all the other upstanding citizens… and you lose yourself to the overwhelming urge that brought you here in the first place. To take this private need to the next level. So you do. In front of God and everyone… if only God were watching.

I never planned to fall in love.

Years pass, and things go on like always. Public meetings, intimate rendezvous, long mornings after a bad night’s sleep. Every encounter making you sink deeper and deeper into what was such an innocent addiction. Days and nights became the same to you. Multiple jobs, endless hours… and only one thing remains the same. The need. The intense need, the unsatisfied need… the aching need.

Until another comes along.

As the glare of the naked bulb at sunrise still calls after you like a line out of a song by Mumford & Sons, the something new doesn’t call like a selfish bitch… it whispers softly in your ear, like the one that got away. It draws me to a softer place… a darker place, later and later in the night… after the glare of day, and all its distractions, goes away. And unlike the whorishly obvious coffee brothel, it is subtle and almost… caring. And the scars of years are replaced by tender strokes to a raw-rubbed ego. The only thing required in return was to think, and feel… and write. And whatever words came out were good… were accepted. I was accepted.

I never planned to fall in love. Not like this.

More years pass, and things change… drastically. The flutter and surge of my heart, gentle ego stroking… the sideways-smiles-turned-lustful… change. Flutters turn to questions. Surges to pain. The lying, sideways smiles, with their promise of fulfillment… turn to insistence. And whispers turn to ice at the harsh dawning of a new day, when I know it has become… the same.

I look up from the computer. I see the light of morning enter through the fog of early June. “When did this happen?” is all I can say, in a hushed voice, raw from not speaking. I turn my head the other way, toward the kitchen, to the glare of a naked bulb at sunrise…

…just so you know.

 

© 2011-2013 Bill Friday

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