This morning when a pigeon abruptly fluttered past my face I automatically said “dipshit,” like I actually annunciated the word, and its commentary sincerely inhabited me. I soon, of course, felt absurd for anthropomorphizing haggard urban fowl, and grimly went on my way. About two blocks later, a derelict man was standing in middle of the sidewalk, hunched over and teetering either in inebriation or its hangover, and struggling to bring a cup of “to go” coffee to his lips. As I passed, I inaudibly uttered “get a fucking grip,” in a heat which soon cooled to the notion that I might be a dick. The entire problem this morning were not these two incidents, but the entitled conceit with which I had perceived them; that is, as perilous subjects of some calm critique emitted from the eyes of an omnipotent being. Maybe this is how God endures us, not in the Stratocumulus distance, or some closed-eyed spiritual ether, but as a rogue pedestrian. A ghost, facing us. And maybe he was hurt as a child, perhaps by the Big Bang, its expanding ripples of subatomic particles breaking a rib or cracking a clavicle before opiates were discovered. Maybe now, as a grown man, he tells himself stories about being a God, in the greatest novel never written, or even started, whilst carrying toilet paper back from Walgreens, whose endless rolls, as a blank Torah scroll, would one day offer the scatological testament of pure chaos.
I’m working through a rather acute depression, fell asleep at around 8:00 p.m. every night last week, only to wake up slightly dumbfounded at a kind of abstract or foreign inhabitance of my own consciousness, starting with exactly what the fuck time it was—had I slept into another evening, skipped work, or was it merely two hours later? How dark could night get before dawn’s obstinate bullying? What didn’t help my mood was that I K-holed in the fervently eloquent speeches of the Nation of Islam leader, Louis Farrakhan, to whose emphatic, racist, and scientifically suspect rants I somewhat masochistically fell asleep. This has subconsciously led to visions of a “Black America,” towards which someone in my shoes might not, in any natural sense, feel allegiance. I haven’t left the house today, despite three Starbucks “Doubleshot Espresso” 6.5 fl oz. cans I drank in hopes of spiking my energy. At around 2:00 p.m., after dozing in and out of Bridesmaids—which I think is actually a very depressing movie, to whose “fucked” protagonist I deeply relate—I looked at my front door, imagining a world outside being hashed over by whites and blacks, Christians and Muslims, hippies and yuppies, and became so tired over the prospect of having to choose a side, that I did what any defeated and scared man could do. I crawled into bed and fell asleep to Wilco, whose singer Jeff Tweedy was to likewise scream, from a distance brought by oblivion, and in rather different form, from the same place Louis Farrakhan did; that is, from some disoriented anger, or mis-managed sadness, their meandering calls into a mic in search of sympathizers. I nodded my head and offered, in mutant form, my best love. They had found one.
I once tweeted something about about trying to screenshot raindrops on my iPhone, as I had earnestly done one wet afternoon, their crystal-like array on my screen being mistaken, sans Wittgenstein, for representative realism—whereby reality can be only contained as some virtual diorama, as extant in one’s empiricism, or “head,” by which the actual world is measured—as opposed to “naïve realism,” the idea that, simplistically, what you see is what you get. This is all fun on a Tuesday night, until your author involves beef which had been fashioned with Japanese curry (sweeter than traditional Indian curry, as introduced by the British during their colonization), a piece which had been accidentally flung from his mouth onto his laptop’s screen and, for a split second, perceived as some dark rogue eclipse within the screen itself. You see, I was wrestling with a piece of gristle, tugging at it with my fingers, when I had lost control of it and lodged it towards my screen. And there it resided, as mutilated flesh, some screen scar hardening over these very words. And what did I pick up and place in my mouth? An offending object, or merely the subject of its representation? How real could meat be on this surface of semblances, on a platform built for and sustained by artifice, where images are mistaken for things? “The logical picture of the facts is the thought,” goes Wittgenstein in a proposition felt far less, an eternity apart, than the tepid thing down my throat. I felt sick. I still do.