31
Jul
13

Rollin’ Boulders

how-to-avoid-traffic-jams-35319_2The alarm goes off, you get up, you shuffle off to have a piss, you summon the strength to go through the motions.

In the shower, sleep slides off you, swirls down the plughole. You like the water scalding hot, needles of fire burning into you. It’s good to be alive.

You make breakfast, you think about the day ahead.

Hopefully this action, thinking about the day ahead, fills you with purpose and makes you smile and think, “Cool. I got this. I can do this. Piece of cake.”

You get dressed, pick out something you feel good in, something you haven’t already worn to death. You gather your things, walk out to the car, maybe pause to look at the sky and remind yourself that no matter what happens, at the end of the day what you do or don’t do really means nothing in comparison to the vast expanse of everything stretching above you.

Hopefully you don’t think that though. That’s a dangerous way to think.

You hate the radio but you listen to it every morning. You wonder what happened to that guy who went to extremes burning MP3s to CD so he could avoid having to listen to the radio. It wouldn’t even have to be that drastic nowadays – a few MP3s on a flash stick would do the trick, but some strange part of you would rather listen in passive hatred than change the station.

At work you set your laptop up, make some coffee and kill the first half-hour on Facebook looking at your friends with their fiancés or their wives or their babies or their summer holidays in Europe. Half an hour can easily become an hour as you lose yourself in the minutia of other people’s lives.

You work, because that’s how life is. You tick the boxes, scratch things off the to-do list, move up the ladder, learn, grow, advance and work some more. You focus on the future, you set goals and work steadily at achieving them only to do it again and again.

And that’s great. You’re doing really well if you can get that right. You love what you do so it comes naturally. The other members of your team at work value your input, they’re glad to have you, when you walk into boardrooms, you command respect effortlessly and behind your back people whisper about how you’re the guy that’s going to make things happen.

You’re doing so well. Your family is proud of you. Things couldn’t have turned out better.

You’re doing so well. You play the game like it’s second nature, which is strange because there was a time when you swore you’d never be the exact person you are.

There was a time when you would go to ridiculous extremes not to have to listen to the radio.

But that’s just what they were, ridiculous extremes. You want to swim against the current your whole life, that’s fine, but you’re no salmon. Some people are, but not you. You’re a trout if I ever saw one.

The hours slide off the clock and before you know it you’re back in the gym change room, old-man dick everywhere you look. You get changed and throw everything you have into your routine.

“Pain is weakness leaving the body.”

At home you shower again and eat mainly protein for dinner – the more, the better. Maybe you work a bit or watch some TV, do whatever it is you do to unwind at the end of a satisfying day.

Or maybe you stare out the balcony window, look up at the night sky and wonder, like your father and his father and his father before him did, why you are here. Again. After so many other times, making the same goddamn mistakes you always do.

All this potential. All that blood spilled, all those sacrifices made for what?

Hopefully you don’t think like that.

It’s a dangerous way to think.

-ST


3 Responses to “Rollin’ Boulders”


  1. 1 Tam
    July 31, 2013 at 12:04 pm

    Wow. Fabulous piece. Now I am staring at the sky myself. Again.

  2. 2 michael
    July 31, 2013 at 3:45 pm

    You’re a trout if I ever saw one.

    Great line

  3. 3 dp
    July 31, 2013 at 7:20 pm

    “Or maybe you stare out the balcony window, look up at the night sky and wonder, like your father and his father and his father before him did, why you are here. Again. After so many other times, making the same goddamn mistakes you always do.”

    Amen bro. Amen.


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