The ice sheets roiled up, the glaciers and jagged mountains blinding in the distant midday sun, all of it intermittently obscured by the wild tossed seas as we descended the immense trough and then rode back up, the terrifying magnificence there again.
I had come out to this vastness because I had failed at life. I was unable to moderate. Or so she said. It was immoderate of me to reply to a “friendly reminder” from work with a “go fuck yourself”, immoderate to have another when I had so far to drive, and most definitely immoderate to call her a bitch – worse actually – when she told me about her friend who had never thanked her for the thank-you card. “Never replied,” were the exact words, but there’s no point in going over that again.
I was adrift now, alone with my failures and losses, just as I had predicted too many times in my head. The rocks and ice were my only buddies now. I couldn’t even get a signal to watch the game..
I left, half expecting her to be beside me, but she wasn’t and I found myself alone on a darkened path going toward the harbor. I listened to the sound of my shoes on the cement, sharp and clear and then gone.
There was always death, an expiring, a no longer. The world as only I know it – my memories – all of that done. Then nothing, a stone, dead and gone. Whatever I did, good or bad, it was just some story.
This blog has been effective at turning over the rocks from my childhood, dreams and half-realized works. The Young Chronicles in particular has been telling as it reveals my lack of identity; I distinctly remember having clarity when I was eight years old and then none on my hitchhiking trip eleven years later.
I was always on edge, unsure of where I was, scared to camp alone, scared on the side of the road, scared of riding in stranger’s cars. I wanted to be somewhere else and, when I got there, somewhere else again.
The second time that The Fear struck was on my birthday. I think my eleventh. My father gave me two tickets to see the Toronto Maple Leafs. A Leaf hockey game for me then was the ultimate experience. I took a friend as my father didn’t really like hockey and thought that I might be happier on my own. The seats were great – center-ice reds – and we were up on the visiting team early. And then it hit me again. It wasn’t as strong as the first time. I seemed almost to have control over it. I could rationalize it.
Why was I sitting here watching this nonsense? Who gave a damn who scored what and when? The whole thing was a farce designed to brainwash and control. Nobody cared about winning. It was the popcorn, furs and dinners, the money, being part of the scenery that people cared about. The blue leaf could just as well be a red wing. I especially hated the silence between play, the organ occasionally filling that with carnival tunes. Eventually, it passed, but the evening had been depressing. We had won, but I didn’t give a damn. I just wanted to go home and get into bed.