I really don't have any fear anymore. Ever since May 5 I've viewed the world in a remarkably different light. Self-destructive behavior has never been a stranger to me, but I've always had a pretty good idea of where the line was, and I always tried to stay at least a couple feet this side of oblivion. I was afraid of making a mistake, especially on a slow news day. That was always my fear. I don't think I'm important in any great scheme of the world, but I recognize that my premature check-out would probably make the C-block in some newscast, or at least 2B in the News-Leader. But my sardonic side worried it would happen on a slow news day, and because all news is relative, I'd wind up the cautionary tale of the day (whatever you do, kids, don't do what this idiot did).
I'm not afraid anymore. The way I figure it, I've gone through the worst 12 months of my life, capped by a cerebrovascular accident (I swear, officer, it was an accident!) that gifted me with a keen new insight: there is nothing left to lose. I mean, what, you want to tell me it could be worse? Don't pull the "you-could-be-dead" card on me, please, 'cause that's not a compelling argument right now. That's not making a good case for life. And the idea that things will get better? That's really a laff riot right now.
The people I wish would understand this couldn't care less. The curious gawkers just like the train wreck — and really, who can blame them? There is a certain compelling quality in watching the inexorable dismantling of this machine, especially if you can do it from a distance and with plausible deniability. And in the end, what does it really matter? This is just one long bleeding letter to a bluebird on a telegraph line. And birds don't listen. They just fly where they want, when they want.
I seek the couch and mindless TV. I long for the quiet. These things are behind me now and dead, I guess. Thank God for Ambien.