I am a beaten fuck. I have failed to heed Thoreau’s warning, and now count myself among the legions of men who lead lives of quiet desperation.
Where the shit did things go wrong? I had a decent run in high school, joined the service, had fun running around the world like a crazy yahoo, and now it’s just day after day of gray, heart-stealing cubicle-ness. Every morning I wake up in bed, and the main theme from “Requiem for a Dream” starts playing in my mind, stressing me the fuck out and letting me know that my soul will wither under yet another day of false smiles, political correctness, and powerpoint mind-fisting. (And yes—when I say “mind-fisting,” I’m referencing a pornographic, metaphorically constructed scenario wherein my mind possesses an anus and a ham-sized fist is shoved forcefully into it.)
Not what I envisioned when I was an eight year old boy, avidly dreaming about becoming Earth’s first Jedi. I’m trapped between a rock and a hard place; shall I continue being the single dude creeping towards 40 who gets weird looks from his married buddies—those sad, sackless eunuchs who’ve lost all ability to Do Cool Shit and become trapped in a suburban version of hell? Or do I end up as the creepy old guy at the club or the bar who’s perpetually one fashion trend behind and always bleating absurd inanities like “basic,” “extra,” “ridic,” or “obvi”?
There has to be some way out of this.
I adjust my tie, cursing my receding hairline, my lack of muscle tone, and my ever-so-steadily shrinking testicles, which are becoming increasingly vestigial as the days pass by. I get up to deliver a TPS report to my boss, who’s laughing about some YouTube cat video or the latest viral Buzzfeed clip. He sees me come into his office and gestures for me to sit down. Like the neutered office-drone I am, I obey without question.
“Kent.” He leans forward and props his elbows on his desk, steepling his fingers together. “I wanted to give you a heads-up and speak to you off-line. We want you to be more customer-centric; I’ve given you enough bandwidth to start building consensus within our new ecosystem, and—”
My vision goes blurry and a wave of nausea slices through me. “Please,” I gasp. “Please—no more corporate buzzwords. I can’t—”
He wags a finger at me. “Ah ah ah! In order to move the needle, you’re going to have to tone down the push-back and take the lead on re-synergizing us into a paradigm shift. Kent, you need to focus on core competencies and—”
“HLLLKKKOHGODITHURTS—BLLLLLLLLLOOOOOOORRRRRGHHH!!!” A rank stream of vomit blasts from my lips. I bend over and try to contain it with my cupped hands, but I might as well be trying to hold back a goddamn tsunami. I barf for two minutes straight, then examine my shaking fingers through tear-bleared eyes. They’re dotted with blood; I think I puked up an organ.
The boss keeps speaking, only now it’s not even sentences, he’s just piling on the hurt: “Rightsizing, risk averse, co-sourcing, take-away, low-hanging fruit—”
Black walls start shrinking my sight. In a few seconds it’ll all be over…and is that so bad? Finally—an end to this rat-wheel existence where I keep running toward the cheese, only to have it continually vanish. At least this way it’ll be—
No. There’s one option left. I reach into my pocket and open my eReader to Echo, activating its reality distortion powers. Magic flash.
“NYAAAAARGHHH!!!” Eldritch lightning blasts through the window and crashes through my body, healing my cells and my psyche, causing my pupils to disappear in an evanescent crackle of shimmering blaze. I stand up, glowing like I’m a super-fucking-Saiyan, and my boss skitters back, pressing his palms against the high-rise glass, staring at me with widened eyes.
“You tried to ambush me,” I rasp.
“I’M SORRY!” he wails. “PLEASE DON’T KILL ME!!!”
“I won’t kill you,” I reply. “I’ve found my purpose: I’m a writer. You can live out the rest of your life with your pathetic little dick.”
He drops to his knees and begins sobbing into his hands. “AH GOD YOU’RE RIGHT—IT’S SO PATHETIC!!!”
Suddenly a gaggle of soccer moms busts into the office. They’re all dressed in safari gear, like super-hot soccer mom versions of Lara Croft.
“There he is!” The lead soccer mom points at me with a trembling finger. “The Girthy One!”
The rest of them break out in excited murmurs and whispers.
“The Girthy One!”
“I’ve heard it curves UP!”
“By Rachael Ray’s fair trade frittatas!”
I am indeed a writer…but did you also know I’m a professional Man Whore? 😉
*70s porn music*
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