Sometimes I worried about each and every one of us as I fell down the stairs from the third floor into a cab anywhere from one to five times a week for nearly six months. In hindsight, we all seemed to be trying to destroy ourselves just as quickly as we’d destroy a thirty rack of PBR or large containers of cheap wine. But we covered up the fact that we were drinking until we cried or puked by laughing (or pretending to laugh) until we cried or puked because it’s easier to laugh when you’re so drunk you can’t see straight. We played young and dumb and kept the fact that we were all disintegrating on some level or another a secret. Every love seemed to fall into the category of either unwanted or triangular. Sometimes there were more sides to it than three and sometimes we never knew that we’d ventured outside of parallel lines. We were always barefoot and singing along long after we’d stopped believing in the things we were singing about. Come August we were all disenchanted and drunk lying under a tree talking about how we can’t believe we ever bought into any of this while everyone inside seemed to be sober versions of ourselves six months earlier. We sat sweating out our drunks, rolling cigarettes, and sighing, not knowing how to feel about everyone inside. We sipped nostalgia, envy, and minor disgust with our covert public alcohol. We used to be untouchable and, those people inside, they were still untouchable. We had been untouchable because we’d told ourselves that we were and we’d been surprised to learn otherwise. The people inside were untouchable because we’d told them they were too. We’d set some sort of example and now I wonder how many of them are falling down stairs just to remember that they’re alive.
It seems like no matter where you are in this state, if you’re sad with the windows open at this time of night, it sounds exactly the same. Cars seem to hover as they barely make a dent in what can only be described as the sound equivalent of that feeling you get when you sit down on the shower floor and stay there long after you run out of hot water because you don’t really know what else to do. It’s that kind of sound that won’t really let you actually get out of bed, one of those things that inspires you to keep your cigarettes on the night stand so when sleep abandons you at a time when you can’t really stand yourself, you’ll have some sort of buffer between you and your loathsome self.
That melancholy Illinois night sound might as well just be the pure auditory embodiment of self-loathing echoing through your head and heart and projecting out into the atmosphere given the chain of thoughts it always sets into motion. It quickly evolves into one of those nights when you’re left hugging and biting your knees and wondering what the fuck you’re doing anymore as you chain smoke with that song about how you were just a fuck stuck in your head thinking about how time is supposed to heal all wounds but no one ever tells you what’s supposed heal all parasites. What you’re particularly interested in is the cure for parasites that live in old wounds and refuse to let time get to them.