Monday, February 8, 2010

Interview with an Umpire

So after almost everyone left the office, I went down to have dinner with one of my best friends.

I found myself with her, sipping cooling coffee as we farted and burped after a heavy meal of chicken and rice.

"They annoy me," she said.



Me: Why?

She: They just do! They annoy me! Because I don't believe in stupidity or innocence. Everyone is responsible for everything they do. They are evil, malicious, spiteful, self-centered, EVILLLL!!!! ARRGGHHH! They annoy me.

Me: They're people. People will always be like that. But why?

She: Why what?

Me: Why allow yourself to be annoyed? Why give them that power?

She: What do you mean? I find them annoying because I hold on to values. Right and wrong. Ethics and morality. And I shall not compromise.

Me: Wait. Those are good values. If you hold on to good values, only good things will come from them - only good feelings. Being annoyed, I believe that there is something else you are holding on to. Something negative.

She: Do you know what it is?

Me: I don't know what it is. That's for you to find out.

She: ...

Me: ...

She: So, how are you?

Me: You know, not many people ask that and stick around to hear the answer.

She: Maybe because you deflect everything, every time someone asks.

Me: Maybe because they all fall asleep after a while.

She: So tell me. How are things?

Me: I'm stressed out, man.

She: Why? Work?

Me: Work is work. This is not as bad as the time when I puked blood. So, it's still manageable. I'm coasting, mostly.

She: So? Your father?

Me: ... yeah.

She: What's happening?


She: Why? Superhero complex?

Me: No.

She: Why?


She: Not at him?

Me: No.

She: At the situation?

Me: Yes... and no.

She: Then?

Me: Huhhhhhh.

She: ...

Me: I am okay with death. I dealt with that last year. The reality of it all. The mortal nature. The fact that we are all going to die. That my father will die. That is all... accepted. I guess... I am just not ready to accept that he is so stubborn at giving himself pain. At torturing himself. At smoking four packs a day, not watching what he eats, not caring about wounding his legs when he has diabetes.

Me: I think about it. About how he can go blind. How he can lose his legs. And to avoid all of those things, is not impossible. I hate it. I hate the fact that there are things that can be done, but is not being done.

She: ...

Me: I wake up every morning, and I have this thing hanging over my head. This, swinging axe.

She: The Pit and the Pendulum.

Me: ...

She: Sorry, you were monologuing. Continue.

Me: There's that thing. It hangs over my head. If my father spends the rest of his life in pain, I am not sure how I can live with that. I cannot accept that.

She: There are things you can't resist. When you've done all you could, there is nothing else you can do.

Me: I hate the fact that I am poor!

She: You are not poor.

Me: Yeah, my neighbour is poor. I hate the fact that I am not rich. I can't hire an army of nurses. I can't fly in specialists from Johns Hopkins. I can't afford cryogenics, robotics. I can't hire people to ensure that no bramble or bush cuts into his skin.

She: You have a choice. Resist circumstances, or accept them. Not accept them as in surrender and die and not do anything. Just... be okay with it. Can you be okay with it? I mean, be okay with it, and function however you can? Cause they need you out there. Being angry, hateful, stressed out, will not help him, it will not help you. You need to function. Become your aspect. And you need to be okay with it.

Me: It is not easy.

She: It can be.

Me: You know what? This is why, over the years, I have lost and gotten rid of a lot of friends. This is why, all these years, I've only kept a few.

She: Yeah, I know.

Me: I'll just have you know, I'm on your side.

She: Of course. Because I KNOW I'm right.

Me: Yeah, I don't care if you're right or wrong. You can be as wrong as you can be. You can get into a fight, cause you killed this person's baby. And ate it. I don't give a shit. I'm on your side.