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page 57

Write page 57 of your 300-page autobiography.

Excerpt from As Yet Untitled by Rahul Raman..

When all of  it ended–an experience I recall as being messy above all else, an incontrovertible evidence of my own stupidity–the prevailing wisdom, foisted upon me with maddening regularity, was that my predicament resulted from nothing more than another attempt to rid myself of the guilt.

This platitude seemed an enormous comfort to those dispensing it, from my then-girlfriend to whomever took it upon him- or herself to plaster upon themselves the shameful disposition that is, being my friend. For my part, I had difficulty stomaching (along with most anything else) the notion that there was something inherently wrong with either three o’ clock in the afternoon or liking Nancy Botwin.

Ought I to have been in some hotel, with an unbelievably poor room service? – The person charged with knocking my door in the middle of the afternoon–I suppose he had the misfortune of working the wrong shift.

It’s become popular wisdom, taken up by coworkers and grief-stricken friends, relatives and mere acquaintances eager for their three seconds of relevancy, I apologize. Tragedy is the conspiracy of space and time against an utterly blameless victim. Given the sheer number of people pronounced unfortunate victims of poor timing, you’d think someone lucky enough to reside in the right place and time would miss them.

Slightly less popular and infinitely more useful would have been the wisdom “Don’t drink like a pig, even if at the time it strikes you as audacious valiant controlled.” Even if it everything goes off without a hitch on a daily basis. Not once did anybody call me an idiot–possibly out of concern that my ego would rupture at a delicate stage in recovery, but regardless, it was something I very much deserved to hear.

Not that I would have listened. She and I didn’t end. I told her to go.

I understand it’s an empty phrase–there are perhaps few things I understand better than an empty phrase–but I didn’t and don’t appreciate the implication that I wound up sprawled on a hospital bed on account of having missed an exit cue.

And despite all this, despite pronounced scorn for the phrase, I can’t seem to escape the nagging sense that there’s somewhere else I should be.

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About Humbug

My past has a way of making my present feel jealous of the future.