The blankness is all pervading. Attempted resistance only strengthens it.

Example: staring at my bookshelf.

A well-intentioned cousin gave me Marbles by Ellen Forney. It’s a graphic novel about bipolar disorder. My cousin thinks it will help me deal with everything, knowing I’m not the only one. That’s a nice thought; really, it is. But as I leaf through it, all I’m reminded of is my own inability to function properly. I don’t want to be like the protagonist. Reading about her madness is not going to make me feel better about anything. I just tried and it didn’t. Some Christian gave me The Reason for God by Timothy Keller. People of the faith really don’t ever give up on you. I wish they’d just move on. I read one chapter and am still left with the sense that there is no God. That there is no meaning, order, logic, or overarching narrative to existence. It is all completely without rhyme or reason. The author seems like a nice enough fellow, but it’s whatever. I’ve heard it all before. What’s next on the shelf? Who They Was by Gabriel Krauze. Contemporary literature given to me by an old friend. I have no idea why. When I Google the title, the first thing that comes up is a review in The Guardian. Not a good sign.

Okay, so fuck the books. How about I watch something. Every streaming service on Earth is available to me via Pure Watch, the world’s greatest pirating website. Just this year, I’ve used it to binge television show after television show. It’s almost worse than my porn habit. Station 11 was cool; consider it recommended. I Know This Much is True was great until the last few episodes. The pivots to flashbacks felt pretty forced and then the whole thing got sort of woke. I wish it had gotten cancelled before the end of the first season. Kevin Can F**k Himself was surprisingly good, only a few weak episodes. So was Sharp Objects. And Big Little Lies. Olive Kitteridge was probably best of all. I really recommend that one. To be honest, I probably watched a few others that I can’t even remember. And what has all of this been for? Nothing, near as I can tell. You don’t care about what shows I like. I watched them just to fill the hours, anyway. Now I have seen them and can say things about them. It’s important to have opinions, and thanks to TV, I have lots. Great. What now?

Well, another show, that’s what now. There are still lots more hours to fill. It isn’t even the second half of the afternoon. So I could find a good show and watch it all in one sitting the way I like to. The day will be killed. The trouble is I’ve admitted what this is all about. And once you know you’re watching TV just to kill time, it’s pretty hard to get into it. I know that would be the reason to pick up a book, too.

Scrap all that. You’re bored, you have no discernable moral compass, you have no goals, you have no self-interest. Isn’t there an enormous opportunity embedded into all that? Like, I could do anything I want to. In theory, yes. In reality, I literally don’t want to do anything. Everything is just so predictable. I could go to a casino, smoke a ton, and lose money hand over fist. I did that big time a few months ago. I could also go to the bar and get smashed. Then I’d pathetically text some people. Nothing else will happen. I will return to my bed in a few hours and sleep it off. In the morning, I will feel dumb. I could go out and try to cop. I’ll just get ripped off. And if I don’t, I’ll just pop pills and watch TV. I’ve already gone over why that blows. I own a car so I could drive wherever. But the first half of the that last word is key: “where.” Where? In order to do what? The casino would be one place…yeah I covered that one, too. The mall? I’m not a teenager. Surely nobody would suggest driving to the woods and being in nature.

To summarize, the following things seem pretty well ruled out: reading, watching, drinking, gambling, getting high, driving. Well, do I owe anyone any phone calls? No. This would’ve been easier just a few years ago, before everyone I liked got a real job, married, overdosed, committed suicide, and/or became a parent. Everyone is busy now, and I can’t even find a way for nihilistic loserdom to occupy my valueless time. How the fuck is that possible?

Blankness triumphs. I feel like nothing, am motivated by nothing, and will in time descend completely into nothing.


After writing this, I went to a bar and got smashed. Made an ass of myself. Returned home and puked. Woke up hungover and dumber than before. One of these days, I am going to hurl, and in the middle of all the slimy chunks, there will be a shiny key. I’ll plunge my hand into the muck to grab it, and when I do, what it unlocks will become clear as day, clearer than anything before it.