Do you want the solution, or do you want the reason?

I’ve tried both. I like doing both. I like band-aid solutions, and all the time that they save me. I like being able to explain issues. I like to form narratives in my mind.

A man’s dropped his papers. Typical.

A silent glance is exchanged between us, and we rush over by his side to help him pick up some papers. That’s just the way you resolve something like that. Quick and easy. Very straightforward: collect a few piece of paper, then hand it to him when he’s ready. You can discuss it later if you want to, but right now, you’d be wasting time.

That’s a superficial example.

Let’s say… how about… you’ve fallen out of love with your lover. Out of the blue, inexplicably – a wave of indifference has came over you. It’s midnight. what do you do?

Ruminate. Nothing but ruminate. Sleep over it. Sit up in the morning to think about it. Imagine all the possible scenarios that you could go through. Sort each scenario by how destructive they could be. Try to decide. Fail to decide.

Run to the kitchen, and fry some eggs. Get your mind off it.

You hear them yawn. “You’re early today.” She smiles. She doesn’t have a hold on you anymore. You feel uncomfortably free. You like the restraints, though. You like the “stability.” The lack of chaos in your life; the permanence of the situation.

At least, you force yourself to remember how that felt. You remind yourself of how you used to be, and all the things that you used to think. You used to be able to write poetry about the feeling in your chest every time you woke up. You can still write poetry, but it’s a dull feeling. It just isn’t as good. It’s not as intense anymore. The colours that spring to mind aren’t so vivid.

She smiles at you. “What are you looking at? Something on my face?” She rubs her hands over her face with fervor, grinning as she rests them on her cheeks. She puts her elbows on the table.

Oh shit. You have to respond, right? You smile back, making sure that you crinkle your eyes. You let out a little snort – no, you let out a rapid flow of air through your nostrils. You wipe your nose, even though nothing came out. You look down, and the smile seems to hang down, dragging your expression with it. Ah. The definition of a “long face.”

It’s not unlike you to fall out of love with things, you think. You think about all the hobbies. The dusty toys. The boxes of assorted junk in the closet. You used to prize them so much – hold them so close to your heart. Where’s that feeling now? Where – how can you get to that point again?

You gulp. You look at her, trying to study her face for any sign of suspicion. You can’t be caught now, not with your pants down and your argument in shambles.

“Why are you acting so strangely?”

“I’m not in love.”

Yeah, sure. See how that works out for you. I dunno, maybe you like smashed plates.


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