You ever get that feeling as you wake up in the morning that nothing is ever going to get better. You already have reached the apex of your life and everything from here on out is just a slow soul grinding decent into madness and depression?
You ever feel that way?
What if you were right.
What would you do if you realized, after much thought and concentration that nothing is ever going to get better than it was last year. Everything is a mistake, every path you could take is the wrong turn. From here on out. Even the apex is at most a gentle rise in the surrounding drear, and now even that happiness, whatever it was, is gone. What are you going to do.
You still with me?
Do you understand?
Are you even listening?
“Its seven AM Portland, rise and shine. We are looking at another day of light rain and cloudy skies, but look up! There are only 87 more days until summer.”
“Eight-seven wonderful days, that I am sure most of will look just like this until we get another one of our long hit dry summers.”
“I said, fuck you.”
“And since it is only 87 more days, here is some good waiting music, we gonna blame it in the rain, a song, theoretically sung by Milli-Vanilli.”
John did not want to get out of bed, ever. Today was not really a bad day, it was just like all of the other days and they were all bad days. He knew exactly what he was going to do. He was going to get up, he was going to eat, shower, go to work, come home, eat, watch TV, and then go to sleep.
He was going to go to sleep dreading the coming of the morning, and he knew that come the next morning he was, no matter how much he wished to the contrary, wake up. He would dream those same dreams he had every night, those dreams of how much things would be different if he had never been born. How much things would be better if there were just one less him in the world. Then he was going to wake up and realize that all of it was just a dream and much to his dismay, he was still there.
He had thought of suicide, but unfortunately his strong Catholic upbringing would not allow it. Even if he had long since become an Atheist it was still there in the back of his mind suicide is bad. He wished his parents maybe would have given some thought to him when he was born. Why is it that everyone thinks that babies want to be born? Has no one ever considered that maybe, just maybe, they will be miserable in their lives once they find out that they are predestined to jack-shit? Was whats going to happen to them when we have nothing to offer them was never a consideration, was it.
I suppose it would kind of be like that scene in Its a Wonderful Lifewhere they are going back over all of the things that have happened and they are riding the shovels down the hill. You friend goes crashing through the life and you aren’t there to save him. You look up at the gravestone in the cometary and read the name, Adolph Hitler. Suddenly you feel better and your guardian angel looks at you with a twisted up look on his face and shrugs.
“Well, I know I was suppose to come here and tell you about how life was all worth living and what not.”
“Yeah, I suppose you were.”
“Well, I’ll go talk to he big guy and see what the end result of this is, maybe you are right and things will work out better.”
“Yeah, maybe, can’t bring me back a pack of smokes to kill the time could you.”
“Oh, here, I was going to quit anyway. You know this whole Angel thing really isn’t all what its cracked up to be. Shit we don’t even get vacation benefit.”
“No kidding huh. Well, maybe if I am meant to live I should go back and be a complete prick for the rest of my life so that I wont have to worry about it.”
“Yeah, I don’t know, none of us are really sure about the other side either. You will likely know more people though.”
So you call me selfish for thinking about myself. What the hell else am I suppose to think about? You dumped me into this cold heartless world with nothing else there worth thinking about. Of course there are no angels, no demons, nothing that interesting in this world. It is just what it seems, cold, dreary, depressing and this reality that no one will ever be able to improve.
“Just like the post card said, An Irish curse, may everything be just as it seems.”
Another day at work, and then home. Work was, well work, dreary, depressing, and long. Work is like that sometimes, and sometimes it is like that everyday.
A side note for those of you who do not suffer from the kind of massive mind numbing, soul crushing depression that some of us manage to live with everyday of our lives. This is how it feels, sometimes. Even the best things in life are tempered with the fact that they are only moments, and every one of those moments that seem so great are overwhelmed with the reality that they are interspersed within a much larger and longer overall landscape of sharp pointy things and deep dark chasms that every step seem to drop you into. You are always looking up into the world around you and realizing that no one else sees things the way that you do and there is really nothing you can do about it. Doctors love to talk about how this pill or that pill will make you feel better but they don’t realize that they are going to be trying to make you feel a way that you are not comfortable feeling, and as a result they are going to make you feel worse. They seem to forget that all of those pills cost money, or are only temporary as they require you to go to a doctor to get prescriptions, and that going to a doctor is something that no one really wants to do. Doctors cost money, money you don’t want to spend, or simply don’t always have access to. You can make all of the pills you want but they are only cover ups, people want solutions but there are no solutions, only band-aids and addictions. How about we try something completely different and just let people be people if we can’t solve their problems. Instead of making us feel worse because there are all of these things out there that we could use to get rid of our depression if we weren’t so pathetic that we could not even get the courage or money built up to do something about it for ourselves.
It should also be noted that the author neither likes or trusts doctors and modern medicine.
Come home, tinker until tired, and then off to bed. Check the mail. Bill, bill, over due bill, package notice.
“Who the hell is sending me a package?”
John looks at the slip and all it says is that there was an undeliverable package and that he has to go to the post office to retrieve it. It does not say who it is from, or for that matter really anything about it at all. Just that there is a package and that he has to go to the post office on the way home tomorrow to get it because they wont try to redeliver it because the postal service is a bunch of bastards.
“Who the hell is sending me a package?”
“Hey Portland its seven AM, get the fuck out of bed John,.”
“Huh, you didn’t just say that radio guy.”
“Of course not, this is that side of your brain you try to cover up all of the time.”
“Go get your package you lazy bastard, you might like it.”
“How do you know.”
“I just do…”
“Good morning Portland, its seven AM, only 86 more days until summer, it a beautiful dreary gray day and it all read for you to get out into the best of it.”
“And now to wake you up we have some rain drops falling on your head!”
“wait a minute, your not talking back at me anymore. Wow, what a strange dream. I think I need to lay off whatever it was I had for dinner last night. What did I have for dinner last night anyway. Oh yeah, Mexican food.”
Wow just a dream, no getting sworn at by the radio, no packages waiting for me at the post office, oh wait… I guess there is a package for me at the post office isn’t there. While I suppose I can pick that up on my way to work.
The author would like you all to know that he really hates mornings and doesn’t want to talk about them anymore. He also hates the post office, and he also hates long drawn out self dialogs. Shit. Anyway we are just going to skip about nine hours or so into the future since no one needs to know about Johns day at work anyway. Really it is far from being the exciting kind of stuff that makes good reading. Unless you really want to read a sci-fi story about processing mail order requests for minimum wage.
John made his way home after work with a rather large package in the back of his station wagon.. It was a plain cardboard box with no return address and just as plain as a plain package could be. He thought it was kind of like his life. No excitement, just a bunch of mysteries all neatly packaged up and hidden away where no on would see them.
The post office lady had asked him if he had been waiting of any packages and he said that he hadn’t. They looked at him a little suspiciously but seemed to not have any worries about him being a drug mule or of him running a methamphetamine lab or anything like that. I am sure that they had already tested the box.
It was a bit of a challenge to get the package into the door. It was large bulky and kind of heavy but soon there it was in the middle of the living room just waiting to be opened. John grabbed that one key off his key chain that didn’t fit anything anymore, but was handy to keep around for the purpose of cutting packing tape and delicately opened the box. The first thing he noticed as he flipped open the flaps of the box was the note.
“Dear John, this is the package that you always dreamed would show up, but you never thought was possible. Follow the instructions and have fun. John.”
John thought it was strange that the handwriting looked quite a bit like his own, and could not for the life of him could think of what it was that he had always dreamed would show up, but never thought was possible. He dug further into the box until he got to the actual contents and there it was. Single use portable time machine, perfect for sending one average sized human one-way. Some assembly required. Batteries not included.
It took darn near a week to get the damn thing put together. It had said on the box that some assembly was required, it did not state on the box that a degree in physics would also be helpful for the assembly process. After it was all put together he looked at it and was amazed with how simple of an object it looked to be. A small box that plugged into the wall and held a small particle accelerator/atom smasher, with 120v ac kick start feature. Connected to that was a six and a half foot tall elliptical ring that stood up off the floor with a control panel that sat to one side. Into the panel all you had to do was set the coordinates and time that you wished to go and then you were off.
John had wished that it had come with some suggestion as to where he was to go with it. He couldn’t decide if he wanted to go way into the past or way into the future. He assumed that the future could not possibly get any better than where he was now. He would just have even less purpose there then he had here. The past sounded interesting except that he would be being dumped into a time and place where he could only do so much. He then noticed something else. This being the small model was only capable of sending him a max of forty years in either direction. That made it even less fun as most of the times that he wished he could travel to were far more than forty years in either direction. Four hundred years and then he would have something, forty he would still be screwed.
He sat, he pondered, he looked back on the last thirty three years of his life and thought if there ever had really been any time in the previous thirty three years that he had actually found enjoyable. He thought about the next forty years of time and pondered about what in the next forty years he would have that would be worth seeing. Flying cars? Oh hell no, that was simply not feasible. Living forever? Who would ever want to do that. He thought, he pondered, he thought some more.
Once again the author would like to remind you that he has thought about this himself. Hence, where this story came from in the first place.
Finally he had it! He knew exactly where and when he was going. He was going to the year 2002, one year before he was born. The city? Boise, Idaho. What was he going to do there? He was going to prevent his own birth!
To be continued….
Now John had no idea how he was going to do this, for that matter he really didn’t even know if he was going to recognize his own mother and father when he saw them.