CC Issue 28 / Literature / Reflections

Now We Are Made Fragile By The Night: A Short Love Story

I open the kitchen drawer to select my instrument, and it is inauthentic. I walk into the kitchen after having left it now I walk back in. Now I am finished in the kitchen for good. I walk outside my parents’ house and there are no stars that I can see.

I walk back from an activity to the bus stop, I walk to my parents’ car, I walk to the laptop on my desk and surf the internet inefficiently. I am not economic when I am on the internet.

Now I am with my 1 True Love. Now she goes home but now I am at her parents’ house. I close my parents’ car door in a spirit of inauthenticity. When I close it it does not close like I intend, not quite fully – the fabric of the seatbelt is restricting it from closing fully, with authenticity, in that spirit. Now I am removing the intruding portion of the belt from the already-closing door’s path, and now there’s nothing in the world which could stop it from closing in my mind.

1TL is good like that portion of the belt, I think. I think about oppression in this context, I think politically about oppression and economics. I think about John Lennon’s first wife I read about in the Beatles’ biography when I was much younger, and how unfair life was to her in that revolutionary time. The biographer stressed this. I wonder if she is still alive, I plan to research her on the internet later on to find this out.

There is a documentary on TV about the folk-singer Bruce Cockburn, who didn’t change his last name but focused on more important things. I appreciate Bruce Cockburn’s activist pursuits but my appreciation is inauthentic in the same way that I criticize right-wing politicians who have families and seem nice and my criticism is inauthentic. I criticize them to my friends who don’t know better and I feel cheap. I don’t understand any of these worlds and I feel alienated. I locate the remote and search the guide for a nature show or a travel show, unsuccessfully. I think about what Bruce Cockburn would watch on TV.

I am falling asleep.

I return from an activity, I walk from inside my Place Of Work to my bike outside my Place Of Work. Now I am riding my bike and the breeze feels like air conditioning. It seems the air currents and I have reversed roles! I walk to 2L14, I walk to 4C30, I walk briefly to 2M44 then embarrassingly to 2M46.

Now I am talking to one of my professors who is an ex-pro BMX artist and wrote his doctoral thesis on BMX culture. He shows me the photo collection of his guitars which he has posted on his blog. He shows me this on the laptop on his desk in his office. Many are low-end guitars but he has one guitar that is extremely rare. This guitar is a Gretsch G6199 “Billy-Bo” Jupiter Thunderbird, and only fourteen or sixteen were originally made, but later there were 50 more made but that’s it. I tell him about my guitar and I am happy that he says he likes that brand of guitar; and it is inauthentic and I suddenly want to run home to my parents’ house.

I do uneconomic research on the laptop on my desk in my room in my parents’ house. I forget to research John Lennon’s first wife. Now I am falling asleep and I realize what has happened, but it’s too late, now. It’s less important than sleeping, now.

I am not an inauthentic person, I think. Now I am at my POW but I chat with the other workers before going inside. We shoot the breeze. My coworkers are often smiling, they are often returning from or leaving for second or third jobs. Many are from southern African countries like Tanzania or Zambia, and have immigrated to Canada. I wait patiently for the right time to learn about where they are from. I chat with Eddie and Calistus and we discuss specific, sporadic things for a little while. I am thankful to shoot the breeze. I do not know if I will ever learn about life in Tanzania or Zambia from either Eddie or Calistus.

I am in transit, I pass many houses and small businesses. I walk into a retail store, I select my purchase and execute the transaction through cooperation with one of the company’s employees. I engage with the product.

I pull up onto the driveway. Now I shut the door of my parents‘ car. Now I am with my 1TL.

I swim around in 1TL’s parents‘ pool, I shiver now that I am out because I am skinny, but the sun is warm. Later we talk about themed parks with 1TL’s extended family, about whom I feel warm like the sun at Knott’s Berry Farm. We talk about themed parks late into the night, and the warmth of Knott’s Berry Farm stays in my heart even though I am starting to shiver again. I put my arm around 1TL’s shoulders and it comforts us both. Now we are made fragile by the night, and it feels good to have 1TL here fit under my arm, and it might be that we are fulfilling our purposes.

I think about life in Canada, I consider 1TL’s parents’ property, how it interacts with the river and juxtaposes with the cars on the single-lane of asphalt directly across from the property, the cars and the road framed by a uniquely hand-shaped outcrop of trees, the boreal itself held rationally and specifically in a meld horizon.

There are no stars that I can see.

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