"This is your bank, isn't it? Do you still need to withdraw money?"
"Yea. I hate this bank - I need to switch."
"Then switch. Why haven't you?"
"Because I still don't know what city I'm going to be living in. I have to figure out where I'm going to be living then choose a bank accordingly."
"Is your job moving?"
"No. The job is staying put, I just can't decided if I am moving. I have an issue with commitment".
He let out a haughty laugh and continued, "I know you have issues with commitment".
"You wont commit to anything; then once it's gone you obsess about it."
"What is that supposed to mean?"
"Nothing [ObLiVioN]; it's not supposed to mean anything."
In the end, we both knew exactly what it was supposed to mean and although I hated him for saying it not even I could deny the truth of it all.
What It's Like to Fail
David Raether Priceonomics Nov 2013
I wanted to share an article I read; it's about a comedic writer that ended up losing his job, home, and eventually his family. I found the following quote particularly poignant and very well stated:
"What happens when you hit bottom? I can tell you one thing: you don’t bounce back. You crawl back, fighting every step of the way. It isn’t a straight arc back up either; there are dozens of setbacks every step of the way. And the place you land isn’t anywhere near where you were when you slipped off the cliff."
Eventually, the author begins to piece his life back together and makes contact with his children. It is through the reconnection with his children that he wraps up the essay in an eloquent ending,
"...But I have held onto what I value much more: my children and their enduring love and affection, my health, and my ambition and self-belief. And in the end, those were the only things worth keeping."
I was talking on the phone, just having a normal conversation, when the phone let out a 'beep beep' indicating it had received a text message. This was nothing new as I had received the notification a hundred, maybe even a thousand times before but this time it sounded different. I paused as I asked myself, "Is that what it sounds like when I receive a text message while talking on the phone?" The 'beep beep' was so distinct, so unmistakable that it was as if I was hearing it for the first time. While the clarity of the tone sparked my curiosity, I let it pass and continued my conversation. When I had finally finished talking, I flipped open my phone to read the message:
"Hi there :)So, I have to cancel tonight. My ex and I have been trying to work things out and we have and we are back together. I'm sorry."
I closed the phone and cried.
When you're drunk, the first thing you lose is your ability to hear.
She was three drinks in and decided to shift the conversation from the everyday trivial to more important issues. "I think he will propose" she blurted out, unleashing a demon that weighed heavy on her heart.
Her confession came like clockwork. During our last two drunken encounters she continued on in the same fashion - diving into relationship issues that hounded her psyche after the alcohol began to take hold. During the first episode I was naïve enough to believe that there was a special bond that united us and allowed her to eagerly express her most intimate concerns, but after experiencing it twice I realized it was just one lonely stranger reaching out to another lonely stranger.
"What will you say?" I replied in neutral tone implying neither acceptance nor scorn. I already knew the answer, but I asked the question anyways - for her sake.
"Well..." she began in an uneasy tone. "I think he has started --- [rings], ---- [may propose]" her words were violently cut apart by the combined chatter of our fellow bar patrons and a fifty-inch television that vomited up play-by-play baseball analysis.
"He ----- [immigration status] ------ [marry citizen or] --------. ------ [Because it will] -------- [we have been good for a month] ------- [say I can do better]. -------- [Called my Dad, I had no one else] ----- [not enough money to bring his family from Mexico] ------ [doesn't accept me] ------"
I wanted to call her an idiot. I wanted to tell her that we had relived this moment twice before - each with her outpouring leading to a breakup followed by a teary reunion the very next day. I wanted her to know that I was finished believing her drunken ramblings and was calling her bluff - no matter how shitty her relationship was she wasn't about to walk away. Her beautiful smile and slender frame did an excellent job of portraying the calm collected image of someone who had her life in order, but it was beginning to give way to a vulnerable, unconfident girl that wasn't about to trade a lackluster relationship for the promise of something better.
Perhaps it was \LM walking out that made me so cold, or it may have been the act of reliving the same conversation twice before only to watch her run back into his arms that made me apathetic to her plea. As she finished, I stared back in a sense of disbelief coupled with perfect understanding.
"I don't want to tell you what to do, but marriage is a pretty big step. It is very serious; it's not something to take lightly" I chimed in as I took the easy way out. Twice before I told her to walk out on him, but the advice had fallen on deaf ears and as such I felt it best to casually punt the ball away and let her discover the truth for herself.
"I know!" she responded back, "my dad always says it should be one and done - don't go in thinking marriage won't be forever. You have to truly believe in it."
The conversation briefly stopped as she turned towards her phone and picked it up.
"I have to call him and let him know I am with you. It's better if I tell him we are here rather than him finding out, it just makes things...." her voice trailed off in the violent cacophony of bar patrons and sports announcers.
I returned to my beer and stopped listening.
/Lm and I are no longer in a relationship.
A better, more honorable, man would have allowed the relationship to pass away peacefully with dignity in the dead of the night. I, however, am not that better man. I cried, bargained, and pleaded to keep the relationship alive long after it was pronounced dead. The more she ignored my calls and texts, the more adamant I became about resurrecting something that was long deceased. Undeterred by her silence, I continued to message her until a single text with the soul-shattering words of "I think it would be best if you stop texting and calling me" was returned. Pleading with her not to 'cut me off like we were nothing', she, without missing the beat, responded back with 'well, I do think about all the times that you screwed me over'.
Sitting in the torrent of it all, watching the tide of circumstance pull her farther and farther away I, once again, became reacquainted with the cruel notion of "No" and the hopelessness of being unable to change an inevitable outcome. Desperation, like many emotions, is a telling test of one's character - a test I undoubtedly failed. Even after weeks of silence from her, I still send my customary "Good Morning" and "Good Night" messages to a number that has vowed never to respond.
In the light of her absence, I have now assumed the role of a forensic investigator, diligently working to compile the shattered pieces of an obscure and distant existence into something familiar and tangible. The photographs and half-forgotten memories of our relationship have acquired a surreal tone of a mythical story that occurred far far away. Memories of a trip through the park, nightly walks by the stadium, climbing over rocks to gaze upon a valley populated by trailer parks have all been bathed in the wash of nostalgia and now appear whiter than ever, so white that their mere mention leaves teardrops in my eye. It is my job to match those images and memories with the here and now.
The end of the relationship has left me asking many questions, but the question, "Who is [ObLiVioN-FalLs]?" has become particularly poignant. That question has become my own expression of frustration and despair. My futile search for a new beginning ultimately harkens back to a search of the past, as it is impossible to determine where to go until you have realized where you have been. This search has become rather elusive as photographs, videos and journal entries capture mere droplets of the vast sea of an existence once lived. It's within the totality of this proverbial sea that I have both fear and hope; hope of answering the question "Who is [ObLiVioN-FalLs]?", fear of the possibility of having no answer. The notion of falling into oblivion, which was what this journal was predicated on, has become more real than ever.