Random, Simple, Never so Good Enough

I find myself in a bar, surrounded by very old and very good friends. We laugh out loud over the disgruntled yaps of local barflies envious of the type of youthful indiscretion that can never be lost to a certain handful of those of us left over from our early twenties who haven’t found themselves knee deep in the army, jail or some job that made us forget where we ever came from. Someone sings the lyrics to a song, behind me, proudly emphasizing the racial slurs within even as their appearance mimics the intended recipient of such slurs. I smile at the thought and another beer disappears.

No one discusses politics, no one talks about religion, and certainly no one mentions anything resembling obligation, responsibility or social justice. Mostly, familiar words that often can’t be said on television and more often are strung together with verbs who’ve forgotten how to hold onto the G at the end of their actions are spoken, or spit or spilled out of mouths half too full with laughter to hold a pint of anything down completely.

Midnight comes several hours after the party begins but barely marks the middle of the event, as the hours creep and crawl and do front handsprings down stairs and fall over fences and fumble with ashtrays, bottle openers, local radio and the overwhelming idea that if morning ever does come, we’ll at least be there to see it off.

The next day a handful of kids play at a park as their parents share submarine sandwiches and ice cold beer in a can. People come early and some go late, many of them in the middle and not nearly long enough for others liking. Another day rolls into intoxication and, once it has two days worth of momentum behind it, doesn’t find itself coming to a stop until days or months or possibly years later, likely in the form of lung cancer or some type of kidney disease. I smile as it all fades off into the late weekend, a new Monday to mark a fresh start for life, as every Monday has the chance to but, by the day’s very nature, so rarely does.

I quit smoking today, quite a few hours before my first cigarette. There’s a pile of emails in my inbox begging me to remember how important a frequent clicking of the reply button is and I realize that I’ll have another good bout of figuring life out to do again this week. Best to get to the drinking…

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