6 Jan 2019

forced

Whiskey and cigars. Don't inhale, get the fix gradual, indirect, cause it's about the look. I think Norman Mailer shot a deer there once. Home away from home. The Royal bar and grill, open mic night. Been working in a wood shop. That's technically correct, I was cleaning the woodshop. Covered in sawdust. Do a quick rough brush-off, leaving most of the dust still stuck to the jeans and shirt. Keep the clothes on, don't wash anything, keep the coat of sweat, let the pheromones do their job. There's a boldfront coming in. I'm on the front line, fronting like the confidence man. I'm gonna win their trust cause I smell like sawdust and I work with my calloused carpenter hands. I'm an honest man. I'm gonna con them, the ones that need to be conned, the ones that need a fantasy, they'll want me if they think I'm someone else, I can create that person. I can get what I want - and what I want is not so much to ask really. Just inhale that sawdust. I put the image of calloused hands in their mind, doesn't matter if that's true or not. It doesn't take that many coats of illusion, just a few, and the will to put them on. Now I'm a user, using what I'm supposed to be using, a selection from half the population.

If the online dating proves a total failure, as it's looking increasingly likely to be, after somehow talking myself into genuine positivity and the will to press on, persevere, work the algorithms, play the numbers game to the ninety-ninth decimal, gamify it for myself, max/min my character stats, be a completist, try everything, exhaust options in a hunting for crack-rock crumbs on the floor kind of way, make it a data-mining exercise, project passion dispassionately, mechanically deploy a set of variations on my presentation in a carefully curated profile, then even resort to paying for the premium account that's almost surely a scam, but what if, what if it's not, what if there's a one percent chance it works, finally, in exasperation, restart all accounts with a fake pic but the same words, to calculate the delta between honest imagery and swipe-bait... after all that playing the confidence game against myself and still nothing to show for it.... that's when I turn the con outward, look outward, externalize, use. It just so happened I got covered in sawdust today, I'll use that. Then I'll use artistic extremism, perform abortions on stage, excise a hundred concept albums in a frenzy of self-immolation, smash guitars and stay sober, force, force it. Force it. Force IT.

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