You can turn on your television when you first wake up, and glue your face to the screen, ingesting every overhyped and under-studied story of impending war, genocide, molestation and social injustice, but people forget that turning off the television might be just as valuable perspective. Odds are, you turn off the stream of apocalyptic journalist vomit and perhaps work up the courage to peer out of your window and see that the grass is probably kind of green, the birds are having at it, and as far as you can tell, the clouds you see in the sky are supposed to be there and are not, in fact, a product of some ultranationalist dirty bomb set off in a train station.
You might even feel comfortable enough to unlock your door, step outside, and take a deep breath. Playing the chances, you probably won’t projectile vomit your lungs out of your body from the air pollution. And as long as you return to your house with all of the organs you left with, you might gain an invaluable perspective. The world is a big, wide open, and unique place. Scary at times, sure, but how often are you going to find yourself in Liberia or Juarez? You won’t smell that gunpowder of a grassroots rebellion, you might smell dog shit, maybe the errant fart, and at worst, a puff of diesel fumes of a passing FedEx truck. You might even be ballsy enough to go out and smoke a cigarette.
Be a real hard ass, hit it hard and hit it long, squint your eyes with the mangled butt hanging out of your mouth as you try to converse with your neighbors who might have seen you a total of four times since you moved in. Their mouths hang slightly agape as they listen to you, a person who was moments before, considered a theoretical person, an idea, and the abstraction that became physical, reality, before their eyes, is enough to leave them fumbling for a relevant and polite response as they pack their nervous children into their sport utility vehicle. The father hurriedly ushers the children inside, whilst the wife struggles to tear her gaze from your slightly out of shape body, not nearly dressed well enough to be outside at this very reasonable hour, in front of people, people whose names have not yet been shared with you, itching your probably dirty package.
They are certainly stunned, but your journey into this brand new world shouldn’t end with the imbibing of a simple cheap cigarette packed with fiberglass and god knows what other carcinogenic monstrosity of modern addictive technologies has bee ncrammed into the rolled, wrinkled paper. The filter is piss yellow, and with your newfound rebellious mannerisms, you flick the cigarette into your unkempt front yard. As you return inside, you announce to the distressed neighbors that you’re probably going to pave your lawn. As you explain how easy your yardwork will become once you plant a foot of blacktop on every square inch of your yard, they manage to buckle their children into the backseat and roll the windows up with the uncomfortable whirring of the lazy automatic window. With their rude and hasty departure, you feel compelled to do something you haven’t considered since high school. Getting dressed. And goddamn, are you going to look dapper.
You start with a crumpled ass-soaked shirt. There are no stains to be seen on it, which means it is fit for public use. A pair of wrinkled jeans that reek of fast food farts and stale feet. Your ratty shoes follow. A brief glimpse into a mirror indicates that your hair is the perfect combination of greasy and statically charged, standing up like brown lightning bolts. You laugh to yourself. Your hair is literally greased lightning. This disgusts you, knowing any part of Grease. You might as well be in a truck stop with a cordless drill and a hole saw bit with some sandpaper, furiously drilling into the bathroom stall, opening up a portal to chow on some strange, lonely trucker junk.
“Grease. Really?” You think to yourself with a self depricating smirk. “No wonder you don’t go out in public, you’re an idiot.”
The front door swings open dramatically, and a large, invisible belch of stale house air escapes into the pure, clean air of the open world, polluting it like the soft, yet swift hand of cocaine pollutes what would otherwise be a viable womb for childbirth. This wind carries with it the misgivings of the slacker lifestyle. The inimitable stench of cheap, glossy porn magazine pages, burnt meat, and beer belches leak out like a snake, crawling at floor level, twisting and mutilating the already browning plants closest to your door. Today is a day for conquering.
Your mind races at the thought of the possibilities you could achieve with this strange, overwhelming sense of freedom. You consider purchasing a compound bow, or a rapier. Why not? Gentlemans weapons, weapons of class and might. What’s stopping you?
Before you realise it, you’re already in the local sporting goods store, hunched over the counter, groaning about a compound bow. You haven’t eaten today, and nothing would fill the growling void in your stomach more than a burnt carcass. An idea tumbles into your slightly slow brain.
Buy the bow and go hunting.
Your eyes are alight at the idea. Your muscles twitch, and you forget about your hunger, and in replacement, your body succumbs to the childlike excitement. Buying the bow is simple. Find which one is the most expensive, and buy it. Ensuring your money is put towards a quality product. A whisker biscuit? You don’t know what that means. It’s a muffin stuffed with cat hair, right? Whatever it is, you need it. You hook up like a gangster with some 12 inch arrows, perfect for hunting squirrels at 390 feet per second, that won’t decimate anything it touches smaller than a great dane, right? The arrow will hit like a houitser, and every single atom of that rabbit will explode like a nuclear detonation, a supersonic wave of red mist permeates the local air. Instead of blotchy red splats covering the surrounding trees and leaves, it simply coats the immediate area in a fine maroon tinge, like an airbrush. There’s no meat to salvage. Just a few pieces of chipped tooth and a shard of the radius and ulna sitting on top of a small rug made out of the skin from the rabbits stomach that didn’t have the kinetic energy to fuse to the groud beneath it. This still sounds edible compared to some of the atrocious concoctions whipped up in your dilapidated kitchen. Spaghettios, mayonnaise, and shredded cheese, microwaved in a plastic bowl. The fact that your innards are still residing on the inside of your body is miraculous in its own right.
Standing in the alley of your small, run down home, you hold the compound bow weakly and pull back the string, catching the arrow and lining up a shot against the passenger side door of your death rattle wrought Saturn with half of a rear bumper and seats that smell like cat piss and stale ham from the previous owner who died inside of it with a cat in a carrier cage. They didn’t find her for a day and a half.
The arrow fires in your lapse of consciousness as you recall purchasing the vehicle from the grieving family. They were not thrilled when you confirmed that this was, in fact, the car that the “old bag bought it” in. After they stopped reeling from such a rud question, the confirm your suspicions, and you drive away with a $150 car that sounds like a sherman tank but drives like you were riding a bicycle down a rough patch of train tracks without a seat.
The arrow slams into the car, blasting sparks in all directions, loudly clanging as it sticks halfheartedly in your rusted door. I guess the bow works.
Removing the arrow proves difficult, so you decide to just snap it off. Appearance never bothered you until today, why should it now?
Just for fun.