One morning very early before the Sun had the chance to light up the sky I turned on the television and realized something. It was all a well-orchestrated act. Everything! Something I should have known, of course. Because, like this style of constant referential speech, it was one performance after another pretending to be natural. Natural like that thin veneer of modern Western society with its billboards and placards and PSA’s all garnering your attention in the hope you might buy something. Go somewhere. Love somebody. Because if you did, then you would need to devote your waking existence to daily indentured servitude to pay for it. To continue to pay and pay and pay! Until you were old and gray and used up. Then others much younger than you would push your sand castle into dust. And they would take your place. All the while throughout the entire process the real you inside would be self-imprisoned ever concerned that if the other actors that were not too dissimilar to you saw that you broke out of character that they might mess up their lines. And if that happened then you would be dropped from society and become, nobody.
It is all an act. But of course the consequences are very real! Yet everyone that is confronted with this fact in conversation takes great pains to slough it off and change the subject tot he topic of sports or money or women. The conversation quickly shifts to little snide sometimes self-deprecatory comments that poke fun at everything that might upset the illusion’s apple cart as if one’s life is simply folly. One long continuing joke of play along and you won’t get hurt. Join in if you want to maintain your status or otherwise, we’ll see you sometime soon. You look at those old picture from college days of your older friends and you find that you can’t quite recognize them behind the old tired faces that at best bare a faint resemblance to their long dead parents. The play world of childhood has been replaced by something not substantially much different. The major difference being that you are now one of the action figures within someone else’s set piece. A polyethylene plastic doll with arthritic joints with big gaps at the knees, shoulders and hips like your playset counterparts once were. This analogy does not reflect the latest fictions of society of course because the change in technology means that the only thing that the young have been afforded is a tiny little screen that they obsessively carry about with them the whole day allowing them to think that they are simultaneously leading a dual over-layered existence. They walk around carrying this tiny vibrating impatient talisman that chirps and beeps ever impatient for attention. Come sleep with me! Dream with me! You are not here but here!
The whole thing is one extended engorging act directed by a screen play constantly refreshed by the great-grandsons and daughters of old traveling Carney roadshows. You are constantly invoked to show up with the right set of props. Each time a different set of accessories that of course you can’t pay for out of pocket so that you have to go on the line once again with a loan to afford it. A modern lifetime in such civil slavery becomes a sad venal empty existence in the end. All because all anyone wanted was to be recognized and known and loved in a soulless anonymous vacuous existence where one has wandered forever in a hall of mirrors. A hall without doors or windows or after a while no possibility of ever finding the entrance that you supposedly gained entry to begin with. But guess what! You were always here. So all that you have is to wake up each morning and comb your hair if you have any left. Splash on some cologne and make a relatively reasonable appearance as a supporting character so that the younger up and comers don’t toss you aside because at some point this is no longer your world anymore. If you are lucky you’ll be able to maintain some incidental seemingly once significant role. Strike any pose that you choose. The ones of your own molded from long experience on those others from personages now long dead and forgotten. That is the way that the old ball bounces. Enjoy it while you can.