Saturday, October 5, 2013


Being the richest and most powerful man on Earth he thought exclusivity his due. He built a city where he alone could afford to live. He called his new home Solitaire because he was all by himself there. He was happy there and thought he'd rather be nowhere. He was the envy of everyone everywhere.
The streets of Solitaire were so clean without people. So very nice and quiet. No conflict. None of the coercion of collectivism. No ideologies being dreamt up to seduce or disturb him. Just mellowness. What was there to miss? He had all the amenities and none of the enmity. He had unity, true unity, the unity of one. It was a kind of capitalistic Zen. His sense of self permeated the whole place. If Solitaire was a tuning fork it would have sounded out his name and vibrated with his psyche alone. Wherever he went, he was there. It was lovely. Others had always frustrated him with their inefficiency and begrudgery so he had worked and earned and invested and traded until he was free of them. Now he could live in a utopia based on love, love for oneself. In fact, he married himself. He rented the function room of the big hotel he owned from himself and had a lovely service where he pledged to honour and obey himself. Then he put a ring on himself and kissed himself and applauded himself. He was best man too. He also officiated and gave himself away to himself. It was a great day and afterwards he brought himself on honeymoon around the corner to another part of Solitaire where there was an artificial beach that was better than the real thing because there were no people there or creepy fish in the water, just flowing crystal chlorine and the sound of his echoing laughter. After the honeymoon he returned to his penthouse that overlooked the whole city and carried himself over the threshold. Well, that wasn't quite possible so he just kind of wrapped himself in his own arms and skipped over the threshold instead. In any case, it was very romantic. How happy he was, for a while at least.

Over time, the magic often goes from a marriage and his was no exception. He grew bored of himself, his little habits and routines. Whereas once he thought it magical that he knew what he was about to say, he now found it tiresome. The predictability of himself drove him to distraction. He also stopped making love himself and as a consequence felt both revolted and rejected by himself. Once again, he was alone but, unlike other couples, he could not separate. He couldn't even sleep in a different room.

There was only one thing for it, an extreme action but he would take it. He plotted to murder himself. He hired himself to assassinate himself. He thought everything would go to plan as long as he didn't find out but then he realised he knew. Foiled. Furious. Frustrated. He had only one option left. He had to just put a brave face on it. To try and think positive. To remind himself that he was the envy of everyone else. And that was when he started to miss other people. He missed their envy. He realised that this was what made him feel valid. Envy and another thing. A murky thing that was gradually making itself known by its absence. A vague thing that could only be found in other people. Other people - they had ruined things again and they didn't even have to be there to do it. He cursed other people because he needed other people. What was he without other people? Nothing. He was nothing and in Solitaire he was nowhere. He longed to be somewhere else. Where the rest of us are.

But to return to the land of others would be to admit failure. Although he wanted nothing more, the shame would be too great. He pinned a final note to the rail of his penthouse balcony before leaping over it. His last hope was that he'd find the note and understand it as a warning to himself not to end up as he did. Of course, he didn't consider that he would never get to read the note on account of him being a crumpled heap on the plaza below. The note is still there now, flapping in the breeze, its inky words fading, destined to remain unread and saying the following -
'For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.'

1 comment:

Salvo said...

Devils advocacy: there is another letter from Chuck Norris to the Corinthians: "Walk softly and carry a big stick - especially when you sidestep the corners - and you'll make the grade."