As you know, I am a disappointment.
When I was a younger man, the world was my oyster (or Wendy’s Value Meal, as it were). Life was flush with opportunity, a blank page ready to be filled with the finest Korean calligraphy. I was strapping and headstrong, like an untethered stallion with a bazooka mounted to it. Cocksure, I brayed a hearty laugh at fate and dispensed the finest varieties of chewing gum to multiracial children. I defied social norms by popping wheelies and wearing white after Labor Day. I was Fonzie flying the Millenium Falcon.
Now in the gray days of my nearly-mid-30s, I am surrounded with the shattered fragments of my unfulfulled potential. My face has been pockmarked by failure and my hips shattered with malaise. Like a mentally ill drifter who smears his face into a dog’s anus, I have tasted the bitter tang of life and come away smellier and more insane. It didn’t need to end this way, but this is where I am.
Besides my wife and son and career and friends and cats, I have nothing. Every day I wake up to a Hyundai Sonata and death and the moral vacuum in between.
Don’t weep for me, dear readers. My disappointing decline into undistinguished anonymity doesn’t really hurt. Once upon a time I had the potential to be something special, but instead I spent too many years wearing turtlenecks, changing toner cartridges and not eating Thai food. Now I can’t remember what I lost and instead I drift in circles aimlessly, like Neil Young, post-1992.
If you think of me again, someday, remember me as I was: hale and robust, snatching rainbow trout out of a mountain stream with my bare hands and a mighty shout. Maybe that way, my withered soul can be reborn.