Composer Ovchinnikov’s music from the final scene of Andrei Rublev


Wintry Apathy

It’s not fitting, nor is it irrelevant, that Bach’s “Air” shuffles its toes onto my speakers while it snows for the third day.

Winter is not so depressing as it is embracing, a translucent, corked vial of emotion and thoughtless haze. I’m not sad, per se. It’s bright outside. What little light shines through the clouds reflects with ease off of the snow. The white slats of the blinds give off a bold reflection, lighting the high ceilings, sparse white walls, and light-hued wood floors, made of a wood that I don’t know, and don’t really care to know. Craftsmanship has never interested me, and wintry apathy has done nothing to redirect my interests.

I’ll go earn money now and you most likely won’t. I’ll greet 150 bodies and you’ll greet 150 commercials. I’ll sanitize a gray-speckled beige counter and a rubber belt and you’ll wipe the salt off of your orange fingers, and then you’ll make fun of me because I wrote this.

Incomplete Nosh (Antonymous)

I’m not sure about the rest of my world, but when I meet a new human being, I meet them under the predication that they have existed before our eyes have met and will continue to exist thereafter (the extent of ‘after’ being undetermined for reasons to which I am not privy). In the topsy-turvy world of retail, a regretful world teeming with holistic egos, lesser-thans, and self-perpetuating, self-inflicted humiliation, there lieth capitalism’s firm psychosomatic foundation of manipulation, favoritism, and greed. I spend each day walking the fine line between convincing strangers that I am to be trusted with an array of problems–varying from recipe suggestions to consolations for a lost loved-one–while simultaneously not ruining their day by using the wrong inflection in a greeting, or smiling too similarly to a politician, or using correct grammar, an ingredient that some complain makes for a pretentious stew.

On the other side of the fence splays an umbered pasture and a dilapidated though impenetrable fortress on whose wrought iron gates there hangs a well-worn wooden sign, inset with chubby yellow letters: “Open Door Policy”. This farcical notion, a humor so cheap labor’s budget fears no hemorrhage, is guarded by a numb-green steel door. Halt! Do you know the flimsy metal keypad’s five digit code? Please knock instead and, if we’ve nothing better to do, we answer.

Often heard in junior high history courses and seen on dry History Channel documentaries bearing reenactments and animated red arrows on pale maps of World War II-era Europe, Hitler lost the war, but only because he fought two fronts: communist Russia and the democratic West. A morbid and unjustifiable comparison to some, I nevertheless suffer a similar fate. My ego and delightful sarcasm shape up to be my weakness against an army of hundreds patrons and a handful of walking power trips.

I spend my days–nearly every day–in the company of ignorance made flesh, a single entity, equal parts espionage and abomination.  On one front, democracy en masse, in denial; on the other, fascist communism–an extreme comparison, however, warranted.

Make no mistake, in the eyes of everyone else, I live and pay with my mental and emotional accounts, a reserve fast dwindling. I work for the very people I serve: a cache who, without regret, slight my entirety, all the while praising their own deceptive tones.


Whenever I sit down to write I can’t do anything but compose a sentence and immediately delete it.  My self-hatred transcends my fingers.

I decided to give up on my love life the other day. What an arbitrary thing, I guess you’re thinking. I’m not really sure where to begin in order to make myself attractive or interesting to other gay men, and I’m not sure there is much I should be doing to get that attention. I’m not ugly, nor am I particularly unlikeable. I have the same qualified baggage as the next person and the same illusory criticisms and appraisals as anyone else. But there’s just something about me that doesn’t elicit affection, and if I’m the one who’s clueless to it, then I’m the one that’s in denial over it.

I’m not someone who is meant to be loved, and it is that simple.  It is not something I am completely sure of, but it is something that I feel in my gut.  It doesn’t make me particularly happy, but it certainly hurts less than anonymous dismissal.  And for the first time in a long time I feel like I’m in control again.

Now that I’ve written more than just a sentence I guess it’s not worth deleting.

I remember when…

I remember when I was younger I would write the most emotional, vague, word-filled Xanga posts that I thought were genius.  In them it was like I would tell everything but the truth–that gray area between a lie and what you really want to say.  Now, honesty is all I want to write about/for/from.

I’m mad.  Mad…

I’m mad.  Mad for everything and mat at everything.  I feel so strongly for all things, for all nouns.  And yet I feel nothing for the most transitive verbs.

Peoples’ histories, their families, their secrets, and their humilities.  I’ve never needed my own to be so guarded all at once so badly and so immediately.  And that feeling of protection that I crave should never be this severe.  I’m so safe that I’m exposed.

Also, the blinds.  Never pull up the blinds.  Keep the bars there.

“Don’t think….

“Don’t think.  Just do it,” he thought to himself.  Of course it would take Mozart’s Requiem to push himself to this kind of edge.  The movement?  Lacrimosa.  Latin for ‘tears’.  Or maybe Greek.  It feels as dead as Latin or as anemic as Greek.

It feels.  I feel–that’s what I meant.  I feel as dead as Latin or as anemic as Greek.