so many situations idly pass through my head as i go about day-to-day. things
i construct on autopilot, so things which represent something true inside
of me, finally something non-performative. they are all seizable,
transcribable. i must start seizing them, i must transcribe them with as
little embellishment as possible, let my autopilot speak for itself

i'm sitting across the table from a friend in a cafe. they have a milkshake. jazz with plinky pianos starts playing
on the intercom. i say "ahh, music to my ears." it makes them laugh as they're taking a sip of the milkshake, which
causes them to choke. they choke on it pretty badly & end up doubled over by the table, coughing it up.
i feel sort of bad, but i am smiling painfully wide because i love chaos & mayhem

it's night. i'm on a rectangular concrete surface with someone i know. the surface is only slightly bigger than big enough for two people
to stand on. it has no roof. it has no guardrails. it's almost level with the ocean. the waves are constantly threatening to roll over it.
i am sitting against a concrete wall. the wall is maybe twenty feet high, & it is the only wall. so it is a tall sea wall where this
surface is a small rectangular outcropping from the bottom. the other person is standing & has their back to it

we have had some kind of falling out, & have been talking. but at the moment i am staring, afraid that i am acting out one half
of an aestheticized script of someone trying to make good with someone else for what they've done wrong. i'm thinking about
how to break out of it, be honest, let my thoughts & words flow like they do for people who don't feel tangled in fictional
representations of human interaction. real & normal but still thoughtful & considered, an overlap which seems
as small as the head of a needle, at least when communicating verbally as opposed to through text

it occurs to me that the "script" has them invariably refusing to forgive me at that moment, giving me a particular
sort of helpless, pleading, guilty demeanor, at least inside. but really anything can happen at any moment. at any
moment the situation can proceed in any number of directions, many of them good. i need to stand up & find
out how they feel for myself instead of just assuming. i stand up. i look at them & try to read their face

i have no idea what they are feeling. or rather, i have no idea which of these two things is true: 1. i have
no idea what they are feeling; 2. the way they are feeling is very obvious to me, but the knowledge is
blanked out from my head by: a subconscious lack of confidence in my ability to read expressions;
a subconscious fear of disrespectfully assuming that i know how others are feeling

i say: i wish i could just tell how you're feeling. but i feel incapable of reading faces. & i say: or maybe
i can read people's faces, but it's blanked out of my head by a lack of confidence & a fear of assuming

my talking about this, instead of just asking how they're feeling, elicits a sudden wave of frustration. or, maybe, i try to move
past my lack of confidence. i do take the risk of assuming how they feel, & i am wrong, & that does elicit the frustration

they shove me. they don't intend to shove me into the water, per se, but in a moment of rashness they shove me &, of course, i fall in.
i drown. this incident haunts them for the rest of their life. it has complex, considerable effects on them that can be examined. but
i don't experience anything anymore. or: i avoid their hand, sit back down against the wall, begin frantically repeating that we
need to stop saying or doing anything for the moment & just get off the platform get off the platform get off the platform

i gesture around at all the streetlights puncturing through the fog, hoping it's suitably picturesque even though it's
just a parking lot, hoping they're willing to find beauty in any parking lot. it was my idea to come out here. i say,
"i always feel a sort of pressure, like the surroundings are now an extension of me, like i need them to perform,
to go out out of their way to be beautiful scenery. i'm silently urging them, frantically. otherwise, it's like
the intent of such a lackluster walk will be ascribed to me, embarrassing me... it's very silly"

i actually go running aimlessly through my neighborhood in the dark on a tiny whim. as i run, i imagine these things happening:

i meet someone else who is aimlessly running around the neighborhood on a tiny whim,
who i get along with. he asks me what i'm doing & i collapse onto some grass as i answer

a paranoid person confronts me like i'm a miscreant. i try to reassure them, among the things
i say are that i need to exercise this spontaneity but i will only stick to the roads, i would
never dream of disrespecting someone's right to feel safe & private in their own home

a friendly black cat i actually met several nights prior runs up to me again

i slip on a patch of gravel along a pitch black stretch of road & fall
in a way that leaves my face bleeding, or a big gash on my hand

i throw up from exhaustion

the motion jostles my compromised molar & causes an unprecedented wave of constant pain that leaves me screaming
on the ground in a woman's yard. she calls 911 but for the police instead of an ambulance, & the police are mean
to me. in a later recount of the situation i frame their cruelty more clearly by specifying in my description
that the moment at which they arrived only reflected pathetic helplessness & not the spontaneity with
which i had been running around, which perhaps they coul have read some unhinged quality into

we go to the coffee shop. i make the impulsive decision to slowly drag my nails across the entire chalkboard, savoring the sound for its
grating qualities the same way i would appreciate the uniquely terrifying metallic groans that would ring out across the neighborhood when
a train would park nearby & make minute movements on the track. a smile spreads across my face. i start laughing at what i just did, so
much that i fall forward to the floor & slump against the wall, & then the pairing, of what i did with such fitful laughter afterwards,
itself becomes funny to me, & i go into an endless feedback loop of laughing at my own laughter, helpless, for at least
the next ten minutes, even after we leave the coffee shop, shrieking with laughter out the door