Thursday, November 6, 2008

The Collapse

It would be the second time his world fell out from under him. The first time was when he was still a child, and he realized everything his parents raised him to believe was bullshit. He vowed then never again to be so gullible, never to look for anything but the truth, never to prematurely integrate anything into his belief system, never to be wrong.

He questioned everything. So it was only a matter of time before he got around to questioning whether or not he should be questioning everything, whether or not there wasn’t a better way to live life than to always be searching, whether or not he was missing out on what life was really about. If he died today, what good would his search have been?

His first reaction was to leave a record. He began furiously writing his every thought. The pages added up. The days went by. Months, without seeing anyone or doing anything. He looked at the giant mess of words that had accumulated, and he felt no closer to accomplishing anything. So when he ran into an old friend from high school who invited him to a party, he thought that a return to civilization might give him some perspective.

The party was full of people who the unpolitically correct would call white trash, and at first he thought he had made a huge mistake. But he soon found that no one treated him like the outsider he was. They all laughed and smiled, even when the conversation took an unexpected turn and he found himself refuting the claim that the lesser of two evils in the current political campaigns was not a Muslim. Even when he explained to them why he refuses to pledge allegiance to the flag, they offered him another drink, and despite all their differences they bonded over their commonalities, they both distrusted the government and enjoyed far fetched speculation that most would call conspiracy theories. And by the end of the night he realized that with all his thinking, all the time he had spent in his life trying to discern the truth, he was not much smarter than any of these people. His world had been slowly slipping, and now it suddenly collapsed.

“I’ve been to harsh a judge of people. And I’ve driven myself mad thinking that they would judge me in the same manner. My life up until now has been a waste.”

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