Une Petite Mort
Obsession over your anxiety should be performed daily. Every day when your body is perhaps a little caffeinated—though not too much, because just think of what it’s doing to your teeth—and is your urine supposed to smell like that?—and when your mind is still racing after that intense exchange with your boss—because you really, really need this job, and you haven’t been able to hold one down for more than a year, and you keep getting stuck in dead-end positions with little or no translatable skills—you should obsess over being interrupted and upstaged by your friends every time you try to say something you think is meaningful—do they really even care what you think?—that burn you got from the lamination machine—it’s a blister now, so maybe you should pop it, or will it just get infected?—the guy who didn’t yield at the yield sign—maybe when I pay off my student loans I’ll buy a Tesla, too… jerk—that freckle you just noticed—your mom survived cancer, so maybe you’ll make it, too, because, I mean, come on: this is definitely cancer—the tear in your stockings—the new pair you just bought last week snagged on the neighbor’s overgrown bushes, which you’ve told him a hundred times to trim back—the mushrooms in your salad, because you asked for no mushrooms and now it’s completely ruined because why the hell should you have to pick mushrooms, which you hate, out of your salad—you don’t work like a dog and take crap from your pig of a boss just to have to deal with this, do you?—the computer crash that destroyed hours and hours of unsaved work—that new laptop was top-of-the-line and cost a three months’ salary, and by God, someone at Apple will be hearing from you—uncle Jim’s five-alarm fire-roasted chili, which isn’t sitting so well with you now—and you just had to have extra cheese, because just look at that spare tire; did you really need the cheese?—the dentist and his x-ray machine, which, how many times does he have to zap you, anyway?—no wonder you have that freckle—and that TV anchor on cable news—you could get a fake tan and make ridiculous guesses based on unsourced information, too. And every day, without fail, you should consider yourself as blameless.
Emmett Stone: I’m a writer and critic originally from Oakland, California. Boston was my home for a while, but now I live in Kuala Lumpur with my wife and dog. If you liked what you read, you can find my occasionally updated blog at http://highdefinitionfantasy.wordpress.com/