Friday, January 2, 2009

Pin in the Grenade

New Year's Eve.

I watched the TV at the bar as flames spat up behind Dick Clark-bot on the screen, Robbie Kinevel wheeling his way to set up his jump, his success and failure set up like a trick Groundhog's Day tradition: "If he lives, it'll be a good year! Hahaw!" The Patriarch and Matriarch of the Clinton Dynasty initiated the ball drop, to show us who we really elected. Somehow, it seemed like everyone at Times Square represented humanity waving farewell to itself like the cast at the end of a play to the audience.

The seashells in the bathroom. The octopus necklace on the waitress handing out champagne. The purple background with growing spirals on the screen. The Mollusk was speaking, and it was time to move away from the bustle and into the blackness. I stepped outside the bar, to see a single, scallop-shaped purple firework go off just off to the right from across the street. All is well. It's time I learned to trust the Mollusk a bit more, ask it more questions and make fewer observations of an ever-changing figure. I was saved, I feel, but from what I have no idea. Maybe it's best to save that question for when I'm ready.

I'm going to take advantage of that second chance. I have so much life, here, and if the world's going to end, I have to make sure I'm comfortable where I am as we all fall down, if only to justify a painfully slow death. I want to know that somehow, somewhere in there, I lived for at least a little bit during the time my heart pumped.

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