by Azrael Tseng
From one mad mind to another.
Look what we’ve come to. It’s not enough that all the yous living and expiring inside your head argue constantly, now you’re even writing to yourself. Well done. Half cooked actually, like your goose or baked like some of your story ideas. So then, how will it be for this year? More of same old same old, or different n(you)?
Let’s begin with a brief recap.
So 2018 was spectacular--the same way a firework is fated to burst into a brilliant shower of sparks, light up the night sky, draw some oohs and aahs from whomever might be watching at that moment, before disappearing behind a smoky cloud and the excitement of the next display. No one sees how the spent shell fizzles down, doomed to drown in the depths of a watery cemetery swimming with corpses of other forgotten fireworks. No one takes that ride.
Winning a bunch of WDC’s fabled Quills was amazing. If it came with a year’s supply of metaphorical crack, it might even have carried you through all the other stuff. You nearly didn’t make it. Keep the memory of losing your job, nearly losing your life and your family close to your heart but don’t let the pain near it again. Let go. It festers like an ulcer, and spreads that creeping darkness named Despair throughout every part of you.
This year’s gonna be different. Better in some ways; you know the deal. Hold on to your cake, and you might actually get to eat it too. You’ve finally got a new job and a boss who values you. Sure, resettling is a migraine most people prefer to pay professional movers tens of thousands of dollars to suffer on their behalf, but even if you sold every piece of your furniture listed on Okinawa Bookoo you still wouldn’t cover the tip. Breathe. Your back and bank account will recover eventually.
Onwards to the words you breathe. Both your blogs have starved to death, and their neglected bones await burial. I don’t suppose you’ll invest in learning a necromantic reanimation ritual to get them kind of shuffling again, all the while moaning for someone to put something sharp through their brains. How many times can a zombie blog die before it can’t be brought back anymore? Stop using work, sleep, and family time as excuses--nobody needs those, right?
Good thing Lilli and Hannah over at Rising Stars have their whips out to keep those fingers typing. A little bit of pressure’s good for your heart. So what exactly are you working on these days, huh? A paranormal school romance--what? You missed the Twilight boat by more than a decade, you ignoramus. A collection of short stories about the lives and loves of your fellow citizens in that Little Red Dot you call the beginning of measles, sorry, I meant Singapore. Right, like who wants to read about ordinary people when they can fantasize about the glitzy, glamorous worlds of Crazy Rich Asians? And a family history while your remaining grandmother is still cogent and kicking at eighty-eight? Now that’s some proper ambition. You’re lucky she can bear to be in the same room as you, unlike her own son whom she can’t stand. Get those stories and words out of her before Charon ferries her away and flushes her memories down the Lethe-rine.
How about your writing family WDC? Shouldn’t you give back a little of the love you’ve been getting from them? You know that without them, you wouldn’t be where and what you are now. Right, you’ve gotta split time with your other family--the one that comes with the wife and kid. Well, I know you’ll manage somehow. You survived being homeless on the streets, rapists and gangs, avalanches, blizzards, earthquakes and pretty much everything else Mother Nature can think to throw at you, you’ll survive being middle-aged and married, employed and healthy. Heck, you’ve got working internet--that’s pretty much all anyone needs to live these days.
So I’ll see you right around this time again next year, if you write back. You’ll write back, won’t you? Hey, just because we live under the same balding roof doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy getting a proper letter every now and then, instead of a scribbled-on receipt. Even institutionalized inmates like us have the right to a life, right?
Forever stuck with you,