Thoughts On A Gray Day In Italy

There are so many empty moments between coffee cups and cigarette drags, between the filled moments of love and hate. What does any of it matter? I talk to friends who have it all and still they have nothing, and others who have nothing and still have it all or at least they think they do. Maybe they’re better liars, or better at lying to themselves.

An old man lives a few blocks away from me who is known in Italy by “old man blob”. He famously frequents the dance clubs in taylored suits finding young girls he can rub is old member on. I’ve been a victim of his dance moves before. The moves that resemble the free, televised, senior citizen aerobics work out, with the occasional, awkard hip-thrust that is so poorly executed it can only be described as infantile, puppy-ish. And that’s really what life is about, being born an old man and dying with child-like pumps in the empty spaces between yourself, and something new. I’m sure he was adored in his prime just as I’m sure I’ll be vile in my old age. It’s something we can all count on.

Outside, I can hear a broom as someone sweeps the cobblestone in front of our apartment building. The large cement edifices contain and amplify the sound. I imagine it’s what the womb sounds like. When we’re born we’re already insane from listening to our own amplified movements for nine months. The lucky ones are deaf, and they certainly have the best wits about them. Now the sweeping man is yelling to another human across the street in reverberating, melodic screams. It’s suitable for the day, all gray, and hostile. And my conscience suffers.

Human nature can be so keenly depicted in the actions towards those we love. It’s amazing how love can cause so much damage. Really, if you want to ruin a place there’s no need for the atom bomb, better to show Disney at a young age and watch the society crumble of disappointment a generation later. Cartoons can be lethal. It’s better the silence, where our thoughts can comfort us, and fake smiles for us, and fake relationships for us, in between the empty moments.

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