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No Joke

Standing on his building’s rooftop he was assessing whether a jump off a 7 story building would definitely kill him. He thought in anger and fury as he made a plan that was not to be executed that night.

“They all think I’m a joke. Somehow every time I mess up it’s hilarious. People never let things go. My wife wants to leave me because she doesn’t think I’m going anywhere with my life. What about her life? She’s not going anywhere either! What a hypocrite! Even my friends and family wait for me to fail in some hilarious way when I’m with them. It’s like seeing me slip-up is their only source of laughter. For years I’ve been ridiculed by the people I loved.

“My boss doesn’t trust me with any work anymore. One or two silly mistakes that could have happened to anyone and suddenly I’m useless at the office. I’m someone he can’t rely on. My coworkers keep asking in a sarcastic manner if I need any help when I’m assigned the simplest and smallest of tasks; tasks that I can’t fuck up.”

The thoughts ran through his mind and then he paused and took in a deep breath of fresh air. He looked again and was certain this time that a fall would kill him. He thought about ending his life that night but no he thought of something better.

“Why end it now? I can’t end it with everyone thinking I’m a joke, a failure. I’ll spend the next few months showing them I’m a perfectionist. I will succeed at everything I do. My conversations will be stimulating and intellectual. I will make them laugh at my jokes rather than my mistakes. Then everyone will rely and count on me. I will be essential to my boss. My friends won’t stand to meet without me and will make time to see me. Yes! I will be the most important person in the life of everyone I know!

“Right at that moment, only then will I jump off this building. I won’t die a joke. They will miss and mourn me. The office will collapse in my absence. Family gatherings will never be the same. Something will always be missing. I will always be missing. They’ll know then how important I was and they’ll remember me not as a joke, but as a leader, as the most reliable person they have ever met.

“Maybe I should stay alive after changing their mind about me, but no..no. They mocked my mistakes and they don’t deserve me at my best. I’m going to teach them all a lesson those ungrateful filthy beings. Each of them pretends to have never made a mistake. I’ll divorce my wife anyway before I dazzle everyone else. She’ll only hear about how great I will become and she’ll beg to come back to me but I’ll end all her hope when I jump only adding to her misery. Yes, I’ll teach them. I’ll show them!”

He felt pretty good about himself and completely satisfied with his grand plan. He took one final deep breath and look at the city below and beyond him. He looked at the stars and added learning about them to the list of things he wanted to do before the jump.

Finally he got off the roof and took the elevator back to his floor. As he put his hands in his pockets he collapsed on the floor in laughter. He laughed at the irony that he had forgotten his keys and locked himself out of his own apartment. He laughed so hard the neighbors opened the door and told him to shut up.

What a joke.

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