The ghost in the machine is sad and drunk

And then it was the time of year that so many cigar stained voices had talked at us about. We had all collectively entered into the sugar-water-logged caboose of the year, elbows deep in promises of snow and cheer and miscellaneous winterland flora, and just like the year that had lead up to that point, it was slapped out of our mouths with tremendous velocity, without reason.

But now the year was on its final breaths, and everybody was pestering it for its last drops as if it had some kind of magic to hork up.

This incredibly banal 6 day burrow between the festive climax of christmas and the shedding of the year is the closest any of us will get to a national holiday commemorating dark circles and guilty headaches. By the time we had gotten our hands firmly clasped around the rest we so acutely wanted and needed, it was turned into a weapon of ionizing boredom, spray painting 5 o’clock shadows onto most everybody, regardless of age, gender or facial hair growing abilities.

Kitchens sinks everywhere whistled throughout all the houses and out into the beige sky. Cell phones soon quieted the sinks; there was going to be a party.

She and I weaved into the hills, off the snurchy main roads. The drywall bastille seemed to emanate a harsh light, like the kind of headlights that you know belong to police without having to look at the rest of the car.

A clowder of bearded children greeted us upon our entrance, they sat on the kitchen counter.

The house was almost too clean for its own good. The walls stood unpainted. How could one experience such an event in such a dehumanized house? Still, the house was charming for all the same reasons that it was lunar.

For the next bit, the party played out like the skeleton of a party. Eyes flew around the room at the making of jokes, and conversational islands took turns blurting and laughing at things on their phones. Gusts of wind periodically wiped tables clear of paraphernalia; things were burning outside.

Come 11:30 p.m., whatever the party had mutated into had sloughed everyone there to their core. The house was now a lair.

They talked like if they stopped then something inside of them would explode, talking their brains empty and their mouths dry and sore and then talking more.

They crowded the bathroom, turning it into a sauna of shambles and tears and vomit. The laughter was now stale and sparse. If the house was a canvas, whatever painting that existed now was painted with ungodly things.

What once was silence was now an orchestra of militant music and disjointed exclamations. The cabal had streun themselves into every crevice of the house. Girls sat writhing on the couch, many people stumbled in and out of rooms and into and off of beds tables and floors. The only centripetal force among them was an incredible anxiety.

The partygoers and their masks were melted away by an endless waterfall of drugs, turbulent nihilists now populated the house. Their biggest fears and phobias had been forced out of them through their nose, and here they stood marinating in them. The lucky only continued to avoid them.

What kind of nightmare could exist in the suburbs? What agony were they trying to drown?

The thought to escape suddenly yanked me. I could no longer watch as they let their hearts cannibalize their brains. This taste of whatever lie behind their eyes was filling enough.

She and I did not look back as we tripped down the precariously steep driveway in the dark. The roads once torn with people was barren. The couldesacs were all so suddenly empty.

It was only upon our arrival home that we exhaled, and realized we had missed the ball.

Happy New Year.