PART A (The Psychologist) — 11

Most of what had gone on in the year or so since Bing bought his prescription is another story.

But he could sure remember life before his reality of legal weed.

It had been a life spent mostly racing through TV channels alone in his plain box apartment . . . a life given daily in frantic pursuit of fresh cures to a disease called indecision with its grungy symptoms born of boredom crossed with slipping time.

Perhaps the sickness had hidden somewhere behind that old Bing’s sinuses.

For he would rub his crusty eyes so hard and often that the fine lines seen drawn beneath might as well have been canyons cut by friction.

Food heated would all grow cold.

Poured beer had always gone flat.

Eventually that Bing would have to settle upon some lesser of many evils, causing time to fly so the whole ordeal could end and begin again.

Yes, steady weed had changed much at first.

For whatever magic lay within those small torn shreds of plant had seemed to slow Bing’s mind down just enough to vibrate almost in tune with whichever burst(s) of silliness he might end up given over to.

But what’s funny about things like curses is they almost seem to love being outrun.

Catching up might be where they have their fun.

Tired sparks of a feeble buzz brought hints of old lights and fuzzy motions.

But devoid of zaniness or bliss, it begged Bing in drab tones to be filled with something else to be run through.

He lay in bed, his mind bouncing between potential old albums or videos to relocate on his iun.

He knew somewhere there had to be some worthy specimen to offer.

But all imagined options were but played-out, dreary trash.

Whatever had made for any previous Bings’ enjoyment seemed utterly incapable of rousing the current one.

And lately nothing new could be trusted.

A few far-off stars shone through in tiny pinstripes at the edges of Bing’s blinds.

He didn’t feel his hands quivering to clasp at clumps of bedding.

A familiar flash of connection was the jolt of colliding worlds.

He reached across to scoop up his iun, slid open the screen, and silently tapped out a message.

old people who only ever listened to music to be
cool keep doing it even though they hate it and
it’s not cool anymore.

He could already see himself later wondering why the words had seemed worthy to save.

A sheen of sweat began to tickle at points across the inner legs of his pajama pants.

He swept the covers off with a gruff sigh.

Almost immediately, he started to shiver.

Fighting not to recognize the many mounting signs of yet another sleepless night, he replaced the blankets carefully, half on and half off.

He braced himself for further flashes of useless inspiration, which always came perpetually in waves.

Could more weed help?

What’s this strain called again?

He lifted the iun still in his hands, and typed:

don’t use blue diesel at night.

He waited.

Sure, he could go smoke more.

But besides the Blue Diesel, he had only a little left of a strain called Green Crack.

He chuckled, weathered another internal flash, and quickly keyed:

how dumb would u have to be to try to use a weed
strain called greencrack to fall asleep?

The light from his iun’s face pierced through to hurt behind his eyes.

If I fall asleep now, I’ll get four hours…

And nothing had ever proven capable of keeping that same thought from repeating throughout such nights with adjusted figures.

He sighed once more as if resigning to accept the bittersweet resolution to a long and bloody battle.

Some part of him must want to just go ahead and capture every wild, frantic, flashing thought.

No?

Maybe getting them all down and digital would clear his mind enough to rest…?

Might as well, right?

If I’m not going to sleep anyway…

So what was that about Green Crack again?

He squinted at the iun.

Green Crack . . . Green Crack…

Well…

He slowly tapped out a reply to his last message, keeping the two together.

well, gc once made u try to kill urself, so
sleep…? no!

And something was deeply, deeply wrong . . . as if the universe itself had paused to focus all its sets of secret eyes on him.

The words he saw onscreen weren’t funny.

They weren’t smart.

They weren’t any kind of reminder.

He saw only sheer failure immediately upon having decided to actually, consciously try.

Some covert line had been crossed somewhere.

Bing blinked.

His hope might as well have been swept out like a match.

Perhaps attempting to play with, use, or otherwise enjoy a curse only gives it more fuel to burn through once it can catch up and re-establish itself in new, ripe territory.

The old sinus sickness drew more clenched hands, chills, and sweating.

And Bing was in the bathroom, sparking away at his last clumps of Green Crack, drawing its piney smoke through an old, repurposed aerosol can.

He was asleep within minutes.

. . .

No, Bing didn’t bother reading his night’s recorded flashes.

It wasn’t that he forgot.

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