Stephen’s Existential Question Time

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Remember that time I had an existential crisis in WHSmith? Stood in the queue with a notepad and some magazines under my arm, I was checking to see whether or not to pay with cash or card when the realisation of my situation hit me. The dinosaurs- they had been dead for millions of years. Jesus for two thousand. John Candy, twenty. One day I too would be gone, and no matter how much I resisted, it was going to happen. Trying to imagine life without me, I became hyper-aware of what was going down and needed to return home as soon as possible but couldn’t because my legs had gone numb. Pretending to have forgotten something, I left the queue and sat on the floor by the advent calendars. Most of them were of pop stars, soap stars, and celebrities I’d never heard of. There was one of some brunette model with shapely breasts. In an effort to gain control, I focused on her mammary glands, but it was no use. Dry mouth. Going to be sick. Not going to be sick. Need something to drink. Need to be in bed with a packet of crisps and a few cans of Redbull. A woman who worked in the store came over and asked if everything was okay, to which I replied not really. Think I’m going to be sick. She was kind and got me a glass of water. It wasn’t busy, so thankfully there weren’t many people around. England on a Tuesday afternoon in some town that could be any other town. Rainy. cloudy. Markets stalls and food vendors and pedestrianised streets with people darting here and there trying to find cover because their haircuts and shopping bags might get ruined. Back on my feet I re-joined the queue and paid for my stuff. Outside with a cigarette in hand, I stood at a bus stop and thought about the death of Tommy Cooper. How long had he been dead? Was he cremated or buried? What happened to his hat? Waiting for a bus, a group of girls chatted and laughed. Their legs naked and long, they made me itch. Normally I wouldn’t look, but as the ground moved beneath my feet and my point of centre dissolved, the distraction was much needed. One of the girls touched her left leg. It was smooth and spoke to me of many things. She knew this, too, and as her finger glided towards the source and my sickly smile widened, tiny dinosaurs flew overhead as the ones that had gone before remained as they had been for so many lifetimes.

A Journal for Damned Lovers on Amazon.co.uk

A Journal for Damned Lovers on Amazon.com

18 replies »

    • That’s very kind of you, thank you 🙂 Ever since I got back into writing a few years ago it feels like I’m having a mid-life crisis on a daily basis. I guess the trick is to look at what you’ve got and how you can change things x

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