Appetite for Distraction – Another Day.


He wakes up. He is ready for court. He puts on a suit that his headmaster gave him one time and he puts on a thin black tie and he wears his only smart shoes which happen to be a pair of hiking boots. Then he charges his phones and he walks to the bus and he gets on the bus and he walks to the train and he gets on the train and then in a tunnel the driver tells everyone to get off train but they are in a tunnel so no one can get off the train. They all sit there silently wondering if they do have to get off or if there has been a mistake. There has been a mistake. An army of children – small and inquisitive don’t touch that woman’s hair stop singing that song sit next to your grandmother and then they leave the train. He sees a Dunkin Donuts which he will go into after the trial and he will treat himself to coffee and donuts just like the policemen who will later be milling around the court room the huge policemen with their barrel chests and their hip holstered power. He walks through the heavy security playing words with friends and candy crush and jelly splash and break out and quietly soiling myself and watching as more and more people enter the court with their families or lawyers or friends or alone for parking or traffic violations and police with guns and swagger and cars turn in the road outside through the window and babies and boredom and standing and squatting and strangers talking about the day they will miss because of this and understanding bosses and second chances and paper work and worry and dressing in unfamiliar suits to appear before the law. Then all enter and he sits down but then he is told to stand up and line up for the state prosecuter and he realises he has no idea what he is doing he really should have brought a lawyer but it’s fine he’ll just plead guilty and get a fine. His throat getting drier expecting to be thrown in an airless dungeon. He needs some water but there is no water and there is no food and no food or drink are allowed into the court house. Then he is asked by the state prosecuter if he needs a lawyer and he says no and she looks at him strangely as he mumble something about his guilt and he realises he really doesn’t know what he’s doing and he is told to sit down and then the Judge enters and everyone stands and he seems like a nice old white gentlemen and power crackles from his fingertips in the most benign way imagineable. He tells everyone that this court is for jailable offences and suddenly it doesn’t seem to relaxed any more and that 60 days in prison and a fine and no possibility of immigration because of a jailable offence on his record and he goes up with five other men all need a translator and the judge explains what is going on and the translator translates in beautiful Spanish what is going on and his heart sinks as he realises he really has no idea what is going on and he thought that he would be okay but he is not going to be okay and the judge suggests that he gets a lawyer and suggests that he gets a driving license and he doesn’t ask if he can just never drive again but that doesn’t seem to be an option and then he is told to sit down and he is given a bit of paper to sign and a bit of paper to take with him and then he leaves stressed and confused and he goes to dunkin donuts and he drinks coffee and he eats an apple turnover and he tries to be witty but he is really not witty at all and he calls the airport and he is called by NPR and his car will be called on Monday. Then he watches as more factories blow up and Ukraine is alight and Venezuela is alight and the Keystone Pipeline will be alight and it was all predicted my mathematics last year and a simple story is a single piece of yarn. Life is a ball of yarn made up of an infinite number of pieces of yarn all different lengths. More factories blow up David bowie favours union. The debate for Scottish Indepencene takes a terrible blow from the Old White Duke. The Satanist lady probably a liar say the police and her father. Millions of women on the bus that he studiously ignores so that he doesn’t get accused of visual assault and he eats some candy for supper. He thinks back to court not going well. He does not understand the system and is told he could go to jail and get fined and have his chance at becoming an immigrant blocked he does not do well and he is stressed and he makes a terrible joke that ruins the day and then he plans for his car to be taken away on monday everything is repeating in his head and mashing down like mash potatoes and then he is wandering the city eating some chips and drinks an hawaiin soft drink that reminds him of childhood and Musselburgh, the pompeii of scotland. It is sugary and sickly and nothing like Hawaii or how he imagines Hawaii. It makes him feel cold. Then he wonders whether he is a potato or a strawberry as he remembers a conversation his headmaster once had with him and he does not understand it but then he is given an explanation that makes sense that the potato is dull and a staple a mass product of use but no particular delight but the strawberry is a bright shining beacon of flavour and colour for the palatte and the soul and the choice between being a work drone and someone who will stand out was what he was being offered and it all came from shoes not being shined and it took 20 years to get the answer but he is happy with that answer and whilst he is okay with being a potato he would actually much prefer to be a stawberry. He watches Jimmy Fallon who holds back the coming storm of chaos with jokes and unreserved happiness as the Titanic sinks into the ocean he falls asleep.

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