Plastic Bag

by dschapman

I have been told that the plastic bag is one of the most beautiful technological products of the twentieth century, aesthetic and practical, too. (There are rodents in my walls and they scare me at night)

Aristotle… but it was William of Ockham, the lousy Franciscan, who was the first true empiricist. After him came Spinoza, and then Wittgenstein.

And then there are the mystics… in the hills, they are sleeping away, with their minds lost – to the scattered breeze – I sighed for you, you wept for me…

You’ve seen them. They waited for me. You’ve seen them waiting. They do this to me. This is not my fault. I sat at the Howitzer and watched the hill for activity. I spent the night in The Cedars on an old wooden cot in the basement watching TV. No one came for me. But I was not alone. I was paranoid. I ate tuna out of cans.

I walked into the store. They offered me two suits, two ties, two shirts, and a smart phone if I bought a suit. So I bought a suit, sure.

Into the night, not bravely…

“I’ll have some water, please,” I tell the girl. I haven’t had a drop in years. Sometimes I get a soda, but all that sugar can seem rather childish.

Prison, long repeating cells… I ache, but they won’t give me what I need. I writhe in my chair and I stare at the rowdy reporters. I was a reporter, once – it was the worst thing I ever did. Cellular desperation, manic, masochistic –

I scraped and painted all the windows as a boy. One day I will own those houses. I will rent them to people and sell them when their values are high. There are probably fifteen houses out there. Maybe more I don’t know about. I work on them sometimes, but am mostly worthless.

I toss and I turn in The Cedars at night. There are coons in the walls. I listen to Mississippi public radio and a boy tells a story about how to cook coon. It is a compelling recipe and it sounds delicious. I decide I will try it.

I buy a plastic bag. Plastics are the future. What did you think I was doing? Where do you get such ideas? What did you think would happen? How do you not understand? I am proud of you for understanding.

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