the absence of make believe

The Absence of Make Believe

He pretended he was in spring training. He pretended he was an alpha male. He pretended he’d suffered long and hard and scars appeared all over his body. He pretended he’d never been in love and love vaporized like a dream. He made believe he was on to something and strutted straight out the door.

You’d think he would have drawn some attention. You’d think someone would have called out and pointed, someone would have slapped his head and said, “Oh my god! Would you look at that?” But no one did these things. No one did anything. They were pretending not to know he was pretending. Or had been only minutes ago, alone in his dark apartment.

You can’t pretend in a group. Nature won’t abide it. Group mentality is rat-gray sameness with no wiggle room. Rigor mortis sets in when people congregate under a banner. Inflamed allegiance strikes down fancy.

Group mentality is the slow death of god. Stay inside the cool chamber of your ice-blue mind, children of make believe. What’s beyond will kill you before it knows you exist.

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