For once, the others agree.

I lost time again.

I woke and I was sitting downtown on the curb underneath a street lamp that shone brightly in the darkness of the night and I was holding a can of beer and a cigarette.

I knew that it had happened again, when I noticed what I was holding. Like the props to a play that my body must have put on while I was out of it, the beer can and the cigarette were signs of my losing time. I don´t drink. And I certainly don´t smoke. My asthma will kill me, I know it will, so I don´t smoke, but I don´t think he knows. He never cares about what happens to our body. Just as he doesn´t care what he does to it. He knows it´s not his. He knows it´s actually mine and he gives it back bruised and battered and he doesn´t care about it at all.

I wish I could talk to him about it, but I haven´t yet figured out how to get in touch with him. Mr. George said that I will soon learn how to get in touch. I know that I should meet him. And the others. But I don´t really want to have to deal with the confrontation.

Mr. George has it all figured out, he says. Well, he says a lot of things and some are just to difficult to understand. He says there are at least four of us, but I zone out when I hear these kinds of things and I usually can´t come back out until long after the meeting with Mr. George and I never learn what he says about the four of us. And I´m not very sure I want to know.

We are working on how all of this started. Mr. George has a theory. He always has a theory. Mr. George has now realized that it keeps me friendly, so whenever I hit the edge he asks me to tell him things about my youth. I´ve learned that people like Mr. George ask a lot of questions about the childhood, because they think that this is were all things start. All the bad things.

I think Mr. George is wrong. I like being a child. I like playing with my toys and I like playing with my sister´s toys as well. Toys are funny. I have a robot and cars and trucks and I also have dinosaurs and hand puppets and I have a crown that I can wear when I play that I am a pirate king. Sometimes I ask my sister to play with me, but she is much older than me and she doesn´t like to play child games. She always calls them child games, because she says it´s games that only children play. I don´t mind. I like to be a child. It´s great. You can do a lot of things that older people don´t. You can laugh at funny things, you can play wherever you like, you can be a pirate king with a crown all day long, you can jump into puddles and into piles of leaves and when you are sick, your mum makes you hot things to drink and you can stay in bed all day long. I like that a lot. Sometimes I get bored when I have to stay in bed all day long, but then I can watch television or I play and sometimes my mum reads books to me. I can´t read yet, but I will be six soon and the teachers at school will teach me how to read and write. My mum taught me how to write my own name and I can read it, too. My mum is really great. She doesn´t say that I play child games all the time. Sometimes she comes with me when I go out to sea and she wears a scarf around her head and she says she has a parrot sitting on her shoulder and then she makes the sounds a parrot makes and it sounds really very real. Dad never plays with me. Dad is always angry. I think he doesn´t like children very much. He´s not very nice to my sister, too. He always says that she is stupid. I don´t think she likes that very much, because she is older than me and she goes to school and she learns a lot of things. My dad comes home late and he doesn´t play with me. I don´t know why. Sometimes I bring him my toys to play, but he doesn´t know what to do with them and I think that it hurts him a lot. He gets angry when I ask him what he wants to play and he throws my toys across the room and sometimes he is not very nice to me and I don´t like it when he throws me across the room. I wish he would just remember that he was small once. My mum said that he forget to listen to his inner child, but I don´t know what that means. She says it to me when she´s kissing my bruises and when she puts ointment on the cuts. I´m just glad he never touches my sister, because she says that she is much older and much smarter than me, but I think that she is a child like me and I don´t think things like that should happen to children. Things like

I need a beer. I know I need a beer, because I haven´t had one in ages. Whatever the fuck happened? I´m pretty sure I bought a six-pack just yesterday. I remember going to the fucking store and purchasing the six-pack and bringing it back home. I remember it clearly. Where the fuck did it go? I don´t want to go through the trash to find the cans. Empty cans are a signal, that´s for sure. I would see the empty cans, remember that I drank them while watching something stupid on TV and all would be ok. But I don´t see any empty cans in the fucking trash and I — fuck it. I don´t even want to wonder where the cans went. I just want a fucking beer. Just one. Or two. I should go downstairs. I know myself very well, so I´m already halfway out the door while I think I should go downstairs to buy beer. My asthma is getting worse. I light a cigarette and it calms me down. Whatever they put into these inhalers doesn´t help shit, but a smoke does the trick any time. I suck on the cigarette and it dies before I reach the exit. I flip the stub against the no smoking sign and leave the building. The store´s just next door and there are two girls in the back and I can tell that they want to buy some beer but they aren´t old enough. That I can tell, too. I push past them and grab a six-pack and that one girl smiles, but I really fucking hate to smile at people. What a waste of muscle movement to smile at someone you don´t even know. Plus, it makes people think you are a nice person and the last fucking thing I am is a nice person, well that´s for sure and

It´s been ages since I´ve been out in the daylight. Can you believe how good it feels to have the sun kissing your skin? I could sit here forever. Of course, I don´t really remember how I got here, but is that really the point? You need to learn how to live in the moment, how to enjoy what life offers. Can you believe how warm the sun is? It´s only March! It´s amazing how much I miss the sun during winter. Or absence. Well, same difference, isn´t it? Really, I can´t stop feeling completely energized. The sun is warming my skin and a soft breeze is going through my hair and it feels amazing how it touches my body and makes me all warm inside. What a feeling! Have you ever felt like that? Have you ever had the feeling that things were just right? Honestly, I don´t even know how I got here, but what´s really amazing is that even though I hit a blank when I try to remember what might have brought me here, I have the great opportunity to savor this one moment, and I will, oh, I will. It´s like back then, what year was that again? Oh dear, if only I could remember the year. There was something… or someone, well I think I might have been on a playground. Oh, yes, yes, yes, now I remember it was most definitely a playground. I must have been twelve or thirteen and I now remember that this playground was the meeting place for all teenagers that lived in our street, and when we weren´t out panting the town red (or any other color, we weren´t particular about that) until it was time to return home, we would sit on the swings and talk and laugh and talk some more. During the summer months we barely made it home before curfew because there were so many things to talk about when you are just learning the ways of the world and wonder about things you´ve never wondered about. And I remember sitting on the swing and this boy Luke was there and he was just magical, magical, magical. The way the sun hit his hair and let it shine all golden, like a halo around his perfect face, his bright smile lighting up this amazing day even more and I sat on the swing and swung back and forth and then it was someone else´s turn and I stood next to Luke and one after the other they all left and it was only Luke and me and the dying beams of the sun that hit our faces while we closed our eyes and oh, how good it felt to be in that moment with him and I can still remember the sun on my skin and the warmth (that had nothing to do with the sun) that went through my body whenever I opened my eyes and looked at Luke. He was just perfect and I seized the opportunity and kissed him and oh, I tell you, his lips were just divine. Perfect texture, smooth and warm and, dear oh dear, how good they felt on mine. But what is that now? A cloud wandered in front of the sun and the warm beams die quickly and leave me shivering. Well, that happens, now, doesn´t it? That´s why you have to embrace the opportunity when it presents itself. Even if you don´t know what will happen.

Not that the bad things are actually of that great importance. Mr. George makes sure I understand that it matters more what you do with your life. When you go for a walk and you get a pebble in your shoe, what do you do, he asked me. I said I would stop and take the shoe off and shake it till the pebble falls out and then I would put the shoe back on and I would continue to promenade. Mr. George told me it´s a recipe, one I should follow when I feel like life is weighing me down and fate throws stones my way. All I learned from his digression was that you should take pebbles out of your shoes and that I should probably eat something right away when I get back home.

For once, the others agree.


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