We are so good at adapting ourselves to our tiny little worlds, aren’t we? If someone were to ask me, ‘Hey buddy, what’s your superpower?’ I’d answer, ‘Adapting myself to tiny worlds.’ It comes so effortlessly to me, and yet the ramifications go on forever.
My own voice taunts me at times like this. ‘Adapting myself to tiny worlds, adapting myself to tiny worlds, adapting myself to tiny worlds,’ it says spitefully. It’s playing its part in my downfall, so I suppose I have to give it credit for that. I nod grudgingly in its direction, ‘I suppose I have to give you credit for that’ I tell it, and it smirks unpleasantly back at me. It’s a day like any other, I remind myself, and yet here I am as usual. Here I am as usual – trapped in my little tiny world!
I’m in the wrong place at the wrong time, it occurs to me, yet apart from that everything is okay. Apart from that things couldn’t be better. The foxes bark in the trees and the birds rustle in the hedgerows. Something uncanny is happening, but I’d be the last person to know anything about that. I’m always the last person to know.
I adapted myself to a tiny world the other day and it was so tiny that it didn’t even exist! This is a running joke for me – the joke grew legs one day and it just started running. It wasn’t even a joke to start off with. It wasn’t even what you would call a ‘proper joke’. ‘And what would you call ‘a proper joke?’’ my voice sneered at me. My voice isn’t even mine anymore – it floats around the room in its spookily disembodied way, sniping at me from unexpected directions.
I stuck to my guns. ‘I adapted myself to a tiny world the other day and it was so tiny that it didn’t even exist!’ I told my voice defiantly. My voice floated around the place like a diminutive mauve trumpet-flower, obviously trying in vain to think of its next put-down. Somehow it looked rather disconcerted; somehow it looked rather at a loss.
All aspects of my reality were subservient to the Decay Function of course, and as a result there was only one way the story could go. Life was full of inescapable conclusions and I no longer even tried to escape them. I gravitated to them just as iron filings are drawn to a magnet, just as flies are drawn to fresh excrement. My voice sniggered nastily in the background, but said nothing.
I was in the echo chamber of my own mind; I was in the hall of mirrors. I tried not to move too much because when I did it set up distorted reverberations that just kept on multiplying. The echoes grew legs and walked, like giant centipedes. They marched across the ceiling. I was afraid that one of them might drop onto me and dig its fierce claws into my flesh. Centipedes are a pet hate of mine, especially the giant variety. When they bite they pump venom into you and each claw – of which they have many – injects venom too. The pain is excruciating.
The Decay Function was racing towards its final conclusion and I didn’t even know what that was. Does anyone know what that was, I wonder? People act very smart of course. They dress up in smart clothes and come out with fancy talk and fine-sounding phrases. Anyone who admits to not understanding is mocked and derided, and driven out into the fringes of society where the unclean things wait to consume us. Professional experts appear in their droves – when they open their mouths torrents of centipedes fall out, full of savage malignant eagerness, full of the will to do harm.
We are all so good at adapting to tiny worlds, aren’t we? We’re all so very good at enabling and facilitating the Decay Function. My own words mean nothing at this stage. They grow legs and abruptly scuttle away into the undergrowth. They ricochet off the walls like so many rubber balls. I realise that I’m better off saying nothing – it’s only extra fuel for the fire, anyway. It’s like a red rag to a bull – it’s only adding insult to injury.
The seconds turn into hours and the hours turn into years and the years turn into brightly coloured rubber balls that ricochet like crazy from the walls. I’m full of eager passion to articulate the dark poetry of the Decay Function but my fingers crumble silently into dust as I pick up my pen. My fingers crumble into the very finest of dust like so many over-extended cylinders of fag-ash. I want so much to express and articulate the dark poetry of the Decay Function but I no longer know what to say.