As I start the morning in my typical fashion of black coffee and cigarettes, I blow the sawdust off the lid of my travel mug and find my miniature files and carving tools. Such has been the highlight of my mornings, waking up to sharpen my tools for the day. Being laid off has been daunting my thoughts, and my car still being stuck in the impound has aided my lack of income into throwing me into a very dangerous state of being. I’ve been edgy lately, with those who deserve it and those who don’t, and it is not their fault. Even if I apologize for being rash, it still doesn’t take away from what was said, so during these periods, I find myself bringing my workshop inside and out of the cold while I avoid human interaction. As wood shavings litter the carpet, I feel the worry and trouble of life slipping further and further out of my mind. My eyes start peeling back the illusion of reality and I can see what is in front of me for what it really is. I no longer see corners, I see angles. I dont see flaws, I see the start of the end. When reality blocks your vision, your vision never becomes reality. As I toil in my solitude, I can barely make out the sound of someone briskly rapping on my door, and it takes a few knocks before I realize I wasn’t imagining it. Not bothering to brush the chips from my lap, I stood to answer the door and heard the sound of retreating footsteps on my front porch. I slip my hand behind the drapes and see the idle vehicle in my driveway. I know who it is, but I am still not in any mood for conversation. Suddenly, I hear the footsteps again, very fast paced, as if he was determined to speak. Before I was able to reach the door, it swung open. “Where have you been, Deuce? I’ve been trying to call for days and I get no answer from you? I’m your brother, you never ignore your fam…i…ly” The look on his face was more confusing to me than Quantum mechanics. His eyes darted around in horror as he saw what I had been doing. Even from the entryway, the amounts of knick knacks, clocks, lamps, and cluttered furniture was enough to horrify him. “I’ve been…busy.” I wasn’t busy, I haven’t been busy, I was reaching for a justification. “What on Earth possessed you to build all of this?! My good God, man…You have enough furniture in here to fill four houses.” “Pick through then…No one has staked a claim to any of it, take what you want.” I turned my back and walked back into my makeshift workshop. Josh took a few moments to absorb what he was looking at, but joined me shortly after. “Why haven’t you been around? I know you got laid off, and I know you’re cars impounded, but I could have picked you up for poker night.” He was making an attempt, and I respected his position, but there was no chance he’d talk me out of my hermitian behaviors. “I’ve been busy.” I repeated. “Alright, I have to do this, and I’m sorry but you need it.” The sight of his fingers slapping the front of his touch screen phone was more than my eyes could handle focusing on. I averted my attention and resumed working. Within hours, my entire extended family was parked outside my house. Friends of the family were also in the midst of clutter. Their instructions were simple…clear the house. Within two hours, the house was clear enough to venture into the spare rooms. Hours of social intervention followed with family and close friends, telling me I needed to get out more, that I didn’t need to shut everyone out. I could only smirk… “You have such a wonderful gift, and everything you put yourself into winds up sparkling in the eyes of everyone around you. You create beauty from nothing, yet you trap yourself into pushing people away…Why?” I was shocked at how misunderstood I was in my mother’s eyes. She could see the beauty in my work, but not in my actions…She only saw the bad side.
“You fail to see the true situation. I’m not happy with the outside world and I have taken it upon myself to shut it out. We are all dealt bad circumstances, and for many, they take it in stride. I am different, and my mind doesn’t work that way. All of my anger, all of my pain, all of my sorrow…they don’t go away and they never have. When life hands you lemons, make lemonade…right? Life dealt me a lot of ugliness, so I turned it into beauty. Each one of those pieces was a particular issue I had. The desk you snagged for Izzy’s dorm room was when my license got revoked. The card table Josh has in the back of his truck was me getting laid off. The grandfather clock was when Megan left me, the fish tank stand was my medical bills…Every piece had a former life as something ugly that poisoned my happiness, and out of this pain comes happiness for others to enjoy. You can look at the situation any way you’d like, but don’t tell me what I’m doing is harmful. It puts a smile on the face of people around me, which makes me feel slightly better about my life. Don’t try to strip me of my therapy…”
45 total pieces left for a new home. All of them branded with my trademark, and all of them going to good homes. While I feel a bit of separation anxiety, I knew that this step was one of necessity. Word of mouth is a great start for my new job…My own venture into the world of professionalism. Time to start thinking bigger, thinking function, thinking artisticly…and most importantly, its time for me to focus on my life, my liberty, and the pursuit of more slivers…
-- When a robot can dream up the ideas I have, its time to silence the competition