It always hits on Friday nights, which is unfortunate, coming off of a full week, mostly, five days of potential regret queued for inspection. I remember being in kindergarten and having to color, color, color, and at first it was interesting; but after a while it’s just filling in lines so you draw shapes within those lines and color those in…Gosh, it’s like being able to breathe again, after nothing but going; being too tired to feel, really, now that I think about it, going one day, one day, count down in only the vaguest of ways because anything more than that threatens to destroy with sheer magnitude, going from event to event and ever second in between is just this time spent injuring your future self, it’ll suck so much later that you should do it now; i have never been this motivated to not procrastinate in my life. Eventually, there are other limits to push, coloring things in polka-dotted only lasts so long. You decide to see how much wax will stick to the paper, and push down until a thick crust completely obscures the object, the area between those lines. It’s undeniable, now, that the week brings on a sort of numbness with it; you sit through being yelled at every morning, and don’t react; at first you justified this by thinking that instead of feeling stressed or something you were just being noble, letting someone take something out, making an art out of a polite response, and maybe this is true, maybe you’ve gotten better at taking it, but it’s distinctly not you, and it’s unusual to go from 60 to 0 so quickly, yes, it feels so strange, and now that everything’s settled down, you feel it all settling around you and push it out of your mind before it does, completely…One layer is interesting, and it buckles when you fold the paper, so you decide to try a second, so you have a mix of color, and when you drag your finger nail through it it makes these multi-colored lines in the wax. Dang it, now I’ve slept, and little else is wrong, but it all sets in; release from numbness, as if every reaction from everything during the week has built up and decided to pounce all at once, my head actually feels likes its swimming in something chemical, and I feel vaguely ill. Soon, this catches on, and the teacher must wonder what all of you are doing but doesn’t ask, Ms. Heidgurken…that’s it, maybe not the spelling, but that’s it, then it was Morgan, and Miller, Marshall, and Ritenour…How long will you remember these names, one day you’ll claw at the edges of your consciousness in a vain attempt to recall them, for no good reason, how long will they stick with you? You’ve made decisions this week based on strategy, money, logic, in a way you haven’t been able to before, and on balance it’s payed off, but I can’t help but feel like I’ve done something wrong, in retrospect, something’s off. Are you insane me, been in pain like me, bought a hundred dollar bottle of champagne like me, deranged like me, strange like me…Gosh, all this feeling leaves you empty, hungry for something, internally desperate and hanging on to something, anything, everything…Walking home from the elementary school every day…it’s amazing what people put up with, you’ve been especially inclined to yell at people this week, which always feels good in the act, but leaves you feeling fairly guilty after, but that hasn’t caught up to you, which isn’t normal…I guess when I was in elementary school, and middle school, some, I didn’t think of my teachers as people, but more as deity, whose word was law, who were all-knowing, maybe it was better this way…Either way, maybe that’s what this all is, suddenly there’s no pressure, computational downtime, processors left to their own devices now rear in rebellion, egged on by the heavy warm air that feels so much like Texas, dripping with memory, so it clings, dearly, How do you remember kindergarten? My roommate asks, there’s no way you can, correctly, but I do and it tastes full like the weather, both with a stunted existence and containment but also strange retrospection tinged with sure dominance, sweet. I remember after school my mom used to check my homework, every problem, and make me go over it and over it again and again until it was all right, and we’d come in the next day to go over it and mine would always be right, but it wouldn’t really because I wouldn’t have gotten it all right anyways, made math errors, when did that stop, the checking, the drive for absolute perfection, that’s what it was, because every problem wrong made me a little less perfect, a little farther from a dream that was already so far away… And I know for sure that I have been numb this week, and the week before that, in a sense, or in the sense that I had neither the time nor energy for emotions, between class and work and practice and not being able to run between neighbor’s yards, or even the basement, mom can I go to the basement, to Phil’s yard, yes, no, why did you go outside without asking, out of my control; to exist in the jaws of some tiger and one day at a time, I tell myself that when this is over, being human will not just be a weekend activity, it’ll be longer than that, days of feeling like a person, feeling person feelings, aliveness, and it’ll have all been worth it…Knee deep in some creek, toes numb, even in this weather, catching fish by hand…

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