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Tuesday, March 10, 1998
By Paul Ford
I sat down in the office, in the rubbery chair. The walls peeled with sanitized pictures of lasers and computers. Mr. Cekes, I said, I've got a lot of stress, and goddamn I want to try heroin. And crack. I want to buy a big fucking pile of vials and smoke 'em until my brain explodes. I don't want a job. Or if I do--
I want to fight in a war. I want us to go to war with some brutal third world country, so I can kill without guilt, saving the penises of my victims in phials, strung and worn around my neck. I'll be known for my cold-hearted butchery. "He just plowed through that village," they'll say. "Stone cold. It was a thing to see, the babies on fire."
Let me take that one better. I want to be a stock market trader. I want the motion of my fingers to send Tokyo grandmothers into unemployment. I want to demolish careers with my signature. Let the rivet-gun toting bastards jump into the river by their failing factory--I want to control the economic tornado that rips the roofs off the trailer homes; I want to fill my fresh-shined shoes with million-dollar bills.
Or politics! Goddamn it, that's a place for a man. The power, the sweet exterior, hugging the babies, the newspapers writing your place in history, while you whisper hinting codes to your hired assassins. I'll develop a predeliction for the tasty favors of pubescent youths. As we move from tax-bought mansion to tax-bought mansion, I'll foster a protracted, cruel coldness towards my pillhead wife. I will teach my son to hate her, to prove that I can. But to the world, we will be thick with smiles.
Or mobster, sure, but better, minister. Guiding the poor lambs. Teaching them the value of obedience. In a position of total control, a position of sacred trust--just look at all of those priests groping through the confessional.
And Mr. Cekes said, Have you considered you might become a teacher?