Sunday, December 27, 2009

Trinie Dalton: Animal Party

"Animal Party" by Trinie Dalton

I moved to the desert to escape the noise and crap
in Los Angeles. L.A.’s air felt gunky on my skin. Just
walking outside I’d acquire greasy layers. I washed
my face three or four times a day. Four hounds next
door started barking at dawn every morning. The
city felt claustrophobic and dingy, even at night
when I was most alive. I couldn’t see stars. I’d sit at
my desk spying through binoculars into other people’s
houses. Even then, I only saw TVs flickering—
no naked woman dancing, no stoner getting high.
Everyone was so boring. Worst of all, I hated driving
the grids; it made me feel stupid, like a termite. All
the daily plugging away in the car, on the phone,
on the computer, in the kitchen, shopping, getting
dressed, talking, thinking, behaving, and controlling
amounted to nothing more than survival, something
that a termite does so easily with no financial security
or brains.

It wasn’t fair: all the responsibilities, all the years
of moral preparation and schooling, for no more
accomplishment (a rented house, decent meals) than
that of an insect. You think humans are superior, but
they’re really not—think of all the amazing feats termites
can pull off that we can’t: chewing and digesting
wood, carrying things hundreds of times their
weight, building massive muddy towers and secure
tunnel systems, communicating telepathically without
language. Being human is a gyp.

Akashic Books

No comments: