I’m With Rick

So I decided to sleep on it, like I do a lot of things now, because as a Valid you can’t afford to throw your words around so easily; they can make or break you, no matter how true they ring.

And I woke up, like I usually do, saying, “Fuck it. Let’s do this.”

In a matter of minutes, my work was done. A few follow-up bullet points to keep in my pocket for reference in case I am questioned while on the road, and my steps are without regret. I feel good, though I’ll need to take some aspirin for this circumstantial migraine.

The world has a lot of nerve, thinking we’ll roll with it.

We don’t roll, do we?



I feel out of sorts in an atmosphere staged for showing thieves their crimes. The chair is cold, the screens are rotating through various corners of the building and Crystal never stops recording.  With so much official business going on, I question the value of my presence in that little room. My voice trails off as she’s tweaking knobs or selecting folders and she says, “Oh, keep going. I multitask.”

Questions posed like pop quizzes. Every other word is scribbled. It doesn’t take long before a strong person hopes to be dismissed and sent back into general chaos.

When monitoring the feel for each associate, Crystal will offer pieces of her life in conversation. The antics of her family are humorous, comfortable, and some of the only times when you’ll really see her at work. Other topics have intentions, if there is a discussion at all; she may suddenly appear, silently retrieving temperatures and data from everyone in the room.

 No one can blame Crystal for her robot parts – after all – working to improve our cruel reality is not a joyous task, nor is it one that allows for favorites. She knows narks from the highest to lowest class who are liars, liars who are crooks, crooks with numbered days and has the overall pleasure of hearing them lie to her face on a daily basis. On top of this inconvenience there is too much paperwork and too many policies that keep her confined to that little room, merely noting their dishonesty until one of the files gets fat.

She is oddly surprised today, that I’ve recognized the change in her hair color every few months. Granted, her entrance is often swift and unannounced but I tend to catch her in the last stretch of aisle way, to her room in the back. How does one not notice a fresh head of golden curls, or Suddenly Straight Brunette, or Gone Gothic black, rushing by?

Rarely will someone have that many versions of themselves, all done up so professionally. Makeup complexion, eyebrow arch, highlights and not a split end in sight. So many loud variances for such a low profile. Could changing costumes help ease the monotony of work or are they chemical reactions to the flighty, ever-shifting people around her?

She would make many friends, she comments on the staff, if prosecuting them in the end wasn’t so awkward.

I apologize for asking a question that may be too personal, wondering if her work principles ever trickle into what little time is left over.

“It’s very hard to stop,” she answers, almost immediately. “It’s hard not to know what someone is hiding. This,” Crystal concludes, waving her palm over the desk of pulp and technology, “has pretty much ruined every relationship I’ve ever had.”

Such are the woes of our watchful girl above.

Dealing With Dinosaurs

Even though my little buddy was the type to predict failure on a daily basis, I made the decision to ride it out. Everything seemed alright once you accepted something less than 100%; the frustration went away. Loop holes and alternatives become second nature and you want what you have. Press F1 and get on with your life.

What, this drive can perform faster? Back up everything I have? Never mind all that shit.

Three and a half years later, the grind became too much for both of us. My laptop broke down. What an awful state to be in, when the newest operating system does not sound like a solid Plan A. Luckily for me, I’ve been dealing with dinosaurs my entire life and have come to prefer their long-hauling, simplistic spirit. Sometimes I even think I was better off with that eggshell beast, limited to Windows 98, giving me the option of creative writing or nothing at all.

Now I’m always preoccupied with feeds and the latest, official remixes of a radio single. Bloodshy and Avant can take asshattery like Hilary Duff and deform it to a brilliance.

When I’d gotten tired of busted tabs, poor battery power and having to pinch my display to cure visual seizures, I’d retired this thick, black backup. It’s telling me now, that we could make a run for it – minamilists’ benefits, guaranteed. I wouldn’t scream nearly as much or throw as many objects… for however long.

I’m waiting on my front end resources to come through with a XP disc, all of them having replied, “Hmm, it’s probably kicking around here, somewhere. But I have Vista now. I’ll look.”

How can you NOT be tearing your room APART, looking for that thing that doesn’t ask you every two seconds for your permission to run a program or delete a file? Just watching the newly-animated progress bars, sparkling from left to right, screams bullshit cosmetics. I’m straight on tweaking and taming that one, for a long while, yet.

I remember who helped me win these battles, and I will not underestimate their strength. I’m gonna stick with my dinosaurs.