He wakes up with the notion that today will be wasted. Last night’s party has worn off but the disillusionment lingers. Buzz buzz, the alarm sounds again and he slaps at it. Third time’s a charm. He’s out of bed. Body and mind try to focus but the waking static hasn’t departed and his legs are weak. In the bathroom, he beholds a face he thought he’d forgotten but there it is. Scruffy and unkept. Teaming with wonder but currently cursed with a foggy consciousness. The toilet flushes. The shower sprays, then stops. As he dries his body, he resumes ceaseless worrying. The sands of time have rounded out his belly and gouged holes in his confidence.
He sits at the desk and turns on the computer. Hopes of inspiration fill his being as coffee fills his stomach. But the longer he sits and stares, the more he realizes that the day is doomed to be unproductive. He sends out signal flares and switches the lighthouse on but nothing enters the bay. His vacant mind and idle hands consume him.
He opens the desk drawer and looks at the cigarettes. He knows they’re bad but he keeps them around anyway. His hands fumble with trinkets and odds and ends. Bottle caps and a poker chip bring to mind distant memories. He picks up the green object. A three-month sobriety chip. It is not his. It belonged to his father. Though the sobriety was ages ago, he keeps it because something about it is important. He keeps it to remember that there were three good months. Maybe the months were before he was born, but they existed.
He sits at his desk, wondering about everything and nothing all at once. He worries and worries and just wishes it was autumn. Autumn will not make him complete. But for now he needs to believe in it. Just for now. If a man believes in nothing, then he will stare into the nothing wondering how nothing can be such a thing. And the nothing will reach into him, consuming what it can, until the man himself is the nothing.