Life is about learning lessons and passing on those lessons.
My brother moved out of my house a couple of weeks ago, leaving me alone with my stepbrother. We both stay to our respective areas of the old queenslander built like a dark age party hall. Mine being the smoking area down the back, the kitchen and my room. His being the tiny room with doors that do not shut properly. The oversized common room is no man’s land. The fireplace is not allowed to be used and I don’t play videogames alone anymore so the aging plasma television sits idle.
I invited my brother and a friend of mine around for beers on an empty friday night as if I spend too much time alone I get freaked out by the sound of my voice. My brother and I bought some Hoegaardens, a beer good for drinking, and some Californian Irish-Style Red Ales called Red Trolleys. The Red Trolleys were rich, dark, velvety and not too bitter. We considered cigars and then considered that we barely had anough money for the beers. Times have been hard.
I also had an Old Speckled Hen saved up for an occasion when life got too tough to be sober. The beer count stood at eleven. Three ales and two Hoegaardens each with the extra falling to me. My friend came and brought Fat Yaks. A decent ale. We sat on the moldy lifeline couches surrounding a table that was too high and well abused.
My friend and my brother got to talking. I sat and sipped my hen. They talked about cars. I know enough about cars to follow a conversation but not to join in. Cars scare me, I cannot join with their machine bodies, our souls merging into a perfect beast like my brother seems to do. Instead I sipped my hen and thought about if learning to drive a car would improve me or ruin me. It was not the first time I had thought about this so I tried to pick up where I left off, which took a while.
The conversation moved on to sex. Various conquests and such. I sipped my hen. I realised I hadn’t spoken for about two hours, mainly due to my awkward positioning. Conversation moved on to how bad I was at sex, my small penis size and my lack of experience. I sipped my hen.
My brother had gone through his ration of beer. I told him he could have my Hoegaardens. He noticed that I was still on my first hen. Luckily it was a cold night and the glass still perspired like it had just been retrieved from the fridge. Talk moved on to how weak I had gotten with my alcohol consumption. I guess something snapped in me but maybe it had already snapped. I called out to my brother. Got his attention. I gave him the finger.
“Eat a dick.”
I finished the beer in one go. Amid laughs and cheers I stood up. I got another beer out of the fridge. I sat down. I got my brothers attention. I gave him the finger.
“Eat a dick.”
I downed the second beer. I repeated. I repeated. My brother said there was vodka upstairs. I gave him a blank stare.
He came back down with a bottle of Sambuca. I grabbed it. I poured it into my glass, not even bothering to clear the dregs of ale from the bottom. As the glass slowly filled the smile started to drain from my brother’s face. I filled the glass to the top. My friend laughed. My brother said holy shit. I stared my brother in the eye. I gave him the finger.
“Eat a dick.”
I got halfway down the big beer glass that my sister gave me for Christmas. I tried to swallow. I tried to breath through my nose. I stood up and ran across the uneven cement, leaving a trail of vomit. I reached my usual stomach evacuation assembly area. I vomited long. I vomited hard. I vomited blue. I vomited up the pile of thoughts that build up when all one has to do with their time is think. My mind was empty. I was serene. My stomach was empty. The scene in front of me was less than serene.
I apologised to my friend and took my leave, collapsing on my bed with David Bowie serenading me out of the huge sound system I barely use now. I dreamt.
I was on a huge golden space station. Red technological behemoths traversed the starburst skies with the grace of angels. There was a machine. A simple scanner large enough for a body and two lights. One was lit up yellow. I scanned myself. The other light lit up green. Something in my head told me what I had done. I had registered to be insignificant. I tried to talk to my friends but they wouldn’t make eye contact with me and said dismissive nothings. I was alone. Unnoticed.
The emporer was in danger and I was the only one who knew. I couldn’t tell anyone so it was all on me. But first I had to make a chicken curry for Masterchef but there was too much fat on the chicken and it all boiled down to blue vomit. I watched as gears ejected from the bowels of a craft and lit the emporer up in slow explosions that melted away reality.
I woke early the next morning without a hangover. I made some coffee. Smoked some cigarettes. Wrote a thousand words. Chatted on the internet. My brother woke around twelve. He seemed hungover but it might have been from oversleep. We met in the common area, what seemed like a vast space between us.
“I’m sorry.” He said.
I breathed across the room fumes of liqourice and vomit and understanding.
Life is about learning lessons. I have learnt that you can’t steer a train wreck because it is on tracks.