June 22nd, 2023 9:00am pdt

If you are visiting for the first time, go to the beginning.




The Beach

 read ( words)

"‘What the fuck are you doing to me?’
‘Observe, please.’
‘Shut up.’

The beach again. Marvelous. Which way did I go last time? Left? Yeah, that was to the south. I went through the opening on the left. I’ll fucking tell you, though, the last thing I am going to do right now is stroll to the other door. Fuck that. It’s time to be a nonconforming bastard again. Another left turn, yet this time I am going to pass that fucking doorway and simply walk down the shore. Period. Julia can stuff it. I need the time and space to allow the roundhouse diorama to sink in. She said it was a step... That realization that I felt toward people in an unfair manner. At least I don’t speak similarly. I keep everything locked away because no one deserves my shit. Maybe I was so weak that I loved each of them. That’s not good. Not in the least. I realize I’m weak and out of balance and have been for decades, but Jesus. Love. That word means different things to different people. To me? Maybe it is desire. If I did love them, the situations were bad. If the word in question applies to my rampant need for physical connections, such a thought is far worse. I hope Julia remains away for a while. I need to think about myself. And fuck that other door, too. I’m going south.

All those memories of Maggie have forced me to realize just how bad I wanted her, not to mention the hideous knowledge that I feel disappointment over the lack of connection all those years ago. This shit is hitting me in the face. Thanks, Julia. Leave me the fuck alone for a while. It’s time to walk my sorry ass away from the doors. Maybe the salt air and the sound of the waves will calm me enough to find sense. You know, I’m thinking that as soon as I began to realize that the roundhouse was disappearing, I should have dived over the bar and grabbed a fucking bottle. Heh. I could use it right now.

1116. My daily routine is almost finished. There is one pan that needs to soak for a while. The garbage work is in process, too. I still have some dry cleaning and a few little details inside the house, after which I will venture to the backyard and trim one of the rose bushes that has grown out of control. I have never in my life seen a face as stirring and amazing as Jamie’s. Fucking hell. The more time that passes, the more I love her. This is a symptom of one of Julia’s observations, too. She said I live in three places... The past, a fantasy world, and inside my own head. Splendid. The fact that I am in love with a fictional character – and have been for several years now – is a clear indication of just how far off kilter I’ve become. I can’t blame Julia for taking issue with me, either. I really can’t. She is trying to help. The process is hurtful and forcible, but still coming from a good place. I have to sit here in the office for a while before doing anything else today. I’m sure I’ll care for everything in due time. I always do. One aspect of Julia which is very difficult is the fact that she knows everything because she originated from my own brain. All the shit I leave out of this content? She already knows. Every fucking detail of my sordid life. Ugh.

I would have loved to see Maggie and her amazing shape in front of me on all fours. Go ahead... Shoot me in the neck. I’ve been routed into thinking in such terms. The process never stops. I’ve been out of contact with that beauty for more than a decade and still want her. Isn’t that nice?

The beach is mild and calming. Good. I need it. The roundhouse may have been created to force my hand with regard to how I felt about a few key individuals many years ago, as well as one from the present time. I don’t like the way Julia puts me in a position to either shut down completely or face the damage of the past. Well, as I said, she is a projection. Still, the difficulty in being reminded of my way of thinking is very unpleasant. I suppose I should enjoy the walk and quiet because soon enough, I fear, I’ll be right back in the shit.

1359 on the same day. I am sitting in the new office with my laptop. Remember the new office? It still lives. I’ve just spent the last couple of hours getting garbage together and straightening the garage. I even tossed the cardboard that has been under the bike lift since March and swept the entire area. Yesterday, I tossed a bunch of shit and cleared this big, beautiful maple workbench so as to allow for me to sit out here in the nice weather and type. I believe my neighbor is having a gathering for Father’s day right now. Relatives arrived a while ago and greeted me before heading inside. That’s nice. Sitting here right now reminds me of all that writing back in twenty when the gentleman had his motorcycle stored and would come on weekends to work on it. Funny, there is a bike in here right now, too. What a parallel. I need more help right now than I did three years ago in this same position. Isn’t that splendid? I’d say nothing changes, but the changes are stark as I look back in time. Maybe I’ll sit here for the rest of the day and drink myself into a stupor. Writing into the cloud means I need not be concerned with what machine I am using, ever. Since almost all of my work is finished – yes, that includes the aforementioned dry cleaning – I really don’t have any pressing direction. The rest of the day is all mine. I just wish I could be happy about it. I fucking love this keyboard.

The beach is under my feet. No hot sand, though. The weather, soil and everything around me is all very temperate right now. I am going to keep walking south until that woman shows up and steers me in another direction. I just don’t care because I don’t feel good after going over those two women from many years ago and feeling as if I was unfair in my consideration of them. And I can’t help but think that whatever the lesson was on the other side of door number one, I probably would not be back here on the beach if I had not passed Julia’s test. I could be wrong, of course, because whenever I feel that I know what’s going on or what to expect, she throws me so far off that I can barely see straight. The woman has a knack for making me think. Something just caught my attention. A sound? Behind me... Holy fucking shit, Batman... There is one of the women of my dreams, again. God bless her for appearing (I hope).

‘Hello my dear.’
‘Holy God, Julie!’
‘How ‘bout a hug?’
‘Fuck yes.’

God damn is she ever a sight for sore eyes. I grab hold of her tiny frame so quickly that she actually flinches. Laughing. Crying. Jesus holy hell in a swimsuit, I cannot believe she is here. The last I saw of her was long ago after we blew the shit out of the resort. I can’t even venture a guess at how many times we died in that fucking place. Julie backs from our long, loving embrace and gestures for us to sit. Time for some conversation? We know each other very well. Her dark eyes look into mine as if the world is about to end. No worries; I’m used to it. We went through plenty of trials and never felt safe, even after falling off that balcony more than once. Julie expresses to me that this adventure is not about the past, but the present. Uh oh. I know what may be further along in this discussion, and it is not good. She tells me that there was a very important detail left out of our relationship, and one which has carried forward until this very moment. And then? The damaging dreams from last year, mainly the first and third. They were key, she says. Key. And I believe I just realized the correlation. Ah, shit. Well, maybe I should have known when we made love all those years ago. There was a line, and apparently Julia is trying to make sense of my feelings regarding the same. A line. Ugh. I know what it is. Oh, but that is not all. We are to embark on an adventure through the second (northern) door together. I guess Julia felt that the first trip to my netherworld was a tad unfair without companionship. I cannot disagree because not a moment passed without me needing someone to at least bounce off thoughts and respond. It didn’t even matter who that person was. Now that I know the little, loving beauty that is Julie will be with me on the other side, I am much less apprehensive. Wow, what a development. And? We are going for a ride on a train. Yep... Another fucking train. At least I am once again connected to one of the most important people in existence. The kicker? She already knows me very well. Intimately, in fact. I love this, for now. Christ only knows what Julia has in store for the two of us. Hell, maybe we are going to blow up another hotel. Heh. After the last adventure and being slammed with all those faces, I could use a bit of destruction. Julie loves me. Seeing her again fills me with solace. I just hope it lasts.



11

The sun is at a pretty threatening angle by the time our conversation slows. I didn’t notice prior to walking my sorry ass through the first door, but time is actually advancing in this odd place.

1504. I am still sitting in the garage. The weather is just warm enough to enjoy this space with both doors open, something I haven’t had much of this year. My neighbor’s shindig spilled out into the driveway and eventually included a visit to my garage to discuss and show off the motorcycle progress. I guess I should be proud of all my work, but honestly it would feel more satisfying if the machine belonged to me (although it would probably never be finished). His family is large and presses on my head in bad ways. Nothing against those people, of course, the issue being my family nearly gone from this earth. The holidays are nothing more than reminders of past events and gatherings that will never come along again. The worst part is not having a family of my own. Unfortunately, that ship ran aground long before I even considered such parts of life. If I dwell upon the reason for this holiday, I’ll become both woozy and angry. I can’t have that shit right now because there are larger fish in the pan. At some point I will rise and shut this down to finalize the garbage and then maybe relax in the house. I am pleased that the sounds from next door indicate everyone is enjoying the day. That’s good. My issues cannot translate to other people. No way. I have found that this day has me at sixes and sevens regarding the past family gatherings. Moreover, the pleasant weather means there are lots of people walking their dogs and such, further cementing my isolation. The last several years have shown me a downward spiral unlike any other period in the past, and the concentration of being so cut off and feeling the slope are forcing me to paint pictures of the future... All black.

Julie. Oh, God help me. I love her.

As much as I’d like to curl up in the sand with her, we need to focus upon the task of the second door. Wait a minute... Is it the second door? This world does not follow any real guidelines, so we could be heading back to that fucking roundhouse. But? It disappeared and left me stranded. Ah, shit. Everything is so confusing. I guess we can rise, walk and learn. What else is there? Once standing, Julie takes my hand and melts my heart. God damn, what a warming feeling she is providing after my cold, single journey. The advantages and comfort inherent in having a loving companion cannot be overstated, especially considering I am expecting more bad before anything good. God bless that little beauty. Oh, my... Now she is wrapped around my entire arm. Sigh. At least I can enjoy the walk now as opposed to the previous venture. I really needed something; someone there off which to bounce thoughts and such, yet I was alone. Feeling her presence up against me is hardly causing desire. The feeling is one of love. Onward to the north. The doorways await us. US. Thank the maker (or Julia, the real maker).

Stop. There is another sound of which I am unfamiliar. Julie is glued to me like a frightened bird. Clinging, all the way. I spin to try and localize the sound but cannot see anything other than sand and water. I can’t even see the doors ahead, likely due to me evading the cause and defying Julia’s intentions as I strolled south away from the beginning of this world. She wanted me to head into one door or the other, and after learning that the lessons were going to be so difficult and heart-wrenching, I gave up and found myself right back here on the fucking beach. Well, I guess Julia wins again because my beautiful traveling companion has improved my mood and caused me to be a touch more cooperative, whatever the outcome. Oh, shit. Now I see what made such a racket. It is a locomotive half buried in the sand just behind us. Geez, the fuck? Julie tightens her grip on my waiting arm as I direct our path to the reverse for an investigation. The entire engine is on its side and partially burned. The windshields are gone. I am going to have to climb aboard and see what may be in the cab. Locomotives don’t give very much when struck, so the entirety of the chassis is intact, just lying on one side. I have to see what this message entails, good or bad. Julie hesitates to release her grip for a moment and throws me an expression of both fear and apprehension. I must do this. Nothing transpires in any of these worlds by chance, least of all destruction.

‘Please be careful.’
‘I will.’

Fuck. I wish I could muster some confidence so Julie can relax a bit, yet my mouth is as dry as the sand. Nothing. Up and over one side of the bent railing and I can raise myself to peer inside. No sooner do my eyes adjust to the dimness when the sight strikes me unlike anything, ever. I react with a flinch and am thrown back to the sand, flat on my back. Ouch. Julie runs to me and lays herself alongside my broken self with tears in her eyes. I can’t fucking believe this shit. What did Julia do, and more importantly, how? I did not see anything tangible, per se, but more like ‘feeling’ what was in the cab, and believe me, it was a lot. Everything. My entire life is in there, all disjointed and bleeding. Dying. I can’t describe the sensation... It’s like a lifetime of experiences, desires, loves and everything else was crammed into a small space and pointed at me. A jolt later and I saw and felt everything, if only in my mind. What the fuck did she do to me?

Flash! Smack!

I hear the falling tone of a train horn as the pressure waves spread apart and its glaring force moves away at high speed. The sky is above me, all blue and beautiful. I cannot feel anything from my eyes to my toes. Nothing. I believe I’ve been struck by a train yet again, this time leaving me paralyzed and bleeding on the roadbed. What just happened? Where is Julie? I need her right now. Oh, God... Sensation is returning to my spinal cord and telegraphing more pain into my head than I could have ever imagined. I am so broken that nothing moves. I can barely swing my swollen eyes from one side to the other. Holy shit, everything is fading. Is this the end of me in this world? The next? What the fuck is going on? I am cold. Now colder. Frozen inside. Light is dimming. The sky is fading away...

‘Don’t defy me, sweetheart. The alternative is my reality becoming yours.’

I can’t speak. Gone. Dead.

The beach again. There is my little love waiting, too. Oh, Christ... Thank everything holy for returning me to her. I need her so bad now, and even more than before. If Julia wanted my attention, she got it in spades. Unfortunately, she also angered me. I don’t like being tossed around like an inanimate object, reality or otherwise. She knows me well enough to realize that I don’t adapt well to this netherworld or any other shit she has to throw in my direction. None of it blows up my skirt, but at least I am trying to learn, for fuck’s sake. I really am or I’d probably travel through the remainder of real time dying over and over again at her whim. Fuck. I guess for the time being I am going to move along as expected and cling to my loving companion. I’m not worried about being punished, but finding myself separated from Julie is not a pleasant thought. I will follow her instructions. Hmm... Julia may have created Julie, allowed us to connect once again, and then ripped her away as a lesson. Whatever it was, I don’t want to lose her again.

‘If we meet again, we’ll smile. If not, well then this parting was well-made [sic].’

Monday morning. Meaningless. The names of the days do not matter anymore. Coffee. Oh, and Alicia was on the screen a little while ago and reminded me of seeing far too much yesterday. Now my brain is all wrapped around her again. I have to try to extract the information and carry forward with my day. God fucking damn this feeling, anyway. Just... Damn it all.

I am never going to talk to anyone. Doing so will not solve anything after all this time. The holes will remain. Pieces everywhere. I don’t know how to fix anything. More weak and desperate with each passing day. My thinking processes have gone off the deep end. Right off the edge of the world, really. I’ve never been so unhappy. Back to the beach. At least there I know I can rub Julia the wrong way and be killed.

Over and over. The rails governing my life form a circle. Forget the beach right now.





The garbage has been picked up. Very good. The time is now 0923 and I feel crappy. All of the world’s wonder has been removed for whatever reason, effectively leaving me a pile of worry. Last year’s developments continue to plague my mind, too. I don’t know what happened, but I’m fairly certain that the damaging dreams have affected my sense of reality to the point of feeling as if there is nothing left for me, ever. My life may have already ended and I simply haven’t felt the brunt of such a fact. I can barely feel ambitious about anything. The simplest task feels insurmountable most of the time. At least I’ve made one decision. I will never speak to anyone about the processes inside me. Never. I just can’t. The risk is too great.

Some mornings find me sitting here wondering if my days will ever change. ‘You have to make the changes’. Really? I hadn’t heard that one. Fuck off with your platitudes. I already know much of this is up to me. And I just realized that no matter how many times Julia might kill me in that netherworld, I will still be right here. Marvelous. Ah, shit... Here comes Cara and her magnificent facial features. God damn is that woman ever stirring. Wow, she was thirty-five when this episode premiered (her first appearance as Kelly). Just... Wow.

1118. I took care of the usual housework and then moved to the sofa with my laptop. I have few other responsibilities today. The first show is still running and will continue to the end. Next will be the third series and I am going to get all sad and mushy watching it. Never in my life have I wished so strongly to be inside a story; setting, characters, everything. All of my issues would disappear within hours of being there. The idea reminds me of an aphorism. ‘Money can’t buy happiness’. That is mostly true, but I will say that money can buy some serious fucking comfort. If a person is going through trials anyway, they may as well be in a beautiful place and surrounded by every worldly need. The third series’ setting is amazing, stirring, and would fit me to a tee. Part of it is the money aspect (there is some money in that place but it is not required for daily life), and the other is the existence of interchangeable matter and energy. Don’t even fucking get me started. Anyway, these programs will be on one or more of my three televisions for the rest of my life, I swear to God above. I need them. All of them. From here to the close of business hours, I may pull the tape from the transmission on the motorcycle and see how my paint job looks. Oh boy, there is Chekhov sporting the first of many ridiculous wigs. Heh. Once I am satisfied with the paint, I can install the oil tank and get ready to run the lines. My neighbor is going to bring the other FXR to my garage one of these days so I can use it as a road map for the oil connections. After that, all I have to do is fabricate a method for stabilizing the horn mount. That will be my last concern before the bike heads out the door for electrical work. I am looking forward to the garage enjoying more space, but at the same time I will miss the work. It reminds me of the beginning of the pandemic when the other bike was being stored here. Those were very interesting days.

Nothing good is in my future. Blech.

Ah, shit... There is T’Pring. What a beautifully unique face that woman carried. It reminds me of the updated version of the same character from last year, as portrayed by one of the most beautiful women on earth. Jesus fuck, anyway... Stunning from head to toe. Just a thought.

Where is the beach? What happened? Well, let me say that I have to be in a very specific, concentrated mood in order to further that story, and since yesterday the muse has disappeared. To where? Who is to know? I can’t do anything about it right now. Holy shit... Another earthquake just slammed and shook the house for a second. Yikes. That makes two in the last month. Prior to the shake, there was a very deep ‘boom’ which I thought might have been a car accident outside on the street. I guess not. I don’t mind the small shakers unless they take place in the dark. For some reason, I feel more helpless at night. During daylight hours, I am already wide awake and can more easily determine if we need to head for cover. This was a magnitude 2.5, about 4 miles deep. Very interesting. I’ve had several dreams about earthquakes this year, too. I don’t know if there can be any meaning behind them, though. Just dreams from my subconscious. I will say that due to two quakes within as many months combined with the dreams, I have been considering the possible consequences of something larger and what needs to be ready just in case. Finding relaxation once again is going to take a bit of time. And I believe I lost the beach for an undetermined period. Whatever. My feelings don’t matter, anyway.

I am miserable. Maybe I should seat myself beneath the rafters in the garage and wait for the next dramatic earthquake. This machine can be on my lap and the whiskey next to me. Waiting. Maybe that’s a good idea because nothing else seems to help. I don’t know what to do anymore.

Time for a break.

Tuesday. Zero fanfare for anything, anywhere. Yesterday came and went, just as today has arrived and will conclude some hours from now. The days all run together; one bleeds right into the next. There are rarely lines between. Sometimes I sit here and think about what can be different from one day to the next, yet once the calendar changes, I can’t find a good reason to fucking do anything. Either this situation comes to a head and I find motivation, or nothing will change from now until the end of my time and this is all I will ever be. Wonderful.

1113. I can’t find the fucking beach. Maybe as time passes it will become clear again. And there is sixth-season Jamie, possibly the love of my life. Gawd damn sonuvabitch is she ever fucking beautiful beyond words, and believe me... I have a large vocabulary. If only she would darken my doorstep and make all the bad go away. Fuck. Not gonna happen. There is nothing good on my horizon. Maybe I should make a pizza for comfort.

Zero fanfare for the common webmaster. Does anyone ever use that term anymore? I doubt it. Back at the outset of the new century, I had high hopes of possibly becoming ‘someone’ through the Internet by way of making a ‘mark’ for the future. Well, the site turned into nothing more than an outlet for my feelings. Unfortunately, I can’t expect anyone to really give half a blue fuck about the endeavor. I wanted to ‘be somebody’. Fail. At least I still consider myself a webmaster.

This is going bad.

‘Can I come home to a peaceful house one God damned night?’ Heh.

Fuck. There she is again with those huge, dark eyes. Why did I have to fall in love with her after so many years? Why did I have to fall in love with a fictional character? After all these years, I still can’t express the depth of my feelings when I see her. This is not good. Julia took issue with me because I live in two places, neither of which are reality. She knows everything and I can’t disagree with her feelings. I can admit that part of what I feel for Jamie was inflamed by seeing the Raven. Don't get me wrong, I am not trying to justify the fucked up nature of how my mind works, but desperation can be very dangerous and drive a person to taking horrible actions and and making awful decisions. I've done it on too many occasions to list here. that much is certain. I know what I am, and little of it is good.

I have to get back to the beach and try to understand what Julia was attempting to do. I still don’t know, although the faces in those locomotives slammed a few points home, not the least of which is the idea that I allowed myself to embrace situations that would have been better avoided. Yes, I said that. I believe my search for comfort clouded much of the clear thinking years ago and led me into places where I lived void of a much deeper need and did not realize the consequences until depression cemented itself inside. I ran to that very same need, and in the process ruined lives, albeit temporary in most cases. I very nearly did it again eight years ago. Frankly, I am surprised Julia hasn’t hammered me with the notion that the only thing holding me back from doing it again is a lack of resources, and such a situation is also my fault. Wow... Maybe she did teach me a few things, even if I didn’t want the lessons. Sometimes looking in the mirror can be worse than being shot in the neck.



13

I have to go to the hardware store and the market in a little while. The idea reminds me of being at the big-box store yesterday. I’ve never seen so many fucking picturesque Asian women wrapped tightly in yoga pants in one place, I swear. None of it really caused any difficulty, though, because the fish I’ve been trying to fry, combined with the girl over whom I’ve been obsessing, have left me completely exhausted. No sooner did we venture through the doors yesterday when I caught sight of a beautiful set of lines walking ahead. The appearance of that woman caused nothing more than sadness. I realized that whatever may be wandering around out there in society is akin to damage inside me. I already knew I’d see some loveliness while shopping, so my head steeled itself and generated all sorts of fucking anger. Since anger never leads anywhere good, it soon turns to sadness. This has been happening more and more lately. And there is a hammered point inside this paragraph. Since I know I can’t be good for anyone and nothing will ever come of what I see, the mindset I now embrace is to avoid everyone. No talking. No greetings. No nothing. The good part is that I will not affect another person, ever. Soon enough I will be dead and I fully intend to remain distanced from beautiful sights until then. I will see them, but soon after I’ll just walk away with the feelings buried so deep that no one will know.

I hope the beach returns soon. I really need a distraction from this mass of sadness.

1550. I went shopping and returned to organize the stuff from yesterday. I also had lunch and reconfigured the freezer in the kitchen. At least by evening I’ll feel fairly satisfied with my efforts today.

Wednesday is here. This is the astronomically longest day of the year. It used to be one of my least favorites due to where I was living, but now that the ocean is right down the street, the mercury rarely rises to uncomfortable levels. Right now the sun isn’t even shining because the marine layer is thick and unrelenting. We may not see the sun for several hours. My plan is to take care of a few things this morning and then take a nice, long lunch break.

I had a dream early this morning involving Jolene. We were on some sort of ship with the captain and I felt toward her as if she was a machine. I believe she was. For precious few seconds, one of my dreams was coming true prior to being ripped away like always. I awakened to find myself in the same depressive bowl of soup within which I’ve been treading water for years. Jolene was wearing shorts that matched those of someone I saw up close, including the color. That is a clear indication that my desires are being mixed up inside in a bad way. She was a machine, plus the shorts, and the composite quickly became three different visions dating back more than three years. Not good. Ah... There is Cara again. Gorgeous. Dark. Beautiful eyes. Oy. Anyway, the hour is still early and I have plenty of time for whatever needs to be done this morning. My one auction seems to be going pretty well, too, meaning I am inclined to begin another. For reasons of good form, I am going to continue streamlining my possessions and focus upon those which are most important. Some items stand out and I become emotional at the thought of losing them. Other crap can go out the door. I still don’t see the fucking beach or the lovely little Julie and her delicious rear end. Yep... I still want to pounce on her. Shoot me. I need to find the beach, and not just to see that girl again. I need to know. Maybe I can convince Julia to be a little bit easier to understand. Good luck.

The rails could represent the inevitability of life. I don’t know. Or perhaps the unchangeable nature of the timeline. They are restrictive, too. A train can turn left when the rails go right, but in such a case it will make that turn only once and then die. I may be in a similar situation. Being a person overly resistant to change, Julia’s efforts in trying to alter the way I live life is a stretch and generally accomplishes nothing more than causing anger and alienating me from any attempts by others to help.

There are videos looping inside my head all the time. I can’t stop seeing the way she moves, nor can I stop creating little scenarios with the power to save my life. She is in all of them. Both of us. This is not good. Sideways.

Where did the beach go? Where is my love?

I was kind to Maggie, and the fact that I keep thinking about her is a good indication that there are unresolved issues inside me. I was always very respectful, too. Everything I felt remained locked away because I did not wish to make her uncomfortable, although she may have read a bit via my eyes. I did not stare much unless she was walking away (and that is so common that I don’t feel it is necessary to defend myself for dreaming as I watched her movements). The point is that sometimes I feel bad – hence Julia telling me that I made progress in understanding – and during other times I don’t. I have become a product of what others inflicted upon me, and while I can’t sit here and blame everything on people, I feel that some of the shit has been beyond my control. Whether or not I can work within myself to improve the way I see other people is not up for debate. Too much time has passed and far too many shit situations have become doctrine. In short, I may simply be too fucking old to alter my ways of thinking. Wait... What was that? Uh oh.

Flash!

And there she is, the loving Julie right next to me and again wrapped around my left arm. There is a throttle lever in my hand, too. We’re on a train again! Yay! Well, I shouldn’t start celebrating until I learn what this trip is about. No sooner did I try to work through my past feelings and what they have done to me, the adventure appeared once again. Good. I was beginning to tire of the search. Julie is attached to me as if she is still frightened. Last time, she was full-tilt into the train ride when we rocked that fucking hotel with explosives. Now? She is a ball of worry. Oh, and some aspects of my personality do not change. When I look down at her little frame, my eyes roll straight to her chest, much like the way I looked at Jolene in my dream this morning. Julie is tiny and reminds me of the kitten way back twelve-plus years ago. I’d like to slather her with kisses, but I’m afraid some analysis must come first. Damn, her breasts are moving just like the other one... Just a few days ago... And I lost my fucking mind seeing her form like that. Dam it... I have to concentrate and push the breasts out of my head. Jesus, what a maroon.

We are rolling at speed, roughly forty, and on straight rails for the time being. I see off to each side of the locomotive is desert again, much like the negative material plane years ago. Cactus? No, just some low-lying brush. In the desert, everything remains close to the ground. Temperature, and all that shit. Anyway, this cab resembles the one from my ill-fated journey to death some years ago, to a tee. Everything has been recreated in exacting detail, likely because something about this trip will match the last. Right now I don’t know, and considering the feeling of actually being attached to a woman I love, I really don’t care. I need her. I also need Julia, but wherever she appears, shit goes downhill because I am almost constantly tested and questioned.

Jamie is on the screen again as I notice the time is now 1041. God damn I love her so much. My daily routine is finished and the laundry is running in the washer. At some point I’ll continue the work and then make something for lunch. Right now I have to sit here and try to understand why the world must be as it is. I just don’t get it. The clues and satisfying details are out there. I know because I’ve seen them. I’ve been close, but not all the way in. I will probably never be there again, though. Never. I wish I could understand why I am in this fucking soup day after day. I know the names; I know the faces. They may as well reside in another universe millions of light years away. I’ll never be connected to them, nor will I be anywhere near where I so badly need to be. This is by far the worst condition though which I’ve ever been forced to live. This is hell... And hellish. I need Jamie to hold me and tell me everything will be ok. Nope. Doomed. Fucked. Perpetually unhappy. That’s all I get. I am right up against the loveliness and wonder that is Julie, but at the same time I am most decidedly not. She is not real. Well, not real out here, anyway. If only...

I keep seeing the past over and over like Satan’s own slideshow and there is nothing I can do about it. Over and fucking over, as if I need further reminders of the vat of misery within which I’ve been tossed for all time. Thanks. Nothing ever improves. Nothing goes away. Maybe I will jump Julie. And how I wish I could jump the other one. Shut up. The slideshow burns my heart and never stops running. I’ve seen, I’ve been there, but now the world is bereft of anything related. Don’t fucking ask. Years ago I thought of reaching. Now I know there is no chance. I also thought of speaking, even as recently as just a few entries back, yet the result in my mind is the same... No chance. Nothing will be served because I am too far gone. This world is on a timer.

The world is pain.



14

Forty miles per hour appears slow when standing nearly ten feet above the ground. The perception of speed and distance reminds me of the way Disney used ‘forced perspective’ in his parks in order to make structures appear much larger than they were in reality. Fascinating. Anyway, Julie has relaxed herself a bit since we’ve been rolling along for quite a while without incident. I don’t think she enjoys dying any more than I do. I wish that was a euphemism. The scenery has not changed and we continue straight along the rails toward whatever Julia has in mind. The cab is fairly quiet despite sitting just ahead of six thousand horses, and due to the calm nature of this journey, I’d like to speak with the little beauty about where we are, as well as where we’ve been. I ask.

Oh, boy. I am beginning to think that despite the sheer number of occasions finding me dead in this world, it is becoming preferable to reality. Julie is very loving and insightful as we speak, leaving me to believe even more in the idea that my hand of cards has been burned by those who are dead. She is always honest, too. Julie was made by Julia, and the latter would not lie to me. She might shroud everything and ruin the inside of my head at times, but all cryptic bullshit aside, honesty rules the roost. Julie knows I am all fucked up and she loves me anyway. Too bad the only person who truly knows me inside and out – and I mean every fucking thing – is Julia. This netherworld is all her, literally. She did everything. She made everything. The conversation with Julie is nice, but at the same time it cements the notion that the only good in my life is when I am outside myself, like right now. Julia knows what resides inside me, too. That means she will provide whatever comfort I may need at a given time, and though she continues to rip it away and/or kill me, there is more ‘good’ here in a dream world than in reality. Given the choice, I’ll take the fucking fiction. Julie and I have concluded that we will roll with the punches here and see what is further down the line. We will follow the rails and do nothing to upset the trip. We both already know our time will be short, plus one or both of us may be dead soon. And then a nice, warm hug. God damn does it ever feel good.

We are driving a straight line with nothing ahead and the same behind. The rear camera image looks exactly like what we see through the windshields. I no longer feel the need to peel off Jule’s clothing. I suppose concern is carrying more power than desire. Ah... Shit. I just noticed to the left is no longer desert terrain. It is the ocean, just like where I first saw the doors. My head snaps to the right and there is the forest. This is becoming strange. Julie once again clings to my left arm, and with both of us seated, my eyes are very close to hers. God I love her so much. The beach has returned and I don’t know what to expect next. Flash!

I am sitting on a dark brown leather sofa surrounded by glowing amber light. To my right is an old speaker serving as an end table; to my left is the opposite channel. I know this place. Holy fuck, there is Maggie curled up on one of my narrow recliners. I remember finding one and then driving all over the Bay Area to locate a matching chair so they could flank the short ends of our coffee table. Back then, Maggie opted to sit to my right. She is in the same position right now and looking as gorgeous as all those years ago in reality. A little tank, denim shorts, hair all over the fucking place... I still want to swallow that beauty in one piece. I know why, too. All the way back to meeting her in PF Chang’s on my birthday, I looked at Maggie as if she was the answer to all my problems. Seeing her sitting there right now brings back so many memories. God damn fucking hell did Maggie ever pull me unlike anyone up to that point in time. Ugh. Flash! Here we go again...

1617. I don’t know what I did today. Laundry, I guess. Everything is finished. I also installed the oil tank on the bike after yesterday’s little boo-boo which landed oil all over the place. No big deal. I have found that no matter which task was at hand today, my head continues to railroad the same shit over and over. Questions without answers. Questions without ears. Just... Questions. And the dreams. Don’t get me fuckin’ started with the dreams. Maybe that shit decades ago spun me halfway around in life and I am looking at everything backwards. The ‘important’ has been shoved to the rear, and the ‘very unrealistic’ is right out front. I am the reverse of the rest of the world.

The train is rolling along a beach. Is it the same place? Will we eventually see the doors? Does anyone give half a shit? The beach was peaceful, if odd. The train is comfortable, but deep down I know bad things are going to happen, the worst of which would be losing the little beauty that is wrapped to me with love.

After a bit of discussion, I learned that Julie knows I dreamed of Jolene, and why. Julie told me that I would never have run my hands all over that woman had I not believed she was a machine. Jolene; machine. The idea was a part of that craziness I created years ago, the beautiful Jolaimora. That was a machine. Anyway, Julie tells me that had Jolene actually been either herself or her character in my dream, I wouldn’t have been so handsy. I took advantage because she was a machine, and deep inside I knew it. Now I want to run my hands all over Julie. I keep thinking of Maggie sitting in that chair. Or? The other occasion when we were at a bowling alley in Hayward, not far from where she lived. I sent a message to see if Maggie wanted to come by and say hello because we were bored to death watching kids bowl. She agreed, and a little while later came strolling up to me in yoga pants and another tank top. A couple of the other guys who were attending with their kids whispered, ‘who the hell is she?’ Heh. God damn it anyway. Should I feel bad now? I was always nice to her. Always. Inside me was a cyclone of desire and it never let up the entire time we knew each other. But I didn’t say or do anything. Ugh. I was always respectful. If Julia is taking issue with the way I feel about the fairer sex, she has an uphill battle ahead because I’ve never felt stronger feelings than I do at this very moment. Not only that, but being routed and squished for more than two decades piled atop the first shit situation forty-plus years ago have created a permanent mindset. There is a massive difference between feelings and actions, the latter being the point when trouble and pain begin. My explanation to Julie regarding the dream makes her smile. She loves me anyway. Memories of Maggie are causing me to begin questioning Julia’s intentions in this netherworld. What is that sound? Uh oh...

Flash!

The train is gone. We are back on the beach, hand in hand. Well, at least I didn’t lose my companion this time. I heard Julia’s voice again but couldn’t make out what she was trying to say. Oh, here we go...

‘Love yourself, not just Her.’
‘What do you mean?’
‘All of your eggs are in one small basket.’

Shit. Metaphors, analogies, and all that other crap just makes my head hurt. All my eggs...? What the fuck? Maybe Julia is telling me something I already know, and if so, I will have to take a closer look at the facts. She is probably meaning to convey that being aware of me deriving all of my value through others is part good and part bad. I am aware of this, as well. I know what I am and some of the causes, yet to sit here and fight with the fact that I feel worthwhile as a person has been underlining every bout of desire in memory. I am going to have to leave this shit alone for a while with regard to others because we’ve been gleaning two different issues. One, the sheer level of desire along with the fact that not only am I worsening and becoming more desperate over time, the power of those feelings has derailed the rest of my life. And two, the answer is undoubtedly yes because a situation which took place between me and a past girlfriend when I was eighteen years old is still one-hundred percent true. The way I felt about her became the only way I could be comfortable and secure in life. My value was wholly in caring for her. Period. Julie just grabbed my face and swung it in her direction. Big eyes, but not sad.

‘You will be ok, my dear. Have faith.’
‘Thanks, doll.’
‘I know what you’re thinking and cannot disagree.’

Ah, fuck. Now Julia’s influence has bled into the other one, although I should have expected this because one woman created the other. This is like having a fucking three-way conversation with three of myself. Wait... What? I don’t know. I need to get the fuck off this beach before the doors appear again. Hopefully if I decide to walk through one of them, Julie will be able to come with me. I need her right now, and not just in a physical sense. I need moral support to deal with whatever Julia may have in mind.

There are the doors, one to the south and the other to the north. If nothing has changed, the south door was already explored. I suppose at some point we will have to go through the other one. Well, if Julie wants to stick with me, that is. Seeing her pretty eyes looking up at me often reminds me of that same conversation from the eighties. I could see exactly what I needed in that girl’s gaze. Exactly. The two shit situations may have been responsible for my lack of confidence and insecurity; those in turn leading me to desire someone even more needy than myself. That is flat-out unhealthy and something with which I’ve been wrestling for forty years. Julie knows all of this and has read my feelings. I can tell because she just tightened her grip on my left arm as if to convey support. God bless her. Just like the others, I need her badly. I don’t know what to expect now that a few things have been railroaded over and over. I know I feel pretty bad, but maybe I shouldn’t. Maggie liked me regardless of whether or not she sensed how powerfully I was attracted to her. She still spent time with us and seemed to enjoy herself. I did not utter a peep, ever. I treated her like a friend and did not cross a line in any fucking direction. So... Why do I feel like a bad person now? Was that the point? To make me question myself even more than I already have? I want to get the fuck out of this place... Now. I toss Julie an expression to indicate that we need to stick close to each other, turn to face north, and...

Into the other door we go."



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