Monday, August 08, 2005

I Frequently Mistake Real Life for Stories

Last Friday marked my final day as a business banking researcher. The day was anticlimactic and pleasant, not at all the sort of coda to several months of numbing terror that one would expect. Movies, television, radio plays and even thousands of years of campfire storytelling have led human beings to think that life works like stories: every crisis has its climax and fitting denoument.

When people fuss about getting closure, what they are really doing is admitting to all in earshot that they have confused stories for real life. In stories, we have closure. In real life, shit just happens until it stops, and some other shit comes along and takes its place.

Most of my favorite co-workers treated me to a much-needed margarita and a very thoughtful surprise gift and card. If life were stories and the beverages we drink were proportional to the stress they are meant to relieve, I would still be in the hospital and young-looking vampires would have to show ID before they could suck my blood.

Unlike every single other workplace card I have ever seen, this card was filled with thoughtful parting words, and really touched me. I'm going to commemorate it by adding it to my desk, allowing it to surf the meaningful flotsam I keep in the biggest drawer. One day down the track this card will surface and I'll open it up and be touched all over again...


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