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Frostbite

I often feel apart from the world. I enjoy it, partake in it, and have connections within its borders, but I am not of it. Truth is that I can't relate to the vast majority of people. Like seeing a flop at a poker table, Ive just become intimately attuned with a variety of social situations and the nuances they require. Admittedly, and indeed surprisingly to some to whom I never waste my breath, I tend to be very commanding and articulate in conversation. I can converse on a variety of topics with nimble comfort, and set the focus of my attention at ease rather quickly. Im particularly adept at engaging strangers in conversation, breaking them from their reveries, then gleaning what I need from them. On a whole Im very Machiavellian, and I harbor no shame about this side of my nature. The world turned its back on me years ago, so I have no qualms about using its denizens for my own gain when they've proven themselves sufficiently immoral and ill-mannered.

From the perspective of the outlaw, outsider and outcast, I feel entirely comfortable, and although I never shrink from the spotlight, I meet any unwanted intrusion into my personal world with searing hostility. Ive made attempts to join their ranks, to assimilate into their social groups, their cliques. These have always been met with mockery, trepidation and disdain. Ironically, it was only after I emerged from my caccoon, as it were, that I was not only accepted, but flocked to. By men as a strong armed thug to assist in their debaucherous misdeeds, always revolving around belittling the weak and downtrodden. The same creatures that in times past would target me with that same deadly, contemptible ferocity, seeking to violate my self-confidence and immolate my already tenuous ties with the rest of the herd. The look on their faces when I stood with the pariahs they targeted, right before those same visages were wrecked and stained crimson, is fine art. I loathe bullies with an infernal passion, and they have no place among men of honor.

The women, on the other hand, pursued me for far more lecherous, but enjoyable, purposes. Ive had my fun, far more then I deserve, and have finally found a chalice that both entices and sustains me. I fully intend to drink her dry. The disturbing aspect of this enterprise was when these sirens, the vast majority Im depressed to admit, revealed their true nature to me. Using their sexuality to reduce men to quivering rubble, to extract material favors in ever increasing financial quantities, and the unnerving cunning with which they would employ underhanded tactics to gain social standing within their own microcosmic sphere of the world, caused me to lapse into despair. This world, and the majority of its denizens, are beyond reproach, morally bankrupt, abysmally selfish and fit for obscurity. They are not worth saving. But we must work towards that elusive goal anyway.

Since the other half of my heart has been restrained through no fault of her own, on the nights I feel the desire for solitude, which is the overwhelming majority of them, I drive aimlessly. Raised in privilege and culture, Ive been blessed with expensive tastes. Many friends will not allow me to choose our restaurant for the night because they lack sufficient funds to enjoy the experience. Their loss. One disenheartening disparity Ive noticed in this city, throughout the world, in fact, is egregious economic disparity. Now, as you read this, know that I am no socialist. Men and women keep what they earn, and those pathetic leeches lacking in work ethic and hunger for more deserve to wither away and die. They certianly are not entitled to the money or gains of the purposeful, driven constantly by their thoughtful aspirations. However, the sick of body, mind and spirit, the infirm, and the beaten, are a seperate class altogether.

I had just finished a meal atypical of me. 3 pounds of tritip supplemented with generous amounts of rice and red beans, washed down with a gallon of sweet tea. After all of this, I found I still craved desert. As I left the restaurant and strolled casually to our favorite Italian confectionary, known for its delicious gelatto, my eye was commandeered by a heart-wrenching sight. Two women occupied a small patch of concrete in front of a convenience store. Both had rangy, stringy hair matted thick with dirt and neglect. One lay sprawled out on the cold ground, several strips of cloth held together uncertainly with duct tape covering her. As her makeshift blanket tattered and waved in the wind, her companion sat in a kind of squat position, her hand out shakily, her eyes cast southward, lightly muttering, begging for change, food, shelter, and love.

I beheld with disgust the vast swathes of people that strode by her, oblivious or simply uncaring as these two women starved. I could all but see Death himself salivating behind them, eager to claim 2 more names for his clutches that night. Undaunted and angry, I shouldered through the crowd, took a knee, and asked the woman her name. "Amy", she replied hesitantly, as if she was unsure if I was flesh and blood or simply a mirage brought on by hysteria. Her friend was Tiffany, they were from San Jose, and hadnt eaten in 4 days, subsisting on water and the dirty morsels they obtained from scavenging through trash cans. It was all I needed to hear.

One hour, 3 pizzas and 2 blankets later, they were gregarious and alive. I knelt with them both and prayed. Heavy sobs emanated from Tiffany's chest, and Amy's ruddy face was washed innocent with tears of relief and salvation. As I left, tears filled my own eyes, and I silently cursed the world. We were surrounded by people with far more affluence than I enjoyed, yet they couldnt be bothered to spare $1, let alone the small fortune I had happily bequeathed to a righteous cause. I understand that people have to be selfish to survive. Im incredibly selfish and can be quite narcissistic, a trait Ive been informed numerous times is quite common in children lacking siblings. I consider them blessings. However, if youre so in love with your own damn self that you cant save the visibly dying, the rotting, and the decaying, even when they are crying out for sustenance with every fiber of their being, then fuck you. The roles should be reversed, and when they are, you can still count on a helping hand from me. My heart may be fatally big, making it a target, but it's shielded by a thick layer of impenetrable, callous ice. Im not frostbitten, never will be.

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