Ezra Titus

1966 – 2009

NORMALCY IN A WHITE ROOM

I don’t believe in synchronicity really, but it’s true that almost everyone’s life fell apart on the same day. Only I fell apart in my head.  I got out of the skid just by emailing a friend who cares enough to read my shit.  Two went to jail.  One was left beaten and alone with her baby.  She was the only one I could help, did help, and for that matter, would even have considered helping.

I’ll always help Crystal.  She’s innocent. Her baby kisses me and laughs when I sing for her … actually, most people laugh when I sing, but Melody?  I don’t mind her laughter.  Two year-olds are a trip.  If she’s not trying to eat my cigarettes, she’s trying to open a bottle of aspirin, and after I try to get all this out of her reach, I look over and she’s trying to jam her fingers into an electrical outlet.  That little thing makes me appreciate my parents more.  Babies require endless vigilance.

Then comes the aftermath.  Bail bondsmen call me.  “Your friend” (ha ha) “wants you to post his bond for him.”

“Hmm … well, I don’t know too much about all that.  I’ve never been to jail.  In fact, I don’t even know anyone who has, except of course for this guy.  So like, if I had $500 for this thing” (which I don’t) “that means it’s really $5,000, right?”

“Yup.”

“And if he were to fly off to Georgia, I’d be responsible for the rest of that $5,000?”

“Yup.”

“I see.  And what was the crime?  Assault of my favorite girl and her baby?”

“Yup.”

“I’ve heard that’s a pretty serious crime.  Is that true?”

“Yup.”

“Interesting … well, if I ever find myself with an extra $5,000 and nothing I’d rather spend it on, I’ll keep your number nearby.  Incidentally, do you find it ironic that this guy ripped me off for $40 a week ago, and now turns to me for money?”

“Yup.”

“Yeah.”

Some girl left a message on my phone for some guy named Werniker or whatever:  “You fucking piece of shit.  I called you from the Shell station.  I asked the chick why it always shows up like that on caller I.D. and she said she doesn’t know.  She’s ghetto trash motherfucker.  I’ll find out everything.  So I’m just sitting here waiting for my fucking mom, and you can either do me a favor, or never call me again, you fuck.”

I found it amusing, so I saved the message.

People go crazy.  They beat their beautiful girlfriends while they’re holding a fucking baby, and think I might find it acceptable, like maybe I’m Taliban (doesn’t deserve to be capitalized).  Like I care that five cop cars blazed in and put these morons in jail.  Like I’d front them cash for it.

Some people say I’m crazy.  Some people say I’m right.  Some say it’s good to delineate boundaries.  I agree with all of them.

At the end of the night, I find myself alone.  Sometimes I miss Sasha, but I know I don’t really want her back.  And before I fall asleep, I evaluate myself, relative to the rest of the people I know. Some are better people.  Most aren’t.  I’ve got problems, but so does everyone else.  It all comes to this right before I fall asleep:  all I’ve got, and all I really want, is a bag of frozen chicken nuggets, electricity, and normalcy in a white room.