THE WRITER MUST EAT -> patreon.com/trn1ty <- blah! ideas with no tangibility; ideas with irrelevant supports; ideas without value; ideas' witlessness; ideas' witnesses; ideas- <^>
2023-01-06 2022-05-04 Interview Olive set herself down on a blue chair with stainless steel gray legs that grasped a red tiled floor thinly but strong enough at least for her right then. The weather outside was beautiful, a clear sky with few clouds, and the sun would rise in an hour, though Olive could see none of this because the cramped office in which she and her chair were captive was windowless. The silence was set to the beat of Olive tapping her jeans with her nails and looking at the, to her, very large vent next to the flickering fluorescent light in the suspended ceiling. The cheap desk in front of her wasn't very big but still barely left room for her against the wall, on it was miscellaneous unsorted paperwork. This was the first, most potent memory Olive would have of her time working for Durmer Burger. There came two knocks at the door and it was ajar. The lead manager, Paul, smiled with nearly all of his teeth before pulling it open. "Olive, is it?" "Yes." Olive stood up and held her hands at her sides, intending to shake Paul's hand if he offered his. He didn't and simply sat down behind his desk. Olive sat down as well. "This is an impressive resume. You volunteered at the humane society for two years?" Paul's salt-and-pepper hair stuck out under a brown DURMER WORKER hat. "Yeah. I had some spare time and wanted to help out." "Good, good. I see you did take some cooking classes at school. You might be able to teach us a thing or two. I know our kitchen can be a little strange to new hires but I think you'll get along fine." "I hope so." "So do you want to stay in the kitchen, or do you want to take orders? Maybe a little of both?" Olive looked at the desk for a moment before looking back at Paul. "I think starting out in the kitchen would be good, but I don't know." "Alright, kitchen, then play it by ear. Sounds good." Paul put on a sickness of a smile and reached out with a bent elbow to shake Olive's hand, which she followed. After Olive left the room Paul leaned back in his chair and began to seize. Foam fell from his lips onto his gray uniform. The chair fell over to Paul's right side, to the door, and Paul hit the side of his head on the doorknob as he fell onto the floor while his chair scuffed the beige wall behind him. As his blood dripped slowly onto the tile the fluorescents finally gave out. Neither the kitchen crew nor the order takers heard Paul die, though Sam, who usually was relegated to the fryer in the kitchen, noticed the light was off while sneaking out to the dumpster to smoke a joint of marijuana. He knocked, asked the order takers where Paul was, and continued out through the back entrance to the dumpster. On his way back he noticed Paul's car was still parked outside the entrance. Sam checked both bathrooms (each empty) and opened the office door ajar to see if Paul maybe was taking a nap on the clock. That's when Sam found the body. After Olive left the room she walked out of the restaurant through the front entrance, looked up and down the street for traffic, though there rarely was any, and crossed Canal Avenue over to the Chinese buffet where she turned right and started walking home. She watched ambulances and a police car fly down the road and didn't see any significance in it. Paul's shoulder was mostly holding the door shut but Sam could see the drool on the floor. He ran away to the front and told the order takers, who called the local emergency number. Two ambulances and a police car stopped in the drive-through and brought out a stretcher, some paramedics, and a police officer. While the paramedics took care of the body the officer questioned first the order takers and then Sam, whom the officer noticed was high. Officer Daniels didn't make a note of it. On a computer screen somewhere (anywhere) in a factory a worker watched a man seize and die on closed circuit television. He picked up a telephone and dialed for his superior who was on the same connection. The superior went down to the worker's office and stared at the still conveyor belt behind the worker, on top of which neatly laid a number of burger wrapper papers. The superior asked what the worker was doing and the worker explained that a man had just died inside the burger store (Durmer Burger). The supervisor stared at the press, then the employee, then the ink buckets that lay beside the press peppered with warning labels regarding the composition of the ink. The supervisor considered how hot the ink had to be to be in a liquid state. Then, silently, the supervisor grabbed the employee by the ear and violently threw them into the red tank. The employee opened their mouth to scream but only music came out. The most beautiful music the supervisor had heard. It came to a crescendo as the worker's face dissolved and they lost consciousness due to shock but it played on even after the employee's decrescendo. Red splattered onto the burger wrappers. 2022-05-04 Recomposition "Hey." A figure in a black trenchcoat, wearing green circular glasses a bit too big for their head, tapped Olive's shoulder as she lay on the road foaming at the mouth. "Hey Olive. Wake up." Seeing that Olive was dead, the figure started walking down the road backwards, facing Olive. When Olive's body flew up and started walking backwards towards Alan's the figure crouched and continued sneaking, staying out of Olive's field of view. This figure watched Olive make her way backwards to the gas station and eventually made it behind Durmer Burger as Olive shuffled backwards towards the ground outside the broken door and lay down in front of it. Olive flew into the door and the glass beads on the ground arranged themselves into a full sized window pane. The figure waited a minute or two on a mechanical wristwatch before heading towards the front of the building. All was quiet in the neighborhood. No birds chirped, no squirrels rustled trees, and there were no cars on the street. The figure in the black trenchcoat retrieved a black purse from their belt, took out a tension rod and paper clip, and started to pick the lock. Within a couple seconds they got through and held the door open. Soon Olive came running out of the portal. "Hey." Olive clutched her arm and turned around. "Hello?" Her face was twisted in pain. "Hi, I'm here to invite you to Saikokon." The figure smiled with a few more teeth than fit a human. "It's free!" "Saikokon?" "Yes, yes. It's quite a surprise, isn't it?" Olive looked around her. "What?" The figure frowned and put their purse back on their belt. "Alright, well, I'll take that as a yes, which isn't quite consent but otherwise in a couple minutes you won't be able to either way. I'm gonna need you to hop on this scooter." They took a small, collapsible Razor scooter out of their trenchcoat from a strap across their front and unfolded it. "It's a bit shabby but I don't like cars' emissions." Olive stared at the scooter. "I'm sorry – this is a lot to process. I need medical attention." "Yes, I know, and either you can pour some isopropyl alcohol on your arm and die on that street drooling or you can get on this scooter and go to a clinic. So which is it?" Olive stepped onto the scooter. Her foot was barely small enough to fit on its platform, leaving no room for the other. She adjusted her weight to balance. "Great. Now, I'm going to have to ask you not to puke. This is going to be extremely disorienting for you. Would you like a blindfold?" "What?" "A blindfold. It obscures your vision." "Why would I want a blindfold?" "In case of inadverdent motion sickness or blindness." "I could go blind?" "You could always go blind." "Will this increase the risks of my losing my sight?" "Olive my dear," the figure grabbed onto the middle of the scooter's steering apparatus firmly and steadied themself, "you have never seen." The figure started slowly walking, dragging Olive along, both through space and time. I'm writing this at 0400. I can't sleep. I didn't sleep much the night before this, or the night before that, but I just can't. I can't sleep. I'm not tired, except I'm a little tired - I just yawned. But I'm not tired. I can't sleep. I'm so tired. I don't want to sleep but I need sleep. But I can't sleep. I can't sleep ! and I'm awake and I've been awake since noon? I can't remember and yesterday I still only slept maybe a couple hours for which I am thankful but I need sleep. And I can't sleep. And heavy is the head that wears the crown; heavy also is the head of the insomniac, the bitter dead-wake hound that howls in its gutty pain and makes mortals fear its cosmically lucid mind that can strike upon them an understanding so great they too will never sleep again. Never rest their head on a pillow, never lay in sheets, never breathe a great calming breath. They too can't sleep like I can't sleep. Why can't I sleep ? Why must I never sleep but stay on guard and on edge and listening to the rustle of the vents and automotive traffic on the street behind me, past my window? Maybe I can sleep but it's the world that stops me. Maybe I halt the world. I don't care. I just want to sleep ! I need to sleep ! Let me sleep ! <^>
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