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Reflections of a Prom King Runner-up

In all likelihood, I don't remember you. I can't remember your name or your face.  Your name tag, your prompting, your cues, all of it will mean nothing to me, and I'm sorry.

I'm not really sorry; I only have so much room in here and frankly you didn't make the cut.  I need the space, you see, for the original two hundred fifty Pokemon, the Indigo League Pokemon, and the only real Pokemon if you ask me, and holy shit I can't believe I remember the Indigo League and I can't remember my own phone number or who I walked into prom with.  I was nominated for Prom King, I know that, and I know I didn't win.  I was runner up, second place, silver medal, the first loser.  I walked in with some girl, not my prom date, but my counterpart on the prom court that was nominated as well, and I swear I can't remember her name or her face. Whoever she was, she didn't win, either.

I was obviously not Prom King material.  Our class may have had a pretty progressive idea of who should be Prom King and Queen, but even given that, I sure as hell wasn't Prom King material, and clearly everyone knew it because I didn't win, but seriously how the hell was that even real? Was it real?  I kinda remember it, but maybe this is a story I made up; I was runner up for Prom King, kids, as if that is something to talk about.

What's stupid is, I don't even care about Pokemon, not even a little, but if you want to know the evolution of Machop, I am, unfortunately, your man.

So I'm sorry that I don't remember you. I'm sorry that I can't remember the name of the kid that sat next to me when I cried that time, sloppily, publicly.  It was an act of kindness, and I wish I could remember, but instead that space is taken up with the names of all the bounty hunters that stood on the bridge of the Star Destroyer in Empire Strikes Back.

This woman that I have worked with for four years keeps calling me Mark, and has been doing so for the entire time I have worked here, and it is way too late to correct her.  Every time it happens, I feel sort of embarrassed for her, knowing that the day will arrive when someone who actually knows my name will hear her and correct her and she will look at me and ask why, after all this time, I never corrected her and I will have to say... something, I suppose, but what?  Should I tell her the truth?  That I just don't care enough about her to correct her, that she could have been calling me Gollum or Optimus Prime or Busta Rhymes the whole time and I still wouldn't have corrected her because I just don't give enough of a shit? So I just wait and someday she will look at me confused and I will just smile and shrug and go about my day.

In the end my memory is selective; I remember Bossk and Dengar and Jolteon and Torchic, because I put a value on knowing things like that, because sometime long ago I made being a fucking dork part of my identity and forgetting 4-Lom and Mewtwo would mean that that part of me has died.

But that's okay, right?  I would happily forget the name, make and model of Boba Fett's ship if it meant that I would finally feel- what?  Complete?  Integrated?

Somewhere it became a thing that I do; I am the douche that shouts out the answers to Jeopardy in bars. Because it is not only important to me to know shit, it is as important, or more important really, to be seen as someone who knows shit, and in all actuality, that second part is probably enough all on its own.  For some sad pathetic reason my knowing useless stuff means something to me, it makes me feel good.  And I need that validation, understand? That's why I'm here, you know?   This isn't art; its an invitation to you to come to my house and tell me how great I am.

Oh shit, you know what? Torchic wasn't one of the original two fifty, that's right.  Back up, type in Chansey instead, maybe.  Is that esoteric enough to get you nerds on board?

Anyway, this is who I am.  I am in a period of deconstruction, where I get to take everything apart and put it all back together again, and maybe when it all comes back together I will find that the machine runs just fine without this particular part of my identity.  In the meantime I am scattered and lost and there are parts of me all over the place, scattered across the floor of the garage, hanging out for all to see. 

Maybe if you shot fire from your mouth, if you could use the Force or had feathers, maybe if you were the one that actually won Prom King ahead of me, and I'm looking at you, B.J. Spooner, then I would remember you.  Maybe.

Maybe not, though.  I can't remember appointments or dates, I can't remember doctor visits, or my blood type, I can't remember- I can't remember anything I should except the the planet that Chewbacca is from is called Kashyyyk.

I don't remember you, but I remember Sam Vimes and Kilgore Trout, Rorshach and Owen Meany.

I'm sorry, but my brain is full of dumb, useless shit and there's just no more room for you.

I'm not sorry.  Or maybe I am, I can't really remember.

Still Writing,
RP
7-23-18 

This is scattered, because I am scattered, and I thought maybe if I write and post about it, I would feel more together. Didn't work, but what the hell it was worth a shot, I guess.  So it goes.  You know where to find me, even though you never do: comment here, email me at dissent.within at gmail.com, @RDPullins on Twitter, and the noxious, festering diarrhea fountain that is Facebook.  Peace.

Comments

  1. Yeah to everyone who reads this ... don’t feel bad , this is Ralph’s wife Sheri and I comment every time and the post reads Connie and he doesn’t even seem to notice ... I wonder if he even remembers my name 😊

    ReplyDelete

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