I sat in the living room at my parent’s old house. The year was probably 2010, or at some point after I returned home from college and my older brother stole my bedroom (while I was in Virginia) so I was sleeping on the couch. I slept on multiple couches for multiple years. I never minded sleeping on couches.

I was probably high that night because all the time I was high. I sat on the couch and watched whatever was on the television screen. Maybe it was a baseball game. I suppose it could have been ESPN. If neither of those I was watching Workaholics, since that was my go-to back then. That was me: I smoked a lot of weed and I watched a lot of Workaholics. I was 20 years old.

I got a text message out of the blue from someone I used to care a lot about. My heart started racing since it had been so long. I stood up and began pacing in the living room. What should I say? How should I respond? I was high. It felt like whatever I said was going to make or break everything. I waited a bit, and then I said: “My right eye is itching right now.”

The phone buzzed again. It was a Blackberry. Blackberry’s used to be a thing. My phone was called a Blackjack II, which is a funny name for a phone. It’s funny because blackjack turned into my game a couple years later, and eventually turned into my profession. The phone said: “Attack of the itchy eyeball!!!”

I felt very comfortable in that moment. It seemed like the world was okay for a minute. Like I was exactly where I needed to be. It was nice. I continued to pace, but my heartbeat slowed down a little bit. My thoughts were processing. A conversation was to be had.

And I remember how nice it was, just being alive in that moment. Nothing mattered, of course, because nothing ever does, but it felt peaceful. I said some things, and the phone wrote me back some things, and I was high and ultimately I asked a question. I just had to know the answer to this question. I had spent so many nights high and wondering what the other end of the phone had to say, but I had too much pride to ask. The other end of the phone was here, now, though, however, so I decided to ask:

Do you think I’m a good man?

That was the question I asked. I don’t know why I was so curious, it was just something I needed to know. The other end of the phone said the most predictable thing. I hated it. But I probably should have known it was coming. That’s what we did, the other end of the Blackjack II and me. We said things to each other. And both sides always knew the answers. It responded:

That depends, do you want to be a good man?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s