“Whoever thought you’d be better at turning a screw than me? I do it for my life. Fuck yeah!”
You’re just like Delicious Tacos, he told me. He was messaging me for advice. Girl problems- but, more than that too, he said. His life felt empty. He was lacking direction; depression, anxiety. There’s something about my writing that suggests I could offer intervention- a quick series of bullet points or if/then statements. Something about my writing that’s aspirational.
I’m willing to believe this. Despite my failures which I’ve grown comfortable sharing with strangers, I’m a happy and centered person. I have positive habits- and even if my addictive personality will merely cut and paste beneficial habits in place of those destructive and pursue them with the same psychotic vigor, they’re at least theoretically contributing to my overall health and well-being. I read and write regularly. I lift weights and take long walks. I meditate and enjoy stillness. I love nature. I believe in God.
I’m just like Delicious Tacos. I write about getting laid, as a single man, in realistic terms. No big fish stories; the raw honesty of average women. This lends me credibility with those hard-up enough to find something like that impressive. Scarier are the types who take jabs and call it “fan-fiction.” Sex alone has become the big fish story, with the same anxious energy of when you would’ve killed a small animal to see tits as a thirteen-year old; relentless and aching.
They all want Magic’s Biggest Secrets Finally Revealed (1997). As if the plethora of Internet content describing it in detail has become too slick- too Hollywood; just as detached from reality. Average men spend a lifetime studying bullshit to screw a fraction of what the dirtbag bartender is pulling strung out. The quickest way to cut the line is a bag of cocaine. I know this because Delicious Tacos knows this.
Stay single long enough with your eyes open, talk to enough women, and you’re going to come to the same conclusions. Once more men get it, society will fall. The trick is to have your interests align with what women find attractive- interests so personally fulfilling that if you never get laid again they become spiritual quests. Without sex, lifting weights takes on a more authentic gravitas. The creation of good art- good, as defined by your own standard, will mean more than any woman’s opinion of you. A deep connection to nature. Reflections on philosophy, history and morality. The ability to make yourself laugh. Good food. Presence. This is the advice I would give- or just get a bag of cocaine.
You’re not like Delicious Tacos, Blair told me. I had lent her Savage Spear of the Unicorn (2020)– I wanted to hear her thoughts on what I consider true contemporary literature. She has a masters from an Ivy League university, she reads Pynchon, she tells me I’m great. She’s smart. She liked Tacos, but she doesn’t see the similarities, and maybe I don’t either. Tacos is taller with a full head of hair; in better shape despite us both spending years at the gym, twenty-thousand Twitter followers, multiple books and fucks more women- even if he’s paying for some of them.
I aspire to be Delicious Tacos, in a one-sided competition, existing solely in my own head. I’m Dave Mustaine to his Metallica- and maybe Rust in Peace (1990) is the technically superior heavy metal record, taking thrash to its logical conclusion. Maybe the Megadeth listener is the more sophisticated music fan, sipping chardonnay and discussing the subtle intricacies of Dave’s deep-in-the-mix guitar fills. Pointing out how Youthanasia (1994) was recorded completely live in the studio as a fuck you to Metallica’s partial live recording of the black album- a fact that was presumably only for Mustaine’s own mental satisfaction- that he’s better than Metallica.
Even when the hard reality of metrics- sales figures and tickets sold- don’t agree. That Dave can be a better lead guitar than Kirk, a better songwriter than Hetfield/Ulrich, a better leading man than James- at least in his own head, where he can set the parameters and claim victory. You’re not like Delicious Tacos, baby- lending her books with a gun to her head. You’re better- it should be you.
Online content is mostly bullshit. The impulse is to fill dead air. If enough empty space elapses, you end up firing whatever you have in the chamber- sound and fury, signifying nothing- into cyberspace like a drunk frat boy feeding quarters into a Space Invaders (1978) cabinet at a dusky college bar in 1982; haphazard shots fired into the night sky; just hoping to hit something. Just like what I’m doing right now- earn credibility with literary references; paint a fuzzy picture of video game nostalgia- people like that. Write about someone more popular than yourself- maybe the uninitiated will be baited to click? Maybe Tacos will retweet? Maybe he’ll be flattered and say, “that Bad Billy- not so bad after all!”
I told him to find peace within himself. Partake in things he enjoys. Realize his passion and pursue it with psychotic vigor. Consider himself dead, right now, and think about what he would’ve liked to have left behind- now, work backwards, and find a way to achieve it. This is all that matters.
You get enough sex and you realize that the girls you jerk off to are wispy fantasies- something that reality will hardly ever match. The percentage of truly great sex you end up having is so miniscule that it should be disregarded on its face- living for the weekend, teachers obsessed with the school calendar; focus on sex and you’ll never stop missing your life. Thanks, he told me. He’ll think about it, he said. And in the meantime, he’ll shoot Delicious Tacos another DM- maybe this time Tacos will write back.
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