matt pond PA

July 29, 2017

What You Thought was a Party

What you thought was a party was just a plain cheese pizza photo op, a cross-promotional chin-up into a compulsory hoedown. One scratchy hay bale and a complimentary bucket of smiles. Fun is mandatory.

On my first stakeout as a fake cop, I realized that repeatedly refreshing my phone and swiping this-a-way and that-a-way allowed me to blend in with the oscillating sidewalk throngs, gently surfing through intentionally unselfconscious waves of screen-goers, an everlasting struggle to kiss normalcy’s divine ring.

The newspaper fell from my blackened fingertips and I began really searching, really swiping to see myself in the role. (Disappearing down a side street, there is no second thought or regret in succumbing. It is the way. Carry on and case closed.)

The parakeet on my left shoulder married the iguana on my right and no one noticed.

What you thought was a celebration was just Cake Day in the conference room. Under finely crafted drop ceilings and resplendent fluorescence, a comically cynical attempt at placation, persuasion, conditioning, enlistment and indoctrination. Everyone sinks teeth, all the way down to the cardboard cream.

Fact: Peephole Magazine reports that people who are comfortable in their own skin often practice being comfortable in their own skin in front of a mirror. Yet they never go to the bathroom.

What you believe is a good way to communicate is really just a photograph of a sunset that fell into a telephone that never rings.

The catcalls echo inside these cerebral walls. No matter how far I run into the thickest forest, there isn’t any procedure to obstruct the velocity of unwanted notions, a flashing mental montage — the cop stops me before I can ask him for help, puts a finger to his lips and says, “Talk is for retirees.” And then, posts a video of himself drawing a revolver. (It hardly resembles a revolver.)

What you thought was part your identity was just a poorly written show about zombies. What you thought was a zombie was only an out-of-work actor, hoping someone would notice the extra emphasis in their split-second decapitation. What you think is a leader is merely a goblin: a non-scientific science experiment gone wrong. Or maybe we’re all the same, conveniently split in two so that the plight of homeless people won’t interrupt our steaming succotash along the cliché Champs-Élysées cafes — the mellifluous flow of ideas, white wine and suffering.

I gave my entire bullhorn address in an extinct indigenous language. It cited everything that’s ever been done wrong to anything, anywhere. No one understood the message or the meaning but the banners were majestic.

A morse-code love poem through the water pipes reads: Entertainment and reality are impossible to distinguish from one another. Everyone transmits an ephemeral televised version of their life. Everything must be captured and immediately thrown away like a diaphanous and disgusting bug, soaring and then suddenly swallowed.

Please get me the cat juggler’s name before he leaves the building in shame!

A. Animals should neither be eaten nor juggled.
B. Fame is a feral animal. And I want mine right meow!
C. If you point out the stupidity of the internet, it just means you’re jealous of Kanye West.

What appeared to be a famous person was a famous person. Everyone knows the name, everyone knows the face. But they cannot juggle, act, perform, write, read, sing, dance, create or convey any deeper, understanding or connection. And at this slippery-eel moment, the state of celebrity also appears to be the goal of humankind.

(As they frequently whisper in cineplex, always follow the eels.)

Impulsive, embryonic adults and flittering children somehow dictate the maturity and quality of our culture. We all keep diving down further and further, accepting and adopting apps that define the way we spend our time, the way we appreciate the world spinning around us. Journalists measure the quality of their work by likes. Artists measure the quality of their work by likes. Lawyers, labels and loves, notions and choices boil down to likes and deceased presidents.

Commerce is now love. Happiness is an act. Money and fame are everything. (I’m begging for you to punch me in the face and prove me wrong.)

That, or while distractedly absorbing the knife techniques of master youtube chefs, we ultimately must conclude that McDonald’s is the greatest restaurant of all time.

That, or pizza always wins.