The other day I was in the street and there were cars around, and all, and I wondered why the cars were there. Then, of course, I realized that cars are to drive around in, to get from one place to another. I found that on either side of the road there were restaurants and stores lined up in neat rows. These were there for people in vehicles to visit. There were sidewalks lining either side of the street, which were (and are still, as far as I know) composed of squares of cement lined up one after the other.
In using the sidewalks I realized what a hot day it was. I may not have realized this otherwise. I also found myself wondering how much further it was to my destination. But I hadn’t decided where I was going yet.
Backwards a bit, I’m watching television on any of several nights, and suddenly there it is. The answer. “Would you like to lose weight and feel great?” it said, “Would you like to have energy to burn? Would you like to get out there and really live?”
Well, I knew that I certainly would’ve liked that; that’s something that I definitely would’ve enjoyed. I doubted that the disembodied voice on the television could give it to me. “Well, then, there’s nothing we can do for you. But you should buy these pills anyway.”
That’s not actually what the man on the commercial said. But that’s what he meant. So I decided, right then and there, that I wasn’t going to procrastinate any longer. In fact I even said it. “I am not going to procrastinate any longer.”
That was what I said. I even stood up, pulled my shoulders back, lifted my chin, and glared imperiously at the green couch on the other side of the room. I marched determinedly across the room and sat down on the green couch.
I had changed couches. It was a start. Suddenly, everything was new. The fan overhead sounded slightly different. The walls no longer seemed so close. I could no longer see through the window. The television was at a slightly different angle.
Suddenly, a bolt of inspiration hit. I knew what I had to do. I changed the station. Several people wearing bikinis were eating slugs. This made me realize how much time I was wasting. That could be me, in a swim-suit on national television eating insects. That could be me winning the forty-thousand dollars. That could very easily be me.
I left the house, and then started to walk toward Des Moines, land of the something. I still don’t know which state Des Moines is in.
Forward past the point where we started, I’ve left the army and am now a man on my own, a man at loose ends with the world. I now know how to load a machine gun in 13 minutes flat, but unfortunately there are no machines here on the hard streets of Des Moines.
I decide I will join a minor league sports team.