Wednesday, June 19, 2013
Who knew a year ago when he and I sat in the park in Hoboken sharing secrets that we would a year later be sitting in a restaurant in Jersey City still caught in the same web of deception, how our lives have become entwined, not because of what either of us did to each other, but what has been done to us, spun around us, and slowing forcing us together – like or not.
Good guys don’t always finish last, but foolish good guys do, especially when bad people convince us we are better than we are or can have more than we have a right to expect or are somehow special when no one is as special as fantasy makes us seem.
It is always the same routine on the telephone, how someone really digs us, and how much we can teach them, or how really great we could be if only… well, if only something, I always forget what comes after that.
And a year later, the only thing special about either of us is how empty we feel, used up, but not of any less use.
I find villains the more fascinating characters in films I watch and so playing the role of one over the last year has been no problem, even though deep down I’m more a flawed hero, one who stands up for righteousness when all else gives into the temptation and seduction.
It doesn’t make me bleed any less, but it certainly makes me feel like the loss of blood served some purpose higher than someone else’s greed.
All good heroes – flawed or not – stand up against evil even when they risk losing everything, not because they know they will win, but because the world cannot afford to let bad guys win.
And sitting at that table, hearing the same old deception being cast in new words, created by some web master no longer visible, from whom we have no need to hide like we did last time.
After a year of people trying to lure me into ugly situations, after learning that personal politics often bleeds into the larger variety, and that people bent on getting what they want at any cost, I’ve learned not to take things face value, but always question odd turns of phrase or ill logic, or even subjective truth.
I learned no good cause can be served by a lie, and that right and wrong might be relative, but they still exist, and that fair and unfair show the quality of lack of in people who accept or reject them, and that cheaters often win, but end up with nothing for their efforts – and that some people are so bent on cheating, they don’t’ care.
But then, these were lessons I always knew and needed to be reminded that down deep, where it counts most, I still stand for things like truth, justice and fair play, and I’m willing to give up all I have to uphold them – and that truth can’t be manufactured out of lies, and justice can’t be served by deception, and the only really valuable people are those who play by the rules – even if they don’t win.