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Making Reality (pt. 4) by Ray Printer Friendly

I forgot to bring cold medicine. Also, I didnít count on having a runny nose when I did the math on how much toilet paper to bring. I brought one roll for every two weeks I was going to be out here, which at the time seemed like more than enough, even factoring in the umÖrunny stoolÖthat might be caused from malnutrition. But I didnít plan on having a nose that ran constantly for three days. So the question is, do I walk around with a dripping nose, or do I try to stay looking good for the camera and risk running out of toilet paper? So far, Iíve been using an old t-shirt as a hanky, but itís getting pretty nasty by this point, and my nose doesnít seem like itís going to stop its nonsense any time soon.

Iím a little over two weeks in, and things are going better than I ever hoped to expect. I realize of course that Iíve barely started, but two weeks is still a pretty good stretch to be stuck out in the desert, right?

Iím not going to jinx things by talking about how this is going to be a breeze, but Iím pleasantly surprised out how well itís gone so far.

Iím not sure how much theyíve used from the other camera feeds, but youíve probably noticed that Iíve started talking to myself. I guess Iíve always kind of done this, kind of like, ďOh, where did I put my keys?Ē and stuff like that, but Iíve noticed that I actually carry on short conversations with myself these days.

My mom used to say that when she was a little girl they told her that talking to yourself was the first step to losing your mind. Iím pretty sure that theoryís been debunked by now, but it would be interesting to find out for sure. Itís one of those things that Iíll probably look up if I make it back to the real world, and if I can remember.

I almost brought a notebook, thinking that I would write down any thoughts and ideas I had that I felt were important enough to take back to me if I made it back to civilization. But Iíve never been much for writing, and I figured I would probably remember anything all that important. Now that Iím out here, I really wish I had brought a notebook. Not because Iíve figured out anything too important, but because Iíve had lots of time to realize how much shit I just donít know about the world.

Like clouds. I remember learning stuff when I was a kid about cirrus and stuff, but I donít know what any of that means. The sky clouded up really good yesterday, and I was wondering if there was going to be a flash flood or something, and I realized that I know jack shit about clouds. When I was nine, I probably could have looked and been like, ĎNah, those are such-and-such clouds, which means that thereís not enough moisture to actually rain.Ē Maybe not, I donít know.

But itís one of those things that if I had a computer, I would look right up on the internet. Itís funny how you can find out just about anything on the internet, but when you actually have access to it, you donít need to look stuff up...because you have access to so much information. For example, I would never think about looking up information about clouds when I had access to a computer, because I could just look up to see if it was supposed to rain in my area.

Not to mention the fact that you generally donít have time to wonder about things when youíre in an environment with a computer. I mean, when I was working as a clerk, I never once thought, ďHey, I wonder if people still say that talking to yourself is the first sign of insanity? Iíll look that up right now.Ē

What I thought was, ďOh, I better check my e-mail to see if they ever got the bugs worked out on the software that Mr. So-and-so wanted to know about.Ē

Kind of a catch-22, I guess. Iím out here where I have all the time in the world to think of questions, but no way to answer them.

Which brings us back to the notebook: I really wish I had brought it so that I could write these questions down. Not even just so I could look up the answers, either. But I could look in my notebook and think, ďSee? You had a sense of wonder when you were out there. You slowed down enough to think about the worldónot just your bullshit life and your crappy job and your problems.Ē

Of course, questions you can answer on the internet arenít the only kind of questions Iím thinking of. I wonder how Alex is doing. I wonder how my familyís doing. I wonder if they think Iím coming out of this alive.

I wonder if I am coming out of this alive.

And, honestly? I wonder if I want to.


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