It sometimes is a little bit tiring. You walk between people, barely touching them – nevertheless – they are there. They are here. They are around you. They look into your eyes, they analyse you, compare to themselves or even to you – from a week ago. So you straighten up whenever you hear them coming, you try to remember how much do they know, how much has leaked out from your inside – the main purpose is not to give them more. You don’t smile much – but that’s all right, everyone is used to that – but there are different kinds of not-smiling; there are different kinds of silence, there are different kinds of isolation. It takes so much energy, every day, just after you wake up, before anyone will see you, to recreate the picture that all of them know – the one which you fed them for the past few weeks, for the past few months, for the past few years. So – you not-smile in this normal way, the way that used to be your face – when it wasn’t just a deception, just a front (god, it was so long ago and you can barely remember it; it’s more like a dream and you can’t quite remember how it was to be this person, that could not-smile in such a natural way and haven’t lied with their whole person day after day). And then you go out to the world: blinding, loud and vulgar in its whole embodiment, with uncountable number of eyes for which you need to perform your little play – and you turn (the whole you) into a perfect decoration, full of plastic and shiny metal parts – however – without any warranty.
Everything inside you is tense, tightly wrapped. In your chest (that resembles more of a wooden box) beats a heart, though it beats too fast, like a startled bird that is ready to fly away; it beats too weak – just like an echo of an echo – but it is still there, just like the pulse and a shallow breath. So you light another cigarette and silence your own coughing, that is also pretty much always there. From time to time you tell yourself that one day you will do something about it. Also – from time to time you promise that one day you will stop pretending. Two innocent lies.
– I am tired – I move on the bench and scratch my eyebrow – for a moment shadow casts on my eyes and at the moment that’s the only way to hide myself. Seagulls glide above my head and only from time to time they scream (and in this scream they sound more like people than birds).
– I know you are – he says and I imagine that he is looking ahead and squints at the sun.
– You are tired as well – I light a cigarette. I think he shrugs. We stay silent for a little bit longer – there is nothing else we need to say. Cigarette burns out. On the other end I can hear his breath. We are silent in rush to finish our untold stories and then we say good bye. We hang up.