Hi, I'm Sam.
I'm a fox, in case you wondered.
Today I got a visit by Jake.
Initially I planned to go grocery shopping but when I noticed that he was in a bad condition I postponed it.
It was obvious that he had tried to wipe off the tears from his face, but I immediately noticed the dark, sticky fur around his eyes. He must've cried all day or something.
He was standing there, completely miserable looking with his whiskers snapped and his tail all droopy and stuff.
Jake can be a bit of an oddball. He's slightly neurotic and tends to talk way too much. He can babble on about everyone and his dog without needing to take a breath once. He just starts talking about his annoying neighbor and how their cats always pee into that one smelly corner right next to his door and ends up describing how the light bulb was invented in 1778 by James Cook while discovering the United States of Atlantis.
It's not as if I'm spared from annoying neighbors. Mine has a compulsive disorder that forces her to clean the windows all day and the door handles at night. This wouldn't be too bad if she wasn't under the delusion of being a news commentator who loudly and thoroughly describes every single move she makes.
"Tina Sullivan takes the bucket and elegantly fills it with water. Not just some drops of it. Not just half of it. No, she fills it up to the top and gracefully moves over to the living room. When I see all these moves of utter magnificence I cannot help but think she might have been a ballet dancer in her past life. What do you think, Tina?"
"That is absolutely right, Tina. All these windows can surely consider themselves lucky being cleaned by a skilled hand like Tina's. Just look how she's wringing out this rag, moving it up and down. Up and down. Are you seeing this Tina?"
I once ask her if she might want to consider a career as a window cleaner or news commentator. She said "No", because she hates cleaning windows and only does it because they're dirty all the freaking time. And she also hates news commentators, because they're so full of themselves.
But back to Jake — well just look at where we ended up. He couldn't just refrain from making me talk too much again about unrelated stuff. Will he ever learn?
Well again, Jake was standing there, looking miserable.
He asked me if he could come in, because he didn't know anywhere to go. I pointed out that he owned this nice apartment close to the park. I visited him there just a week ago. He looked down and didn't seem to remember it.
Great, did he start to become forgetful too?
In such a situation there was no other option than to let him in and listen to him talking about his month. He took long, lonesome walks in the park, was sitting on random benches in the forest for hours, staring at the leaves and, if at home, retreated into his garden, quietly sobbing while staring at the leaves there.
And I responded: "Oh, you really started to work on your health. Being out in nature so often must feel great with all the fresh air. How did you manage to get your butt moving?"
I think he wanted to keep it his secret, because he didn't react.
But I believe there was something else I didn't quite get. Maybe it had to do with his girlfriend coldly dumping him out of the blue.
I remembered: "Is it about Hannah, the girl you met at the art club, who you are dating for over two years now and you said is the love of your life and the one person who makes you feel 'complete'?"
"Hannah, who understands you like no other and who makes the grayness of the world look like eternal summer to you and who loves to go to the park with you to hug and kiss in the sunlight and to calmly listen to your favorite music?"
I couldn't tell if I was correct and I wasn't able to ask him, because he was suddenly struck by a wave of tears that didn't seem to find an end.
I got concerned and thought about calling a doctor or something, but I had no chance when he grabbed my tail and hugged it so tightly that I thought he was trying to squeeze the insides out of it.
He said that he'd never felt this terrified of the world before and that he cannot cope with being alone like this. He said everything is gone and that the only thing consoling him are his memories that keep stabbing his heart like glowing knifes. It's unbearable to him. He said he wishes to just stop breathing and fall over dead to escape from these memories and the icy fire they torture his heart and brain with every waking hour.
I thought: "Hm, from which movie did he get that line?"
And then I got an idea: "How about going to the movie theater? Like in the old days?"
He suddenly looked up, his eyes all teary and red, and said that he'd love to go somewhere with me like when we were young.
He seemed to get a bit better while we were talking about all the movies we had watched long ago in college. And we pondered over which one to see next.
There were just so many awesome movies, we weren't able to decide which one to go for.
We ended up deciding to not go and instead spent the evening at my place drinking lychee lemonade and moping about how indecisive we are.
He kept hugging my tail all night and frequently went back to crying into it until I was dripping wet like a jellyfish. I wasn't exactly sure if these were his tears only or if he also cried out the few beers he gobbled up half an hour earlier to forget his pain.
The alcohol surely made him open up to me more and he talked about his feelings of being isolated and deprived of intimacy and love.
He told me details about his and Hanna's love I'm not sure I wanted to hear. They made my ears get warm — which is the fox equivalent of blushing for all of you who might not know. He actually told me a whole lot about how it felt to be with her ... or inside her, until I got a bit dizzy from it.
He said being with her made him feel happy like never before. They weren't two foxes going about their business — they were one. And now he said his second half was just ripped out of him and he is torn and bleeding to death. This in turn makes him feel never before known misery and despair.
He also said that he feels like being trapped on another planet where he only ever sees gray rocks and dust. He feels like never getting anywhere and being caught in his own mind with no escape.
This suddenly made me realize how lonely I myself am and suddenly the agonizing pain he must've felt crept into my chest.
I didn't really care about movies anymore in that situation. Or about lychee lemonade.
We sat there crying for three hours straight, hugging each other tightly and screaming in pain about how utterly alone we are. There is nobody in our lives to console us. Nobody to open up to and explain our deepest fears and feelings to.
We wish so much that one day there'll be someone for each of us who would hold our hands when we cry, who listens and makes us feel less alone.
Someone we can visit and go to the park with and watch movies with. Just someone out there in this cold gray world for us who makes our day just this little bit brighter.
We ended up deciding to meet once a week to repeat the crying and sobbing until we've finally met these new people.
He seemed a bit happier afterwards, still terribly sad and depraved of his eagerness to live, but he was able to stand up without falling over onto me again.
I said that he's confusing and a bit awkward. But that I still like him a whole lot.
He said he loved me more than I could imagine.
I kept pondering over these words for several days. Was he right?
And suddenly I realized: That's exactly what my psychiatrist advised me to do. She said talking to people who have similar problems will help me to see new nuances and perspectives about my problem and to eventually form paths to overcome it.
She was very nice and we made a lot of progress. She even planned to tell me about the secret of how to be happy and how to not take the world and its quarrels too seriously.
Unfortunately, she wasn't able to tell me, because she committed suicide the next day. When I found her last letter she wrote "Life sucks, but at least when I'm dead I'll be happy."
In that moment I realized: "Oh, she's been a Goth this whole time."
Well, you never know how people truly are on the inside.
Lucky me, I like surprises.
"How's the weather, Tina?"
I think I'll meet up with Jake again tomorrow.
If you have any ideas how I could cheer him up and make hime feel better, please let me know.
People keep telling me that I'm totally oblivious to their feelings. That's not true at all. I'm just really slow at getting all these tiny, freakishly nuanced cues they make with their faces and tails.
I'm no doctor. I've only ever been at a university once. And they threw me out after me having broken the fifth touch screen. It's called "touch screen" isn't it? And I touch everything. Not my fault if they didn't make it claw safe.
Oh, and people also say I don't care about their property. Then why do they let me borrow it all the time? I borrowed a rake, a microwave and a unicycle last month and until now nobody came to take it back. This means nobody misses it. This means it's mine now.
Laws? What are you talking about? There're no laws against borrowing and keeping unicycles. I ride one to work all day with the microwave as a safety helmet. It works great, but the soup isn't ready in time. If I put it on a higher level my skin gets all hot and dry and my fur starts to fall off.
And I don't want that.
Do you even care about my feelings at all? And what about Jake? Why do you hate him so much? He's never done anything wrong. He's a good boy. Misunderstood, a bit odd, but a good soul of a fox.