He was one of those trendy looking emo kids. Soft, with a carefully mused half Mohawk, and a round face too delicate for punk rock. He wore a goodwill suit, like he was a character in one of those PG-13 feel good flicks. Starring the hottie of the day, or maybe Ellen Page, he wasn’t good looking enough to be her love interest. No, he’d have been her emotional best friend. Effeminate in a glorified way, he was shoulder to cry on, and her support system. One day she’d walk in on him and that boy from art class in a compromising position, but he’d swear he wasn’t gay. Scared and scarred. But that was years away.
Today this marshmallow man child was sitting across the table from me at the downtown Central Library. Talking on his cell phone. Chit chat, ratta tat tat, it was fucking obnoxious. Obnoxious in a high school way, disrespectful to strangers because his eyes had not yet been opened to the truth that the world is not comprised exclusively of Good People. No, there is also the Rest of Us. Those who do not care about him. Those who are not interested in his feelings, his desires; certainly not his hopes and dreams. No, we do not care about his plans in life, his back story, and definitely not that one time at sleep away camp when his eyes were opened to a whole new realm of exciting possibilities. We only cared for ourselves, and about the fact that this pumpkin headed jerk off would not shut up. In a public library! There are rules that must be followed in a public library, common courtesies that must be extended in a polite society, even if we are not polite ourselves. Internal chaos is one thing, perhaps even necessary in the struggle to internalize grand words like Peace and Understanding. What we had here was ordinary and common rudeness set in an otherwise peaceful public setting.
“…yea…oh, I don’t know…sure, I’ll call you at three thirty…noooo…what’d you have for lunch,” he stuttered in a sing song little boy’s voice, drawing the eyes of all around him. I gripped my Bic ball point pen tight like a hunting knife, when an older gentleman from across the room spoke loudly and firmly with the voice of a man who knew a thing or two about hard living,
“PSSSST! Hey! You’re not the only one in here; pipe down on the phone kid!” I was impressed. Firm and to the point, without being overly abusive. Much more restrained than the fire that I wanted to set under the young man’s chair. But the point was lost.
“…I gotta go…yea, some people are being RUDE,” said the kid, with an insolent tone and a glare shot in the direction of the old man in the corner. What nerve. The kid huffed in his seat a moment before slamming his books on the desk and shuffling towards the men’s room. Perfect.
As I watched him shuffle bumble stumble across the room, I imagined calmly and cleanly rising from my chair and gliding silently towards the men’s room myself. Catching the door just before it clicked shut; I stepped quietly with rubber soles onto white tiles lit by cheap fluorescent bulbs. I could see him in the mirror, fumbling at the urinal, his back to me, unaware. Easy. I took a quick step forward and smashed his head into the cool tiled wall, grabbing a fist full of greasy Mohawk, pressing his bleeding nose forward, grinding his face into tile, not allowing him to see me. He whimpered. I punched him quickly in the kidney, and he whimpered some more.
I could kill him. I could very easily reach into my pocket and jam my Bic through his neck, and that would be the end. One less arrogant prick, one less pretender. A little more peace and quiet in the public library. The world would thank me; I would probably get a medal. Even his parents would admit I did them a favor, at least after they got over their initial shock and horror. His Ellen Page friend would admit he was always a little creepy, and she never really felt comfortable around him anyway. She would thank me, but explain that she didn’t feel right being friends with his murderer. Murderer. I would understand what she meant.
My dream was interrupted when the emo goblin slumped his sizeable girth back down into the chair across from me and let out an obnoxiously audible sigh.
I smiled at him with black eyes. The world is not always a nice place.