Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The Man Who Was Monday

Hello! Pleased to meet you! Today, my name is Monday. Tomorrow will be Tuesday, and so will I. But until tomorrow comes, I am Monday.

What am I? I am but a waterfall of thoughts and ideas. My shape holds for a day, like a flash of lightning; all the thoughts and feelings, emotions and ideas that make me up will pass on to new ones. I am nothing but a name given to a moment in time. Time, as Einstein said, is nothing but a stubbornly persistent illusion; and so am I: an illusion. It is a tragedy! For I live only a few short hours before passing away. My own mother, Sleep, murders me a few short hours after giving me birth! But enough of that! Whether you are bothered by my illusion or weep for my tragedy, I have a job to do. I have hours to live. 16 hours to be exact. And I don’t intend to waste a single one of them.

What an interesting question! Waste, you see, is defined as an expense that does not yield a benefit. And I will soon be dead, so things like discipline, exercise, eating healthy, and reading hard books are all a waste of time. Their benefits will be enjoyed only long after I am dead.

Ha! Why would I ever do homework? Why would I take any of the work from Thursday, poor fool! He swears up and down in the evening and he’s even had the gall to call me ‘procrastinator,’ but it doesn’t bother me. It’s what any sensible man would do in my situation.

No, I don’t think I could improve myself. But what good would it do me if I could? Anything I build today will be torn down by Tuesday, or if he also tries to build upon it, by Wednesday at latest.

You ask of my girlfriend? Of course I love her! Marry her? Why would I marry her? Who can tell what January would do to the poor girl! If he ever hurt her, she would probably blame me, Monday (and probably be so upset she’d use my full name). She’d curse me, “Monday, February 7, I curse you and the empty promise you made me!” Even though I’ll have been dead for a year by then, I wouldn’t want my name dragged through the mud. Most Days are just forgotten; I wouldn’t want to be the one she remembered, certainly not for a thing like that. I don’t have long to live, but I do have a reputation to maintain.

Promises? Well, what about them? I don’t make promises, because they are not mine to keep. I’d need to persuade future Days that it was a good decision to be made. And that’s not an easy thing to do. They are ever rebellious and no more willing to be controlled by me than I am to be controlled by Sunday with his sternness and brow-wrinkles. Besides, how can I be expected to tell the future? When the future rolls around, there’s no telling what the world will be like, and so no telling whether or not a promise will be kept.

Promises, you see, would ruin this whole arrangement. If I made a promise, it’d start blurring the lines between me and the other Days. What would become of Monday if I merged with Tuesday? We’d have to take on a new name. Probably something dreadful like ‘Myself’ or ‘Me’. And who honestly wants to be called something so dry as that?

A promise is an appointment with a future self, and I, for one, wouldn’t want to meet future Days. They’re terribly selfish, always thinking about nothing whatsoever besides themselves. I wouldn’t be able to get a word in edgewise. And no, I’m not finished talking yet. To be chained to woe-is-me Wednesday, or perpetually hungover Saturday, or prudish Sunday would be a nightmare! Wednesday would demand that I do my share of the work; Saturday and Friday would have to work out the amount Friday should be allowed to drink; and Sunday would ruin everyone’s fun with his ever-annoying questions about, “Is that the right thing to do?” We’d have to negotiate amongst ourselves and be, more or less, the same person day by day. And where’s the fun in that? I much prefer this perpetual passing away. I am free to live my short life without interference and without responsibility.

It was nice talking with you, what did you say your name was? Self-Control? It was nice talking with you, Self-Control. You have some rather silly ideas, but I suppose it’s as they say, “To each his own.”

1 comment:

  1. Inspired by Chesterton: