Here's that writers' manual you were reaching and scrambling for. You know the one: filled with juicy writing tidbits and dripping with pop cultural snark and smartassery. Ew. Not an attractive look. But effective. And by the end, you'll either want to kiss me or kill me. With extreme prejudice. Go on. You know you want to.
What is this about? I said: what is this about?
So we're careening down the road hell-for-leather in a howling twister assembled from panic, rage and blind momentum.
The pavement is cracked and patched, black-as-pitch dying man's signatures scorched by our searing wheels, and for a moment I see infernal red eyes within, glaring out, but our urgent impetus, our arrogant impetuosity, carries us safely beyond their capacity to react in time, at least for now; the smoke from our hot tires a kissoff to their shortfall wickedness.
No, we are wicked. This is our time on the earth.
And we will be sure to dig in our heels.
Monsters are as caricatures when calibrated against the depth of our own wanton malevolence, once the millennium had ticked by and we found we had worn down our brakes, were unable to prevent our lurching wild mercury ride along crumbling interstates, weeds pushing through ruptured shoulders, the stink of roadslaughtered skunk filling our flared nostrils and nauseated guts, bug spatter, raw-throated emcees raining down layer upon layer of apocalyptic rhyme over beats that would stomp the redwood forests like so much kindling, preachers screaming about homo-sex-you-alls and how this is God's time, this is bill collection on a grand scale, we will all pay this Original Ferryman far more than the two-penny standard once balanced on closed lids... no, this payment is in souls and will be measured in suffering and anguish just as soon as we stop the ride, run out of gas, or luck, or hubris, whichever comes first.
With treacherous sex on our minds and a kind of sullen, heedless glory, we won't be the first but we might well be the last.
So keep your foot on the pedal and barely glance at the vistas as they pass in a blur of heat and wind—the grain fields, the blasted prairies, the purple distant mountains, the cattle, the trains, the loneliness, the signposts, the dead slate skies, the bright planetary skies, the John Deere Harley Davidson Gulf Chevron Arby's Denny's Super 8 Travelodge gasfoodlodging gasfoodlodging asscrudedodging cashdudegrudging ohmygodisitreallycometothisalready?
As we stomp on the useless brakes, scream, then drive off the edge of the world.