Roll on your sanity.

Roll on your sanity.

Postby ashmie on Thu Jul 12, 2012 10:39 am

Roll on your sanity.
A short story by Ashley Laycock. Introduction, unfinished.

I remember when Mr Williams our classroom teacher at the end of primary school banned dice rolling during silent reading hour. It was then that I knew the game was up. Childhood had ended or was indeed about to move on. It was the fault of those choose your own adventure style novels. The fantasy ones with monsters on each page and different outcomes depending on what decisions you took and which page numbers you turned to. After reading so many of them it’s easy to view our whole lives as adults like one of those damn books.
It’s Monday, you wake up for work. Another day at the same position you’ve been lucky to hold for the past three years.
Do you A: Get ready, have a Kellogg’s breakfast and leave with a kiss for the wife without any trouble at all.
B: Call in sick.
C: Sleep in for as long as you can before making a dash for the bus at the last minute.
Or D: Run away to some far forgotten land by magical carpet and forgot the whole thing, your life, ever happened.
Tempting as it may sound you’ve yet to choose D but it’s always there at the end, just in case, a big what if saved for the rainiest of rainy days.
I remember. Fights in the playground. Older kids scared of their juniors. Learning that the best punch was one to the jaw. That way you can take someone down in one go. Daydreaming in science, brain aching in maths. Loafing off at cricket and football, staying inside the library on hot sunny days to play boardgames no one had ever heard of. I remember giving up on the world of the sane and the run of the mill pass times and games at a very early age, 7 or 8, who knows. We can blame Tolkien all we like but there is more to it.
A niche, a place away from all the blandness that society and television offered us. The world of fantasy and boardgames, miniature battles and dungeon explorations. It’s all going on up there. Where? Your head of course, your mind and imagination. I remember.
I remember a time when we looked to ourselves and our friends for inspiration and excitement. I remember. A time before staring at a screen hour on hour for the answers was the social norm. Typing into the void, screaming our thoughts and opinions of the latest craze in the desperate hope that someone will take note and confirm that they like what we wrote in that blank nightmare, the twilight zone of human opinions. I remember when we had everything we needed within us and our friends and families. Before databases and tracking devices, before the huge pacifier of human thought and emotion. I remember how those adventures ran, always giving several options. There was always the alternative even then. A beefy, burlish looking man blocks your path with an iron fist.
Do you A: draw your broadsword,
B: Barter
C: Don your leather jerkin or
D: Put the book down and do something else.
Forget about yesterday, don't worry about tomorrow because all that matters is today.
Maggots Michael, you're eating maggots.
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ashmie
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