“Success is how high you bounce when you hit bottom” – George S. Patton
Life is one tough cookie. For many people, it resembles that of listening to your favourite song at full blast on a pair of expensive headphones without a care in the world – you’re casually perched in the warmth of your living room listening to that new album by that new band you seem to adore and there’s not a soul to say otherwise. I once wore those expensive headphones, and oh boy would I blare that music. But then one day, quite abruptly, the music stopped. It just stopped. And a huge menacing fist came whirling round the back of my head, slapping me inexorably on the back of my scalp; hence striking the headphones from my head and sending them tumbling to the cold, desolate floor of nothingness, crushing them into a billion one-celled organismic smithereens. The end of the ludicrously expensive headphones, and the end of music.
If that doesn’t strike you as a vivid enough analogy to convey the way my forsaken life has played out over the last few months, then you’re probably too rich, famous or successful to contemplate the life of me, Frank, the bottom feeder of society. To put it simply, I don’t think there’s a single aspect of my life that I could proudly define as ‘successful’ (whatever that means). I yearn for success, but while I spend the majority of my days worrying about where I’m going to acquire my next cigarette, I’m not entirely sure where I’m going to find this ‘success’, if even it exists.
Anyone would say that it’s not a sensible idea to share any segment of your financial details with the rest of the world-wide web, but in all honesty, I would feel far more woeful for the guttersnipe that attempted to hijack my bank details than I would for myself. In fact, I’d be relieved to see someone take possession of my bank account. Perhaps then I could get away with blaming the legacy of ‘financial fuck-ups’ I’ve constructed over the last few months on them rather than myself. Over the last few months, I’ve watched in peril as the cute numbers of my Santander bank account have descended below freezing. As of ten minutes ago, the numbers displayed on my online bank account hold the precise balance (or lack of) of ‘£-71.46’, and it’s not reaching paradisiacal temperatures anytime soon.
Perhaps the most towering of the endless list of worries I face in this glacially cold period of my life is the fact that I’m not employed by anyone, so the lack of coins in my bank account are definitely staying relevant to that of a church mouse’s for a considerable time longer. I’ve drifted from job to job over the last six months in an audacious attempt to locate my passion in life. I haven’t discovered it yet. Well, I have, but I don’t think there’s a booming niche for the one who sits on his scrawny arse from dawn to dusk watching clips of Breaking Bad on YouTube and devouring curry-flavoured pot noodles. That resource, ‘cash’, is the most vital resource on the planet for human order and society, and I currently have minus none.
Money is arriving soon, it always does. And that will be the end of my problems, right? I can continue my less than extravagant life of drugs, alcohol and paid Netflix and grow old with those commodities. However, there is one other critical issue that may jeopardise that perfect life plan – I’m not in possession of a bank card…or a wallet…or any form of identification. By some miracle, I managed to lose all three of these essentials within the space of one night due to unforseen levels of alcohol and marijuana invading my system. An entire wallet of cards that gave me credibility as a human being on this bedeviled Earth, and they’re all gone, sitting comfortably on the shelf of another thieving societal bottom feeder that probably has higher digits in his bank account than I. Of course, the entire armoury of cards that sat contempt in the emptiness of my wallet, waiting for their turn, is fully replaceable – at the expense of the money I don’t currently have.
As a final stab at the wound of problems bleeding out my life at the moment, all of my monthly bills are beyond overdue and I recently received a threatening text from the company that allowed me to send SOS texts to my mum at three o’clock in the morning on a Saturday night stating that if I don’t pay the ancient cob-webbed bills within the next few days, then they’ll be forced to delete my phone number from their system and ask for the rest of the bills on the contract to be paid up front, which I thinks mounts to around one big one. The sudden deletion of my number would be both a tragedy for me and the abundance of girls on Tinder that I feel would definitely have wanted my phone number.
However, with every down, there’s an up and this has genuinely been the case over the last few months. With the absence of money and success, I’ve found my eyes opening up to things that I never thought were as important before – books have been read, family members bonded with and I’ve seen my appreciation of the vital things in life surge past my appreciation towards the materialistic items that I used to spend most of my time around. Now, the three most important commodities in my life consist of the roof that protects me from the maelstrom of wind and rain overhead, the wood-burning stove that blisters in the living room, and my mother, whom I’ve learnt a lot about over the previous months. And perhaps the most invaluable possession that I’ve come to welcome the most is this blog; it seems to be my only way forward in this dark period of my life. I do miss Netflix though, I really do.