A feeling of nausea overcomes me seemingly from out of nowhere, descends as if it were a falcon or, more accurately, some other, slower and larger bird more interested in carrion than anything else. The night sky is full of designs we are compelled to decipher by the thing inside us that recoils at all random conglomerations, whether of words or facts or numbers, but I have set out deliberately, at least for an hour or two, to destroy that part of myself, to fill it in with the rational equivalent of concrete so as not to have to spend the rest of my life arguing for the reinstatement of sophistry as a legitimate legal profession, the wringing of one’s hands in the face of decisions that might otherwise seem on the face of them mundane. When to fill the dirt bikes with gasoline, when to stand at the window and, out of a sense of helplessness I suppose, do deep knee bends or whatever we call deep knee bends now that we have become much more sophisticated in our knowledge of the body and what it can endure before giving out, what it can be expected to accomplish. The chemist who lives across the street with the wife who whispered something once in my ear that I could not make out but which has ever since kept me up at night as I try, naturally enough, to piece those incomprehensible sounds together into a comprehensible whole, looks the contraption over, runs his fingers along the more elegant lines that just happen to have emerged during the haphazard fashioning of it over the course of weeks and months and years and says he has heard there are islands out there where the people are no longer human in the strictest sense of the term, where they have evolved or devolved one into the basest replicas, into ideas with flesh and blood covering and little else. His monologue reminds me of the time when I was stuck on an elevator by myself and the hours ticked by and before I knew what had happened, the elevator had turned into a cathedral whose endless stained glass windows depicted its bearded and taciturn saints standing perfectly still for some reason in tide pools, among brilliant yellow anemones and the occasional octopus, its tentacles wrapped lasciviously around an ankle and its eye peering out at you with something like impertinence and something like love. Not that love which joins one being to another, however briefly, but that which endeavors to annihilate all distinctions, all boundaries between beings and make of them a single indefinable entity like light or what some people refer to as universal gravitational pull when what they really mean is that thing that encourages them to keel over lifeless in the streets.