More shells turn up under the scissored ribbon. More and more everyday. They don't stop coming. They'll never stop coming. You make one joke about Demolition Man your go-to and then like that, everyone thinks you've got a turtle or snow globe type of fetish that needs to be sated.
Birthdays, anniversaries, Christmas, Saturnalia. If it's a holiday worth gifting for, it's worth shelling out for. The rellos come in droves, they are multiples upon the year. One baby popping out across the line again and again. Each more the family fractures, splinters, roots itself in the little game they play.
When family and friends present you with that shell, that ornament kitsch or knickknack based on the same never ending theme, they think things will go of two ways. Drape your books with Æthelstan study all you want. You're already on another track and it's a game to them.
First is off the cliff and to rage on into the night. To become that malcontent they all invite to family dinners, so that your attitude soils their placemats and they can revile in turn.
See, when you're given all these shells, or rabbit trinkets, or pink platypus paddy-whacks, they want you to snap. It's going to be endless unless you stop it. Entertainment comes in many forms. Frothing at the mouth from your porch as you shout at the passers-by and pitch shells is but one. Many roads lead to cranksville. On the backs of tchotchkes we step.
The other end game is lined with bromides across the lip of the martini glass they shatter in celebration. When your piles from all corners of the Earth becomes too unbearable you'll find yourself making tunnels and drop-hatches, hoarding endless molehills of the stuff. You're too polite to decline, and you're never really sure when they'll drop by, so you always keep the ornaments in show. Which feeds its own cycle. And then you become the example they show their children and the one they warn about when they hound the garage sales.
Your collection of Max Ernst is drowned out, long forgotten as any kind of side interest or fancy. The walls creak. The smell ranks and files your brain away. It's the horror of holding onto things and never letting go. As in when you friends and family use a crutch to base all your gifts and presents.
Money still works, people.
Written on Monday, 8 December 2014