my test. what now? i like to read...:

hi dude

Just checking in. Email me if you ever see this (but I

know you won't). 7:14 PM, February 28, 2020

hi dude

You know, I've managed to see the most beautiful

places. Why can't I see you?

I don't really know what to write these days. Do you

remember doing this assignment, back in the third

grade or so when we were just learning about using

computers? When we'd just gotten our passwords for

our school accounts, everyone found them weird and

promptly told the person next to them the strange

combination of words and letters. After that, the

technology teacher said not to tell anyone our

passwords. We all just stared at each other

awkwardly. Ah, the joys of youth. 8:23 PM, March 1,


hi dude

Last September.

An exceptionally hot day for the month, for the state.

There I was, standing on a float, waving at all the

people crowded on the streets.

It's one of the last parades I'll ever be in. Maybe I'll

see a few, far away from here, but I won't be in them;

I'll just watch.

I was on the float, looking for you. And I saw you,

kind of. I saw you, but I didn't recognize you. I can

only wonder how I didn't.

Did you recognize me at all? Was there a flicker of a

name in your mind, or did you just stare and enjoy

the parade?

You look so different these days, you know.

See? I remember some things. (Then again, you

weren't there when I started forgetting. I keep

forgetting that it's been so long.)

I don't think you'd like me nearly as much as you

used to. Actually, you basically know nothing about

me. I suppose I don't know you either, do I?

I'm just using you to procrastinate, because I know

you're not ever going to see this. I have a paper to

write on JFK, but it's not like you'd care.

Do you ever think of me? I've never met anyone so

bitterly nostalgic as myself. Apparently, nobody

thinks of the past as much as I do. So even if you

did, why would you think of me?

I know you were really religious when I met you. Are

you still? I think I'm more religious than I was when I

knew you.

Heaven has to be that browning field, next to that

stupid little dip in the ground that always collected

and held water for weeks, so that when you tripped

on it your clothes got all muddy. The cotton clouds

wafting against a background of blue. The

basketball court with those weird red things the

basketballs always got stuck in. The red pit.

I'm always alone when I imagine it. I don't want to be

alone. -1:28 PM, March 5, 2020

hi dude

It just occurred to me that the last time I ever saw and

talked to you, you said you didn't have this email

anymore. But it's late and I just wanted, needed to call

your phone number, but it belongs to someone else

now. And I don't know how to feel about that. And it

occurred to me that it could be your mother's number,

and that I've still got a chance, but your mother never

liked me.

In other news, it's crazy how this coronavirus thing

can upend your life, eh? If I'd known I'd be making

hot chocolate with Stevia, water, and cocoa

powder... 1:01 AM, March 22, 2020

hi dude

We've been in quarantine for a hot while now, right?

I called the number again, and I actually got an

answer instead of that haunting bitterness of a

voicemail. She picked up, and I asked if she'd

ever heard of an A. She said, "No, sorry" and. I

said, "Okay, sorry, have a good day" and she said

"You too" and then hung up.

What's there to say, really? It's not like you're ever

going to see this or respond.

I was at a spelling bee a while back, and of course I

won because I'm smart as hell like that. It was the

district spelling bee, and there was a fifth grader

there that was tall and awkward and reminded me a

lot of you. He was wearing a Naruto sweatshirt, and

of course it wasn't you. I wanted to talk to him, but

the spelling bee went on too long and he left, and just

like you I'll never see him again. I ended up talking tp

the runner-up instead.

How was your Easter?
I'm sure you'd be surprised to know that I hated

Easter for a full three years. I really, really hated it.

And then this past Easter, I managed to get a

girlfriend, and I really love her (gay relationships

move faster than straight relationships; probably

comes with the knowledge of past oppression and,

wow, aren't we so lucky to be alive today?) and

so my Easter was really good.

You know, in the fifth grade you asked me if I was

depressed and I said, "What? No. Of course not,'

and you accepted it. As it turns out, you were very

right. I wonder who could've guessed? The only tip I

gave was being an extremely edgy ten year old, and I

suppose you caught that.

You were a much better friend than I ever was.

D'y'know, it's rather funny. I've become rather

obsessed with California recently, and yet now it's a

constant source of sadness and longing. You see, I

very much wish to go there, but I know that none of

my family really cares for me over there. The only

reason I want to go to California is to get far, far away

from here, and for life to get better. I realized about

three days ago that it will never get better. I have

family there, sure, but they believe my mother

over me.

It just occurred to me that you weren't here when

everything started to go so horribly wrong.

So anyway, I want desperately for California, and yet

when I go there I'll be even more alone than I already


I don't even have any friends in California- not really,

anyway. Not anymore, if I ever did (can't remember).

What's more, if I ever go, I'll have virtually no chance

of seeing you ever again.

All of my friends are here, and still, the only people in

the entire world that I wish to get away from are also

here, in this house with me.

My mother threatened to cut contact with me when I

was twelve years old, which was really cool of her. I

couldn't think of anything for a few hours, but when

the numbness finally reached my fingertips and left

my brain, all I could think was that I would be

estranged from my family. Just three days ago, I

realized that she had already done this. I am forever

condemned to hellish loneliness and pain, no matter

where I go. It doesn't even matter if I kill myself at this

point; none of this matters. This is a stalemate that'll

last a lifetime.

No matter where I go or what I do, I will be alone. Or I

won't be alone; I'll have friendships and a family that'll

feel extremely artificial. I'll rely on sympathy.

Would anything even really change now? I

spent last night on the floor in a closet, sleeping

under a towel and several blankets, and I was still

freezing, and I realized that nothing is ever going to

get better.

I already rely on sympathy, and I'm already alone in

the world. Forever condemned to hell, both by the

God that I started praying to and my saintly mother.

Who could've guessed that I'd have a problem with


I read all about that Seattle hijacker today. They

really made him out to be a villain. I think he knew the

whole time that no matter what happened, he'd never

come out of this free. I think you could almost tell

when the air traffic controller knew that he wouldn't

be able to talk him down.

I used to fly a lot. You remember that much. I wonder

if I ever saw him anywhere.

I can't go back home, because there is no home and

there never will be. Andy, I really long for those days in

the field, staring up at the cotton clouds. I really wish

we could all go back. I really wish I could've enjoyed

it more, because it's all gone now. We're never going

there again. None of those stupid little games about

the elements. No more childish adventures.

I miss home. I'm not welcome in California, or here.

I'm all alone now. I worry that it'll always be that way.

Ah, wow. The quarantine is really getting to me.

Sorry. Anyway, 45,000 Americans or so are dead. I

really hope you're not one of them. -2:39 PM, April 22,


hi dude

I'm going to stop using this email soon,

which is really cool, right? There's just no reason to

keep all of this misery anymore (not you, but

everything else). I've had to say a lot of goodbyes

recently and I don't really want to keep them, so I'll

be gone soon. It occurs to me that a normal person

would've just deleted this document anyway. This'll

be one of my last entries; I've decided that I'll

abandon this email account in two weeks or so, but

not now. I guess I could always just come back to it,

but I hope I won't.

I had this horrible dream about you a few months

ago. I'm not sure if I've already written about it but I

guess I'll tell you again. I had a dream that you texted

me back, saying you'd been suffering abuse from

your parents and that's why you never responded to

my text. And then later on I saw you rifling through a

recycling bin for cans, and you looked at me and we

made eye contact and you were so pale and gaunt

and I woke up wondering if that was the last I'd ever

see you, artificially unhappy. Anyway the crazy part

was that you weren't even the main plot of the dream;

in the dream I kept throwing out old soda cans, but

more and more kept appearing and the trips to and

from the bedroom to the garage were getting


The sad thing is that with my ambitions I'll never see

you again, as if seeing you again wasn't already

unlikely enough. I want nothing more than to leave,

all the while wishing I could stay. I think this state is

the best and the most beautiful, and it's unlikely that

my opinion on that will change. I miss this state more

each day, and I haven't left yet. Decisions, decisions...

It's stubborn teenage angst that refused to leave, I

suppose. This will to leave and the will to stay are the

only things I feel strongly now, and no matter what

I do I'll forever be torn apart. How do you cope when

your only options are both detestable?

I think sometimes that the only way to cure myself of

this is to leave the country as soon as I can, but

where would I go? Canada? I could become a

dual-citizen, but I fear that wouldn't be enough.

At the same time, even after I realized this country

does not care for me at all and in fact never will, no

matter what, I still loved this country with everything I

had. America, to those who need it, is a 'best case

scenario' story; it's an inspiration. There were days

when the only love I felt was that of the Bill of Rights,

which is silly and pathetic but completely true. The

Revolution was an inspiration, a heroic tale of

escape, something I could never look up to.

I think that I'll end up paralyzed. I'll stay here, but I'll

be unhappy, and when I go to other places I'll be

even more unhappy. How do you balance out love

and patriotism for the dire need to escape? How does

once cope with the permanent feeling of displacement,

validated only by stays in Holiday Inns and late nights

at the airport? I fear that the only alleviation I'll get

from this horrible loneliness is validation, that I'll only

feel at home in isolation and my only comfort will

be among strangers, in a strange city a thousand

miles away where nobody ever thinks twice about

anybody. I fear that I'll never find home.

When I was younger and Clash of Clans global was

still a thing, I would spend summers nights on global

servers, forging hundreds of connections with people

I would never talk to again. Life is hell, and I could

only pour myself out and feel comfortable among

people I knew I would never talk to again, even

despite the optimistic friends list. Loneliness is only fun

when you can talk about it with random people in the

night, words tinged with concentrated human

desperation. I still remember many of those

conversations, but not the people. Does anyone

remember me?

Anyway, maybe we did talk at some point, but it'll

never happen again. I think that's mighty sad.

5:07 AM, May 8, 2020

hi dude.

So this is it. I must face up with reality: you're never

responding. Even if you kept your account, you

would've deleted this. You know, like a normal


I think it's time to give up.

bye dude.

4:18 AM, May 20, 2020

Important information: "Andy" is an elementary friend I had, one that I would never see again. He took up much of my thoughts because I was a little dick as a kid and I have no idea, to this day, why he stuck around. This is only formatted the way it is because this was all typed on a Google Document we shared, the first one ever created on one of our accounts, in our tech class in the third grade. Amazing how you remember things like that. I've since abandoned that email account, but I took screenshots of this one-person conversation, and I'm posting it here in the hopes that "Andy" does find me and also so that, were my loving family to take my devices away from me, this would be one less piece of me that they got to take.