We’re So Alone Together

I haven’t spoken to anyone in days. I have but I haven’t. I’ve read script, seen pics, watched vids. I see my friends smiling and happy, I see them laugh at the things I type. I don’t see them them laugh. I look at letters on a screen that say LOL and I hear them laugh in my head. I hear their voices and see their faces. I work from home and outside of my cat, my houseplants and the occasional bird outside I don’t see living things for days. I am alone but not. I am a technological contradiction.

I hear beautiful music streaming on invisible waves coming out of my macbook pro’s speakers. The last time I heard live music is when I picked up my guitar and played a few power cords when I was stuck on how to finish a piece. That was a month ago. Real live music may be too loud and crowded now. Real life is messy. People look at you differently in real life. They don’t seem happy in real life. I prefer the smiles and hijinks I see online.

I am alone but completely surrounded by perfection and outrage. I am the calm center of my own universe posting only my best possible outcomes. I am a god. I’m nothing but zeroes and ones but I am a god. Call me Zuul. Get the reference, feel the wave of nostalgia and smile. You’re a god too, we all are now. God is alone.

Religious conviction is 140 character talking points. Politics is an outraged sentence linked to an article that is probably from a fake news site. Love is a relationship status and three months of nauseating profile pics with the two of you.

I don’t display my relationship status. I don’t have profile pics that have another smiling face in them. I am alone in this. I am alone in a world of my creation, a world of my endless choosing. I’m distracted and drooling when I binge someone else’s fictitious life on Netflix. Can you hear me Nancy Botwin? Walter White? I’m right there with you! For the love of god give up on the strange and be there for your daughter Hank Moody.

I am so alone yet I’m surrounded by everything and everyone. That’s a lie. I’m not surrounded, I’m stuck. Hello screen, goodbye real world.

How do we live alone but with everyone? How do we cope with such a realization? I wrote a novella about a man castaway on another planet with only a robot for company. You may try to put your phone away and get out more. Authentic contact over artificial. Real life is scary and without limitless choice. I want my limitless choice just like I wanted my MTV in the 80’s. Now I only want me. I only want what I want.

I’ve used the word ‘I’ in this piece so much because I’m all that’s left of the real world. My brain, me, I. You’re reading this but you’re not real. I will never meet you. I will never see you. I will never hear your voice or laugh at one of your jokes. I will never cry with you and hug you. I will never experience anything with you except for this.

You’ll read this and you’ll feel something and maybe we can be friends. Maybe not. But it doesn’t matter because in the end, just like you, I’m alone.

Me Bless Me. The internet has freed my mind and trapped me in its web. I’m dying a little each day in reality while swimming in fake internet points. Fake internet points cure cancer if you’d only believe in them. They keep troops safe too.

Hello rectangular world, goodbye harsh reality. I don’t need the pills of the 90’s, I’ve got super powers.

Just like you. We’re so alone together and it feels tragically fantastic. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

Chuck Harrison is a writer and illustrator who lives in New York with his son called Puff and his cat named Monkey.

Keep up with Chuck on Twitter and Website

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