There’s this place in Belfast right down beside the Titanic Quarter up close to the water, across the ship yard. It’s one of my favourite spots in the entire city. You can see the river meet the mouth of the sea, the water is murky but nowhere near as bad as the Foyle in Derry where up to four hundred bodies are found a year, most of them suicides.
I found this place a year or two ago when I was applying for University for the first time. I hadn’t slept that day and I was listening to James O’Brien’s show on LBC, a good show as well. I sat by the pier and I watched some ducks and other birds floating along the water. When they dived down into the cold depths I counted how long they were gone, each duck could hold their breath for a maximum of forty or sixty seconds before coming up for air.
I don’t think the ducks were hunting for food, but rather they were just bathing. Soaking their feathers and then shaking themselves dry- you’d think that a bird wouldn’t have enough sense to bathe itself, but there we had it. It was a strange site, but in a way it was quite meditative. It was a beautiful day.
The next time I ventured to that point I had a wee bit of grief. I can’t recall what exactly I was in town for, but I desperately wanted only one thing; to eat KFC down by the Dock. Little strange I wanted to eat some dead birds alongside some not-quite-dead birds, but I was peckish. It’s a good mile long walk between the KFC and the dock so I was a wee bit paranoid about my food getting cold.
The paranoia was unjust because when I arrived the food was still warm. I sat down by the docks and watched…something. There weren’t many birds and it was a cloudy day, terrible aesthetic. I was enjoying myself until this stupid kid, couldn’t be more than twelve years old, rode on up with his bike to the docks.
He and his friend were quite cuntish. Tried talking to me but their tone of voice was very condescending, they were trying to take the piss out of me. I never responded because I had grown use to such shit back in school and it was best to keep quite, keep eyes averted- do not give them anything to grab onto whatsoever.
All the while I was eating my chicken, I thought about the various things I could do to this kid to wise him up. Back when I was his age, kids wouldn’t even fucking glance at an older kid. They were bigger, more vulgar and vicious- you were genuinely scared of them. Nowadays that respect is gone, I don’t know how we lost it- or if it ever really existed. Perhaps we aren’t big enough, nowhere near as vulgar or vicious.
The first scenario that popped in my head was that I would finish my chicken, walk over in an attempt to feign conversation, throw the empty chicken box so the kid could catch it and then knee him in the balls- with full force. I’d punch the other kid in the throat, that way he couldn’t make a sound. No one was around but I didn’t want to risk them screaming while I committed a particularly violent assault.
I’d then beat the shit out of them and throw their bikes into the sea, before presuming to fuck off out of there. The kids had no idea who I was, I wasn’t even a resident of Belfast- if I got away there was a ninety percent chance I would have gotten away for good. The perfect crime.
All the while the kids would have the humiliation of getting their asses handed to them. It would eat them up inside. The thing about conflict is that it doesn’t just go away, it festers. It festers into bitterness, rage, burning you inside and out with anger- changing ever aspect of your being and when you feel like you can’t contain it- you lash out.
I’d have effectively destroyed those kids, it’d be hilarious.
A few more scenarios popped up into my head. Most of them fairly similar, one in which upon beating the shit out of the kid I would jump up and land straight on his jaw- full weight would crack the jawbone, making him incapable of moving it. An incredibly painful procedure, I imagine.
There were also a few ones in which I threatened the kid with my flip knife (back then I carried a flip knife cause I thought I was hard, I wasn’t. Hard people don’t carry knives) scared the living shit out of him and then left.
But the most vicious scenario I played in my head was this one; everything went as usual with the attack, but after throwing the bike into the water I would pick up the beaten kid and throw him down onto the rocks below. The rocks had been eroded by the water, sharpened like knives. A seven foot fall from that height would almost definitely kill him.
Ideally I was hoping the fall wouldn’t kill him, or even break the skin. What I hoped would happen is that he’d land on the rocks and be paralysed from the waist down. I’d leave to go wherever men like me have to go, all the while the kid would drift in and out of consciousness- awaking to a numb agony. The tide would come eventually, the fear of drowning would be worse than the drowning itself- but the drowning will be bad.
Some people think that drowning is painless, that things like waterboarding aren’t torture. They couldn’t be more wrong. Drowning is an awful way to die, it’s like being orally raped to death by water.
As the water comes up, gradually every hour, the kid will be terrified. The water is cold and hostile, like being stabbed a thousand times by icicles. The numb agony will soon become agony. Perhaps the hypothermia will kill him long before the drowning, perhaps not. Ideally he wouldn’t be able to cry out for help and if he could then ideally no one would be there to listen. If a boy cries out to be saved and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?
Eventually the water will lift the corpse away from the rocks, most likely to be drifted away on off to sea by a current. But I hope the body stays in the bay. I hope someone finds it, this random little kid murdered for no reason other than he decided to act a cunt to the wrong man. No motive, no premeditated thought, no sense of reason or logic. Just brutality for brutality’s sake; an entire new genre of Viciousness.
Now, here’s why I’m not a Psychopath.
Psychopathy is traditionally defined as a personality disorder characterised by persistent antisocial behaviour, impaired empathy and remorse, and bold, disinhibited, and egotistical traits. Basically a Psychopath is someone whose brain is wired in such a way that they feel no sense of empathy or remorse. About 5% of the world’s population are Psychopaths, in the UK it’s about 1%- you’re less likely to know a Transgender person than you are a Psychopath. In fact if you get out and about much, you probably know at least one.
As you can see above a good portion of the Psychopath brain is inactive, while a normal person is incredibly active. Without these empathy and other emotive receptors being activated, the individual will feel practically nothing in regards to empathy for others. That allows them to do some very questionable stuff, most of them seek power and respect hence why they seek out these professions.
Though it’s important to recognise that not all Psychopaths are killers, infact the overwhelming majority are law abiding citizens. Most of them are surgeons, doctors, politicians, lawyers and bankers. These individuals are very motivated, ruthless and above all else egotistical.
But a Psychopath only turns into a violent criminal, murderer or serial killer (again, important to note that not all serial killers are psychopaths) due to traumatic experiences gained in child hood by parental abuse or severe bullying. That trauma, alongside the already vacant lack of empathy, turns an ordinary psychopath into a monster.
You may be familiar with another term to define such individuals; Sociopath. The two are very similar and both can be equally as violent, although most individuals suffering from these traits are fairly law abiding citizens. The two terms differ exponentially; a Psychopath’s brain is set with little to no emotional or empathy receptors in the brain from day one, while a sociopath’s emotional receptors gradually decline in effectiveness over the course of their lives- particularly childhood where they may face serious neglect, emotional abuse and bullying. Which in turn shuts off these sectors in the brain.
In other words; Psychopaths are born, Sociopaths are made.
I’m not a Psychopath, namely because I just took an online test (and we all know the reliability of an online test) in which I scored 17 points- meaning I’m 15% Psychopath. I took another test for being a Sociopath, got 30% Sociopath. Then I took another test and it appears that I’m diagnosed with an Anti-Social personality disorder.
What, me? Anti-social? Pffft, get out of here.
In reality I probably have various mental health problems that are, as of yet, undiagnosed. I’m planning to see a shrink as soon as I’m not broke. Upon speculation I probably just have some anger management issues alongside a very vivid imagination, so intricate murder fantasies become a common occurrence.
But I have never killed anyone nor would I ever kill anyone. I get very insulted when people tell me they think I’ll grow up to be a serial killer, when in actuality I have an incredible depth of empathy. Do you know I often feel guilty about killing a fly? I once spent an entire afternoon feeling incredibly anxious over the fact that a bee was dying in my garden and it wouldn’t take the sugary water in the spoon I was offering it.
No matter how much I hate someone I remain incapable of killing them. Because although I despise them, I feel nothing so horrid to their mother, or their father or sisters, brothers, friends, cousins, loved ones. I couldn’t just rip a chunk out of all their lives, create a gaping black hole in their hearts.
What would have happened if I did kill that boy that day? The police would have found the body, bloated as the water damaged the skin immeasurably. The sight of which would give the family nightmares for years on end. The loss would cause a sever grief in the household, a morbid silence that tears apart the family. The parents may even end up slitting up. They would never know why someone would kill their child and that lack of knowledge would make them bitter, broken. What kind of a monster would do such a thing like that?
I don’t want to be a monster. I like to think of myself as a good guy, but often times I have these intrusive thoughts. I mean, I have these really really bad thoughts, they scare the shit out of me. But although I feel bad about even having these thoughts, I keep telling myself that I am still a good guy. Because the difference between a good guy and a bad guy is not that the prior doesn’t also have bad thoughts, but they are strong enough not to act upon such evils.
Christ this is going to read really weird for any future job prospects, with HR reading all these Articles to ensure that I am not a deranged lunatic who shouldn’t be trusted with poultry or typing out letters. I’d just like to set the record straight; Hi, I’m Des. I’m a very sane individual, very mundane, super normal- some would even say the normalest.
Please hire me, I need a job.
What was I talking about? Ah yes, Psychopathy. The reason I’m talking about it is for two main reasons; the first being that I find the subject interesting and wanted to open an article with an inane diatribe of a murder fantasy that would be closed off with a decry of my lack of psychopathy for comedic effect (did you laugh? c’mon, be real…did you?) the second being I could not find a suitable article for this said opening, that is until I attended a party last week and it got me thinking about Psychopaths. Namely, because I met one.
So I get this invite to a house party in late June, I’ve been to two previous house party’s thrown by these guys but they weren’t exactly worthy of articles. One was around late December, before Christmas and the other was like…last month, I think? I don’t know. Either way I got really drunk at both of these mediocre parties.
On the day of the party I have my first proper workout in like a month (I do 400 Push-Ups a day but that didn’t count) mainly because I needed a confidence boost for the various social interactions I would have tonight. I have a lot of self image problems alongside a low self esteem so physical exercise is a huge benefit to me.
Other than that I was a little worried that I’d be sore in the morning because, y’know, first workout in a month. But before heading to the party I went to the Acne Ridden Manlet’s bourgeois domain to play some poker, ate a pizza and exchanged in what we refer to as playful banter and others would refer to as bullying.
You see, when we get together we play this little game, a battle of words if you will. The goal of the game is not necessarily to win, but rather to destroy the other person. Ideally you’d make the other guy cry, though I don’t think any of us have yet to accomplish such a feat. We’ve all made each other rage quit though.
I am what some people would describe as a “Phenomenal Shit-talker” in which I will say the most barbaricly absurd drivel imaginable, unapolegitaclly and I will not stop until the opponent is in such a dazed state of confusion that he will lash out at me- thus causing the man to lose his cool, which we find hilarious for some reason.
In one case me and the Chinless Wonder were having a pint with the Manlet, we got to talking and eventually we found ourselves playing the fatal game of shit talking. Me and Chinless had joined forces, for the Manlet had made the mistake to take on both of us at the same time.
The Manlet is a History Major and for some fucking reason I was making the absurd argument that History was a stupid subject because it’s just re-learning about things that have already happened and thus it appears absurd that someone would dedicate their lives to studying these events that already happened. The Manlet tried to fight back but the Chinless Wonder used one of his more elegant rebuttals; “Nigga just remember“.
We got him good that day.
The game of poker was pretty good, although most of what we did involved waiting for the others to arrive. I’ve played it a few times now, a little familiar with the rules. These games could go on for hour or dive hours at a time but I wanted to get out quickly so I could catch the bus to Belfast.
So I made large bets with shitty cards, which to my dismay made the others intimidated and caused them to fold. Meaning for a good few rounds I was winning despite having the shittiest hand in the game, which in turn really irked my friend Warcock- a man who is half German and half bald eagle- saying such cruel things as “He doesn’t even know how to play!” all the while he check’s upon every single fucking round he’s in and borderline refuses to show his cards when he folds.
Eventually I lose, but not until I make one of the other players lose by forcing him to go all in and beating him by a hair. For some reason the Manlet went a little crazy and went all in, forcing me to do the same. The reason he did this was; “Because I want to watch Jackass!” as one of the other players brought all three Jackass movies.
Soon after that the game ended abruptly, half an hour before my bus would arrive. We chatted a little and I engaged in such a rabble of shit talk that it rightfully offended the Acne Ridden Manlet. Our game is like psychological sparring and often times I’ll hit him square on the chin. Most men would fall down flat after a hit like that, others just lose their balance- this man though threw an entire packet of minstrels at me and then chased me out of the house with a broom.
I think I won.
I got the bus to Belfast at around half nine. There’s this weird churn in your stomach you feel when you venture on a night out. Little bit of nerves, because the night could be great but it could also be really really bad. Like, you might get laid- but you also could get raped by an exiled Harvey Weinstein.
Got to Belfast at about half ten, went straight to the off license and bought a twelve pack of Heinekens. I always bring beer to the party because I feel obliged, for some reason, to bring something. Like I’m buying my place. I don’t know, I just don’t want to be that guy at the party with nothing to offer.
I get a little lost on the way to the house but eventually, thanks to the help of a busy taximan, I find it. They let me in and I climb up the stairs, I see my good friend the Commie but first I make my way to the kitchen. I start putting the beers into the fridge, which is already stacked to the brim full of beers. That takes me about two and a half minutes and then I head out onto the fire escape.
The flat is medium sized, about four or five bedrooms, a living room, bathroom and a kitchen. The whole place is a pigsty and it did not surprise me to learn that only the lads lived here, no women. Most people hung about the fires exit, the kitchen or the living room. Some secluded themselves in various bedrooms, under the fire exit stairway or along the narrow hallway.
I went out and talked to the Commie. Now the Commie is not an actual Communist, he just likes to joke that he’s a Communist; “For the Meme” when in actuality he despises the ideology. Loves Russia though, some would say a little too much.
He’s a very frail guy. Like if you took John Mulaney and gave him AIDES. He’s got everything; bad lungs, bad joints, various sleeping disorders, allergies and so on. It’s honestly astounding that he’s still alive, he’s kind of like Mr. Burns in that he has so many diseases that there’s no room to expand and thus they can’t do any damage.
In another life, the Commie and I would have been brother in laws. But that didn’t happen so let’s move on.
I’m gradually getting a bit drunker, watching everyone else move about and talk rapidly. The Commie had smoked a perfectly legal substance and was very stoned, my jokes made him laugh way easier than it usually took. Eventually he got up to go…somewhere. I had an awkward chat with a stoner who had vacated from the living room because guys were discussing the topic of; “If your bro is horny then you got to blow him, as a friend“. The poor man was confounded by what he had found, as he had yet to be initiated.
You see, the younger generations (particularly later stage millennials and Generation Z) have grown up on the internet and have thus developed several different sub-communities with their own sub-cultures. They have their own acronyms, phrases, writing styles and humour that is so independent of one another that it automatically excludes outsiders.
Back ten or fifteen years ago you may have heard a joke and said “I don’t get it” and then moved on, never encountering that said joke again. But online you’ll encounter a joke, often times written in a strange format and style that you cannot understand. But the thing is you’ll continue to see that joke, or jokes in a similar style to that one- it is no longer just a joke you can just walk past, but a view into a subculture of human beings on the internet.
The strange thing about these norms of communication is that these users don’t actively learn it. It’s not like Spanish or English where you have to practice. You just pick it up as you go along your travels without any notice whatsoever. It’s impossible to collect and define these norms in some kind of dictionary because they’re always evolving. Each joke or meme has a half life of about a week at best, maybe even a month if the current is good.
See what happens is that someone comes up with a joke or produces a meme, sometimes a literal joke or meme but often times it can be as simple as a strange phrase written in an even stranger font. That joke is then shared and replicated into a variety of other subjects to create a longer life span for the meme. But what kills a meme is when outsiders use it and it becomes mainstream.
The initial crowd that loved the meme now hate it as it’s become popular, the outsiders (often referred to as “Normies” meaning normal people) will eventually lose interest in it overtime. At this stage in the game the meme is brought back by some abstract community who love ironic memes, memes they themselves don’t even find funny but share it because it’s now ironic and thus may render a semblance of humour.
Ironic Memes are probably some of the strangest things you’ll see online. Because they’re intentionally poorly crafted jokes and images and phrases that resonate little to no meaning outside of “I’m being Unfunny Ironically” I’d argue that it was a Hipster Sub-Culture for people who simply didn’t realise they were Hipsters.
In the Stoner’s case he encountered a brand of Ironic humor that he was unfamiliar with. There isn’t a title for it but I’d think it would be called Gay Irony. Essentially, what the joke; “If your bro is horny then you got to blow him, as a friend” is doing is both mocking the people that genuinely believe this and the homophobes repelled by this.
What adds the humour is that it’s imagining your typical macho fuck boy (i.e. a frat boy, douchey surfers etc) and having these typically homophobic caricatures say the gayest shenanigans you can imagine. It’d be like if Jason Statham talked about giving a reach-around.
The vast majority of the people who partake in such jokes are usually straight guys who are a part of this ironic meme crowd, they’re essentially being gay ironically because the typical social norm for straight guys is to be remarkably awkward or even hostile to such behaviour.
It’s a very confusing subject and I myself barely understand it, so don’t feel to bad if you’re struggling with the whole thing. It’s kind of like Modern Art in that way where it’s mostly meaningless horseshit. In fact, you’ll never find a better example of Post-Modernism in Artistic Expression than in Ironic Memes.
Anyway, I chat to this stoner and another guy who has a perpetual high face. The world cup is on but I don’t know jack shit about it, we talk about some perfectly legal substances and how nice they are, then we talk about MMA which is the conversation I was more invested in.
The two guys obviously knew way more about MMA than me, I myself have a brief knowledge- watched a few McGregor fights and know some names. Honestly most of my MMA media comes from YouTube videos of Redneck’s fighting former gang members. But I didn’t want to expose myself as a newbie, so I nodded my head to emphasise genuine interest but always tried to drag the conversation to fights that I actually knew about.
Eventually they too fucked off to somewhere else, which left me standing by myself momentarily. That was until I saw this slim, 6′ 6” Australian man move towards me. He was damn near the prettiest man I ever met in my life. Like I’m talking Dorian Gray levels of pretty here. He was a fucking Hemsworth for christ sake.
He comes up and stands beside me, looks at me and says “Do you think anyone’d mind if I took a piss off the balcony?” I said go for it. We laughed and then he went down stairs to take a piss in a corner. Bit strange considering there was a bathroom inside but eh, I’ve seen worse. I was actually a little disapointed that he didn’t take a piss off the balcony because there was a van in the street below and I wanted to see if he could hit it.
We got to talking, he was from Sydney. His father is English so he got dual citizenship for both the UK and Australia. Said he could go anywhere in Europe cause of his passport (though by 2019 those destinations will amount to fuck all) he chose to live here for…some fucking reason. Went to Uni for like a week, dropped out and has been partying ever since.
He was your typical Australian stereotype; a surfer bro and a party animal. Though the strangest thing about his presence was this; no body knew who he was. I asked everybody who lived there; “Here, do you know that Australian guy” and they said no. He just showed up randomly at a party held by strangers. Truly bizarre.
At this stage I was talking to the Beatles fan (who lived there) about various stuff. We joked about murdering the Australian man and stealing his face, he saidthat way we’d have better luck with the women (even though he had a girlfriend) and I elevated the discussion by suggesting that we ought to kill all men, thus consolidating the market.
I then pitched a black comedy in which two un-fuckable men create a disease that kills all men other than them. And though the disease works, it has terrible consequences as the women become infected and are turned into Lesbians. He laughed at that part, I think it’d make a fine film.
We’re chatting when a guy I kind of sort of know comes over to chat, let’s call him Primy. I met him at the previous party, initially citing that I knew him from somewhere. I did in fact not know him from somewhere. He had a very generic look, as did many other people. I swear to fuck I made a damn fool out of myself asking people that I never met in my life if I knew them from somewhere.
I initially liked him upon the first encounter we had at the previous party, seemed dead on enough. Though all that changed later on in the night. It was about two o’clock in the morning and I was sitting in the living room for god knows how long. I’d taken so many beers at that point, if I closed my eyes I felt that my soul would ascend to whether it may go.
I like to think that the ideal goal for any night out for me is the possibility of getting laid. But of course that a naive ideal, especially at house parties. No, the real goal for any night out for me is this; drink and take as much as you can- but don’t throw up.
I didn’t throw up that night, I sat in that room praying myself into sobriety. Listening to the conversations around me. There was this skinny blond guy who self identified as a Loyalist, but he was sound enough. I don’t think he’d burn me out of my house, namely because he doesn’t have the upper body strength to carry a tiki torch.
He was conversing with this chubby guy from Draperstown who I fucking loved, he was a sound lad. Although he does vote SDLP, but then again nobody is perfect. They were talking about the cesspool that is Draperstown and then Tommy Robinson came up and the Loyalist said some very stupid things about both the thug and the Muslim population in the UK- which I was severely disappointed upon hearing because I myself felt a sense of camaraderie through the fact we were both on the dole.
At this point I thought it wise to tell a joke; “I genuinely believe that Northern Ireland is the most comfortable place to be a Muslim. Because when there’s a bomb threat, you’re not the first suspect” the room went up in an uproar. I had that joke prepared for three or four months now, waiting for the perfect moment to tell it. It was the perfect moment and I got the perfect reaction.
It’s probably the best joke I’ve ever told. Only two sentences and it has it all; sufficient political commentary, absurdist observations, the hint of tragedy looming from the bones of the Troubles and the ongoing war on terror that will never end, all culminating with these perfect words set out in the perfect order with the perfect tone of voice- the perfect joke.
The girl across the room found it funny, or at least I hoped she did. She was giving me looks and I think we were set. After a few hours most everyone left except for me and two girls, one of them being the one I was just talking about. It was the crack of dawn- about quarter to four in the morning. A guy came in, nice guy with glasses- I’ll call him Kingsman cause he looked a wee bit like the guy from Kingsman.
He checked in to see we were all alright, we were fine. He said it was ok for us to stay over, which was nice of him. I gave him a drunken handshake and he went away. Apparently the two girls I was with were friends of his girlfriend. I heard from the various other girls at the party, most of whom I was friendly with, that they were cheeky cunts. I didn’t get that impression from them, they seemed perfectly nice.
At this stage I was trying to act sober by engaging in a dialogue, which would ideally lead me to curt one of the girls but all of that was fucking ruined when Primy barged in alongside the Loyalist, the Beatles fan and the guy from Draperstown. Initially I didn’t mind the company but Primy insisted we played a drinking game which I was too drunk to follow.
So at some point I fell to the sofa and tried to sleep. I didn’t sleep well. In fact I kept hearing them talking to me, Primy worked at Primark (hence the name, Primy) and he just realised that he had to start work in two hours and he was obviously not fit for it. So he had to call in and say he was sick. Then some guy threw up on my ass and the Loyalist was kind enough to clean it up.
He did a good job too, wasn’t even a stain on my jeans when I awoke.
I went back to “sleep” and awoke to find the Loyalist trying to steal my €500 boots (the boots are a long story) and Primy was petting my head, seeing if I was still alive/awake. Upon realising I was being petted by a stranger, in the worst hungover state of my life, I said to him without even opening my eyes; “If you touch me again I will fucking Rape you to death“.
Now it’s never nice to threaten to rape someone, even if you didn’t even mean it. That’s why for a solid five or ten seconds Primy was dead silent. After processing what I just said, he replied “…Uck, don’t do that“.
At this point I believed it was time to go. I got up from my seat after about twenty minutes of just sheer processing the amount of pain I was in. You see, when you get drunk you need a solid eight or twelve hours of sleep the following day to process all that alcohol. You’ll wake up hungover, but outside of that you’re fine.
On this night I slept, poorly, for barely four hours. My liver was still breaking down all that shit- I felt as if my body was digesting itself. It was the worst pain I’d ever felt in my life. I got up but Primy insisted I lift a card for…some fucking reason. I did, then I fucked off. Not before Primy gave me a hug for being a good sport, which is nice, I suppose.
I told all of this to Primy, about how he straight up fucking cock-blocked me with his stupid drinking game. He found the whole tale funny and then apologised like a good sport. I said it was fine, probably nothing would have amounted out of the whole thing even if he wasn’t there that night. Then again, nothing will come from nothing.
Primy here is a good lad and amid our conversation it dawns on me; “Oh my God, you’re like the Catholic Luke McGariggle” Luke is a friend of mine and for the time being I won’t change his name because…fuck it. The Beatle guy agrees with me, since he is familair with Luke. But Primy here says; “I’m Protestant”
Which starts us off on an interesting dialogue. “Well,” I says “then you’re the Belfast Luke McGarrigle” to which he says “Lad, I’m from Cookstown-” to which I retort “Well you’re the Cookstown Luke McGariggle, then” which is an apt description. Cookstown is literally just Drumahoe with Gonorrhoea.
Eventually I go into the kitchen where I meet a guy I know, a proper character, let’s call him Coke. Now Coke is this fairly tall guy about my age, very smart and funny but he has an Achilles heel; he’s an asshole. Now I’ve met many assholes in my time and Coke here was one of the better ones. You could get along with him just fine for a good while, but occasionally he’d say something and it was just apparent he had little to no remorse. He’d be a terrible man to get close with because he would always get bored and say stupid shit to cause a reaction.
But for that moment we are at peace, equals even. Plus because of his Autism he’s able to remember the lyrics to nearly every Irish Rebel song so he was a sound country man, a good wee Nationalist, one of the lads.
Now I knew who he was, but I let on that I didn’t for five odd seconds while I was getting a beer. “You’re Coke, right?” he nodded. He knew my name already, unlike me he didn’t see any sense in pretending not to know who I was. The reason I did that was to let on that I had a more active social life than I actually do and thus I know so many people that I often forget their names and faces.
I did the same thing to the Beatles Fan’s girlfriend when I came in, letting on that I didn’t remember meeting her when in actuality I recall every brief encounter we’ve ever had. I have a good memory in those regards, I’m shit at remembering birthdays or whatever the fuck an adjective is.
Though all that acting was done in vain when later on she confided that she couldn’t believe I didn’t remember her. So then I admitted that I did remember her, I was just letting on that I didn’t. She gave me a really confused and concerned facial expression, a face I would encounter on various people throughout the night.
What’s worse, not remembering someone or lying so that you don’t seem like a creepy weirdo and admitting said lie which makes you an even creepier weirdo? A question for the philosophers, I suppose.
So the reason I call him Coke is because he loves Coke. Can’t get enough of it. Loves drawing a line of Coca Cola and snorting up all that sugar, all the while giving a lesson upon the best way to absorb Coca Cola and to avoid a brain freeze. Though some people may refer to that brain freeze as a “overdose“. However, I would ask how could a man have an overdose on a perfectly legal substance?
What do you think we are, non-law-abiding-citizens?
Today he was off the Coke, hadn’t had a snort in two or three weeks he said. Though it was fairly obvious he was on a variety of other perfectly legal substances. He was really warm, in his own words he was “sweating like a Pedo in a Barney suit” a great joke which he would repeat all through the night, mostly to new people who had yet to hear the joke but I have the feeling this particular jest was a favourite of his.
We talked a good bit about exercise, history, the dole, strength and the variety of perfectly legal substances. Though for the most part we engaged in a good bit of Slabbering. For those of you unfamiliar with my dialect, slabbering simply means Gossip. We’re not drooling on each other.
We slabbered about a good few people, none of which I’m going to release here. I have a slabbering reputation to create/uphold- I can’t just slabber about slabbering with other slabbers, what am I, a slabber? Despite the stigma, Slabbering is vital to building trust between people, hence why I do it. Though I may falter, I like to think I only say things behind a man’s back that I know for a fact I have the nerve to say to his face.
One of the main guys who lives here, let’s call him Guy, comes in and prepares a plate full of legal substances. He goes up and down the apartment every now and then, promising these substances to all who want them. But he’s smoked so many legal supplements that his memory is shot to fuck so you’ll find yourself waiting forty odd minutes for him to stop talking to people and actually organising these said substances.
Coke takes a good few more substances, hence why he’s sweating like a Paedophilic Dinosaur. I learned via others that he had split up with his girlfriend the night previously. It seemed he wanted to get as fucked up as possible. If I didn’t know any better, I’d say that Coke was hoping to die. But he seemed like the kind of man who believed that he’d never die. Or at least, that’s what I sensed from him.
I chatted to Guy for a bit. I knew him as an actor and he even played in a proper musical up in the Opera house, but he was telling me the last day that he didn’t really give a shit about it. In fact in the musical he said that the actors he was understudying fucking hated him because he’d show up to every single rehearsal high. He didn’t see any sense in identifying as just one thing; Actor, Economist, Supplement Supplier- he just wanted to one thing- a Guy.
While I admired his insistence on living in the moment, I overwhelmingly disapproved of it. It’s alright living in the moment when you’re a carefree 19 year old, not so much when you’re 35 with kids. Often times it’s hard to change that kind of mindset, that’s why you always need a plan, even if it’s incredibly vague or futile, because how else are you going to keep on track?
He seemed uncomfortable by these questions regarding the future, so he quickly changed the topic to me. On the previous party he asked me what I wanted to do, “A film maker” I said. “Any good?” he asked. “Well, I’m alright-” he butted in “Yeah, but are you any good?” the boldness of the question startled me for a moment, at that moment you could easily tell he was half American. “Yeah,” I says “I’m good” I was going to add “Best in the world” but the tide of the conversation had changed.
So as you can see, when he asked me this question again I had plenty to say. I can’t mind exactly what I said, but I believe it was something along these lines;
“Yeah, I want to be a film maker. But I don’t just want to be a film maker. I want to be the greatest film maker that’s ever going to live. I want kids like me looking upon my works in fucking awe, thinking I’m a benevolent genius. I want my success to enrage my critics and shame those who doubted me. I want to create films that’ll live on throughout time, be placed in special archives, beamed up into outer fucking space- I want my name to be Biblical. I want greatness, I want glory- and I know this whole damn dream is futile because I’m pursuing a career in a medium that is entirely based on people’s interpretations, and people for the most part are fucking idiots. Maybe a hundred people think I’m a genius, but maybe five hundred don’t- maybe two thousand don’t even know my name or face. I know to achieve this dream I will have to make a lot of sacrifices, because I can climb this steep mountain but I can only climb alone. Those who I see along the way will be of great benefit, but I cannot take them with me. Nor will they want to climb with me, and I cannot stay with them upon where they have rested from their own climb. Because I know that if I stop now I will have an undying thirst that’ll drive me mad, and I already may be mad. Mad enough to believe in such a dream, to fantasise about such a decrepit and gloriously lonely life- but it is the one I want. I want to scratch my name upon the face of the earth, to encapsulate the human spirit, to delve further into the abyss and uncover it’s borders. I want that, I want it all.“
As I finished my delusional monologue, Guy gave me that confused and concerned stare that I would receive several more times during the night. He stopped fidgeting for a moment and said this; “…Cool” then went back to work and immediately changed the topic.
I think I sacred him a little bit, got that crazy eye in me. I acted like Desmond the weirdo instead of plain old Des. A mond can make a huge difference in a man.
He gave me one of the substances he prepared, something he referred to as a “bomb” I can’t recall the exact name of this perfectly legal substance, all I know is that after a while it made me feel ecstatic. He tells me to set an alarm for about forty minutes time and then “come and find me” which makes me really fucking anxious- I mean, what the fuck is going to happen in forty minutes? And why are you the only person to subsidise it?
Fucking strange. Anyway, I went up to this girl that the Commie said he fancied and tried setting him up, but she said “I don’t think my boyfriend would like that” and then everyone laughed. I laughed to, you ought to be able to laugh at yourself. At this stage of the game I was very high.
I was told explicitly to stop drinking after taking a bomb, but I wasn’t feeling anything at the time so I drank like two or three more beers. I was told to stay hydrated, which initially I didn’t feel necessary. After awhile I found myself drinking out of a fucking jug of tap water. It was fucking delicious.
I took two more bombs that night, I was warned not to go over two but in total I had three. Guy took six, Coke took something like eight and he almost threw up. I dared him to throw up on the van in the street below the balcony but unfortunately he did not throw up.
The substance was cut up into small portions and wrapped around this little paper to make a mall shape. I was told to take it like a pill, just small and for the life of you don’t chew it. Upon the third bomb I took the bag but it tore apart in my mouth and it went all over my tongue. It was probably the worst thing I’ve ever tasted in my entire life.
So soon enough I get really fucking happy all of the sudden. The substance is in my stomach amid digestion, giving it time to pollute my bloodstream, triggering some production of the hormone serotonin which is shot directly into my brain- causing an ecstatic joy.
I start saying and doing weird shit. I start asking people these really weird and intimate questions. Namely; have you ever been in love? Most of the people I asked this question responded yes in some manner of detail. Others answered yes and didn’t want to expand, in fears of revealing too much of their soul to a strange man with dilated pupils. One guy said no, he’d never been in love and had no desire for it.
He looked a little bit like Owen Jones, the British Journalist. I said he was a bit camp and he laughed in an offended manner, then tried to expand upon my claim and clarify I didn’t mean anything by it. Primy butted in to tell me that I have a great gift for unintentionally offending people. Which is true, it’s one of the many things I have in common with Coke.
Upon asking Coke this question he said he didn’t know. He thought he had experienced this feeling with his last Girlfriend, but it was only momentary. I told him he will always love but it will always be fleeting, that’s his problem. His ex-girlfriend (incidentally is the Beatle fan’s gf, long messy story there I won’t tell) was across the room to us. We were all alone in the living room and he just told her “I never loved you [insert name]” which…is never the nicest thing to say to a former partner.
Like I said, Coke is a raging asshole. It also doesn’t help that he’s a giant scrounger, a high functioning autist who managed to trick the state into paying for his fancy car. I swear to fuck he’s the kind of welfare cheat that Ronald Reagan dreamed up in one of his delusional speeches.
I talked about the whole idea of “the one” and how I believe it is ultimately toxic. I’ve talked about it previously so I won’t detail it here.
For some reason I felt compelled to talk to Coke’s ex across the room about the twenty or thirty different scars on her arms. I spotted them when I came in. I don’t go looking for scars but for some goddamn reason I always find them. I’m observant like that. I noticed these wee scratches on some random girls leg and deducted it came from her cat that she probably owned.
Reason I was staring at her legs? Well, I was trying desperately not to look at her ass.
I already knew the morbid story the moment I laid my eyes on them scars. They were of similar size, shape and propensity. They were the markings left behind from self harm. I presume she used a pen knife, broken razor blade or the blade from a sharpener. I’d known people previously who did something similar. The tragedy with people is that they’re not very different, in some shape or form all our stories are varingly similar.
I went to the kitchen to get another pitcher of water for me and Coke, as we were in dire need of water. Guy was preparing some more substances, wearing a Costa Coffee shirt that was half open. I commented that I had expected him to have a six pack, again- not the nicest thing I could have said.
Although I have to admit he’s in good shape. For some fucking reason I felt the need to brag about doing 400 push ups a day, even flexed a little. Felt like a vain moron, for arrogance is the enemy of the Irishman.
For some goddamn reason I noticed a small scar on his chest and asked about it. I’d noticed another scar earlier right by his eyebrow, in which he got from falling on a toy train set when he was like four. This scar was different though, there was a lingering pain behind it.
He told me he’d done it himself and then proceeded to show me various other scars on his right bicep. Some small, some large and one in particular looked really nasty. I think he earned that from a suicide attempt. I was surprised that someone so pretty and confident could hurt themselves in such a way, but he told me he hadn’t always been this way. The man I was looking upon was a work in progress and he’d come such a long way from whence he came.
I asked why he had hurt himself, expecting a life story of some sorts. But the look in his eye told me that he didn’t want to talk about it, that he refused to think about such morbid topics in such detail; “Sometimes you’re just sad, bro“.
I already know the reason why people hurt themselves, for some reason I felt a need to ask their individual reasons. But they’re usually all so very similar. They’re often people who at some point in their lives struggled with fitting in and dealing with their mental health. They feel as if they have no control over their lives, as if you’re being dragged along by friends who you believe don’t really care about you, a family you think doesn’t love you and various other responsibilities you feel your presence wouldn’t make the utmost difference.
You feel as if you cannot control your life, but you can control pain. And to some people that means a great deal. Of course you have to be really goddamn lonely to hurt yourself. It’s why self mutilation is so common among prisoners in self confinement, which is a form of torture in and of itself.
For some fucking reason I asked if I could kiss him, he laughed and allowed it. It was a stupid thing to do, especially since he didn’t even kiss back. Man, I got to stop kissing men. I’m not even gay (being gay would solve so many problems) I’m like, the straightest guy to ever live. I gotta build a reputation for that shit though.
I follow Guy about as he delivers the substances, we come to the room (former bedroom of a political guy I know, call him Parnell) filled with five shirtless men and one fully clothed woman sleeping in the corner. Nothing dodgy happening, they’re just sitting about smoking and chilling out.
For the rest of the morning I stay with them. Eventually Coke comes up, now shirtless, to hang about. I go down occasionally for more pitchers of water. The sun is up and I watch it ascend above the houses, it’s a beautiful sight. I was high as fuck at that point and I think everyone was getting annoyed about how chatty I had become.
I asked the usual question, most everyone in the room had been in love at some point or another. I talked to them about it and then I talked about myself. At some point I brought up the shit that went down in Derry. It was the day after the Twelfth of July, throughout the week some cunts down in Derry went out every night to throw petrol bombs along the road, at cop cars and at the Fountainside Estate- the only Protestant Estate in the Bogside or even that side of the Foyle.
One day someone tried to shoot at the police, which brought along rumors that the New IRA had been behind the rioting because they’re the only kind of cunts around that have access to Guns. For those of you uninitiated there’s different types of the Irish Republican Army dating back across a century.
You had the first IRA led by Michael Collins, then you had the Provisional IRA led by Martin McGuinness, followed by the Continuity IRA and then the Real IRA all of whom were appalled by the current IRA’s moderation in the Troubles and the Good Friday agreement. Then you have the New IRA, which is just a fresh batch of cunts.
To put it bluntly, the IRA is like a movie franchise where the first one was really good but every sequel has gradually gotten worse and worse where it’s clearly apparent that nobody fucking wants to see them anymore.
I’d been paying close attention to these riots. I felt odd that I felt something resembling concern over a city I utterly despise. Then again I was more worried that eventually shit would spiral out of control, some cunt would get himself killed, there’s a retaliation which leads to a car bomb which leads to a dozen more murders which leads to an escalating paramilitary conflict and- we’d have the Troubles back. But a lot of shit has to go down before something like that even becomes possible.
I’m a lucky man to be born in peacetime. I just hope to god it lasts.
The others didn’t particularly give a shit about Derry, they were just passing around a bine that everyone took a toke out of. Primy went on to tell me about all the people he knew back home he considered to be Loyalists, who claimed that they weren’t bitter but it was clearly apparent they were very offended by all things Irish. He told me he himself identifies as Irish because everyone loves the Irish.
The only people that hate the Irish are the Irish, more specifically the Irish who refuse to acknowledge they’re Irish.
For some reason I felt the need to tell a story about the Chinless Wonder and that involved the term “Black Bastard” so just to clarify, for new people, the term doesn’t refer to actual black people- it refers to Loyalists in Northern Ireland who, in the eyes of Irish people, have a soul black with rot. A place with a large population of said bastards is often referred to as a Black Hole.
Just to clarify, there’s a difference between a Protestant and a Loyalist. You don’t really know much about a Protestant because they themselves are individuals, but a good part of the time they’re decent people who view themselves as British and thus support Unionism. A Loyalist on the other hand is a hateful bastard, who’ll burn a Catholic out of their house if they think they can get away with it.
I asked if they were familiar with the term, they all were. The girl, now awake, said it was a term for Protestants but again I had to specify the difference between- never mind. Anyway, I’m telling you this because only a few days ago I realised that I tried to explain what the term Black Bastard means to a room full of Protestants. I feel like a fucking moron.
Safe to say I got a good few confused and concerned glares in that room for the weird shit I spouted.
We spent a good two hours in that room. Guy had come in to chill while his girlfriend slept. I asked if he could make more of those bombs and he looked exhausted. I felt really bad for asking and said it’s ok, I don’t want any more.
I’d talked to the guy who looked like Owen Jones on and off throughout the night. He was pretty dead on, he’s a writer like me. I tried giving him some advice but he seemed to already know the shit I was telling him. Again, I felt like a proper moron. I guess that’s why Kanye says “I don’t take advice from people less successful than me“.
I went down to get another pitcher of water and Owen was just sitting their in the corridor, looking at his phone. He was pretty tired and was just waiting for the buses to get up and going. I helped him out by downloading a timetable for the bus he was getting and showed him the times.
He seemed pretty dead on. Eventually he came in to the room to wish everyone goodbye and when he was about to leave he said “Oh, and Desmond. Next time maybe try not to say every thought that comes into your head” then he left.
Initially I laughed at it, since it was ultimately a constructive criticism that he said in a humorous tone. Gradually over time I got more and more angry that the little cunt had the fucking nerve to say that to me. The others told me that he does this every time, every party he always leaves but right beforehand he drops a brutal truth bomb that just lingers among the room.
He’s a drama queen, he lives for this shit.
I found myself getting more and more angry because the criticism was so inaccurate. You may not understand this from my writing, but I’m a pretty quiet and stoic guy. Most days you’d struggle to get a genuine smile out of me, let alone a genuine thought. I keep it all bottled up, don’t talk to anybody. That’s why I write this blog, I needed a place to vent.
Eventually Guy went to bed. Everyone in the room felt tired, me included. I was still processing what Owen had said to me. Eventually I’d get over it, but it took me a while. It was about seven in the morning and the people were looking to get up for a smoke outside. We’d done a lot of smoking in Parnell’s room, but they wanted fresh air for some reason.
I felt insecure initially for not smoking cigarettes like the rest of them, then when I got up I saw this brown stain upon the corner of one guys mouth and at that very moment I was so goddamn glad I didn’t smoke.
We went outside along the fire exit balcony. The whole house was asleep. We stood there mostly in silence. I drank my water and they smoked. I waved at a guy going past and he awkwardly waved back, perhaps fearing I was taking the piss. I wasn’t, by the way.
The Beatles fan’s girlfriend came down (sorry I can’t be bothered to make a name for her, feel free to call me a misogynist) she’d previously been asleep and wanted some water but she lingered around us for…some reason. I don’t know. She showed me this hole in the wall she plastered over, I said she did a pretty good job considering she’s barely an amateur.
The others started talking about Coke, who was in the living room and was trying to get some sleep. They were slabbering, like I had been slabbering to them. Though they didn’t appreciate my slabbering because I had been slabbering about someone they liked, their slabbering was about a man nobody gave a shit for. I think they’d slabber about me later on, but that implies they actively think of me.
They went on about how strange he was, how he told these stories and says these things and it quickly became apparent that he had no empathy, no remorse. Like how he thinks he’ll join the RA and how he wanted to be a School Shooter for a while. But now he was just a callous drug addict.
“He’s a Psychopath” I said.
I then tried to explain to them that a Psychopath is not necessarily a bad thing- that often times Psychopathic Tendencies can be quite useful. But they were struggling to comprehend how a Psychopath doesn’t necessarily have to be bad and I was too tired to explain.
We need people with Psychopathic tendencies to do the shit that no one else will do. We need them in our leaders so that they have enough ease to make tough decisions, we need them in soldiers so that they can kill on command, we need them in everyday life so that shit gets done- we need people who value their own ego and pursuit of power over their own fear.
I possess a few Psychopathic traits in the fact that I genuinely believe I could kill someone if I needed to. That I have an inflated ego, an ability to manipulate people and a compulsion to lie for my own benefit. Though I don’t have the superficial charm that Guy possesses, which sucks. But fortunately I don’t suffer from a lack of empathy, unlike Coke.
Eventually the gang feel tired and Primy takes them back to his place, he asked if I wanted to come along too. But I felt that the gang had gotten quite sick of me and he was just being polite, so I turned him down. They left and I stood there for a while making awkward conversation with the girl (I guess that’s an upgrade from someone’s girlfriend) who was clearly tired.
I finished my water and she went back to bed. I dropped the pitcher off in the kitchen and went to check in on Coke for…some reason. I don’t know, I felt obliged to see if he was asleep. He wasn’t. He was sitting awkwardly trying to get asleep. We chatted briefly and I said I was away. Told him he’d be better off lying down on the sofa and so he did.
Upon posting this article it came to a lot attention that the people at the party were quite upset at the representation I had of them, particularly of Coke. I just want to clarify that I have nothing against any of these individuals, even Coke. If anything, I kind of like him.
Granted the entire article in and of itself seems like an indictment of his character, but in the end he appears to be a sound guy. I don’t know what’s going on in his head or his heart, I don’t know what’s really going on with his relationships (and to those who were offended by the interpretation that I was mocking the breakup, I apologise. That was not my intention) I’m just reporting what I see for my shitty blog that little to no one reads.
The reason I went to check up on him baffled me for a week, but I believe I solved it. I was always cautious with our interactions, but despite his various flaws I felt deep down that he would be a good friend. I tried holding back that feeling but he has a way about him. His heart seems to be an eternal battle between a good man and a raging asshole, sometimes the asshole wins out but often times throughout that night I saw the good man. The great man he could one day become.
Most of us are not set in stone, we are all a work in progress. I wish him the best.
I left that very moment, house quiet like a dead whore. The streets were surprisingly bare for Belfast. It was just before eight in the morning on a Saturday. I saw little to no one on the way to the bus stop outside a few students and a crazy guy muttering to himself at a bus stop.
I’m about two minutes away from the Europa (most bombed hotel in the world) when I see it. I walk past the remains of a great bonfire that had been ignited on the Twelfth. The burnt wood is scattered about in this car park and inside an old man is walking around, looking about for…something. I assume it was his car park.
My eye catches a concrete barrier in the desolated car park with the word “KAT” spelled out with spray paint. For those of you uninitiated, it stands for “Kill All Taigs” the latter word being a slur used to dehumanise Catholics, which I am considered to be.
In Ireland you can be the most Anti-Papist Atheist alive, but if you’re born a Catholic- you’re a Catholic no matter what. It’s a similar thing with Jews, even if you don’t believe in Judaism you’re still a Jew. Because it’s not just a religion anymore, it’s an identity with a community- an ethnicity.
So seeing this acronym I felt a lot worse about my situation. Because I was already sleepless and miserable, but now I’ve just been reminded that somewhere out there, there is a good portion of people that want to kill me for no good reason other than I was born on the wrong side of a fence.
I was not in the mood to actually pay for a ticket and wait forty five minutes for a bus, but I did. I fell asleep on the bus but I ensured I had an alarm set for the time I’d go by Castledawson. Got to Dungiven, got home, slept for six hours. Woke up with a headache and sore arms. Full of regret.
Over the course of the day and I encountered many intrusive dark thoughts which I did my best to fight down. I felt a good bit of regret saying and doing weird shit the night before. Things got so bad I reached out to a friend to confirm if these feelings were normal.
He tells me they are and that what I’m feeling now is pretty much every Sunday for him. Every Saturday night he goes out on the town and raises cain, only to wake up the following day hungover and full of regret. He says that he’s trying to fix his interactions with people, namely to stop telling Jew jokes.
He told me the highlight of last year for him was when he was at a house party and his friend came up to tell him “Hey man, everyone is asking about the guy who keeps talking about Jews- is that you?” I laughed so hard at that. I brought up this story at the first house party we went to with the Belfast ones, about how he met a Jewish guy and you shared a few Jew jokes and he was having fun but then you told one too many Jew jokes and the guy looked mildly uncomfortable.
That was hilarious.
I barely ate that day, tried staying up as long as I could to avoid thinking about the various dumb things I did detailed in this article. I had an irrational fear about going to bed because I believed that a terrible terrible dream was waiting for me. I was right about that.
I had a dream that my dog was dying of cancer or something, so I had to put her down myself. I got her on the table, laid her down and kept stabbing her with a kitchen knife. But each stab wasn’t doing anything but hurting her, so I tried desperately to stab her right in the heart, but that only cause her more pain. She looked up at me with these terrified eyes.
The screeches echoed in my head and all her face told me was “Why? Why would you do this to me? I loved you“. She escaped and ran down only to collapse in the corner. She was afraid to look at me as she was dying. I woke up, crying. It was one of the most traumatic dreams I ever had.
The next day I was initially sad but gradually got better, I’d even dare say I felt happy. A strange feeling for me. I was so goddamn grateful that my dog was still alive, I almost cried again.
I suppose at the end of this story I have to summarise what all I learned, but what I learned I already knew. So the lesson is not necessarily to be learnt, but to be upheld. Which is a difficult thing as most everyone is flawed, we make mistakes and fall back into bad habits.
After all, we’re all just chasing after Serotonin like a pack of Psychopaths.