“Jake,” his dad said in a tone all too well known, “what are you gonna do for work now that you’re here?”

They’d just finished giving praise to the Lettuce god. “I don’t know Dad,” he said, the weight of insanity crushing. 

“You know, you need to find something.

“I know dad.” 

There was a silence. 

What the fuck dude, Jake thought to himself. I’m twenty-six years old, I’ve traveled to the other side of the world, and here I am again. His self-esteem had been thwarted, sense of adventure crumpled. I need to keep moving, he thought. I need to make something of myself and it’s not gonna happen if I’m suckin’ on the nipple. Jake, shift your perspective. Peel yourself off the pinball and try again.

That’s when he got on the internet to search. 

He dug and dug. 

If anything held true about the way the cookie had crumbled in the past, it was that Infinity had always been on his side, so long as he’d been on his own. It didn’t matter how outlandish his desire, if there was combustion to set the engine into drive, the will would roll.

He spent hours dredging, days wondering, What’ll the future bring? But wonder didn’t suffice in helping him home in on anything dreamlike. He had to devise a plan of action if he wasn’t to succumb to de-base-ment, and part of that plan of action…was acting.

My friend, I would like to commend you on not giving up your right to search for your own happiness, The Old Man said to him, but do be leery of what lies ahead, and remember, do not be fearing or I will slap the back of yours.

Thanks Old Man, he said. If I don’t do something, then I won’t do anything. I don’t really know what I’m after, but I know what I’m not after, I think.

Good, The Old Man said. Don’t ever let anyone deter you from trying to seize your moment. And you’re right, you must do something. Something is something worth doing!

Thanks Old Man. And I won’t let anyone deter me.

Even yourself, The Old Man said.

Weary but hopeful, tilted but refraining from wilt, he continued harrowing on the lines of desperation…

As I plow
What under earth will I find?
I remember when,
I couldn’t even climb.
Moments come,
Upward growing,
A rollercoaster of awareness,
Until the fulcrum in my favor
Shows me how to live.

Dreary, but driven by the antithesis of doubt and more than one weeks end, something had arrived. It was something that he’d attracted into his life. It didn’t matter the mire of his bygone brandings, it didn’t matter how sore he was behind his previous attempts to fly above the eye, he’d inverted the threat of failure, and had persistence on his side.

When he hadn’t been poisoning himself with garbage materials, Infinity would respond accordingly, like a dream does to an inquisition. 49th RAIL DIVISION, it read, KITCHEN CREW NEEDED.

Interesting, he thought. I think I’ll give it a try. So, he applied, and waited, with faith and knowing that something would give if he took the ride.

Days later, there was a ring in a box. It circled around the house with echoes from within. 

“Hello?” 

“Hello, may I please speak to Jake?” 

From the tone alone, he knew it was something. Something that would help set the process in motion…

Thank you universe, he then said in silence with the gratitude of a thousand monks at a lettuce table. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. 

His fervor for the future went unmatched by his follies gone by. The wompers, they had no room to loom in the midst of the spark—but then again, that hadn’t been their main domain in the first place…

Thanks for reading this excerpt from Chapter 43 of Losing My Mind in America. Let us keep our spirits high! Let us keep the water flowing! Let us keep the world turning, and let us thank him for our food. Lettuce…yes, you, lettuce, thank him for our food! Stay tuned and follow to receive more excerpts. I’ll be posting portions of the Lower 48 Chapters of Losing My Mind in America, every day until we reach lift off. PEACE IN.

-Tom

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