All original work © 2009 - 2018 Alexey Provolotsky

22 June 2017


"For Christ's sake. 

People. Your eyes! What's the point. Don't you see. Don't you goddamn SEE. You walk down this street and that is that. Like, forever. For all eternity. Over in a flash. Yes, young man, YOU. Excuse me. Young man. Yes, you. Don't run away. You've stopped. You've stopped and that's a start. We all have to start somewhere. Don't pass by so quickly. There's always a moment to stop and reflect and... You won't believe it but I'm older, I know. I don't want your money. No, this is not it - put it back, I don't need your change. And no, I don't have any gospels on me - Christ, I probably hate them more than you do. My briefcase is filled with paper. My salary is in multiple zeros. You will have one, too, some day. Documents, reports. Contracts, both signed and unsigned. Believe me, you don't want to look. And no, I'm not here to holler abuse or cranky philosophy... Christ, why AM I here? I guess I've got something important to tell you. But I forget... All the same - what are you? Student? Immigrant? Boyfriend? Who? Okay, you don't have to answer, just hear me out. This hit me a few minutes ago. This moment. This man. Me, for example. I will never see you again, and you will never see me again. That's it. Over in a flash. I'm repeating myself. Sorry - mind if I smoke? I'm trembling like a raving lunatic. Want a cigarette? What, began already? Here, take one... These are good. It's so tragic, you see. Hundreds and thousands of people pass you by on these broad pavements and all you can do is look past. And I've lived my whole life here. And you raise your eyes occasionally and you see their backs. Dressed in white, black, awful red and green. With their haircuts and billions of stories that maybe - MAYBE - are worth telling. Like you, for instance. Like you and me. And no, I'm not a bum. Look at my suit. Here, look at this watch. This briefcase. Tailor made, expensive, vintage stuff. Still, what's the point, right? Or take this ring. I'm a married man. Married with kids. Two girls. And here I am, on my way to the seventeenth floor of a tall building, one of a million. I look at all of you. Potential business partners, possible wives, probable lovers. I will never see you again in this big city. ANY city. Now of course, there's a chance. But is it worth talking about? Truth is, I don't even have the time for one question to ask all these people. So can I ask it? Can I ask it now, young man? How old are you? Where do you study? Yes. I know the college. I've heard the name. I studied there once. You see, a simple question to make you leave some sort of impression upon my life. Some kind of imprint. Why is it any more difficult than some fucking pop song I hear on the radio at the mall or at the hairdresser's? Look at these people. LOOK! One second - and that's it. Gone forever. A face you'll never see again. A voice you'll never hear. No terrorist act is as fucking cruel as this tragic fact. Yes, I swear a lot. I know. You should have heard my wife yesterday. Zoe. She just... She. Hell, never mind that. Anyway, I'm afraid I've got to be on my way. Besides, your classes are about to start. And my work - I mean, after all, I'm a working man, and there's the building. No, thank you, no. Zoe? You want to talk about Zoe? How?.. Ah, I see. Your girl. Oh God no. No, young man, they are waiting. Starbucks! You're joking. I hate the fucking place, don't come near it. Sorry, got to go. Nice talking to you. Running now. Running away through that door. Sorry! Hey, John, this boy, don't let him in. I don't know him. Well, I do... Christ, it's too complicated. Thing is, he has to go now. No, that wouldn't be necessary. Nothing physical, John. Please. Just tell him to go away. 

We're done."