I've Always Said I Was Part Irish (Only Because My Last Name is Moss and Moss is Green), but This Proves It: Short Sentiments of Staggering Sadness

posted May 3, 2013, 4:11 AM by Terrence Moss   [ updated Jul 22, 2014, 7:56 AM ]

I love writing and I love having so many outlets through which to do so. Most of what I write is specifically for the blog and never makes it here because I’ve set this aside for the feature pieces.
Some of what I write is so dark and depressing that people who follow me on the blog will think I’m depressed or even suicidal – so I post those musings to Howwwl (as I did with the former Storylanes).  
But every now and then I feel I have a few solid pieces from both outlets to compile into a longer piece for this site. This is the fifth such compilation and is made up of two musings and an attempt at poetry. 


I remember a time...a time in my life...
when my parents were together,
when my oldest friends and I lived in the same town,
when I had a career,
when I felt like a local boy making good.
But since that time...that time in my life...
my parents did what was best for them, 
my friends and I, we all grew up and I moved away,
the career that I had was derailed by my own hand,
and I felt like a local boy who tried and failed and failed some more.
I remember a time...a time in my life...
when I made smarter decisions, 
when the worst thing was not having a job, 
when the best thing was happiness,
when the possibility of the latter was all but promised.
But since that time...that time in my life...
I've made some unfortunate decisions, 
I've been unemployed,
I've strived for happiness,
and landed everywhere in between. 
I think a lot about that time...that time in my life...



I am not a person that engenders much sympathy from people when things aren't going well for me in life as they aren't now. 
From what I can understand, part of it stems from the fact that I come from such a solid family background (little do they know). We were a nuclear family -- a mother, a father, a younger brother and myself. We were a middle class family living in a house the suburbs. People from church, in many case single-parent families in an apartment complex, called us the Cosbys. 
We were anything but. These Cosbys are now divorced and living in disparate ends of the country. This particular Cosby is largely unemployed but working a temp job near where the former Cosby-lites used to live -- 3000 miles from where I had long since called home. 
So there's this feeling that since we couldn't maintain the Cosby status imposed upon us, people think we somehow did something wrong and therefore deserved what came to us. 
But I certainly didn't. I still don't. And neither did/does anyone else in my family. Those who delight in such a downfall are assholes who never really cared about the "Cosby's" in the first place -- which begs the question as to why they would associate with them in the second place.
All this said, a lot of people disregard what I'm currently going through as if I did this to myself. Granted, I made certain decisions over the last couple of years that would cause people to believe that. But at the same time, life just happens and it happens in a way that no level of preparation can cover. 
So my face gets long, my tone gets auger, my words get dark and my heart gets heavy. On the rare occasion, tears will fall. Some of you may catch them on your shoulder. Others may catch them in their hand to throw them back in my face.
The best case scenario would be for them to fall into the lap of Burbank or Bradley (not their real names), who will gently rub my shaved head, tell me how much they love me and say, "Tonight we rest. We'll worry about tomorrow the day after next."


I talk a lot about death and wanting to die. It's not that I want my life to end by my own hand, I just want it to end. 
I've felt this way for the last several months -- stemming from my inability to find a job once I started looking for one after more than a year of unemployment. I had to move out of my apartment in late November. I left Los Angeles in early December and went up to San Francisco because I was willing to expand the scope of my job search there. 
The plan there was to find some shit survival work and live with 18 people while I worked my way out of debt and figured out what to do next. 
Of course, that didn't happen. I couldn't find ANYTHING, nothing found me and I wound up essentially squatting with a very generous friend.
Then I decided to abandon the job search altogether and just start traveling wherever whatever money I had could take me. But a temp job fell into my lap -- in my hometown 3000 miles away. 
This brought its own complications ranging from lodging to transportation to car rentals to my out-of-state driver's license to my maxed-out credit cards and general feelings of being the local boy who tried and failed and failed some more as opposed to being the local boy who made good. 
I'm 34 years old (actually 33 but this year has sucked so much that I have started saying 34, but soon to be 35 since 34 hasn't been any better so far). My life should be better than this, but I had the audacity to want to be happy and that has put me on a far more treacherous life track than living in misery would have. 
I wasn't asking for much -- meaningful work, a nice apartment and a fulfilling life. Instead, I struggle to barely survive. But I don't want to struggle and I don't want to just survive. I want to live. And if I can't do it my way on my terms, then I don't want to do it. 
I'm not married to life. If this shit ended tomorrow, I'm okay with that. I've done enough. There are always more things that could be done, but I don't really feel the need to do any of them. Everything I've REALLY wanted to do, I've done. Sure, I'd like to go to Europe -- perhaps live there. But I've created several television shows, built my website on my own and wrote a book.
It doesn't matter to me that none of the shows have been produced, that my website isn't widely read and that my book hasn't really sold. The fact of the matter is that they're in existence. If someone else wants to carry the baton of getting the series produced, boost traffic to my website and turn my book into a better seller than the Bible, by all means. I won't be here anyway. Just make sure my remaining family gets whatever money would otherwise be owed to me. 
Between Newtown, the Boston Marathon bombing and the West Texas plant explosion, there are a lot of people who are dying that didn't necessarily want to. And there are people who are ready to go but keep waking up in the morning despite their desires to well...not.
If that means we still have a purpose here, then shit needs to get better to make it worth waking up everyday. Right now, it's not. 
If someone offered me five more years of struggle before I have everything in life I've ever wanted or the option to tap out now, I'd sure as hell tap out now without nary a hesitation or a second thought. I don't trust the universe. I don't trust life. I don't trust God. Everything I've ever wanted comes with a price that I'm not sure I will want to pay. 

So I don't want to be here. I don't need to be here. Whatever I have to offer to the world has already been offered. It's out there for people to discover and enjoy. In the meantime, I'm sitting at the train station with my 92-year-old great-aunt who thought 85 was a good age to die waiting for our train to arrive and take us to glory -- whatever that is, wherever it may be.
Of course, she's telling me to live on since the train is likely going to come for her much sooner than it will for me.
But I am not above cutting in line ahead of her.