How To Get Ahead And Make Your Mark On The World – 9 Simple Life Hacks To Live Your Life As You Know You Were Supposed To
By Simon Barget
Sleep for three days on an ottoman handsomely accommodating your 6’ foot 2’’ frame, flat on your back with feet splayed out and cat tucked in by your haunches (or abdomen) -- very peacefully twitching and not quite out for the count -- feeling the small of your back firmly in contact with the nap’s raspy fibres, and whilst sleeping hardly dream, yet be strangely aware of how sumptuous and marvellous and louche this sleep really is, a sleep like no other, or recalling the sleep you had post five consecutive jetlagged nights 2005 Sydney, when you crashed out in the Montefiore at 7pm, and woke up at 7am on the dot, with not even the slightest trickle of piss in your bladder, while in your absence the world has settled itself into a faintly accommodating shape.
Wake up and do nothing against a background of nothing, just white noise, a mass devastation, peace isn’t really the word, where you don’t even need to gather yourself, and perhaps a bowel movement comes, the type that slides out like a banana, still you lovingly attend the black sludge in your one-cup cafetière letting it stew a tiny bit longer than usual, and when you pour it out, a billow of steam flutters your eyebrows, and the odour is pungent, and the rich liquid makes a soft bubbly tat-tat-tat as you pour it into your cup.
Sell everything, your house and your flat, sell that of your parents and spouse and the proceeds of your grandparents reparations from before the war in Prenzlauer Berg that you reinvested in Kreuzberg, and once all the money is gathered in an easily accessible holding, find yourself barefoot on the top raised floor of a mahogany-rich house in northern Thailand, and have the pads of your feet so in contact with the soft coldness of the wood, that if the wood was to rise up any further by dint of Thai animist magic, it couldn’t even be any closer to those sensitive foot pads of yours, and if you happen to look out of the openings they have for windows, you see only rolling hills and green, or a field with nothing, or a field with an old mechanical tractor and no motor, and since this thing doesn’t look quite right at rest -- it is top-heavy, and the handles rise maladroitly into the air -- you fancy you should go use it then, that’s if you can even find your Havaianas let alone bother to put them back on.
Take all the mobile phones you have and just obliterate them, reach right into the back of your drawers and boil them in a medium-sized saucepan over a gas stove, whose light is always too strong and the dial not properly adjusting, so it is either pathetic whisper or inferno, but this time you get just the right notch, and slowly but surely the plastic starts to bubble and blister, things pop, and the smell is caustic and harsh and makes you retch a little and a slow brown/grey sludge forms which you stir against some reassuring resistance with a wooden spoon, and perhaps you whistle something to bide the time or to emphasise to yourself that the endeavour’s a real good one and that you are towards it quite cheerful.
Extend your hand out into the street and pick up the cars, all those workmen’s vans with ladders fixed to the rooves that protrude a little bit awkwardly, with their one old Penalty Charge Notice left on the windscreen as a decoy, then wide-eye the word STOP with such bulging deadly averting eyes that no man is immune, or mime it in sign language like they do on the beeb, so that they stop dead in their tracks, and everything slowly devolves to a whisper, and the men who have been banging and drilling within your vicinity for the last fifteen years straight, pick those men up, not necessarily violently, but pick them up nonetheless and deposit them in a black plastic bin bag until they are slightly suffocated but not dying, and every so often, open the bag to check they’re not dead, but hope that they are still very much coughing and wheezing and gasping for air.
Find a surfeit of very attractive men or women and fuck to your heart’s content but make sure the fuck-fest is so frenzied and crazed, so debauched, that you produce pools of vomit which you later pick up to spread lavishly over each other’s bodies like peanut butter or creosote until you can’t see the flesh.
Make phone calls, and in order to do so, amass sturdy reliable British Telecom phones, aligned on your desk, and on those phones make real personal calls to all the people you know and have known, call the dead and the dying and the people you think are just about still alive, and when these people answer them with a reassuring recanting of the last four digits of the phone number, say all the things you would like to say, but above all be fucking cheerful about it, because there’s no reason any more to be cagy and muted, be loud and proud and even slightly horsey, and just stay in your house for four days solid, making boisterous calls.
Make up with all the people you wronged, however small, all those tiny things you remember you did and thought you let go of but secretly know that you didn’t, bring them back up like a man, and do whatever it takes to appear in person before that person right now, go immediately to them and humbly beg forgiveness, not needing that forgiveness, say you know it was wrong and that is all that matters to you, and don’t wait for an answer just watch and hark intently, really and truly see the person as they take in your entreaty and don’t dare expect anything from them, and once done walk out unceremoniously, making sure to close the front door, but by god close it quietly.
Set up the whole top floor of a deluxe Manhattan hotel, or an exposed brick and beam loft space, and then assemble all the people you just plain liked in the world and who you can finally admit to yourself now very much like you, all the people you feel you had a connection with and want to be tactile with, and spend the whole October weekend starting at 6:30 pm precisely on the Friday evening, having fun, hugging, stroking, touching each other if necessary, whilst all the other people in the world that you never really cared for stare up from the sidewalk feeling slightly left out.