The New Ghosts



Have you met them? Of course you have. I was at the salon because I like a certain standard and there she was, alive for social media, alive for me as much as I breathed life into her, but at the expense of my dignity she was simulated, a consciousness held in abeyance. I reached out into the abyss like a forlorn Harry grasping at a dispatched Sirius.

There was nothing there. A brief acknowledgment portending the death of the context; she didn’t ask, she wasn’t engaged, she was just hoping I would ease the burden in the split second of her attention. I wouldn’t. I look at people in the instance they are at their most trying and don’t get out of bed for less than Everest. Nobody has forwarded their ports.

You knock twice but nobody answers. They’re all under the covers hoping the lights come back on. They took a break from everything. They found social media and lost social transparency. They ran to the first refuge, the first source of ease. Few are actually here, but living as interpolated expectation, between the moments of desolate sand running through fingers.

Some of us are already algorithms. We don’t need to be predicted, when we have been prescribed. The operant conditioning of the likes we receive dictates our next action and in the mounting pattern of subordination to the digital masters we regulate our behaviour to exist as the ephemera of transient approval, thus we are conscious up until the point we decide to move through walls again.

The endless traffic jam and insurmountable gridlock of the status quo has enforced hibernation on all but the most prescient and aware. Most can barely talk. Every act of relational faith is a gesture into abyssal futility only occasionally subverted by a surprising instance of superimposition onto the living moment. Lightning rarely strikes twice.

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