Tanner Babcock

  1. Fiction

Solitude

Copyright © 2019 Tanner Babcock.

Attention friends and family. You are all such empty, pathetic people, that I often considered not leaving a suicide note at all. Because after all, you people aren't worth it. But that's rude. I changed my mind. I want anyone and everyone to know what happened here.

To my wife, Charlotte: Hopefully it has become obvious to everyone in our lives that I would still be an architect if it weren't for you. You were always criticizing me, attacking me. Nothing I ever did was good enough for you. I suppose you expect me to cherish you for finally helping me get clean after years of enabling me. But I never got clean for longer than 8 seconds at a time.

I was a young child with a lot of talents. I could have been a developer, an architect, an engineer. But because I used to hang out with jazz musicians in the early '60s, I have to pay the cost of being helplessly addicted to heroin, marijuana, and OpenBSD for the rest of my life. My potential was stunted at a very young age, and I blame my parents for that. It's a shame those eight rehab programs never worked. Thanks for letting me die thousands of dollars in debt. I attended private school in Billings, Montana, even though I lived in the Busby-Lame Deer Community school district. Wellington Wood Academy gave me a thirst for learning, and an immense disdain for being taught. My early years as an adolescent were spent in a fury, trying and failing to learn x86 assembly, and copy and pasting answers from the Board Games Stack Exchange. During this time I experimented heavily with crayons.

My 23-year marriage with Charlotte is, was, and will always be completely empty. It was hopeless, tired, and devoid of any human emotion. We felt nothing for each other from day one. She knew it as well as I did. It was because of this that I cheated on her with Betty, Polly, Sue, News Stand Girl, Redhead at Dave Matthews Concert, Monaeiqua, LaShaunDay Day, the Waitress in Budapest with the nose rings and stomach tattoo, Bernadette, Tiffany the Real Estate agent, and forty-six underage Brazilian prostitutes whose names I've never bothered to learn because of their vocation and their stunning lack of contraceptives and spermicides. I'm shamefully and terribly sorry. I probably would have cleaned up my act if I was really in love with Charlotte, but I wasn't. The worst thing I ever did was sleep with her sister for four years: the belly-button years.

I would like to shamefully and humbly apologize to my son, whom I assaulted with a sock full of pennies when he was only a tyke at the ripe young age of 4. When Narrator Jr. was a little fuck, he was very talented at building symmetrical, geometrically correct and detailed structures; in a nutshell, Legos. He had built the top 22 stories of the Empire State Building. I have a very foggy memory of that night because I had lost $14,000 at the casino and was strung out on Crystal PTSD (I told Charlotte it was just Max Wellman), but from what witnesses tell me, I destroyed his Empire State Building and broke his heart. This was partially your mother's fault, for enabling me and letting me throw away our life savings countless times.

To my daughter, Jacqueline: I know having your father commit suicide when you're --- 18 now, right? -- can only fracture your life and give you even more problems with men later on. For that I apologize. But to directly address what you said to me last week: Fuck you too. Try not to key up my headstone your family can barely afford the way you did my Mercedes.

From when I was 25 til about 40, I was really into taxidermy. It was a cheap way to kill and torture animals. I got to arrange their bodies into hilarious positions, and stuff them with styrofoam. I even made them little costumes. I made a fire department made of little squirrels in fireman costumes, a police force of possums, and a flock of seagulls dressed up as A Flock of Seagulls doing their hit song from the '80s (it was a weird time). Even though I loved taxidermy, and I loved mutilating what were once defenseless animals, I absolutely hated the smell of dead things. Charlotte threw out my collection multiple times due to it, as the stuffed brigade was starting to traumatize the children (the squirrels and neighborhood rodents were often missing eyes, tails, or limbs), and a fire marshal and his fanny pack full of raisins accidentally fell on the heads of our dinner party guests while they were putting their coats away in the closet. That ruined everyone's appetite for veal, but made for great dinner conversation.

My parents began sending me to psychiatrist appointments at the age of 9. Most of them pronounced my name wrong, emphasizing the "tor" instead of the "Nar", as in "nar a-Tor". I mostly lied to them and made up things about my life. Anything to get the attention off of my real issues. I played them all like a fiddle, usually getting them to prescribe me Vyvanze and Adderall, once Klonopin, and to tell the truth, I bet a lot of so-called psychopaths are capable of it. I destroyed all of my relationships before they even started. I knew what would have really happened if I had told them the truth: That I was playing them for drugs, that I killed small animals for fun, that I masturbated in my little sister's room weekly for a sexual thrill, that I frequently self-harmed by sticking needles in my pelvis: They would have locked me up in the mental institution and threw away the key.

Now, my biggest and perhaps only sincere apology of this entire letter, I humbly apologize to the Sheraton Hotels Cleaning Service and Chambermaids' Union Local 722 - not only for my rudeness to their intrusion during my autoerotic asphyxiation two hours prior, but for the enormous amount of blood and brains I'm about to blow all over their steamed, tucked cotton sheets. I should have put a tarp on the bed. Now I considered a lot of methods to suicide before deciding on the .357 my father gave me for my 20th birthday. I would have went with an old-fashioned hanging, it would have been convenient since I had the belt out to choke myself with while I was masturbating to Asian fetuses. But my neck has been so sore and stiff from doing that so much, that I just didn't want to have any more strain. It itches. I also don't want to be found that way, by anyone. A brown, runny fish in my pants and my balls withered and dry like prunes? No thank you.

The idea of an overdose is tempting, and I do appreciate the thrilling irony of a long-recovered drug addict who has overdosed on accident multiple times, using his own placebos and withdrawl medications to die on purpose. Too stupid. If I'm leaving this world high, I want to get really fucked up, and since Charlotte threw out my little black book of dope delears my second-to-last rehab trip, I've had no way of getting any. So overdose is out of the question. Plus, I've gotten a good look at a guy who tried to kill himself by overdosing and lived - he had the mind of a two-year old and drooled creamed corn on his Thomas the tank engine sweater.

Jumping off of a bridge? That's fun. I've always wanted to go skydiving. The one time I went bungee jumping, which was with my family in the early 2000s, I was too depressed to enjoy it, and fantasized about the cord snapping and throwing me into the East River. But I heard something from my friend Charlie a few years ago, that when suicidal people jump off of a building or a bridge, they get a rush of adrenaline to the head from the free fall, and they get a sudden will to live. But because it's too late, they tragically plummet to their demise after changing their mind in mid-air. I don't want that to happen to me. I don't want anything to interrupt me or change my mind. I've had enough of that patronizing shit, the last thing is my own body bribing me with little trinkets of dopamine to stay in this meat grinder. Wrist cutting? Waay too dramatic and way too painful. Even when I was into self-harm, I didn't like cutting my wrists. This ain't Shakespeare.

I almost threw myself in front of the subway train hundreds of times, while waiting on the platform. There it was, calling me name. "Narrator! Narrator! Let's die! Sweet relief is here! Jump on the rails and fry yourself!". I can't kill myself in front of a crowd though, that's another problem that jumping from buildings has. It makes me too nervous. And everyone knows helium tanks are for pussies. If it were physically possible, my ideal suicide would be by firing squad, only I would be both the executioners and the one sentenced to death. But since I can't do that, I have to personally and solely do the job myself. Here I go. Fuck all of you people. I hope your lives are ruined now.

Goodbye, only slightly cruel world. It was once fun bleeding you dry, but I've stopped caring, and my time is up.