whirlpooled topics unbackspaced. streams of consciousness. blurts. scribbled notes. outlined ideas. velocity waves. snatches from icloud. because self-editing is a writer’s cowardly way of preventing a reader from fucking the writer's confidence. dates don't matter. memories and moments aren't chronologically marked on the soul.

Showing posts with label 2020. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 2020. Show all posts

Be Headers

How many times did your boss tell you to do something - and you didn’t do it? How many times did your mom or dad tell you not to do something - and you disobeyed? How many times did you not finish your homework? Skip school? Smoke pot? Drink before it was legal? Tell a lie? Break your vow? Cheat on your spouse? Pad your expense account? Take too long a lunch? Take candy out of a co-worker’s dish? Did you listen to the doctor when he/she told you to lose weight? Quit smoking? Cut your cholesterol? Floss? 

And who was culpable for your infractions? Was your boss fired? Were your parents beheaded? Was your teacher terminated? Did your spouse leave you? Did your doctor lose his/her license? 

We’ve all broken rules. 

And for those who lead others - what do you do when no one keeps the rule? Starve him? Evict her? Terminate her? Imprison him? Assume the consequence for them? 

How large much each infraction be? Who judges the breach? 

So the “leadership has failed.

Did it? Did each subordinate keep each rule? Follow each order? Honor each vow? 

The leadership has failed. They've got to go!

That’s quite a beheading policy. Well, I’m not going to pick up a stone and aim a pelt.

Here’s a thought: we make laws and we hold each human being responsible and culpable for his/her infraction. 

Apparently, even an eye for an eye wasn’t strict enough for your sense of justice. 

Apparently, justice will only be served when we’re all blind. 

But don’t you see, we’re already there.

Tongue Lashes

My previously close friend from high school looked up at me and said he felt I suffered from “mental illness” because I still believed in Roman Catholicism. Seriously. By the way, he posts daily about the inhumanity and vileness of republicans. The man needs a mirror.

I don't know when men of faith were reduced to the punchline or to the special bus stop.

Theology is similar to math. I cannot prove mathematical theorems to someone who doesn’t understand an equation. (Note the root of the word theology and of the word theorem.) There are humans who have a greater understanding of God and His wonders. I don’t understand dismissing some of the greatest minds in history (Saint Augustine,  Saint Thomas Aquinas,  Kierkegaard,  Saint Teresa of Ávila) simply because one can’t grasp all the aspects of their thoughts.

The notion that men and women of faith are limited, naive, daft, or foolhardy is as venomous as racism, sexism, xenophobia, and homophobia. Only a fool dismisses and hates and persecutes those he cannot understand. 

You perhaps don’t speak French, but that doesn’t mean Parisians speak gibberish.

A Stand

My Mother taught me, “when you stand Mark, don’t look for anyone behind you. When you stand, you stand alone.” I’ve often found that to be true. I’m flatfooted. I know how to plant my feet, ball my fist, and defend my principles.

One day I decided: Is my fear of being alone so great that I’m willing to abandon an entire belief system just to sit with someone at recess? No. I can do alone. What I cannot do? Live without a backbone.


nightly unedited blurt from my phone. i dont know why i write anymore. I dont make money from it. Corporate communications is cash now. So i dont know why i do it. I dont polish it or edit it or save it anymore. I just spurt. I dont know how a woman feels. Women always tell men how we feel. But they dont know. i know how a man feels. When a man ejaculates it’s so many emotions in the mixture. Stress and fear and love and joy and anger all mixed with the liquids and the frictions. Ejaculate. Yeah i use that word. Im so goddamned tired of denying the scientific facts just to slicken social slather. Writing used to be my sex. But it‘s not anymore so i dont know why i write. i walked my mother from her rocking chair to the dining room table tonight. I hold her like a pair skater. Our arms figure eighting so she’s balanced and stable on her feet. On the table i have her medicine. And my dad’s. 3x5 cards with the name and the time. Im careful. No mistakes. At the table i start to cry. Not sob. Seep. I do that now. Throughout the day. I seep. Tonight my sister asked me why im so emotional lately. Theyre not used to my trickles. 30 years went by without even a lump slurring my pronunciations but now everyday i weep. “is it the medicine?” She asks. My medicine. Heart meds mostly. “i dunno” i slurred. But i do know. Im sad. So now i ask myself, whats wrong with sadness? Why isnt this considered a valid emotion? Im sad. I’m fucking sad. Im lifting my mother into bed throughout the day. Im sad. Im helping my dad bathe. Im sad. I check my foot times and times and times a day. Im sad. my heart is beating me to death. Im sad. I check my mothers emails for her. mother’s best and last friend is dying. We’re sad. I look at old pictures of joy and laughter and love. theyre all faded by the sheen of loss and losing. Why wouldnt i be sad? Which kind of man wouldnt feel sadness? I used to think myself a fraud. Less than man. Missing elements of manhood. But now i know the biological fact of sorrow and shedding and sadness. i dont know why i write anymore. Its not like sex anymore. My emotions are flaccid. my solutions are impotent. I dont feel fucked. I feel sad.

Take Care

They wait at the table. Wait for meals. Wait for doses. Wait for bedtime. Wait. She doesn’t hear well anymore. Oh with hearing aids – and repetition – she can understand the words. He doesn’t see well anymore. Well, not completely. A big black dot seems to interlope. They await together. 

Behind the table – a desk. On the desk – a speaker. Music streamed at the highest volume. Some notes are heard. Some sounds are recalled. 

An aloud family. Everything is allowed aloud. 

In the kitchen, I wait for the eggs to scramble. I stir. Stirrings. Everything is stirring now. All emotions are stirred up. 

In the dining room, “That’s Life.” Sinatra. She tips her head toward the sounds and slightly smiles. I hear the sounds of singing from the dining room. 

I glance in and sees the two of them singing. I smile and stir the spatula. 

“True Love.” Dean Martin. Their song. The song. “Do you hear that?” He pats her hand; she smiles. She turns her palm up. An embrace. They smile and wait for their eggs. 

I put their eggs on plates, carry them into the dining room, and wait to do their dishes.

Taken Into My Confidence

I'd spent a life without the confidence of courage. I'd worried I lacked the bravery to persevere. To endure. To overcome. 

I don’t know if all men share that fear. I haven’t asked. The word stamina is so sexually shaded. 

I knew I was tenacious. 

And by Christ, I'm belligerent. 

But I'd worried whether I possessed an actual pair of stones to prevail. So, I stood behind the edges. Aside of the spotlight. Abaft from the beginnings. 

Until 2020. 

I haven’t thickened my cocoon; I’ve straightened my spine. 

There’s a kind of peace in fear. 

It’s a peace one acquires with age. Dread. Sure. Well, because I know what’s inevitable. But a peace. No. A confidence. A confidence that I'm able to handle the unavoidable. The pit in my stomach is recognizable. It’s an echoed epicenter not an unpredicted ulcer. There’s a confidence in knowing I'm able to endure until an end. That doesn‘t mean I don't feel afraid. It just means I'm not burdened by the fear of how to handle something unknown.

Dead To Me

You know what college students aren’t taught? Death. Every cycle I read some bullshit diatribe about how “we’ve” failed our children by not teaching them money management. Really? Fuck money. Teach them death. And not that bullshit about crossing over the rainbow bridge. I mean stuff like: 

1. Do you call the coroner? 

2. If they die at home, do you call the police first? 

3. Does the corpse go to the funeral home first? Hospital? 

4. When do you contact social security? 

Sure. Wills. Health directives. Power of attorney. We’ve got that shit solid. But the practical aspects of death. We’ve fucked ourselves. Of course throw the folks in a nursing home and so much of this is solved. And who should teach it? Primary care docs? No. They have enough crap to deal with. Enough stuff they’re muzzled from saying. Should clergy teach it? I’m laughing. No one listens to them. 

So listen up: teach this shit in college. Required. Spare your spawn from sleepless nights worrying about “getting your things right.” 

Ha! I’m a goddamned fool. No one gives a fuck about being “morally right” anymore. I’m standing on this quicksand with only 5 fucking toes. And that’s stress baby. Defined.

Do This In Remembrance

Legacy. Remembrance. How do you want to be remembered? I thought of this today. A woman I know posted something on her Facebook wall: "We've reached the point where people simply want to argue. Blech. Get off FB and read a book or something, would you please?" And Laurel's right. 

I have an explanation for their behavior: because they don’t have anyone to tell it to. Verbal violence = people who feel unheard. So they shout. Verbal violence = impotence. But then I thought about it. If I should die before I wake, how would I like to be remembered? What if Facebook were my obituary. The road map of my temperament. The tale of my final days. Each post a Hansel and Gretel trail to my immortal soul. 

I’d like to think I was thought kind. Faithful. Interesting. I’d like to think one could see the joys of my life. I have a loving family. I hope I’ve reflected that. We have great fun as a family. I hope I’ve reflected that. We have strong faith in my family. I hope I’ve reflected that. I hope I’ve reflected I cherish my friendships. Honor the truth. Trumpet the righteous. And thirst for justice. I hope I don’t seem melancholy. Or angry. Or full of hate. If I should die before I wake, I hope one would know that I felt loved, felt satisfied, felt welcomed, felt sad, and felt scared. And I knew I was heard.

Contiuation of Me Becoming - Losing - Maintaining - Me

My nightly velocity wave. typed on an ipad from the center of the bed. writing because i need to say it; i don’t need to be understood. Exercises of exorcisms. Thoughts repelled. Expelled. Confession without the need of absolution. last week i sat on a barstool in a new bar on the corner of century ave and stillwater blvd in Oakdale. I sat beside my best friend Mike and occasionally followed the cheers to a screen to see a football team score. But my mind wasn’t on the game. I‘ve sat near this intersection countless times in my past. A distant past. 40 years ago. When deciding where to watch the game, Mike mentioned the intersection. It sounded familiar. But I couldn‘t recall why. Until we got there. In 1978 & 1979 I sat in a car near that intersection and waited for my best friend - Roger Kachel - to get off work. He was a bag boy at a grocery store on that corner. Knowlans. The grocery store still stands; Roger does not. He died in 2006. Nearly every night I’d pick Roger up from work. We’d smoke. Sometimes pot. Mostly cigarettes. And we’d either head home to his basement or to a friend’s house. Nearly every night. Surface conversations. Too young for the tools to delve. To excavate. To divulge. While watching the football game, I thought about Roger. Our friendship. The passages of time. Sad? Yes. But not heartbroken. Too long ago. Different men. I was different. I was shy. Uncertain. Scared. Roger was the first male friend. I was timid. So worried to lose. So worried to go back to lonely. I wondered whether Roger would like me now. He would. I haven’t changed that much. Would I like Roger now? Sure. I still like him. I loved him. He was my friend. Last week while driving to the intersection, i felt so frustrated. So angry. So impotent. So pressured. So caught in the middle of aged. I sat down beside my best friend. Sipped my bloody Mary. Sighed my stresses aloud - remembered my first friend - and relaxed. A circle? No. A line. The continuation of me becoming - losing - maintaining - me. Us. We. Through Him. With Him. In Him. Forever and ever. Amen

Want To Know A Secret?

I’ve been thinking about secrets. 

Last week I stumbled on a website that posted my paternal great grandfather Jacob B. Trost’s obituary. And so, I started to dig. I’d heard the whispers of his history: “committed suicide.” Oh, and I knew he did not raise my grandfather but I didn’t know why. My father has no memory of him. And he has no memory of his mention. Well, except “committed suicide.” My father knew so little of his grandfather, he thought his name was Jack. I was startled to read Jacob was a Methodist. More on that in a bit. The one who provided the information for this obituary also had little knowledge of Jacob’s life. He/she misspelled Jacob’s children’s names. And so many facts are missing. 

So, I researched my paternal great grandmother Blanch Roland Trost. Except for the fact that her maiden name is also my middle name, my grandfather never mentioned his mother. While digging, I read she was a protestant too. My father is named for his maternal great grandmother. The oddest aspect: my grandfather misspelled his grandmother’s maiden name. How? Why didn’t he know how to spell his grandmother’s name? Now – here’s the most interesting aspect to me: my grandfather Louis and my great aunt Marguerite were devout Roman Catholics. What? How did they become Roman Catholics? Both sides of their tree were protestants. 

I have no one to ask. 

My grandfather spent time as a boy at Boys Town. Why? I don’t know. It was a family secret. My father doesn’t know. He never knew. He only knows my grandfather was eventually given the option of army or prison. My grandfather chose the army. Is that where my grandfather became a Roman Catholic? I don't know. I have no one to ask. How could a father have an intimate relationship with his children and never share with them the fundamental facts of his life? 


My great aunt had two daughters while unwed. She gave them up for adoption. She then married and had four children. At an elderly age she passed away. After her death, her two legitimate daughters discovered in documents the existence of these two illegitimate sisters. One daughter told me she had no knowledge of her mother’s past. And now their surviving uncle has died too. No one to ask. How could a mother have an intimate relationship with her children and never share with them the fundamental facts of her life? 


On Facebook I rediscovered a first cousin I’d met as a boy. We reconnected. She shared her history with me. Our mothers (sisters in-law) were very close at one time. My Mother was a new bride; my aunt was in the midst of a divorce. My cousin has no knowledge that her mother had a previous marriage. Well, I’m not going to tell her. But why didn’t her mother tell her before she died? How could a mother have an intimate relationship with her children and never share with them the fundamental facts of her life? 


My maternal grandmother had 8 children by four different men. My grandparents divorced at the end of WW2 because my grandfather returned from the war and my grandmother was pregnant by a different soldier. An aunt (that child) never told her children the circumstances of her birth or their grandfather’s name. When she died, her obituary sited the wrong father – and misspelled my grandfather’s name. She had kept her secrets from her children. How could a mother have an intimate relationship with her children and never share with them the fundamental facts of her life? 


So, why does any of this matter? I had a think. 

Practical: How can one accurately provide a medical history when one doesn’t know it? Any genealogical map lacks veracity when landmarks are misplaced – misspelled – misrepresented – or missing. 

Interpersonal: Don’t we owe our truths to those we include in our lives? We don’t ask children’s permission before we force their participation. Think of it: we’re creating human beings and historically abandoning them. I understand everyone isn't entitled to know each sin we've committed in our lives. But aren't they entitled to know the facts that directly affect them? You know, like the name of their father or whether or not they have a predisposition to breast cancer. 

By God they’re not missing links. They’re facts unjustly concealed from those who've been forced to live with their artifacts.

Mad Indeed

"Mad About You" was a favorite of mine in the 80s. 90s? I don't know. I liked the show. I thought Paul Reiser was underrated. Wrong time. Too similar to Seinfeld. Same rhythm. I thought Helen Hunt had immense talent. And I like character driven entertainment. "Mad About You" was character driven. Mysteries - plot driven. Meh. Sports - plot driven. Meh. "Friends" wasn't a favorite because the characters didn't ring true. But "Mad About You" had a real couple. And I liked it. Well, not enough to put my life on hold once a week. But enough that if I spent my Thursday evening at home, I'd watch it. If I remembered it. My favorite: "Thirtysomething." Completely character driven. And I had a thing for Ellen (Polly Draper.) Well, honestly I wasn't ever television. I've often said that if I lived alone I wouldn't own a television and if I did - I'd rather stare out a window than watch it. 

I've loved 2 television series in my life. Both were English. 1. "Good Life" It was funny as hell. 2. "Lovesick" It was brilliantly written and the male characters were true. The writers wrote men well. I liked "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" (Hunt played Murray's daughter) but I thought it waned through its run. 

So there was a reboot of "Mad About You" last year on Spectrum. I don't pay for Spectrum. I don't know about Spectrum. I've never heard of Spectrum. But - "Mad About You" recently came to Amazon Prime. And I have Amazon Prime. Tonight I began a binge. I watched 01:19 seconds of it. Less than 2 minutes and I walked away. 

Why? I couldn't accept Helen Hunt. She's ruined her face. She looked affected. Plastic. I couldn't move through the suspension of disbelief. I couldn't believe her. It's all actress/no character. And I know that's ridiculous. I know I'm supposed to be beyond all that. And I've examined my conscience. Is it sexism? No. I've felt that way about Mickey Rourke. Loved him in "Diner." I thought he was a terrific actor. Until I couldn't move beyond the Play-Doh features. Something about Rourke's face demands the credit: Face By Wayland Flowers. 

And she knew it. They addressed her face in the first minute of the show. Did they think the audience was so shallow it didn't know 20 years had passed? How insulting is that? If Helen Hunt would have walked on the screen with a 57 years old face - we'd had all accepted the absolute fact that 20 years had passed. (Two words about authenticity and talent: Geraldine Page.) 

I understand actors owe us nothing. But I think they owe the work. I don't think they should distract from the words. Of course that's my bias as a writer. And honestly, the issue is bigger than Hunt or Rourke. (Hell, it's a very small issue. I'm not a fool.) I know people can't tolerate Barbra Streisand because she's all about affectations and nails. And Al Pacino is all about the tics. And Diane Keaton is about the idiosyncratic gestures and the belabored speech pattern. So - this isn't confined to one television show. Aside: old references? Yes. I don’t participate in current cinema. I walked away from crayons & coloring books when my hand could grasp a pencil. Well, and my mind could grasp a thought. 

"Mad About You" indeed. I felt mad that Hunt didn't trust her talent. I felt mad that society cherishes youth and sacrifices authenticity. And I felt mad that another fucking thing was ruined. Can we please stop pandering to the lowest common denominator: carnality? Exactly which demographics were they trying to attract? Did they honestly think anyone under the age of grey was going to watch? You know what I'm mad about? Intelligence. Wit. Talent. Truth.


See, you can believe in God and science. Science describes the acts of God. And God benevolently enlightens mankind to repair mankind’s errors. That’s what I believe.

Fruitless Plain

You cannot nourish the pupils when half the cored apple has rotted.

A Guided Tour

And then one day he realized he'd become a convenience for the socially stiltled. A chauffeur leading a cortege and guiding clumsy corpses to gathered groups. And so he parked and left them to find a new conscience to ride.


My nightly velocity wave: 

One of my least favorite traits is my incessant drive to constantly examine my immortal soul. I hate self-reflection yet participate in the dissection on a minute by minute basis. I’m always facing my sins. This self-critique is quite difficult. But I can’t seem to get out of the loop. 

Today I realized something about myself. I realized I hold men to a different standard than I hold women. 

I’ve always prized women as my closest confidents and companions. I was raised by an extremely confident and principled woman. My Mother stands on two feet – apologizes only when she’s wrong – and compromises only when a conviction is absent. She is morally and ethically cement. 

Throughout my youth, my masculinity had been questioned because I shared such an affinity with the female sex. My sexuality was questioned because I seemed more comfortable in the company of women than I seemed surrounded by men. Recently I discussed this with a childhood friend. I told him that I felt comfortable around women because my best friend was a woman. I spent my childhood at the heel of my sister Carol. Carol was – and remains – a confident and principled woman. She taught me insights into the female mind. As a teenager, I knew their basics. Women enjoyed my company because I could empathize or – and this is unique - LISTEN to their concerns and thoughts and emotions. 

So, I’ve never considered myself a misogynist. Upon self-interrogation I think I’m a misandrist. 

I despise a man who lacks the courage of conviction. I hold a man who refuses to define a principle in contempt. I abhor a man who rejects a declarative sentence. I’m disgusted by men who are pliable. And for the love of God it takes self-control to keep my fists in my pockets when I watch a man slather. I feel honest to Christ disdain when I encounter a man who refuses to defend his doctrines. I fucking hate a coward. I’m honestly intolerant. And yet I feel nothing even close to those emotions when I encounter passive or submissive women. And I don’t know why. Do I hold men to too high of a standard? Do I hold women to too low of a standard? I don't know. But I don’t judge it the same. I’ve always thought men and women were parallels without precedence. My parents define an equitable relationship. They are a truly quintessential partnership. I’ve never considered either the “leader.” Yet I hold men to higher standards. I expect more of us. I did not type I expect less of women. But I require men to be more. And I don’t know why.


Foreboding. That’s an emotion my generation hasn’t felt before. We were so blessed. But not anymore. Covid. Altered existences. 

Being a caretaker to two souls from a different generation is such a privilege. I said to someone the other day, “But they're my best friends. They've been my best friends my whole life!” We compartmentalize our relationships: them/us. But our parents were our first best friends. I wake every morning and they ask how I am and care how I feel. Who asks you and really cares how you respond? Seriously. Who asks you? I have one friend who asks me. Surprising. He wasn’t a close buddy. (My closest? I hear from maybe once a month. Well, I can’t be sober cab anymore.) But my new buddy: every morning I get his text: “you ok trost?” Nice. Makes my day. 

So. Conversations with my parents - my first friends. Rationing. Ration books. Polio scare in their childhoods. Quarantines. Diphtheria. Mass hysteria. Cuban missile crisis. Calling out the national guard. Hurdles the police will face. Words my generation forgot. Words like “common good” and “share” and “us” and “ours” and “sacrifice.” Words our first friends taught us. We were so blessed. Our first friends know we were. They knew it before we had the thought. Foreboding.


I zoomed out this morning and bought the necessary items. And I mean necessary. Funny how the "list" whittles to necessities. 

Each day I‘m seeing my place in this world with startling clarity. Oh that’s wrong. I see my absence in the world. I see where I should have been. 

I should have been a priest. Each day I see that more clearly. And I knew it when I was 8 years old. I don’t know if I’ve ever really revealed this. But, here it is: I left the seminary in 1982 because I was so broken-hearted how vile it was. Traditional Roman Catholic values were repudiated. There were predatory seminarians. And I was so naive. A couple of seminarians started to “groom” me. I was not accepted by my male peers in high school so I yearned for male friendships. When two of them tried to be physical with me within weeks of each other, I packed my belongs and I left. My soul and heart were shattered. It took me 3 years to return to The Faith. 

Anyway. I wish I hadn’t been a coward. I wish I had had the balls to defend The Church. But I was afraid. I was a coward. 

Today at my pharmacy, the tech and I (we‘ve never met) somehow started chatting about The Church. We do not belong to the same parish. We ended our conversation with promises to include each other’s families on our daily Rosary. That’s the life I love. I am a Roman Catholic. The Church is in my blood and imprinted on my heart and soul. I should have been a priest. I knew it then; I know it now.

If Need Be

My parish priest sat outside on a chair. He wore a mask. Fellow parishioners were paced at least 6 feet apart down the sidewalk. Signs state there is a priest available if someone needs him. The signs were paced down the sidewalk too. When I saw the line - I didn’t count how many people because I was in a car - I started to cry. I noticed the rain stream down my windshield as a tear trickled down my cheek.

Claque For The Cruel

I remember when i first joined Facebook. It was for a woman who proved to be ... well let’s just say ... emotionally compromised. Idk. This might just be my new term for fuckwit. (I’m trying to curse less.) Anyway FB was a virtual reunion. I saw who had really changed since the education years. No need to attend a reunion. All the marginals provided digital information/confirmation. But then FB became a wonderful hoe. I found the weeds - i removed them from my blossoming life. “Click!” and they were gone.

And i learned about human behavior. Those who just copy and paste or click share pretty much were the gossipy type. Stuff like that. Now I've discovered FB has become like a divining rod. It’s easy to see the shallow. It’s easy to discern the depth. I’m finding that often underneath the surface there’s a pool of bitterness, hate, and angst. Damn, people I thought were sane are actually pretty frightening asshats on the verge of volcanic violence. Sure, right now it’s just verbal ejaculations of venom. (Frankly equally on either side of the political aisle.) But if they can’t contain or hell - disguise their inclinations ... Well, when’s the uncontrolled outburst? Scary. You know?

I was talking to someone the other day about all the hate in our society now. I told her I found myself feeling bitter. Oh bitter about all the stress in my life. It’s been a really difficult year. But when i realized my bitter, I had to stop myself and reevaluate my reactions. And now I’m cautious. I guard myself from that inclination of sin. I’ve watched the hatefilled. The one’s who feel unheard and unnoticed. I‘ve learned they feel a secret thrill to trolling. To provoking. It’s like an impotent man finally getting erect and getting the joy of the poke and the elation of the prod. And the sheer thrill of spraying the seeds of their emotions. And unfortunately we’ve all been jabbed enough to clench when the detestable approach. I've noticed that I’m contracting my cheeks just knowing they’re around. But not anymore. I’m too tired to live tensed. It’s time to eliminate the “bad companions.” It’s a sin to be a claque for the cruel.

Too Many Words

I've considered cowardice today. I'm not talking about bravery. I'm writing about cowardice fueled by avoidance. When I was a boy, I was often bullied. (Frankly, who wasn't. Right?) Anyway, I daily conjugated the verb to avoid. I avoided the men's room. I avoided the lunch room. I avoided corners. I'm now 58 years old. I pride myself on confrontations. I confront each affront. I do not fear reprisals nor reprimands. 

Today I realized I still avoid corners. Okay. No. I avoid being cornered. 

How? I frequently block the cell numbers of people I wish to avoid. It's not that I fear the confrontation. I just don't want to spend the energy. It's not cowardice really. It's sloth. 

Have you ever engaged in a conversation that just required too many words? Too many words to explain. Too many words to justify. Too many words to repair. Too many words to plead. Too many words to say. Too many words to hear. Just too many words. 

I'm just too tired for all the bullshit. And so I'd blocked the cell numbers of all the too manys. And I thought about that today. It isn't an acceptable alternative to confrontation. So, I've adopted a new policy: I think I'll just say, "this is just too many words and I don't want to spend the energy." Maybe it's just as cruel as ghosting but at least it's more honest than making someone wonder whether or not you’ve read his/her words.