It’s getting closer…

“Mrs. Frenchie’s cat is missing.
The signs are posted all over town: “Have you seen Honey?” We’ve all seen the posters, but nobody has seen “Honey,” the cat.
Nobody… until last Thursday morning, when Ms. Colette Piscine swerved her car to miss Honey while she drove across the bridge.
Well, this bridge, now slightly damaged,
is a bit of a local treasure, and even has its own fancy name: ‘Pont de flaque.’
Now, ‘Colette’… that sounds like ‘culotte’ (that’s ‘panty’ in French).
And ‘Piscine’ means “Pool”… “Panty Pool”
‘Flaque’ also means pool in French. So, Colette Piscine, in French ‘Panty Pool’, drives across the ‘Pont de flaque’ – or ‘Pont de Pool’, if you will – to avoid hitting Mrs. French’s cat that’s been missing in Pontypool.
Pontypool… Pont de Pool…
Panty Pool… Pont de flaque…
What does it mean?
Well, Norman Mailer, he had an interesting theory that he used to explain the strange coincidences
in the aftermath of the JFK assassination:
In the wake of huge events, after them and before them, physical details – they spasm for a moment. They sort of unlock, and when they come back into focus, they suddenly coincide in a weird way: street names and birth dates and middle names… all kinds of superfluous things appear related to each other. It’s a ‘ripple effect.’
So, what does it mean?
Well, it means something’s going to happen… Something big…
But then, something’s always about to happen.”
-Grant Mazzy; Pontypool (2008)

As I’ve been forced to revisit my past a lot lately, I’ve had my former step father on my mind often. I started noticing common traits between what I remember of him and what Ben has been evolving into. But as an adult, I have reasoning skills, and I can think critically about cause and effect, and I understand why Ben is the way he is. And because of this and my empathy, I can possibly help him, and have also started to paint a better picture of the person my former step-father actually was.

Now… consider this. Two days ago, I woke up and found a message from my mom with a screen shot attached, which showed a sudden message from said step-father. Just a short hello, just passing through. He offered well wishes and shared the fact that he was 25 years sober. Approximately how long it’s been since the last time I saw him. What are the odds?

People like to toss the word “crazy” around when people start putting pieces together and noticing patterns. But what if they’re actually onto something, and being flagged as “crazy” is just a way to turn people against them and get them to keep their mouths shut? What if medication is just a way to control them away from noticing these patterns and make them complacent? It’s just a theory. But what I’m going to tell you is a strange story about my life; an underlying subplot, if you will. And I promise you, it’s going to sound stranger than fiction. Because at a point, you just can’t make this shit up. It just… happens.

I haven’t tried retracing my steps any further back than the first time I remember starting to notice the pattern. But I was about 12 or 13 when I noticed. It was Gorillaz. They became an instant favorite of mine, because I’ve always been a massive fan of cartoons and music, and this was a beautiful marriage of the two. 2-D was my favorite. I can’t explain why, I just thought he was attractive, I guess. And so, back then there was a fan site dedicated to them that had neat info like backstory. 2-D’s bio mentioned that he was 23. And for some reason, that just stuck. I’d later see a picture of him wearing a shirt with the same number on it.

But from then on out, it kept happening. I realized that I lived along Highway 23. My birthday adds up to 23. It’s in other sensitive personal bits of information that I dare not divulge. But it kept happening to the point where I started telling my close friends and family about it. And from there, it never ended because they all teased me about it for the rest of my life. And it kept popping up.

So. After a million years of this, after I moved out of state and started trying to adjust to my shitty new life, I went to see Pan’s Labyrinth with some of my new “friends,” and by friends I mean a bunch of older Gen-X people who insisted on my constant presence, despite always seeming incredibly inconvenienced by it and failing to understand that I was still just a kid barely out of high school with no job, no license, no freedom to just go out and do things with them all the time. So when we went to see Pan’s Labyrinth, it was preceded by a trailer for a movie about a man who was haunted to insanity by a number. And guess what goddamn number it was.

I was freaked. The fuck. Out. And you know, it was in a crowded theater, shit was loud, you’re not supposed to talk, and so… I had to sit there and keep this panic all to myself throughout this really stressful movie about really scary and depressing things.

When the movie finally came out and we went to see it, we walked out of there and I can’t even remember all the coincidences that immediately happened, but I do remember the most ominous one. We all looked up and saw the number 23 written in the fucking clouds.

Now… this has never stopped, and believe me when I say that it always pops up in the most wtf places possible. But thinking back on that stuff, coupled with some other strange facts like how in 2010 I wrote a short story about a girl who writes fiction that comes true, and no one believes her, so she writes a ridiculous book about a viral apocalypse which- wouldn’t ya know it- comes true. And then everyone hates her. Ten years ago I wrote that story. So many of the details kind of became hazy in my memory, so after the CoVid-19 outbreak, I started noticing how we had this indoor garden going, like my character had. I was prepared for the occasion with face masks and other precautionary items just because I’m a zombie junkie. So I had the idea to go back and read it to see if there were any details I’d forgotten about that might creep me out. I should not have done that.

Not only did it all add up pretty weirdly accurately, down to the limited quarantine with people still working their jobs and going shopping and shit but with mandatory precautionary gear, only catching it through the air if you’re standing closer than a certain distance from the infected, growing an indoor garden to keep fresh produce around, etc. Too many details. But anyway, on top of that, I apparently also predicted the end of a friendship that hadn’t ended yet, down to the last little detail of being denied the right to know why and being threatened with legal action for continuously trying to obtain the answer. 😐

What the fuck. And if you go back and read some of my previous entries leading up to this, you might find that I felt this coming. I tried to warn everyone, but no one listened because I didn’t have a good answer for why I felt that way. It was just a feeling, it doesn’t come with a readme.txt file, okay? But by now, I’ve learned to sense when something is about to happen and to listen to my instincts. They are not wrong. But people think that because the ominous thing doesn’t happen the same day, that it’s not going to. They also assume that because nothing bad did happen than it was a false alarm, when perhaps maybe I just helped them avoid it.

Call me crazy if you want to. I don’t care. By now, I’m more than aware of the fact that everyone thinks I’m crazy because no one really listens to anything I say 100%. Sure, a vast majority of the things I talk about are just theories I’ve constructed. No one ever takes me seriously when I say that it’s all hypothetical, they just push me off as a nut job and assume I’m trying to preach my theories as gospel, when really, I’m just trying to explore different ideas about why some of the unexplained phenomena may actually be solvable. They refuse to even consider them as a possibility. So when I have one of those impending feelings that something is going to happen and soon, they do the same shit. But this time, I’m not just trying to have a friendly discussion about the theories that swirl around my mind. This time, I’m saying “Hey. Something is actually going to happen, and I feel it.” This time, it’s a warning. But regardless of how many times I warn, they ignore, and I end up being right, and regardless of any of the times they actually did listen and took evasive action which led to a favorable outcome, they still do not trust me when I say that I’m sure I know.

Sorry for the digression. But what I’m trying to get onto is that all this stuff recently has made me realize some things I hadn’t noticed before. Like how the actor who played the main character in The Number 23 also played the main character in a movie about a man whose life was not his own. He had no privacy. The entire world was watching him constantly, and he had no idea for the longest time, until things started adding up. People from time to time would gain access to him and try to expose what was going on to him, but until he started figuring it out for himself, none of it made any sense. And when those people did try to warn him in huge extravagant ways, they got caught and banished.

So that’s all fine and interesting, heck of a coincidence, sure. So what if he’s been in two movies about topics, or possibly other movies about topics I haven’t realized yet? Big deal. And sure, think that if you like. But then also consider this very strange detail that seems completely out of left field: I found a picture of this actor once from when he was quite young. Probably about the same age as my youngest brother. And the photo of this actor looked exactly like said brother. Uncannily so. Like if you’d shown me that photo without any context, I would have wondered when and where my brother posed for it, without even considering that it might not be a picture of him.

Feel free to think whatever you’d like. I’m sure there’s a finite amount of ways that a human face can possibly look. Like how my friend Chris looks exactly like McJagger (sp?), but until I’d met him, I’d never seen a picture of Jagger before. And if I’d come across one later, I would have for sure thought that it was my friend.

Who can really say? Some people are just crazy conspiracy theorists, so completely mentally disabled that they are capable of noticing patterns and forming theories. So I suppose that makes scientists insane. And coders. And doctors. And detectives. Important people who help us gain knowledge and understanding for the growth and development of our species. All a bunch of whackadoos. The only thing that separates me from them is a piece of paper saying that I went to a school where they told me things.

And on that note, I’m going to sign off and go lie down and hope that the virus doesn’t kill me. Because I am infected now. And it’s extremely painful.

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