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The Loop "Life sucks." I glance up from my book and sprawl across a dilapidated coffeeshop couch at the dark uniformed contingent of angst troopers who nod with that sagacity recruits alone can muster on the eve of battle or community theater players during dress rehearsal. "No one cares, you know. They just don't understand." She delivers her lines flawlessly beneath a track lighting hotspot; the painted faces of Jose Marti, Marcos and other compadres of the revolution peer over her shoulder from the photograph of some alley mural; a coincidental icon, perhaps, or mere irony. "I've always felt like an outsider, you know, on the outside of some window looking in" I refrain from stage whispering a heresy: "If you don't like it, break the window" for she'd only be breaking ranks, breaking faith with the role she's cast herself in that communion of souls yearning to be lost. Besides, this isn't improv, it's ritual. "Dammed straight." "You go, girl." "I hear you." "Ain't that the truth." The new revised standard version of "amen" for these true believers who worship not idols of gold or silver, at least not yet or as they would admit but terpsichore to the militant arias of that bloodthirsty pagan goddess of vague peer acceptance. "Life sucks." Yeah, this pageant is a loop, a variation on the same tired ways history moves, yet I wish them better, this current crop of Crusaders who've chosen their own splinters from the cross all bear of restless spirits never really knowing what it is we seek.
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