You know, I really never saw myself ending up in a position like this, trapped in a storm drain, but, well, here I am. You could say that life is like a series of twists and turns meant to take you down paths that you never expected you would ever reach, and for me, that meant tripping over a brick and accidentally wedging myself inside this narrow storm drain opening.

When I was young, I found out that I had a curiosity for the unknown, for what was just out of grasp. I looked up at the stars and the moon and wondered what suspended that glowing dust above me. Now, trapped between concrete, I only wonder if anyone is going to help me. My phone is in my back pocket, conveniently beyond my reach and thus the endless help network I could have possibly contacted rendered mute. I had heard my father talk about surviving on my own, on living like a man all those years ago, but today I feel as though I've accomplished neither of these objectives. Instead, I feel my feet dangle below me while my stomach acts as a vacuum seal, preventing me from pushing myself out.

I wonder: is this truly who I am? The man wedged within the storm drain? Obviously, the answer is yes. But is there more to me than this? I have no definite answer.

Life trapped in what essentially is a horizontal gutter is too short to be angry at those who've spited me.

I've fiddled with the idea of predetermination before, the idea that where you end up has already been decided by fate and that the life you lead is a consequence of the universe. And if that is true, where does that leave me?

On one hand, if predetermination is true, then any alternative that could have possibly happened to me is, and forever has been, void; thus, it is not my fault that I am stuck here. I am merely the unfortunate product of a sick joke life has made of me. This is my maximum; my final form. And no amount of wiggling my large body will change that.

On the other, if predetermination is false, then my potential was greater than this and I could have been amazing, a true marvel. In fact, if we take this hypothesis to its limit, then I am truly unlimited. Or, rather, I was truly unlimited. Until that small moment in time where I neglected to notice the brick lying out on the side of the road, left to collide with my foot, sending me to my present doom.

I am unable to tell which is correct here. Part of me yearns to believe that I was indeed a being of endless potential, one that could achieve anything. The other part of me seeks out an excuse for the present circumstance I am in. It is not a position I am proud to occupy.

You may have noticed, and rightly so, that I seem to have ignored the fact that my fate may change. The reason for this is because I have been out here for a grand total of eight hours and no one has seemed to take an interest in my pleas for assistance. Not that I blame them; I have no one to call responsible for this predicament other than myself. And the person that left that brick lying there. You, I blame.

Ah, but life trapped in what essentially is a horizontal gutter is too short to be angry at those who've spited me. No, life is something to cherish. All these people who kick empty soda cans and throw pinecones at my face do so with pure intentions, I'm sure. Perhaps they have never been in such a situation as this, and in doing so have already proven their superiority to me. Or maybe they see what they're doing as an act of moral generosity, to show others that my path is not one to follow. Either way, it doesn't do much good thinking about it now, not when I have lost sensation from the waist down.

I genuinely believe people are kind-hearted and that everyone does their best here, on this earth. But does this mean that my best ability was to get myself stuck here in this storm drain?

As I idle here, waiting for the street cleaner to finish me off, I wonder what my family would think, seeing me like this. I wonder how hard they would stomp on my head, trying to force me all the way down the drain.


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