Everyday Artists

The world's greatest artists walk you through simple, everyday tasks.

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There is not a man or woman living who continues as such without a hearty reverence for the damage a neighbor can do. Neighbors break everyone, and afterward, many are strong at the broken places. Then again, we are all broken in places, that is how the light gets in and exposes our cover.

The most essential trait for a good hider is a built-in, shockproof, shit detector. By shit, I mean neighbor; the two are synonymous in this and all other cases.

When on your property, keep vigil for their approach. When their car pulls in their driveway and you find yourself exposed, act quickly, for time is the least thing we have of. All you have to do is have one true hiding place. Find the truest hiding place you know. The best hiders possess a feeling for invisibility, the courage to pursue it, the discipline to live within it, the capacity to sacrifice all else for it.

Considering hiding places, forget your personal tragedy. We are all bitched from the start and you especially have to hurt like hell before you can hide seriously. But when you get the damned hurt, use it—don’t cheat with it. Briar thorns hurt like hell, but no one suspects it. Trash cans reek of creative death, and oxygen is limited, but damned if it isn’t a complete submersion in disappearance. Rather to smell of rotted Lo Mein than to return home to tell your partner, “I’m not brave any more, darling. I’m all broken. They’ve broken me.”

The foe here, the woeful conversation of weather reports and golfing trips, it is cause for drinking. But even as an intelligent man is sometimes forced to be drunk to spend time with his neighbors, so too is an intelligent man aware of the portents of a whiskey dependence. The scent alone will sully the briar bush and turn your garbage bin fouler yet.

When possible, never dive into anything head first. Trash can, briar bush, laundry chute. Extraction becomes the issue and you may find yourself asking your neighbor for assistance while they bleat on about the overcast skies. This said, the neighbor has a slinkiness, and when ambushed, head first is preferable to nothing at all.

Do not build hiding places. A treehouse, for instance, is an invitation to be joined. A ladder into your privacy is an open door, and open doors are damned welcoming to fools.

Hiding places must exist as something else. The thing is to become a master and in your old age, acquire the courage to do what children did when they knew nothing and played hide-and-seek on instinct alone. Thus combine the wisdom of experience with the innocence of impulse. There is no hiding like the hiding from neighbors, and those who have hid long enough and liked it, never care for anything else thereafter.

Remember also that once chosen, you must commit. Never mistake motion for action. It is not movement that keeps you hidden, but stillness.

It is a neighbor that sours the human spirit with foolishness, and the job of every human to not open their soul to such spoil. This is the decision you make to better yourself. You know it makes one feel rather good deciding not to be a bitch.

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