Once I wandered down a crooked path in the twilight of mediocrity, as I tired of sauntering along the gilded seams of that hallowed chasm between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie. For much of my life I found myself a disgruntled denizen of the land of suburban purgatory: the Middle Class.
I led a phantasmal existence as the Lost Lamb of this societal pasture. My journey through this convoluted realm was a veritable mixed bag of wonders, pitfalls, and revelations that left me suspended in a perpetual state of insignificance.
As an enigmatic Lost Lamb, I traversed the verdant lawns of manicured estates, each one a carbon copy of its neighbor, as if stamped from the assembly line of the American Dream itself. I witnessed the afternoon parades of minivans and crossovers transporting their precious cargo of well-adjusted children to soccer games and piano recitals, exuding an air of genteel conformity.
In the temples of capitalism we call shopping centers, I marveled at the cacophony of consumerism. Laughter, sobs, and the rustle of shopping bags permeated the atmosphere, while the scent of soft pretzels and the bitter perfume of credit card debt mingled in an intoxicating concoction. There amid the gleaming altars to the Free Market economy, for just a fleeting moment, I tasted the sweet ambrosia of material satisfaction, only for it to vanish like a sugar-spun dream.
At time-honored gatherings of the Middle Class, I felt like a complete stranger. I stood bewildered in the corner, as I viewed social butterflies dancing beneath shimmering streamers and twinkling fairy lights. As the evenings unfolded, dirty little secrets were spilled and inhibitions shed like the leaves of an autumnal tree, further emboldened by the sweet nectar of boxed wine.
Eventually, last call came and designated drivers ushered their inebriated peers to their rides home. Some continued to ramble on, mostly unaware of how foolish they would look and sound. Yet, many more were suddenly hushed by the somber realization that Monday morning’s harsh sunlight would pierce their revelry, banishing us back to the drudgery of our daily lives.
During my pilgrimage as the Lost Lamb, I sought solace in the sepulchral embrace of the office cubicle. In this confining cage of ambition, I was lulled into complacency by the siren song of mediocrity. The days bled into weeks, months, years, their passage marked only by the gentle crescendo of the retirement account and the changing of the seasons.
Still, amid the banality, there existed moments of transcendent beauty. I found solace in the beauty of an evening sunset’s fiery hues,the whispered secrets shared between kindred spirits, and the amusements of my youth fermenting into a comfortable elixir of nostalgia.Like a lone star in the ebony expanse of the cosmos, these fleeting moments guided me through the murky waters of uncertainty, leading me ever closer to the elusive shores of self-discovery.
Alas, I was the Lost Lamb of the Middle Class, a creature of paradox, both entranced and repelled by the trappings of a life teetering precariously between comfort and tedium. But today, inspired by a line from Allen Ginsberg’s “Footnote to Howl,” I found the phrase to best describe my role in that long stretch of wandering years.
So, dear reader, as you wander through your own Life’s maze, know that you are not alone, for there is always a Lost Lamb who walks beside you.
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