The neck of the first space bug snapped easily. I caught it off guard. Its muscles were tense and I was full of adrenaline. Its head spun a full three-sixty. The second little bastard had time to react, letting its body go slack as my hands wrapped around its small head. I could twist. I could jerk it this way and that. I’m pretty sure it was unconscious after my second attempt, but that satisfying crunch just wouldn’t happen. No stream of green slime they called blood erupting from the back of its little bug throat.
I’m no sadist. I’m no monster. I’d leave it lie if I didn’t have orders. Everything must go. Every single one of these six-legged alien assholes. Their entire bodies were only about as large as a human torso. and it was hard to believe these suckers had made it all the way across the galaxy to wreak havoc on our planet, but here they were, sucking the nitrogen from our atmosphere in their giant suppository-shaped spaceships. In my briefing, I was told that their mech suits were a new improvement. A quick adaptation. They sat their little ant bodies into a bipedal robot, and they were suddenly freeing up legs to work on more nefarious projects. The ultimate multitaskers, these little fuckers. They never stopped evolving.
Maybe they were smart enough to get their asses all the way here after all.
I laughed as I pressed my heel into the face of my enemy. The pop was sudden, my boot hitting the ground and that green goo splashing about in all directions. Their brains were so small compared to ours, and we still haven’t even made it to Mars? That shit’s embarrassing.
I didn’t mean to quit my job. Just like I didn’t mean to move back into my parent’s guest room. Just like I didn’t mean to get a common-law divorce. Just like I didn’t mean to get her pregnant and throw my hands in the air after weeks of arguing about everything to do with her body being her decision. If I could have carried the damned thing, I would have. Reality bites, the Gen Xers said.
I was shattered. I was grieving the loss of potential. I was afloat in a sea of what ifs and shoulda dones. I was infected by a disease known as The Fuckits, and I didn’t know where to go. So I went home. Fifteen years on my own, and I crawled back with my tale between my legs. It was only made worse by how easy it was. My job let me transfer. Mom and Dad were happy to see me. My dog was glad to have a backyard.
I quit my job as a mattress salesman about 4 months after the move. I just woke up one day and realized that I was done pretending. I hate sales. And sure, I’m pretty good at convincing people to buy something they already want to buy, but saying the same ten sentences to every person who walked through my door for 15 years was in no way fulfilling. The only reason I still had the job was because it pays better than it has any right to. 50k/year for about 4 hours of actual work each day. The fuck is everyone else working so hard for, I always wondered.
And then I figured it out. You work hard for a sense of accomplishment. You work hard so that when you turn around and look at what you’ve done with yourself, you don’t feel absolutely fucking worthless. I never worked for much of anything. I felt pretty fucking worthless.