When you’re a boy with Alzheimer’s disease, life can be pretty difficult. Well one would imagine anyway. But not for the boy who lived on 52nd street. No one knew that this boy had been bestowed with memory loss because it was never apparent. He seemed like your average kid, going to school, playing sports, growing up fast. It was discovered one afternoon when he had fallen out of a tree and landed on his head. His mother rushed the boy to the hospital. The boy had been given a CT scan and the doctors gave a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease. The doctors said that he was born with it and was not obtained after his head collided with the ground. His mother cried for days and his father still never came home. About a week after the diagnosis, his mother stopped crying. The boy was showing no signs of forgetfulness and she never noticed anything before the accident. His mother became very curious about him. She began testing him. She made him walk home from school without her assistance. She made him make his sandwiches every evening for school the next day. She even quizzed him on his homework every night before he would go to sleep. The boy’s mother could find nothing wrong with the boy. She became very worried again. She cried and stayed awake all night. Then one day the boy didn’t come home from school. Usually a child’s mother would become very upset when her child didn’t return from school but not the boy with Alzheimer’s mother. She was ecstatic. Finally some proof that this boy really was sick. He had forgotten how to get home! Soon after the boy’s disappearance his mother started to worry. She called the school and they explained that everyone had left. She called the boy’s best friend’s mother. He was not there. The boy’s mother began crying and laughing simultaneously. She was bereaved that her son had not returned from school but she was excited because he really did have Alzheimer’s. The boy’s mother sat at her kitchen table chain smoking throughout the afternoon. At around five pm the boy casually strolled through the kitchen door. He swung his book bag around the chair and kissed his mother on the cheek. His mother didn’t say a word and the boy ran into the living room and turned on the television. His mother got up from the table and sat next to the little boy. She sat there for about five minutes before asking the boy where he had been. The boy simply replied he was at soccer tryouts. His mother began bursting out in tears. She screamed and drooled and her mascara covered her face in black shadows. She ran to her room and cried for an hour. The boy didn’t move from the couch. After the boy’s mother had stopped crying she stormed down the stairs, grabbed the boys hand and pulled him outside and into the car. She drove ferociously to the hospital. At the hospital she demanded that they take a look at her son. The doctors reluctantly agreed and gave him another CT scan. This time the boy had developed traces of Parkinson’s disease. A doctor turned towards the mother and said simply, “Sorry it’s a new machine. We’re still working out the kinks.”
Painted pipes peel shades of bark and dust
Corrosion fills empty blank voids
Six stringed musicians play loudly to
Drown the crowded conversation
Paths of wood meander and hinder
The uprising of four-legged flat backs
Beautiful shapes of glass take the forms
Of various angels and harlots
Short and stout, tall and tense
Sticks with gold and legs of ceramic pillars
Captured dead framed with smiles
Relived past memories of tin
Congregated segregations of philanthropic throws
Life as we know it
Belongs to the youth
I watch cautiously as her hands wander through the air. I watch as she places her fingers alongside the clay mug. She uses an ounce of strength through her tips as she lifts the cup towards her curved lips. I watch as she slowly opens the red gates of passion and rests the white mug against her bottom lip. She pours the hot liquid down her throat until it rests in her stomach. She wipes the froth from her upper lip and chuckles from embarrassment. She flicks her hair and looks up at me. Her cold hard eyes pierce mine. I try my best to return her stare but she always wins. I look away and watch the crowd. I watch the young men and women of our society sipping away at coffee and tea, eating Danishes and reading newspapers. She reaches out and caresses my hand. With her forefinger she draws circles on the back of my hand. I watch as she makes figure eights and swirls. I tilt my head and look at her. Her gaze unchanged. Cold and hard. The corner of my lip curls into an attempt of showing emotion. She closes her eyes, longer than a blink but shorter than a while. I can smell her fragrance dancing across the table. It tangos passed the pastries and the hot drinks towards me. It brings back memories of love not lost but forgotten. Memories cherished in photo albums and in my heart. She suddenly stands and tells me she will be back. She withdraws a cigarette from her purse and exits the crowded room. I drop my head in dismay and relief. My breath escapes me in a hurry and I can breathe again. Fluid motions return to my arms and my head becomes a free-willed swivel. I feel loose and calm. I pull my head back into my spine before gazing out through the letter-stained window. I can watch her smoke her cigarette. Watch as she draws the smoke into her effervescent body. I watch as her body collapses as the smoke files out from her lungs. She too has become relaxed and free. The tensions in her shoulders are now with her aching feet. She could never get used to wearing heels. My mind slips into a daydream and I remember our fondest memory. In the summer at the shore, where we spent hours laying in the sand talking about nothing. Where we smiled at each other for what seemed like hours, but really were only seconds. The night we spent in the beach house. It was warm and filled with bugs but we couldn’t have felt happier. I watch now as she butts out her cigarette and returns to the coffee shop. She sits down and gives me a faint smile. I return the gesture but only out of reluctance. She pulls on envelope from her purse and slides it across the table. I look at it and then to her. She gives a reassuring nod and I slowly move my head from side to side. I pull the white sheets from inside the golden-yellow parchment. I take out my pen and apply my signature. An end to a dream, the final step in moving on. My eyes turn to hers. We lock in a stare and this time I win.
The car came barrelling towards him with a screech of tires. Black marks painted the roads as the driver lost control. Philip J. Anders jumped clear of the oncoming car as it careened into a nearby telephone pole. As Mr. Anders pulled himself from the dirt ridden pavement he couldn’t help but smile. Another helpless victim he would think to himself. A few people from nearby rushed to the scene and tried to help the old man inside the car. Mr. Anders only stood and watched. He removed the ten mega-pixel camera from inside his pocket and raised it parallel to the scene of the wrecked car. He snapped a picture and placed the camera back in his pocket. Satisfied, he turned on his heels and headed on towards home.
Mr. Anders placed a canvas upon an easel. He picked his favourite brush from a drawer and a few tubes of paint. He began mixing colours on his palette. When he was happy with a few basic colours he sat down the flat board and pulled up the swivel chair to his computer. He pulled the digital camera from his pocket and plugged the USB cord in from the camera to his personal computer. He uploaded the picture of the car accident and enlarged it so it took up the entire screen. Another smirk and he pulled a smock over his head. Mr. Anders began painting his new piece of work.
Mr. Anders was a professional painter. He was an artist with convoluted ideas and twisted interpretations of art. Although condemned by most critics, Mr. Anders had a niche market and he explored every nook of that niche. He gave what his fans wanted, blood and guts and twisted shards of metal protruding through the prevailing smog of exhaust fumes and burning rubber. Mr. Anders would always deliver. Nobody ever questioned how Mr. Anders would come upon these magnificent wrecks of automobiles and maybe they should have. When a drought was forthwith, Mr. Anders would occasionally deter drivers from the road not with malice but with benevolence. In his eyes it was benevolence. He believed he was performing good acts by the approval of his fans while in the meantime turning a profit.
Mr. Anders became a worldwide sensation. Prestigious art auctions in London and New York along with Paris and Dubai sold his paintings. He became a cult figure and many tried to imitate his styles by recreating deadly events. The media hated him. They would still write stories about his work and place them on the front page.
It got to the point where Mr. Anders wanted to go bigger and create more works of art. However, car accidents weren’t so frivolous and didn’t occur as often as he would like. He began staging his own accidents; driving cars into ditches at first, minor inconveniences. He grew more adventurous as each accident passed. He took a car over a cliff before jumping out at the last second. He drove head-on in the oncoming lanes. Each time he came away with minor bumps and bruises. He became a daredevil. He became a world icon.
His popularity eventually faded away after he died. People began forgetting about his dangerous stunts and boisterous attitudes. His works did manage to gain popularity but only his early works. Fraud deemed his latest works illegible mostly because of fabrication. They sold for amounts much less than his originals. His masterpiece, The Flipped Bus, will sell for millions for years to come. Only esteemed art collectors will remember his name and what he stood for. Had Mr. Anders kept his work in minimalistic portions he may still be remembered by most. Greed and objectivity took control of his life. He was a loner and he preferred it. His life would later be viewed as a work of art, however it was never finished. His life was taken early when he tripped in the bathroom and cracked his skull against the marble sink. An uninspiring end to an extremely precarious life.