They assumed they had killed me, but I had only been asleep. Even though I don’t remember doing so, in the distant past I must have taken a pill or inhaled a gas that put me in a state of suspended animation, for when I awoke many years had passed. I was painfully thin and my clothes had turned to gauzy rags. Fortunately, even though my limbs were weak my mind was sharp. In fact, I now thought with a clarity that heretofore had escaped me.
No longer did I feel the need to take exercise for its own sake. Purposeless activity was a waste of energy. All energy was potential energy, with the promise of doing great good. Going through the motions was play-acting, and for what audience? Why would anyone go to the effort?
Certainly, no sane person would squander his hours in such a fashion. Even now, months after my awakening, I don’t remember much about my past but I assume I was a person of some importance, otherwise I would not have been kept around for as long as I have. I’m pleased to report that the few people I have communicated with since my resurrection have treated me with respect.
I wanted to know if I was alone in having been put into storage and kept alive after a long time in a moribund state. Were there others in my position? If so, who were they and most importantly, where? Could I meet them?
If there were others, they remained hidden. We, the gaunt and confused kept to ourselves, awaiting an invitation to mingle that never arrived.
I recall being well-liked. It’s all a blur, but I do remember that things began to change unexpectedly and suddenly just before my fall from grace. Women who used to smile at me would no longer look me in the eye or even acknowledge my presence. Those I thought my friends were foes. The transformation had occurred literally overnight.
I wasn’t fired. Rather than anything that dramatic, the phone simply stopped ringing. New offers ceased. No longer in the loop, I wasn’t aware of the parties and meetings I hadn’t been invited to. People looked embarrassed when I stopped to chat. I could almost hear them exhale in relief when I moved on.
I was once offered an administrative position in a rapidly growing company, but I declined because I knew that they would eventually regret their decision and fire me. I can’t handle any more massive disappointments. No more performance evaluations, thank you. Not another case of being escorted out of the building by a security guard, the contents of my desk handed to me in a box as I wait by my car in the parking lot. You can keep your job and all that goes with it. I will enjoy poverty and freedom in equal measure. Never a team member, I don’t expect to suddenly change at this late date.
No one has ever been glad they hired me for any sort of job. Again, I could fool myself and others into thinking that “this time it’s different,” but what’s the point?