...Not the kind of wheel you fall asleep at...

"Vulnerability Analysis"

This was the title of a Tennessee regulation I happened to glance at yesterday. My mind wandered, picturing some sort of machine created to gauge our vulnerabilities, something along the lines of one of those fortune-telling machines (or machines which rate how good you are as a lover) where you squeeze the handle and the lights blink up up up like surfacing bubbles until they reach a declaration: "You will be wealthy." "One hot mama." In our case, "VULNERABLE VULNERABLE VULNERABLE!" with accompanying sirenic whoops.

I have issues with vulnerability. I am a scab that keeps getting picked and just wants to heal up already. I am toughened skin that wants to be all baby soft but is leery enough of people and their intentions to be satisfied with a quiet scarring instead.

This weekend I received a letter in the mail. Not so much a letter as a note. It was from someone I've not spoken to in a long time. From the outside, it looked like some sort of business mail, a safe manilla envelope--perhaps the photographs I'd ordered that were to be delivered or something I'd ordered off half.com. I ripped it open while chattering away with Grey Cat and Teany Cat, expecting one of these two items. Instead I got a note. Two words, carefully scripted and staged, with time and effort placed into them. It was like unwrapping a package to find a severed hand with a hundred thousand dollars next to it--shocking, welcome, and upsetting all at the same time. At first I felt the pangs of a broken heart. And then later, it made me angry.

There was no return address. My address was typed out carefully on a white mailing label so that the handwriting would not give the mailer away. Upon opening it, whom it was from was unmistakeable. And yet, I was given no choice but to open it because I was given no reason to doubt it was anything else than what I'd expected it to be.

This is what vulnerability is.

A plain manila envelope with no return address and your address carefully stuck on the front in computer-scripted font. A row of lights with accompanying hooting noises springing through the air as the final light shines down on your face and you can do nothing but accept your destiny.



Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home