Weird Divide

I don’t think Lacey can go on not knowing.

“I agree.” says a polka player.

“Why do you like coffee?” asks Jack of Lacey.

“Because it reminds me of my good childhood memories. My entire Norwegian family loved coffee. It’s a culturally significant drink in Scandinavia.” says Lacey. “Or at least American-Scandinavian culture.”

“That sounds delightful.” he says.

“It’s comforting and thoughtful.”

“I’m glad I grew-up Irish.” says Jack.

Lacey smiles. “At least there’s skiing.”

“True.” he says.

“Would you have lived my life the way I did?”

“You know I wouldn’t have.”

“What would you have done?”

“Run away.” says Lacey.

“Where to?” he asks, smiling.

“England.”

“To do what?“

“Be journalist?” She thinks. “Or a socialite.” She thinks more. “Or both.”

“Lem, would you have followed him there to do that?” asks a Millennial.

“No.”

“Why?” asks a Boomer.

“I would have realized he was he.” he says.

“As opposed to what?” asks a gay man.

“A Lacey.” he admits.

“A what?!” asks a Boomer woman.

“A younger, more delicate version of Joe Jr.? Who needs your help?” asks a Millennial. “Who needs you to save them?”

“Lacey didn’t try to start a school newspaper?” asks a Boomer. “But your real passion was what? Politics?” She looks at Lacey. “When did you decide you wanted to be US President?”

“At age 10.”

“But you were interested in politics at what age?”

“When I was four.”

“That was the first election you recall.”

“Yes.”

“So Lem did you want to be first husband?” asks a Millennial.

He thinks.

“I can see why she’s not sure about you.” says a Boomer.

“I would have been first man.” says Jack.

“To Lacey?!”

“Yes! Because it would have worked.”

“As long as you didn’t stab me in the back.” says Lacey.

Rose looks at Lacey. “It’s personal isn’t it?”

“You think we can’t control ourselves?”

“And behave like reasonable, honest, decent adults?” asks Lacey.

Rose cries.

“Why cry?” asks Lacey.

She blinks. “I-I screwed-up.”

“Well, we all do.” says Lacey.

“It does help to have this conversation dead.” she says smiling.

“Well at least that’s worked out nicely.” says Lacey.

“Yes, dear. But then what about your side of things?”

“It’s obviously either far worse or better I would imagine?”

She decides to end the conversation. It’s too grim.

“And that’s why she keeps finding herself with me.” says Michael.

“Are you sick of it?” asks someone.

“I am!” says Lem.

Silence.

“I’m being confused for some evil sadistic pleasure of a fool.” says Lacey.

“Yes! A fool who can’t stand to see you happy or being yourself.”

“Why can’t they stop?” asks a Christian hater.

“They can’t cognitively understand it it seems.” she says. “It’s like narcissism is some sort of plague.”

“One that we can’t even properly diagnose.” he says.

“Yes. It’s beyond our current science.” she says.

“What was it like falling down the stairs?” asks someone.

“As an adult it wasn’t too scary. It’s a quick process. But that’s-I’d not recommend it.” says Lacey.

The Christian hater laughs. “I suppose God gave you grace.”

“Yes.”

“It’s kind of fun before the pain hits. As an adult.” says a ghost who fell.

“Yes! As an adult you understand. Although don’t go around pushing people down stairs.” says Lacey.

“Like shooting people was the trend of the 1960’s.” says Bobby.

“Didn’t the Queen fall?” asks a celebrity.

“Yes! It’s common to fall down a flight of stairs before you die. Isn’t it?” asks Louis.

“Among the elite.” says a ghost.

“In old age.” says Louis.

“Lacey you fell too soon.”

“Talk to whatever pushed me.” she protests.

“It’s not good to die though.” says the Christian hater.

“No!” says Lacey. “No! But God gives people grace.”

“So they’re using demons to push people?” he asks.

“They shouldn’t have attacked me.” says Lacey. “Or the Illuminati hater should have stopped long ago if it’s just him.”

“They can’t kill him?”

“Not easily.”

“Is he Republican or Democrat?”

“He’s corrupt.” says Lacey.

Michael cries.

“Who is he?”

“He’s evil. And God knows. And honestly, I’d like God to deal with it.” says Lacey.

“Your utter lack of interest in him drives him nuts as he seems to be a sociopathic idiot.” says someone.

“When did you start to lose interest in him?”

“When I realized he was evil.”

“Is there a child sex ring?” asks the Christian hater.

“I’d bet yes. But it’s not like they’re all pedophilic. In my estimation. It’s more that they’re into everything and that’s part of the worst of it.” Lacey says.

“So like drugs, food, etc.” he says.

“So some are healthy, relatively speaking?”

“Yes. It seems.”

“And that’s sad.” he says.

Silence.

“So if they curse someone who’s dangerous to curse the curse comes back on them?” he wonders.

“Some things shouldn’t be done.”

“Who does love you other than God? And your father, possibly?” he asks. In Heaven he means.

“The English.” says Pat Wilson.

He laughs. “Who else?”

“Me!” shouts Elliott.

“As a friend?” he asks, shocked.

“Yes!” he says. “But that means something.”

“I’m sure you mean romantic love.” says a man. “And in that case, she’s loved by me.”

“And who are you?” asks a professor.

“I’m Michael.”

“Although I haven’t entirely given up yet.” says Louis.

“And I haven’t either. But…if I’m straight and was, I should have told her I loved her and I didn’t enough. Or clearly. More clearly, than enough really.” says Lem. “I need to love her more than the way I loved Jack, however inauthentic that was.”

“Do you love her?!”

“Me Lem?”

“Yes!”

“Yes.”

“How much?”

“A lot.” says Lem.

“But I love her more.” says Michael.

“And I love her the most. But I messed-up.” says Louis.

“Did the Illuminati hater affect things?”

“Yes!!”

“He’s like a super villain.” says a perfume hater. “With a dark, mysterious identity.”

“Let’s name him something!” a perfume hater says.

“How about Ramone Yves Olson.” says Lacey. “And we will henceforth call him Mr. Peggy Olson since I think that protects everyone’s privacy.” She thinks. “He’s not on Mad Men, by the way. His type shows up in various characters. But he’s not literally on the show.”

“Would Peggy have dated him?”

“She might have gone on a date. But it wouldn’t have gone well.” says Lacey. “I think it would just have been awkward.”

“What did Louis do?” asks a gay Millennial.

“He betrayed me.” says Lacey. “Possibly with his wife and Athalia.”

“Two dead blonds.”

“Yes!” says Lacey.

“Wait, Athalia Ponsell?!”

“Yes. I suggested they date each other to be kind.” Lacey rolls her eyes.

“Did he know her?!”

“Seemingly no.” says Lacey.

“So you introduced them? And then it went very badly.” says someone.

“Yes.”

“I love her! And if I can forgive her for her interest in other men…I love her the most.” says Lem.

“But you didn’t need that much from Jack.” says Lacey.

Lem cries.

“Why did you go too far with Athalia?” the gay asks Louis.

“I was hurt. She was in love with Elliott and Joe.” he says.

“So you guys are in Purgatory or God’s somehow allowing this?” says a Christian.

“Or it’s what would have happened.” says Lacey.

He laughs. “And they’re in Heaven?”

“That might be it.” She nods. “Or it’s just Purgatory.”

“Poor Louis.” says someone.

“But Michael is Michael?” asks a woman in shock. “As in the Asmats?”

“Yes!”

“Lem, who does it hurt that she feels something for?”

“Anyone but me.”

She laughs. “Were you jealous over Jack or dud they imagine you were?”

“It’s my personality.” He laughs. “But I wasn’t in love.” He shakes his head. “I think they imagined it, I’m afraid.”

“Do you tell her stuff like that?” asks the gay man. “Lacey.”

“I get interrupted. Often.” he says.

“Did Mr. Peggy Olson orchestrate Joe’s downfall and Elliott’s as well?” asks a Millennial.

“They did manipulate demons to attack them, possibly.” says a female.

“To confuse them?!” asks a Christian.

“Yes.”

“How does Mr. Peggy Olson not realize how dumb he’s being?” asks a woman.

“He’s probably traumatized by his meteoric success. The transition to the life of an elite and all that. And he’s really dissociative.” says a perfume hater.

“And he just treats the Illuminati meetings like it’s just him and his friends playing with a Ouija board in the basement as teenagers.” adds a reader.

“And how many of them are living in reality themselves?” someone else asks.

“Is that why you think the elite should be more carefully vetted, so to speak?” asks the loudest perfume hater.

“Yes!” says Lacey.

“Like old money versus new?” asks a hater.

“Yes!” says Lacey.

“Because old money doesn’t get so mentally lost when they find out about this stuff. They just find it sad, predictable and fascinating.” Someone thinks. “Maybe amusing that a fantastical conspiracy is true. But not…lost to the point of a break with reality.”

“Like finding out…ghosts are possibly real too.” says a hater. “And nowadays a conservative wouldn’t bat an eye either. Not just old money. But all conservatives.”

“Some Liberals who indulge in the supernatural might not be so shocked.” says a woman.

“Did Mr. Peggy Olson…accidentally leak to the dead press?”

“If he exists.”