It was something that I hadn't done. But it just as well could have been something that I had done. Something small, but dense and caustic, lodged in my conscience for years. A chance remark had jabbed it, sparking off a fierce growth into a cancer that eclipsed the sun-filled day and absorbed levity like a black sponge.
I dosed myself with a chemotherapeutic cocktail of impeccable reason, human interaction, and gluttonous indulgence. Look, it's not really that bad, you're blowing it completely out of proportion. So, how was your holiday? Mmm, I'll have another of those lovely biscuits. All to no avail. It flowed heavily, like a stream of molten dread, through my chest and into my gut, where it coagulated, oozing malevolence and taunts. Calling me names, pointing out my shortcomings with caustic sting. I left work promptly.
At home I still could not shake it, and I was ill-tempered, snappy, and short as a result. I tried to purge it, hoping it would wither in the light of discussion, but my efforts were inarticulate, oblique, and ill-timed.
Sleep finally sent the bastard thing into remission.
Big Black - Bad Penny (buy here)
Joy Division - She's Lost Control Again (buy here)