Sugar Rush in the Infantry Stage: part 2.

A fellow  in front of him had had his hair nicely brushed.  His lips formed the shape of a nice bow-tie.  This was a fellow who was on his way to a better life.  His whole demeanor revealed a spirit less downtrodden overall, and therefore proclaimed a higher degree of intelligence on the part of its owner.  This individual was licking a lollipop, and his whole body bristled with the delight of simple sugar intoxication.

Now was the time to proclaim to one's dignity to the world, whilst people could clearly see what dignity one had. There was no point forever loping around.  One must snatch the moment by its tail.

Orson decided to seize the moment whilst it was still fresh:  "I am Orson!" he would say.  "Come to tell you all. I shall tell you all."   But what if the superior fellow would have looked at him as if to say, "That was not it at all"?

He had to get his passport photo taken, but there was something strange about this situation, he felt, and he fidgeted.  It was true he was a little hairy around the ears.  No, that wasn't it.  He hoped they wouldn't find that secret aspect he'd been trying to keep hidden.  It was unclear what this was, but still he felt it there, like a mark of some deficiency.  Cameras were objective and they could see into his deficiencies, even where he couldn't.   What they could see was still uncertain to his mind, and perhaps he really didn't want to know.  He tore at the cuticles of his fingernails in disgust.  There was something there -- Something, something. There.

The camera flashed at him and he knew it was all over.   Either he would pass the grade or he wouldn't.  That is, if the camera hadn't stolen his soul, which it might have done. Who knew about these strange manifestations called souls.   Apparently some people had them and some didn't.  It might be that the secret the camera would uncover was that he didn't have a soul -- he was one of those who lacked one. He hadn't thought about that.   Would the camera be able to be objective about his subjectivity?   Could it tell him how he would turn out to be?

The passport was needed for his trip to the Congo.   There he would be a man among men -- perhaps for the first time.   A door had been opened for him.  His government was demanding a military intervention to help Kabila.  Kabila's was Zimbabwe's friend, and therefore a friend of Orson.

It was a great opportunity to walk through this door.  He would step from childhood into manhood.  Perhaps there would be riches involved.  Untold riches.   It was no secret that this made up for untold deficiencies.  It was not his fault his deficiencies were untold.  Or that his sensibilities were trampled upon.  He just wanted a better life, one in which no man looked down upon no man.   Heading north was his best chance to get what he needed.   He'd invest in a flashy car, and nobody would look askance at the slight limp he'd developed from the beating he'd received in childhood.

The thing was to get through the door -- and to do so, he had to be identifiably human.  He'd never articulated the problem in this way before, but this was what they demanded.  They would surely be looking for any deviation from a respectable norm.    His palms had begun to grow noticeably sweaty.  He wouldn't give them a chance to find a problem.  He would go boldly where no man had gone before.  He would crash through the door.

A woman was handing him his passport photo now, and it looked vaguely like him, although not exactly.  He also picked up his complimentary lollipop on the way out.   It was red and orange and lush, exuding the fresh fruit sensation of melded raspberries and nectarines.  Orson was on his way to a new adventure.
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