"Hal, The Hot Dog," and Other Ways to Combat Loneliness
Is this poor guy like YOU . . .
More "Faces Of Loneliness"
This piece can be interpreted as sad. And happy. A paradox of sorts. Two completely-opposite entities existing in the same place.
Enough of this over-the-head talk. This story is about a "silent killer," devouring masses with no bloodshed. Attacking the innocent for no reason. Never apprehended. Nor extinguished. Still on-the-loose and so fluid that this "beast" could be staring at your in daylight and you wouldn't know it. It's that awful.
Loneliness is the "silent killer." The "beast" whom devours the very marrow of our souls without one word of notice. Easy as sliding down on fine Chinese silk, loneliness takes its swee time and moves into residence in our minds, hearts and eventually, our soul.
Not many cures on the open market for this "disease."
Not many brave-hearted warriors to tame this "beast."
Not too many valiant police officers to arrest this "silent killer."
Sad is not the word for this living, breathing, organism that goes to bed with us and awakes with us - -spending every waking moment in our days, moments where we could be happy, and the worst time of all, dark evenings when there is no stars or moon for comfort.
I do not know of anyone on or off HubPages who has not at one time or another, felt or dealt with loneliness. "She's a mistress with sharp teeth," one unknown poet defined this common black-cloaked being who takes charge of our lives without asking our permission.
Enough sad talk. Just writing thoughts of loneliness makes me both lonely and depressed. But depression, the first-cousin of loneliness, can wait for a story of another day. Now I am focusing on loneliness. That's all.
Here are a few facts about loneliness:
1. Loneliness knows no racial boundary. People of all ethnic backgrounds live in or fight loneliness each passing day.
2. Loneliness can attack anyone of any walk of life, anywhere, anytime. Ministers, bikers, bullies and babes. Loneliness doesn't care.
3. Loneliness feeds on the fact that it can bring us down from a happy level of existence to the lowest-level of painful depression in the blink of a therapist's eye.
4. Loneliness has but few cracks in its armour, but it can be fought. With the right methods and procedures.
Even our society has made "loneliness" part of our entertainment with songs such as:
"Only The Lonely," by Roy Orbison; "Are You Lonesome Tonight," by Elvis Presley; "(This Is For) All The Lonely People," by America, "Lonely Days," by the Bee Gees and "I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry," by Hank Williams, Sr.
Here are some reasons, I think, are why people are lonely:
1. Job. The constant turn-down's at offices and factories lead to loneliness.
2. Loss of Job. Down-sizing or just fired for no obvious reason.
3. Co-workers (at job) - -static among staff members can create loneliness.
4. Marriage problems - -spouse leaves with your next-door neighbor.
5. Being Single. Hard to find a good guy or girl.
Enough clinical talk.
I want to talk about "my ways" of dealing with loneliness. And even people on HubPages, Facebook or any social network are soft, easy candidates for loneliness - - -especially those who are like me, a stay-at-home husband who is disabled, cannot work or drive, and only has a phone and a PC for company. Sad, but oh so true.
My ways of combating loneliness may not be found in any psychiatric journal. Or inside the latest Cosmo magazine. But they work. That's all I know. They work.
1.) Call the telephone operator and ask for the number of a friend. Just the sound of another human being's voice helps for a moment, but do not do this too many times. You don't want AT&T hunting you down for "abusive practices of communications devices."
2.) Start a long, drawn-out novel about anything or anyone you please. Map-out how many months it will take for you to finish your project. A busy mind is not as penetrable as an idle mind. Remember that.
3.) Take up a hobby that only you can enjoy. I didn't suggest square dancing, hiking with a group or biking over the hills to a new country. Stamp and coin collecting may sound funny, but they can generate interest in something besides "you" sitting around dwelling on how lonely you are.
4.) Singing lessons are great to combat loneliness. No one said you had to be a Kelly Pickler, Faith Hill or Usher, just take the lessons for "you" and your own pleasure.
5.) Buy yourself a pet. I acquired a male cat named, "Festus," and I am not really been a "pet person" since I was twelve. You will be amazed how much "Festus" has helped me just by doing what kittens do - - run around, sleep and crawl up on my lap for a quick, (pardon the pun), "cat nap."
6.) Write a theater play. Even though you have no background as a writer. Go online and search for websites on "how to write plays." The Internet has any and all things for all people. Why not would-be playwrights?
7.) Find things to laugh at. And by that I don't mean your "cousin Dilbert," with the protruding wart on his forehead. Seek out comedies on television or on DVD. FACT: Loneliness and laughter are sworn-enemies.
8.) Walk outside, if you are able. A change of scenery is always a lift for your spirits. Take time to notice something you might have missed before. A flower growing in an unusual place, a neighbor who has just bought a new car. The list is endless. And beats staying in the house all day.
These are just eight easy ways that you can combat loneliness if you are a sensible, level-headed person.
But in case that you are not a sensible, level-head person, here are, to be honest, eight outlandish, far-fetched, hair-brained and whimsical ways that you also can use to beat loneliness.
1.) Join the circus a change of jobs may be what you need to be happy again. But be sure to tell your wife where you will be.
2.) Volunteer to be a well-known mascot for a famous fast-food place. Maybe you could be, "Hal, the Hot Dog," and see the friendly people laughing at you from inside your red frank and covered with "fake" mustard (yellow house paint) and a fresh bun for a suit. This way, no one will ever know who you are. But stay clear from dough-nut shop mascots such as, "Donnie, Do-Nut," for you will have no way to disguise your face.
3.) Talk to a lawless biker gang and get to know how they survive. Ask safe questions like, "ever take your girlfriend to see an Adam Sandler movie?" Or, "care if I ride your "hog"? Some bikers will welcome your company, but avoid following their unorthodox rituals as giving them your wallet before you talk to them or you may "ride your thumb" home.
4.) Go to a community fund-raising event and be the guy who people hit in the face with pies. What a fun way to relieve your lonely disposition. And look at all the free pie you can catch with your tongue.
5.) Run a marathon with people you've never heard of. Sure you will fall flat on your face, but at least for fifteen minutes, you will get "some" exercise.
6.) Call up a talk-radio show and start a heated-argument on purpose. A good, hot person-to-person banter will do you good. Plus you might be discovered while you are on the air coast-to-coast as the next Howard Stern who is never lonely.
7.) (BE EXTRA CAREFUL WITH THIS ONE) dress-up like a Viet Cong soldier from the Vietnam War days then storm the gates at Paris Island, South Carolina screaming, "I love Communism! The only way is the Red way," before long, many new "friends," called United States Marines, will be so glad to give you "free" American lessons. But you will not be thinking of how lonely you are while you try to get out with your hide.
8.) Board a city bus and before you sit down, break into a comedy routine by Steve Martin. People always love Martin. And if a few irritated passengers tell you to, "get off the bus. Now," just ignore them and go ahead with your jokes and impressions. But don't panic as the bus driver pulls over to the curb and physically-removes you from the bus while the passengers gives him more applause than Jay Leno gets on Friday nights with the Tonight Show.
I feel so much better now that this story is finished.
Funny how things like these stories work. I read this story to "Festus," my pet cat and that rascal took it on himself to bite me then run under my couch.
Cats have a weird way of saying, "great story, Ken!"