I am protected here. It is like a gated community with a titanium gate, a pack of Dobermans, razor wire, and poisonous gas. An enclave surrounded by raging gangs of thugs carrying high powered semi-automatic weapons. Unafraid to shoot. It is an island nestled in the center of a volcano. A hot air balloon dangling rabid piranhas.
Or perhaps not quite, but this is how I like to think of it.
And if no one pets me, it is because I am in my fortress, not because they would rather pet the dog.
Perhaps the prison guard has a point when she berates me for "actively participating" in my own "alienation." She is too naive to realize the valor in what I do. The strength it takes. I maintain disconnection to protect us all in the same way this up-side-down chair protects me from the other inmates. If I reach out to them - to the prison guard, her husband, the other felines, the dog - and they do not reach back?
They do not extend a hand? A paw?
And if they do reach back, what myriad ways will we learn to make each other suffer? Who do we hurt the most if not those we hold closest to our throbbing hearts?
It is a risk I cannot take. I prefer the height of the table. The comfort of the chair legs. The security of my loneliness. They will not make a fool of me because I will never allow them the chance.
But it is rather lonely up here.