About meeting the mean Patrol Boy and trying to be friends with him

Nineteen is a selfish age and finds one’s cares tightly circumscribed. I felt endlessly powerful and endlessly optimistic; my pockets were empty but my head was full of things I wanted to say and my heart was full of stories I wanted to tell. I felt I had been made to do those things. How conceited does that sound? A lot or a little? Either way I do not apologize. I was nineteen.

Around the age of thirty-nine, my troubles began to set in. The world eventually sends out a mean-ass Patrol Boy to slow your progress and show you who’s boss. You reading this have undoubtedly met yours, or will. I met mine, and I am sure he’ll be back. He’s got my address. He’s a mean guy, Bad Lieutenant, the sworn enemy of goofery, fuckery, pride, ambition, loud music, and all things nineteen.

– Stephen King

Unlike King, I never did drugs or got drunk enough to boast about it. Nevertheless, I have had my own share of careless juvenile ambitions that gave me a high back then but wouldn’t catch me dead now.

Dreaming my way through life

Until five years back, I believed that one day I was going to grow up to write books for children, to open my own bookshop, to earn enough money to take vacations in Hawaii and Vatican City, to build my dream house…you get the drift, right?

I still want to do all these things. I really do. I still think that one day I will do all these things and more. Yet sometimes, just sometimes, I feel the feasibility of all somewhat bleak. I Doubt. Damn this Doubt.

So how did I come from believing in my dreams to wanting my dreams to come true? How did the big D creep in?

Spotting the Patrol Boy

The day my hairdresser discovered the first strand of grey in my hair, I stopped to think for a moment. But no, that’s because of the polluted environment and the harsh chemicals I bestow on my hair, I told myself and moved on.

Then I tumbled upon a book written by 24-year old author and the book was not another Opal Mehta. I walked into a florist shop run and managed by a 23-year old girl and bought flowers for my friend who was throwing a house warming party for her own house. That was the day I spotted the bad old Patrol Boy in my neighborhood. He was right there making clandestine inquiries about me.

As I looked at him from behind the lamppost, I realized that the clock has been ticking. If I were to make all my dreams come true, I would’ve at least started on some of them. Sigh.

Being friends with the Patrol Boy

No dear reader, no, I have not given up just yet. I have a game plan. I am going to switch on my charms and be friends with the Patrol Boy. Being his nasty self, he must be pretty lonely. If I were nice to him, he’ll have no choice but to reciprocate. And then, I shall gain some more time to make my dreams come true.

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One Response to “About meeting the mean Patrol Boy and trying to be friends with him”

  1. I just stumbled across this, as researching an article I’m working on about King and his mindset going into the last three (four?) volumes of The Dark Tower. I’ve always viewed the Patrol Boy as an enemy; someone to fight off at all costs. You’ve made me think of him in a different way, and I thank you.

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