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Hello, happy birthday?, ah, come on, you know we always got together at my place on this day, you brought girls, we danced, and on my twentieth birthday we had already flown across and about fifty or more of you showed up, but this is how things are in the South, you meet your friends and – where are you going?, and they are already ecstatic– to a fiesta, come with us – and you do not even pretend to hesitate – I’ve never even seen the birthday boy…, and you call your other friends, and not only have they never seen the birthday boy either, but this is also the first time they shake hands with your own friends, and the apartment is too crowded already, and the people hang on the street and shout from down there that the rum is all gone, but the lady doctor one floor up lent us a hand, she always kept several spare bottles, and when the last Coca-Cola drop was sucked up, the fifty chaps roared that they can’t stand the heat, and it was nighttime already and I started squeezing out orange juice and I emptied all the four cartons, which my father had stored to last us a week, and I knew that I’ll get in trouble for that, but I was turning twenty and I had fifty people over for my birthday, though I only knew about ten of them, but then we got back, and, who knows why, I stopped inviting you, and you rarely reminisced about that night when you shouted from the street for me to bring you the long gone rum, and I started telling myself, so what if I am not celebrating my birthday, who needs a birthday anyway, have I ever actually celebrated my birthday?, a day like all others it is, best not to think of it – I don’t have a birthday today, it is on such rare occasions that I have a birthday, I have never had a birthday, what do I need a birthday for when there won’t be fifty people attending, and I only know ten of them, but they make me squeeze out oranges, not only have I never had a birthday, I have never been born, you have never been born either, he has never been born and she has never been born, them too, no one has ever been born and won’t ever be born, because then they would have to celebrate their birthday, and what kind of a birthday is that when you have never been born, when no one has ever been born and won’t ever be born, alright, I am hanging up now, I don’t have a birthday and I have oranges to squeeze out…
...In order to receive, Kashi, you have to give, and if you haven't learned that in your entire month of existence, this means that you have carried in vain this last generation TV they took our of your belly with a c-section, and Blackie's wisdom – after every last chance there is another last chance – is stupid wisdom, the formula is – after the worst there always comes something even worse, and after comprehending this truth you reassure yourself that being hungry and homeless is not the worst, there is the sadness of the wasted years when you swapped the printing housewithscrubbingfloors, there is the hat that you never take off – yet you can not hide under it because it is not an invisiblehatbut an idiot hat and let it roll with wind – there is this feeling of lack of sense and there is the loneliness you always feared more than waking up without a jam muffin and a place to live, if not next to the Presidency, than at least acrossthe disco in Studentski Grad, where there are more drug dealers then supermarketcashiers, but this is not the whole truth either, Kashi, first and foremost, in order to receive you have to give, in order to win, first you have to lose...
Something is wrong, that’s how it seemed to me at first, ‘cause I stay in my tiny room all night, just a row of tiles above, and I am watching the sky, and then in the janitor’s room throughout the day, so what if I got a wooden leg? It looks like a curse and a hoodoo to drag it ineffectively along the stairs, neither diving down, nor flying up, and luck will never come your way in this mayfly life, but gradually you start to comprehend and keep your fingers crossed that professors would hasten in discovering the medicine, which would approximate us to the eons of sea turtles. Yet eventually you realize that science has it all wrong and now you will exclaim – how simple it actually was! But do not forget the thirty years of gazing at the stars each and every night. One morning, when the sky grew lighter, I said to myself – since it cannot be this way, why not the other way!, and I felt my wooden leg extending into a sea turtle flipper. You know that the year is nothing but a rotation of the Earth around the Sun, or several million kilometers. If we move it away a little, for one round it will go, let’s say, twice as many kilometers. So, for one year we shall live twice as long. If we move it to go three times as much, we shall live thrice as long, and so on. Thus the likelihood of luck coming your way shall double, triple and so forth and I shall no longer drag my wooden leg along the stairs, I shall dive and I shall fly and I shall know that as long as you have the time to wait, luck is bound to come. You are asking me how we shall move the Earth. Not to worry, there should be at least one more like me in town, but capable of constructive thinking, all I have to do is hint him the idea. So many people are having it bitter all their life, dragging from the ground floor to the attic and back.