Neon

            When you’re sitting in your room all alone. When you're desperate for a change of the sullen. From sullen to color.

            You walk right through the front door after some begrudging thoughts. I didn’t do the dishes, I forgot to walk the fish, whatever. Who cares?

You spill onto the street. The milieu has changed.

            People surround you. Headphones in, eyes forward, scrolling on the phone passively. Night has set in, and the artificial light of the city has replaced the sun. Apparently, that light can pollute the air—another inherent caveat to the human race. Pollutants here, litter there.

            And those people could be a part of those blissfully unaware, or terrifyingly vigilant. You see, most folks are fine. They’re unassuming—all with their flaws, sure—but all fine in the ultimate sense. But as a mass—as a collective—humans are inherently flawed. Put us in a place of serenity, it becomes sullen.

            And you hate sullenness, right?

            Some guy wears a mask with slits for the eyes. It’s plastic—something one would get at the dollar store or a Party City. He takes your hand. And while it looks like he rips you from your path, it feels like the wind seizing your momentum.

            For once, it feels like you’ve ascended the grey.

            But down into the tunnels you go, the grime on full display yet nullified by sweltering neon light. You’re now inspecting the escort for the first time. Dyed hair. White with black underneath. A clash of two opposites.

            The tunnel opens. Narrow is no longer. The ceiling of this new room is so tall that…

            Are those clouds?

            In any case, it’s misty, all a drape over the sea of people below. They’re buzzing, bouncing about the walls in a frenzy with similar, cheap masks on. Your escort slips one over your face, too—you don’t even get to see what the outside looks like.

            “Dive in,” he whispers. “Get lost.”

            So, whatever, you descend. Those stairs are lined with neon, too. Drenched in the marinade of fluorescence. Euphoria’s starting to grip you. You’re starting to feel like you could get into this vibe that has been set around you.

            Look at all of them. Those guys don’t have pants on, the girls over there are topless, and everyone seems to be behaving. It’s like they’ve all ascended what we consider to be “human nature.”

            Like it’s natural to be a beast or a fucking predator.

            No.

            No, we have to ascend at some point and that’s what you’re doing now. You’ve gotten out of your apartment—as proud of it as you are—and gone somewhere. Somewhere with lively people with smiles radiating through their masks.

            Surely, they have to be on drugs, you may be thinking. Well, maybe, sure. But repercussions can’t be seen unless they’re present, and at this moment they aren’t exactly screaming. However, drugs aren’t here…

            Drugs are in the air.

            In that neon light.

            Plug it in and there’s color.

            Plug it in and you can escape.

            Transcend into euphoria.