It wasn’t so much the young or the phalanx of aging Hollywood actresses, “my bevy of lovers”, he was quoted in Vogue for Men when describing his female friends, but for all the hyperbole and mirth written or envied about him, Terence was an empty man. Some felt his parlor antics, his all-nighters and international jet-setting, was nothing more than compensating for his adolescent shortcomings. He saw himself, his curiosity both perfectly manipulating and nauseating, as his own deity. His mercurial nature, when permitted, allowed for people to hover close to him or diminish into the nothingness.
Terence was disgustingly perfect, and his rouse was that he could hide his vainglory beneath innocent seal-like eyes–like a raven against the setting sun.
Those who did know Terence, who cared about him, passively ridiculed him whenever would appear at a luncheons dressed in a tee shirt and torn jeans, his worn D&G shades adorn on his scruffy face; his attitude devoid of care for the people or their destinations. Even while this was occurring, in his presence or behind fake smiles, he never sought to correct them or respond.
The truth of the matter was this: Terence’s marquee boy-toy life was in fact a college episode of compensation. He was compensating for some thing more than himself—a purpose unlike that of the tabloids, trysts, and unyielding flows of dissatisfaction.
It would be one morning, one a calendar month one could not recall, that Terence would pack what he could into a bag-pack, and leave his rent-free apartment on 61st and Lexington, and board a Greyhound bound for anywhere not familiar to him. He would not take with him anything identifiable from his old life. He would not take with him the trappings of material gaiety, he would not take with him the blackberry filed with names and numbers inputted there hours before; he would not bring with him his car keys, or the ignorance of believing a man or cause is measured on how much its worth or how much the returns were.
Terence went north to Massachusetts, and after some time, bargaining with nothing more than a passion to help with his charisma to bring like-minded people together, he found a home of sorts. In this new place, like that inside him, he freed himself from the naïveté that was his old world importance, and looked for employment that benefitted both him and others. His fair-weather friends, those demons wrapped sexually and fittingly in their silk, denim, and animal fur attire, called on him less and less. Terence made friends of every non-statistical demographic and nationality, and in them they valued is raw energy, his view on life, and his randomness—at times. He still marveled in collecting comic books, watching cartoons, laughing at children and animals falling in the snow, and playing sports( more ever now with the emergence of feisty Olivia and the calculated Isabella as strikers on his kickball squad).
Terence didn’t mind being outside the grid or “along the side of the road” as some would put it, he valued the idea of starting anew, and not following in track with the others.
By design we have an ingredient inside us that either mixes wells with what is force-fed to us or disagrees and rises to the top. It’s not so much we should find what makes us happy and the approach that as the path we’ll be on for the rest of our lives, (hell happiness should be forever in supply), but it should be about a longevity of happiness for others—to see others smile, laugh, and wear our happiness on them, with them, long after we’re gone.
Terence sought the longevity aspect of his new life—to work tirelessly at his job, with his co-workers and friends, and use his actions to motivate others to do the same.
Sometimes at night Terence wondered if this pursuit of longevity was his old self, the city-minded ego that grew up with him, rapping at the window on city blown current to have a word with him. Terence wondered if perhaps his old self was paying him a long overdue house-call, to help modify his new way of living a tad. But, he would never answer it—he admired the Metropolitan creature at his bedroom window, for its bravery, but then pitied it–it’s life was a short and an exclusive one.