“Do you see those birds?” he asked.
“Yeah, they don’t even mind us in their midst, huh.”
“Do you think there’s a computer program that controls them? That this whole park, in the larger city, in the larger grid of the universe, is just a simulation? And all their actions, the flocking pattern, is an algorithm… that, I could probably write a code that would have them behave similarly, honestly.”
“Isn’t that from a movie?” she asked.
“Yeah, I was seeing if you had seen it.”
“Well, I have. And I think you were trying it out because you wanted to sound clever and original.”
“When something shocks them, they scatter like their world is ending. I wonder if birds have a concept in their program of ‘standing your ground’,’ he continued, feigning unphazed.
He jumped up from the bench and yelled and the birds exploded out from his absurdity. It worked, she laughed.
“It’s not the end of the world,” he said. He was getting positive feedback for this pattern, again. When in doubt, don’t. Do something with that nervous energy. Lash out if you have to. Turn out with the crazy. It feels so much better.
“It’s Tuesday,” she said, continuing the laughter.
“The end of the world is Tuesday?”
“Now who’s being flighty. I’m trying to tell you. It’s not the end of the world, It’s tuesday. So where shall we take wing to?”
“I don’t have any responses programmed that far ahead. Only the drive to fly with you.”
“It’s not the end of the world,” she concurred.
They walked through the city. “I’ve never paid attention much to girls. But then, I’ve hardly had any real friends,” he confessed.
“Sure, you come to college, it’s perfectly fine to not be very experienced with things,” she consoled. “College is where you are supposed to try all kinds of new stuff.”
“I guess. I mean, girls are cool, sure,” he conceded.
“Yeah, definitely got that naive charmer thing down,” she said, smiling.
“At the mental hospital they told me I should use my words to express my feelings,” he said, with a hefty sarcasm.
“Riight,” she said, turning on her heel.
“I’m just kidding. I wasn’t in a mental hospital.”
“Now I definitely trust you.”
“Okay, I just figured you didn’t want to hear about it. You were being nice and I shared too much. Sorry.”
“It’s okay,” she told him. “But then you lied to me, and that kind of pisses me off.”
“Well, I was scared you would run away,” he argued.
“Maybe I should. It’s not like I know you that well.”
“Let’s just start over. I told you I’m not good at this.”
“It’s not the end of the world.”