VALLE DE INÚTIL, CALIFORNIA — Looking back on it now, Jake Masterson is pretty sure he missed his “golden opportunity to get it done.” What exactly did he miss his chance to do?
Commit suicide. And Jake is “absolutely kicking” himself for missing that particular boat.
“Sometimes hindsight may be 20/20, but you still wish you were blind out of one eye and couldn’t see out of the other,” Jake told us in a Skype call. “As I sit here, now, at this time in my life, I realize that there aren’t many more doors of opportunity that will open up for me, and I really could — and probably should — have offed myself in my 20’s. No one knows how much wasted potential your life had when you die before almost anyone realizes theirs.”
Masterson says that he’s always battled depression and suicidal ideation for as long as he can remember. He was 11 or 12 years old, he said, when he first starting wondering if everyone aruond him would have been better off if he’d never been born. Part of that theory came from when he found out that he was an accident, only conceived when his mother Jean forgot to take her birth control, and on a vacation to Atlantic City with his father, had sex with him, which wound-up being the night he was conceived.
He was only four years old when his parents started openly talking about that night with him.
“On some level, I guess you can say that story is a metaphor for my life and existence. Sure, it’s crazy that the already astronomical odds of being conceived were even higher given that she only skipped the one pill, according to her,” Jake explained, “but also, in the end, I wound-up winning that universal lottery the prize for which was a lifetime of most people ranging from either being indifferent to my presence, to inconvenienced by it, to downright against it. So, a lot of people ask me if I’d rather my mom had gotten an abortion, nor not even gotten pregnant, and I honestly just shrug my shoulders these days and say, ‘Yes.'”
It’s not that Jake isn’t happy with some aspects of his life. He enjoys his friends, for the most part. His family is just fine, he says. In fact, he likes everyone in his life so much, that he just feels deep down that he might be doing them all a really big favor if he kills himself.
“It’s like, people are so polite these days that they’d never admit it to my face, but it’ll probably be like when that one asshole in the bar finally leaves, and everyone can relax a little bit, have a little bit more fun,” Jake said. “That’s how I imagine it’ll be, if I do kill myself. But the thing is, I’m so shitty at everything, that I think I even fucked-up the timing of offing myself by a couple of decades.”
The time to do it, Masterson thinks, would have been in his early 20’s. Back then, he wasn’t a middle-aged man still holding onto delusions that his natural talents would one day turn into literal and metaphorical gold. He would have been known as someone who had left too tragically soon, before his full potential could be realized.
“It’s just so like me to be oblivious like that. I suck. Now, everyone’s figured out either a) they were wrong about my potential, or b) that I’ll never live up to it anyway,” Jake lamented. “If I had killed myself at 22, 23, or even 24, I would have been so young, no one would have figured out what a piece of shit I am. With about twenty years exposure to me, the bloom is way, way, way off my rose.”
Jake says it’s important that anyone in his life who happens to read this story not panic. He won’t be killing himself. He’s pretty sure he’d “just fuck that up, too.”
“At this point in my life, I have zero confidence in myself whatsoever,” Jake said. “Somehow, some way, I’d fuck it up. I just know it. So, obviously, I missed the boat. It was sinking into the ocean, and I could’ve just tied myself to the anchor, but like an idiot I kept bailing the boat out. Now my arms are tired, I’m soaked, and the water’s about to go over my head anyway. Lesson learned. If reincarnation is real, I’m killing myself well before my thirties.”
Writer/comedian James Schlarmann is the founder of The Political Garbage Chute and his work has been featured on The Huffington Post. You can follow James on Facebook, Spotify, and Instagram, but not Twitter because Twitter is a cesspool.