Betrayed by my pride yet again, making the Public Spectacle, dreading the eye of my fellow man upon me, I banished myself to the desert. "I'll show them when I'm dead!" I assured my wounded ego. But as the sun scorched my half-baked idea into a fully baked one I decided to head back to the weary world yet again having not heard my name upon the wind. Just hope I haven't gone too far this time...
I was crawling in despair and still no civilization in sight. Nature has her own rules and I came to rue my rash defiance. Fuck, what a way to die! Alas, what can I say? What possesses me to do such foolishness! Regardless, here I am now. Shigata ga nai. But fortune favored me as I spotted a traveling man with a canteen bursting with water. Lord have mercy!
"Please, help me. I need water."
"Oh, go away you inconvenient person you."
"Hey, I'm dying here!"
"Sounds like just another selfish request to me."
"I just want to live..."
"Then you should have taken better care of yourself! I can't be bailing out every misbegotten fool I run across. The world would turn to chaos!"
"It's in chaos now!"
"Precisely. Too much liberalism, no one taking responsibility. I aim to put a stop to that."
"But I need water."
"Need? How do you know you need water. Couldn't it all be imagined on your part? Can you prove you need water?"
"If I die will that prove it to you?"
"Yes, but anything short of that is simply whining on your part and I won't stand for it! On this I will not budge! You must learn your lesson."
"But I'm trying to save you!"
"Save me? That's funny! You just making up reality as you go along over there?"
"It's the truth! We all die if we don't help one another."
"Not me! I've been responsible, that's why I am where I am and you are where you are."
"Either we all live together or we all die together. It's just a fact!"
"Balderdash! That sort of self-serving philosophy doesn't fly with me. It's always "brotherhood of man" when you people are down and out. I'm putting my foot down. I stiffen my neck and clog my ears to your words."
"Then you seal both our fates..."
"Enough of you! You know nothing of me. Judge me not lest you be judged yourself!"
Chapped and feeling as if he'd been dragged across hot burning coals, the man with the canteen huffed his way home - where he died several days later. Possessed by the seething madness from his desert conversation, he refused against all protests to drink a simple drop of water, declaring he "had no such need." Against all his family's exhortations he stiffened his neck and clogged his ears. "If I'm alive it proves me right! I don't care what fantasies you people concoct! I'm right and I know I'm right: reality can only be what I say it is!"