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Brain Garbage

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“One of these days you’re going to give yourself carpal tunnel.”

“Yeah, probably, but not from this.”

“C’mon, you’ve been refreshing the page for hours.”

“Hour, singular. And you’re one to talk.”

“I’m not saying I’m better, but I’m not the one making us miss our dinner reservation to look at video stats.”

“We aren’t missing dinner. We’re being fashionably late.”

“Dan.”

“Fine, fine. But can we wait for it to get to a nice round number?”

“Ew, gross, that’s even. Compromise on round number plus one?”

“Or I stop when it’s even, and then you can sit here until it gets another view.”

“But then I’ll be the one making us late.”

“Exactly.”

“That’s not fair. I was ready first. I’m ready now! I can’t also be the one making us late.”

“Can’t you?”

“Let me rephrase— I won’t let you gloat about me being the one making us late this time.”

“I don’t gloat.”

“Danny, lying is a sin.”

“Rushing your boyfriend to dinner is a sin.”

“Aw, don’t be all grumbly. The video will still be here after, and I swear I won’t make you come to bed if you want to stare at your analytics all night.”

“…Will you stay with me?”

“Was this your evil plan all along? Get me into a bargaining mood so that I’ll agree to stay up super late with you?”

“I just— I feel like it’s going to be a pacing night.”

“Oh.”

“And I think maybe it wouldn’t be if you were there.”

“Yeah, yeah, Dan, of course. Happy to stay up. Honest.”

“Thought you said lying is a sin?”

“Good thing I’m not lying, then. Maybe we should cancel dinner, go a different time?”

“No, really, it’s fine. You’ve been waiting to go for weeks.”

“Yeah, but you were busy.”

“With a video that’s now been published. I’m not busy anymore.”

“But you are pacing-y, right?”

“Um, I mean I’m not pacing now, but no promises as to what happens the second you walk out of the room.”

“Then it’s settled. No leaving the room.”

“I meant don’t leave the room without me.”

“Too late. I’ve already cancelled our plans in my mind. Now we can’t go because it would clash with my mental preparedness.”

“Fine, I give in. Thanks. I’ll ring them in a minute to let them know.”

“You know, maybe I could call— actually, never mind. If I do it, I’ll have to rehearse for half an hour and then we’ll really have been a no-show. We can’t have them hating us if we’re going to try again at some point. Should we have an excuse so we don’t seem flaky?”

“What, like that we’re stuck in traffic? Then they’ll just move it later.”

“I was thinking more along the lines of our flat burning down.”

“Phil!”

“I’m not saying I want our flat to burn down, just that we can tell them that. Lying doesn’t count if it's to make things less awkward.”

“I think telling them our flat burned down would make things more awkward, actually.”

“Whatever, just tell them something that makes us sound like we have lives.”

“What, is sitting hunched over my laptop not cool enough for you?”

“Definitely not cool enough. I’m a superiorly evolved being who doesn’t bother with lowly human things like laptops and internets and YouTube. And of course I would never make it my whole career or anything.”

“Point taken.”

“Have you thought at all about getting up for a bit? Just to stretch or something. The numbers can’t change that much in so few minutes.”

“Ouch. I’ll have you know I’m actually getting all the views right this second.”

“I’m sure you are. But YouTube’s anti-spam-views check thing messes with the numbers, anyways.”

“Yeah, I know it’s not exactly accurate. Still feels important to know what the numbers are, you know?”

“That’s a lot of knowing stuff. Why would it be so bad if you just didn’t?”

“Well, if I don’t know the numbers then I can’t tell if people are watching it now or are waiting or are spreading it out. Because if everyone’s watching now it’s like Ahhhhh! but if it’s small now then it’s like ohh?”

“Yeah, those two sound the same to me. Which kind of reaction do you want it to be?”

“Um, is small big an option? Like where some people have seen it and enjoyed it but then don’t tell the rest of the internet? I mean, it’s not like this one was so personal, but it still was, kind of. Makes me want to hide under a blanket or something.”

“Yeah?”

“Does it ever happen to you where you post a video but you don’t want people to really watch it? Like you need to just physically expel it from your body and make it the YouTube servers’ problem but also don’t want other people to see your random brain garbage?”

“Dan, your video was really good. It’s not at all brain garbage.”

“Debatable.”

“So watching the numbers here— it’s actually because it bothers you that it’s growing.”

“I mean, it’s also nice because attention is nice. But yeah.”

“Not to steal your crisis and turn it into a video, but do you think if I made a video that I told people not to watch they’d actually listen?”

“You already did that, you spork.”

“I did? Huh. Well, did people not watch it?”

“Sorry bub, I think most people did anyways. If it helps, I remember finding a loophole by listening while not looking at the screen, but that’s just because I didn’t want to let you down by ignoring your instructions.”

“Oh, how I miss the days when you’d listen to anything I said.”

“Psh, no you don’t.”

“No, I totally don’t.”

“So it’s okay that I’m going to keep sitting here for a while even though we both know it’s probably not good for me?”

“As long as it’s okay if I sit here next to you.”

"I wouldn't have it any other way."