I like to walk into the darkened club alone. It’s better this way. Just me and the fog, no one in between us. That way I can really see it, billowing out over the dance floor, cut by fragmented strobe lights, multicolored strands that must submit to the fog. Just as we all must.
The fog makes me feel so many things all at once. I feel like it’s a misty London night, on a street with piped in techno music. I feel like I’m high on a mountaintop, where my lightheadedness would be explained by a change in altitude instead of fog inhalation. I feel like I’m at a bar ten years ago, before the government outlawed smoking in bars. But unlike smoke, the fog is shared. The fog is for all.
Mostly what the fog makes me feel is alive. I dance with a woman and I’m captivated by the suspense. Is she hot? The fog moves away from her face. Nope. I move on. The fog provides infinite choices and chances. I feel hands on my body and don’t even know if they belong to a man or a woman. That’s the best part about the fog. No questions. No judgment. Just fog.
What I love about fog is that it’s made of mystery. Sure, some people might like to tell you that it’s made of a glycerin-based fluid that atomizes inside the fog machine and, once it hits the air outside the machine, condenses to become fog. Those people are assholes. Fog is ambiguity. Fog is anonymity. Fog is sometimes the cause of respiratory problems, but more than that, fog is my life.
I’ve thought about what I’d do if they ever outlaw fog, which is a distinct and horrifying possibility given the preponderance of aforementioned respiratory problems. I’ll go up to the attic, where I’ve been stockpiling fog machines in preparation for this day. I’ll take them all out to the garage. I’ll place the machines around the perimeter of the garage, in a circle, all pointing towards the center, where I’ll have my recliner (or lawn chair if I can’t get anyone to help me move the recliner). I’ll turn on the fog machines, one by one, and then I’ll sit. Slowly, so slowly, the fog will overtake me as I ignore the instruction manual’s warnings. “Use only in well-ventilated areas.” “Do not operate for prolonged periods of time.” “Never use more than one machine at a time.”
He died doing what he loved, they’ll say. Being surrounded by massive quantities of artificial fog.