I guess the first thing I should do is introduce myself. I don’t usually give much thought to decorum—I wouldn’t be where I am today if I did—but considering the nature of the project I’m about to embark on, it’ll be important that you know my name. Well, one of my names, anyway. Given my choice of lifestyle, I think you’ll understand why I choose to use an alias. It’s not that I’m ashamed—far from it, in fact, as you’ll soon read—it’s just that I’m a powerful man, and like all powerful men, I have a lot of people to protect; a lot of decent, hardworking folks under my wing (and a few not-so-decent, but I’ll get to that later). With that in mind, call me what the night calls me as I prowl it nocturnally, the name I give at all the clubs that peels back the velvet rope and gets me a free drink ticket if they know what’s good for them. The name that echoes in a thousand stairwells and public bathrooms, and over a million dungeons and dives. The words I always say when I introduce myself to strangers, the words:
“Hi, I’m Batman.”
At this point, you’re probably wondering why I’m writing this.
It’s a good question.
I am known, after all, as a private man, which is true enough. But too often privacy, a set of attitudes, is mistaken for discretion, a set of behaviors. If discretion means flitting around, trying to conceal my true beliefs, actions or intentions under the cover of night, or beneath the skin-tight veneer of a full-body leather batsuit, then admittedly, I have little patience for such games. While it’s true that I prefer the dark to the light, and the snug, glove-like way a custom-made, full-body leather suit flatters my immaculately sculpted and naturally ample physical “goods,” the simple fact of the latter should stand as testimony enough that I have nothing to hide by choosing to conduct my business after the sun has set. Does the wolf take his meals in plain sight of the farmer? Does the bat, for that matter, in the blazing sun when he is tired and cannot see? The night means sharp relief for me. I can see better in the dark—the things I want to see—and do not sweat my suit as much. I write with the hope that these notes might serve, if they are ever discovered, as the public voice of a private man; that he might continue to speak for himself to anyone who desires to listen, after he has been swallowed by that final darkness, which he only flirted with in life. I write first for myself—to reveal myself to myself as I go, and second for posterity and the instruction of others—for in time, I too shall go down to the back of the batcave to fold my wings forever and be known to the world of the living no more.
To which you may want to reply:
“Why should I care? What do I want with the musings of a man who wears around a batsuit? And why does this strange, avowedly private, batsuited man want to share said musings with me?”
I presume no knowledge of you, reader. It may be that you are just starting your journey through life, or that you are no initiate to the ways of love, or even that you have logged enough hours in passion’s perilous embrace to be considered “experienced,” wearing the indelible marks of those burning encounters with all the pomp and pride such warlike badges rightly command. Whoever you are, whatever you’ve done, and whoever you’ve done it with—fine. You have my blessing, and I don’t care. What I do care about is passing along the secrets that I have learned over a lifetime exploring the darkest (and deepest) recesses of human sexuality through the use of my unlimited power and resources and skillfully deployed gnostic teachings acquired by me through the friars of a remote Nepalese Luciferian cult.
My point is simply this: I know things that you don’t know.
I’m not trying to be a dick about this—just stating a fact. I have seen and done things that would shiver a sailor’s timbers, and not in a good way. I have also felt the nourishing bliss of total Ayurvedic surrender. I’ve seen the best of humanity, the worst of humanity, and a pretty good smattering of everything between, and I’ve fucked with all of it, literally. If you fear God, or have a passing interest in getting off, you’re going to want to listen up. Keep in mind that I don’t have to share any of this with you and am doing so at great personal risk, just for the sake of human understanding and my posthumous reputation. I could be killed for talking about some of the things that have gone down on and around me, which is why I’ve asked my publisher not to release any of this material until after they get to me, I’ve died of natural causes, or, more likely, in pursuit of the next thrill.
The way I see it, If you’re reading this it must be that I’m either long guanoed, or you’re one slinky little cat-burglar. In any case, congratulations—and you’re welcome. You’re holding my legacy—and it’s about to get heavy.
Some of you might call this a diary. Wrong. Diaries are for little girls and babies to remember what they ate for breakfast. This is an adult book, and my ambition for it is immortality. This is the book that will damn me. Let its name reflect its stature. Let it be called, my “doom.”
Seth Blake is a writer from New Hampshire.