The Devil gave Daughterry a sideways look.

"The trouble with you being immortal," said Daughterry, picking up the conversation from before, "isn't whether it's your fault or not. It's a matter of understanding people. How can you understand what moves people when you don't understand that the meaning of life is death?"

The Devil chewed his beans. He waved his fork in a circle that meant "Go on."

"Well," continue Daughterry, "it's not complicated. It's not even philosophy, really. Just a hard fact. When you are doomed to die, that becomes the main force behind your life. You do what you do because you want to be remembered a certain way, or because it is or isn't healthy. You do what you do because you are running out of time. You do what you do because you're twenty years old and that's what twenty-year-olds do, or because you're fifty and that's what fifty-year-olds do. It's the reason you're careful about what you say when you're forty, because you have to live with the consequences, and it's the reason old people say whatever the hell they want. It's the reason people get married and have kids; we have to replace ourselves."

Daughterry took a sip of coffee.

"It's what makes us happy or sad or mad about things. Because it's all so damn wonderful and so terrible, and it's going to be taken away. And, of course, there's the fact that it's so scary. How does it not drive us mad with panic, every moment, knowing that we are going to end? How strangely nonchalant, how divinely resilient we are! Being mortal means being bedmates with horror."

"You'd be amazed," said the Devil, "how boring time can get. You'd go crazy living to be much more than a hundred, let alone a thousand. Life is like a day. Night comes. You get tired. You sleep. You want to sleep."

"Horse balls. That's just the kind of thing an immortal would say. It changes a thing, when you're afraid of it."

—Michael Poore, Up Jumps the Devil

The best thing about saying that last year was, collectively, the worst year of our lives is being able to say that last year was the worst year of our lives. I'll be God-damned if I'm going to let this one top it.

Happy New Year, everyone.