The Risk of Writing Without Direction

I spent the day in bed today. I got up to get tortillas and a hamburger-scrambled egg mix and some pickles and ketchup for lunch. I ate in bed. I also got up to shave. That’s always important. I’d probably manage to shave if I were in a coma in the hospital.

Oh, and my roommate needed a ride to the gas station for “refreshment” (beer) because she needed to mow the lawn with an old push mower (the kind that has twisted blades between two wheels, basically a grass hacker).

Other than those things, I’ve stayed in bed. Crocheted a bit. Stared out the window. Napped. Drank gatorade and surfed YouTube and Facebook. Spent an hour talking with Mom on Skype. And now I thought I’d write a bit of nonsense for all those other nonsense lovers out there.

Nights are normally my hardest time of the day. But tonight hasn’t been bad. I haven’t had any visions of suicide. I’ve got so much medication, so much variety, that sometimes I debate which pills would be the best to empty first, which should follow, and which should come at the end to finish the job. But tonight I haven’t really thought much of anything.

I’ve gotten word that my grandmother really isn’t doing very well. She was recently diagnosed with cancer. Tumor in the stomach. There won’t be any operation or treatment. Too late. Too old. It’s been a good life she said to me over the phone a couple months ago. She was up and walking around and looking pretty normal then. She’d get tired more quickly. But she was still active.

I suppose she’s not so active anymore.

I hate death. I hate that people die. There, I said it. It’s cruel, it’s purpose debatable, its process unpredictable and thus impossible to prepare for. The weeks after death are just as detestable. All the accounts to settle, the house, the money, if any, that’s left over. And then, if your lucky enough, or cursed enough, to be present for the death, there’s always that question about when was the last breath really taken, when did consciousness end or slip off to wherever it may go when it’s finished with the body.

Death is like the fucker who rammed his fat Ford face into your Prius and kept on going. No license plate, no defining markers to identify to the police. Nothing to do but call the ambulance to the passenger dead on scene. Put her on a gurney in that god awful ziplock bag and haul her off to the morgue without bothering with sirens or lights. There’s no rush when time is up.

It’s not like I’m afraid to die. (I could skip the pain part of course) I’m just pissed off, and there is no one to be pissed off at. Death is simply a process that happens to every thing that lives. A process, not a person. It doesn’t have a face, a voice, a shoe size, a favorite dive bar or any particular kinds of hobbies. Death just happens, and that makes being pissed off all the more … pissy.

When I was working at a telephone captioning service for the deaf and hearing impaired, I’d get these calls, mostly old women friends, who were the last of the family. Who had nothing and no one left but this one friend she couldn’t hear. I would imagine her in a room with old photos one the walls, maybe a framed verse from the Bible, no sounds from a cat or dog. No voices. Just silence and a little orange light from the floor lamp, and a green glow from the words that appeared on her closed captioned phone.

I couldn’t do that job for long. There would be days where every call was about a death. Or two deaths. Most people were old and it was as they say “a blessing really.” Many were pointlessly early. Some days I would feel like an entire city had passed away. I imagined a town somewhere in Midwest suddenly empty, the store fronts peeling down to the foundation, homes with torn window screens, doors left open, mould and mice pushing up the entryway carpet.

I had to quit. I quit and went from there into the hospital for depression. I don’t know how people keep living anymore. I mean, I know how they keep living, but people graduate college and graduate school and become teachers or plumbers or nurses, doctors, and build families and take their kids to soccer practice and the dentist. I see them everywhere. They look happy. Busy, but happy. I go to the mall on 64th South and sit near the sock stand between Dillard’s and Macy’s, and watch them pushing strollers, holding hands, shouting ahead at the grandkids. They joke and push each other around and go in and out of boutiques and soap shops. Happy. Somehow.

I don’t know why life is the way it is, and I don’t really care. I don’t care why, if something is born, it must one day die. That’s like asking a boulder why it’s so goddam heavy. But it sucks. It sucks and won’t let go. Like a blow job from an industrial vacuum that never shuts off, never lets up, and brings you to your knees, then squirming onto your side … it’s all so fucking ridiculous.

I’m just angry. That’s all. But today wasn’t so bad really. Talked to my mom, crocheted a bit, relaxed on my bed without any back pain or crying. I think, maybe I shouldn’t have written anything. It’s such a risk. I think I’ll write one thing, something that wanders a bit, looks around, makes a few jokes and goes to bed, but instead, according to WordPress, I’ve written nearly a thousand words all about death and anger, and how weird it seems that so many people can walk around so lightly, as their bodies weighed nothing at all.

I don’t know how to end this post. I’ve got nothing else in me. It’s all out there now, floating around in digital space, pissing off the positive thinkers.

Well, fuck it. I’m going to bed. Maybe something will make sense tomorrow.

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One thought on “The Risk of Writing Without Direction

  1. This is just to say I have burned the lines that you penned in drab dispair and which you were probably saving for kindling. Forgive me they were bothersome– so true and so cold.
    (I know this parody won’t help, but I hereby acknowledge your thoughts.)

    Liked by 1 person

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