THE SECOND JOB FROM HELL by Brian Roper

Posted: July 22, 2007 in The Roper Files

I give a rats ass about offending people, but I do draw a few select lines in the quicksand. One of these is trying not to bitch too much at the readers. Have to remind myself from time to time it’s not their fault my job just barely (and I can’t over-emphasise the word barely enough) pays the rent and bills. Not their fault it’s Saturday night and I’m sitting here alone at lam wired on coffee pecking at my keypad while the rest of the world is out on the town and hitting the bars. Life hasn’t just passed me by; it blew by like I had a flat. Not with a bang but with a whimper as TS Eliot said.

People think that being a bachelor is a care-free cake-walk of irresponsible, un-protected sex. For some luckier people maybe, but in my case I’m forced to forgive them for they knowest not shit. In my case living alone is nothing  less than a second job. I have to do my own housework, my own laundry, my own yardwork and my own shopping. Trying to keep up with it all is nothing short of maddening; it makes me appreciate much more everything my parents did for me daily for years. No wonder they seemed so stressed-out all the time.

As relentless and predictable as the bills in the mailbox, it’s always something. Gotta mow the damn yard again. Out of cat food. Out of my food. Time to clean to house again; a week already? Don’t have time for a girlfriend; don’t even have time to masturbate anymore. Someone or something demands my time, my attention and my money every waking minute. The phone rings as fast as I can lay down on the futon.  Someone needs a jump; someone needs a ride. Someone needs this; someone needs that. Brian lives by himself; he’s got nothing else to do, right?  By the time I crawl into bed at the end of the day, my energy is drained. Go to bed. Pass Go. Pass Jail. Go directly to bed.

My life is a constant hand-to-mouth hustle; it takes something on the level of surgery to force me to even pretend to relax.  I am constantly wired on coffee; my current drug of choice. The Poor Mans Speedball. Pour me another; I’ll tell you when to stop.  Pumping caffeine into my system with the original energy drink to keep me awake long enough to Get Things Done. And there’s always One More Thing that needs to be done. 

Finally comes the inevitable crash. All I want to do is sleep. Don’t answer the door. Don’t answer the phone. Turn the computer off. Screw you and yours; I’m sleeping.

Sleep…sleep! Precious sleep. And even there, there’s no escape. I have dreams about my job. Dreams about past car wrecks. Dreams about washing my truck. Wake up in a sweat; this can’t be happening. 

But it is. Back to work. Or something. 

BR

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