Working Ten Hour Shifts Sucks (except for having Friday off)

Posted: March 14, 2008 in The Roper Files


5am…the eyes click open. Wake up in a state of shock; my forty-hour sentence is completed. A three-day reprieve. No I’m not really in prison; I’m referring to the forty hours a week my menial job subtracts from my life. Every second of those forty hours seems to hang in a state of slow-motion suspended animation. Inhumane to be subjected to such perpetual boredom while being forced to listen to the very worst of North Texas radio. Country, rap, Tejano and classic stadium rock all at the same time, all week long. Simply maddening.

But yesterday was payday and upon waking up this morning I realize another wonderful benefit of my job and it’s called Friday. Time to take care of business.

After starting a pot of coffee and a few minutes on the Internet, it’s off to the laundrymat. Wash the sheets and the heavy winter blankets. My work apron and my blue Dickies workshirts as well as the sleeveless camo “wife-beater” shirts I like to wear underneath. I love to infuriate my boss by not wearing the t-shirts emblazoned with the company logo he loves to hand out as opposed to raises. Those go in a pile behind my seat and when homeless people at red lights hit me up for spare change, they get a shirt and my boss gets the free advertising he deserves. “CrackieBear” standing at the red light panhandling money wearing one of his shirts, that is.

The road rage starts early and today is no exception. People drive right up on my back bumper, but I refuse to speed up. Why yes I DO have all day asshole now that you mention it. Why do you ask?

Drive back home 45 minutes later with clean sheets, blankets,and work clothes. Job well done; damn I’m efficient. Most people are just getting up or leaving for work; I’ve already got three loads worth of wash done. Driving on an overpass, I look down at a unmoving parking-lot freeway. Heh heh…you poor dupes!

Pull up in the driveway, unload and start putting linens in the dryer. There is still a half-pot of coffee left; good! Pour a cup and put on a John Coltrane cd.

I have problems with depression and sometimes life sucks so bad I can’t hardly stand it.


But as I sit here and watch the sun come up the sky is turning into a colorful mosaic of psychedelic colors. Pink, orange and purple clouds against the blue sky. As I sit and drink my coffee and take in the soothing strains of Live At the Half Note I am overwhelmed with a disconcerting feeling of calm. Not used to this.

Close my eyes and listen to the saxophone, the bass, the piano and the drums. Yeah it all seems to make a little more sense now.

I know just like drugs this feeling won’t last but for now I’ll take it.


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