Where DID The Last Two Weeks Go?

Posted: January 4, 2009 in The Roper Files
Tags: , , ,

It’s been a blur; haven’t been to my menial job in over two weeks.
Where did it go? Shaking my head as if it will all fall into place, but it doesn’t. An overwhelming sense of melancholy drapes itself over me; looking at the calendar in shock. It can’t be January 4th already.
You wouldn’t have known it was winter yesterday here in Texas; it was eighty degrees. Where’s those shorts? Got up today and it’s dropped down to forty. Brrrr. Dart outside and grab the paper. Unfold it and check last nights lottery numbers. Rats; I’m going back to work tomorrow it seems.

Slam the door behind me and turn on the table lamp. Focus my eyes and look around. This place looks like a bomb went off last night; need to clean this filthy apartment today. Ugh; that’s going to take a couple of hours at least. Still got Christmas shit laying around.  Cram a trash can full of colored paper and ribbons; the sight of which makes me depressed. Kind of says something about Christmas, you know? This shit’s gotta go….
Start stuffing festive colored paper and cardboard boxes into a paper bag. All this stuff’s going; can’t clean the house with all this stuff in the floor. Going to walk it all down to the dumpster at the apartments on the next block. It’s four in the morning; no one will see me.

Put on a jacket and look around. What else needs to go? There’s that used furnace filter I changed on the first. The sink has a bunch of stinky cat food cans; grab those. Some leftovers with potential stink-bomb capabilities in the fridge; grab those too. In mere seconds I have two armloads of things I don’t need and I’m out the door.

Locking the deadbolt behind me on the porch and a car pulls up. FBI? CIA? Nope just my neighbors coming in from a night at the bars. We wave hello to each other as I gather my things and walk down the street. I pad catlike down the dark silent street; my neighbors lights are all out. Go around the corner; there it is. With one deft move all the trash, the filter and a bag of ribbons and colored paper all go flying into the dumpster and out of my life. There. Turn around and walk back to my place and unlock the door.

Look around; this place is a mess. Books, CDs, DVDs, newspapers, magazines and junk food wrappings cover every square inch of my apartment. Gotta get this place organized; start putting things back in their proper place. Books back on the shelves, CDs and DVDs back in their respective storage places. Pick up dirty clothes. Throw that dead cigarette lighter that burned out and has been laying on the coffee table since this time last week in the trash.
Take another look around. Need to dust. Need to vacuum the rugs. Need to clean the bathroom. Need to mop the floors. Then as I’m putting things away and attempting to bring just a little order to my place, I discover a little black plastic bag. Dammit.

It’s the apron I wear at work. I’ve been to the laundrymat two times since the last time I took it off at work and have forgotten two weeks in a row to wash it. And I remember pulling a piece of metal out of the water jet cutter I work on and it dribbling muddy toxic water all over it right at quitting time two weeks ago. This thing no doubt needs to be washed; I’ve gotta go back to the laundrymat this morning; fuck! Just what I felt like doing.

Gotta confess I’m feeling a little helpless here. Can’t win the march against time. Feel like I’m spinning my wheels here in a serious way. Never enough time; never. Feel a serious black-cloud bout of depression closing in on me. I was going to do SO many things during these two weeks and I didn’t get anything done it seems like. Was going to look for a new dentist; was going to get new glasses. Didn’t get either of these things done. Two weeks off and not enough time…is that pathetic or what?

Here it is 24 hours before I have to resume a routine I want no part of. The house is a mess. The strings on all three of my guitars need to be changed. And the more I look around, the more things I see that need to be done. There’s that old computer monitor that burned out sitting there gathering dust; need to do something with that. Just bought another computer; got the old one sitting here gathering even more dust; what am I going to do with this junk?

The room starts spinning around me like a hurricane has picked everything up and I’m in the vortex of it all. I feel faint; sit down. Too overwhelmed by all of this; it’s making me feel a little sick. Can’t deal with all of this; it’s too much for one person. Just 24 hours left….the clock keeps ticking while I sit here and fret. Get up one more time; start picking up things and putting them back in their place. I’m a shark; gotta keep moving. Start rooting through stuff; what’s this? Old receipts, unopened Christmas cards, old newspapers, old magazines. Start stuffing this stuff into the recycling bin; it ‘s all gotta go.

After an hour or so I’m starting to see furniture and the floor again; good. Not clean per se, but it’s a start. Pour myself another cup of coffee, put on some music. It’s my last day off; gotta relax. Gotta pull myself together. Like worrying is going to get anything done.

Got to give myself a little credit. Got through the ordeal of the holidays. Saw friends from out of town; even had a girl I knew from high school look me up and met her and her husband at an art gallery yesterday ( Hello Caroline & Gerald!) Had other friends in from out of town; we partied hard and  played guitars till our fingers bled. Got a new (and badly needed) computer. Broke down and got a digital camera. So some improvements got made.

Take a deep breath; relax, Brian.  So the apartment’s a little dirty; this can be fixed. Things could be so much worse; they really could. If I keep telling myself this, maybe I’ll start to believe it.


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