Take Another Look











{May 9, 2010}   His Day

He sighs as he turns off the alarm clock. The motions come to him automatically. He drifts awake. He blocks the chorus of kids voices out of his head. Spins the noise in his head to a minimum and stops, like a choreographer. Remembers to say what he usually says, takes the things out of the cupboard that he has to, and is reassuring when he’s supposed to be. Gets into gear. Drives the car. Stops at the sign. Feels a sudden urge to turn the music up really loud. He holds it back, but doesn’t like holding it back. So he turns the track up loud. Hears a question about why the music is so loud. Looks out the window. Notices that it’s sunny. Clenches his fist, then releases it. Something important. He drums his finger on the dashboard. Looks down at his phone but doesn’t hear it ring. A meeting. He is the boss. Thinks of the show, The Boss. Thinks of money and draining fluids. Wonders about his bank statement. Looks to make sure that the childproof seat is childproof. Is pissed because his stupid ex will think that he didn’t brush their teeth. Like the world stops with him. That’s a nice idea. The idea is like a cloud on his horizon. He calmly exhales. Lets them out. Forgets to kiss them goodbye. Is angry with himself on the way back. I forgot to kiss my own kids goodbye, he thinks angrily. I suck. Then he looks out and sees a boat drifting. Whatever. It doesn’t matter today. Perspective in motion. Like geography. I’m a discoverer about to see the world. But, as the meetings go, it seems to lag. Finally, he thinks, work is done for today. I’m not going to work late tonight, not again. He opens the door. Notices that the dog has eaten his shoes again. And his toothbrush is old and disgusting. His beard is grown out like a madman. He likes that. He grabs his tobacco and wonders if he could eat that for dinner. Sighs. Gets on his computer. Surfs pictures of pretty girls half his age. Chats one of them up. Flirts harmlessly and aimlessly, tuning his ability. “You are so sweet! I’m turned on,” the pretty girl types. So he shuts the screen down. “Goodbye,” the computer says. He laughs. They always get so involved. He wonders if he is a jerk. Asks his dog out loud. “Am I a jerk? Am I a jerk?” He elongates the words. The way he says it the dog pants and tries to jump up and lick. He pats the dog on the head and scratches its ears. The dog wants more, the dog always wants more, so he shoves the dog away, taps him hard for being so annoying. The dog whines. He shoves the dog away and yells at the dog to go back to its bed. The dog circles around pouting, and he hates the dog for being such a bad sport. Realizes the television has been on for three hours and he hasn’t heard a darn thing, but now he wants to sit down. He sits down, scratches his own crotch. Glares at the dog to see if the dog will notice. He doesn’t. Fucking phone rings. This time is loud and intrusive. Is it her again, he wonders in mild but interested annoyance. What is wrong with her. Like I’m so glamorous, he thinks. Her head is much more exciting than mine. Knew she didn’t have enough of a fucking life. But geeze. Compared to his. As if I’m so interesting and important. If only she knew. She wouldn’t want me anyway. She just needs to think she wants me. I didn’t get to enjoy the sunshine, he suddenly remembers with a pang inside. The pang surprises him. Regret stings. I should have stopped for lunch. Coulda shoulda woulda. The door opens. He is grateful at the distraction. His friend is over and time goes by. Later, he has no ideawhat they talked about. Empty space. He doesn’t care. He makes faces at himself in the mirror. Pretends to admonish himself in the mirror for being a bum with a beard. He likes not having to care. Isn’t that what he learned? He takes a shit and looks at motorcycles. He looks at the clock and realizes it is way too late. Should have gone to bed hours ago, he reminds himself. Takes out Plato. Reads some philosophy. I should really read something sometime, he thinks to himself. Maybe play the piano. Turns his head over. Takes his clothes off, puts his pajamas on, puts the laundry in a pile. Turns his head on the pillow. His head aches. His eyes feel strained. He feels mildly disgruntled. Passes it off as indigestion and turns the light off. Another day. Done, he thinks.

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