Thursday, February 25, 2010

Abstract, A Fog of Life

I pick and pick.  I bite.  I gnaw.  It breaks and grows.  A pile forms.  Somewhere.  Below Midway?  I’m left with rough, jagged edges.  Broken bones.  Or is it broken skin?

A pangram is a sentence that uses every letter of the alphabet at least once.  Likewise, a crossword is a pangram if it contains every letter.  Pack my box with five dozen liquor jugs.  The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.  Brawny gods just flocked up to quiz and vex him.  It’s difficult to keep the duplicate letters low and to still make sense.  The Welsh word “cwm” means “valley.”  I have no clue how to even begin pronouncing it.

I’ve always done it.  It’s obsessive of me, I know, but I can’t help it.  Like the cracking and popping of the crackers and poppers within my flesh.  Will it cause arthritis?  Does it matter?   I can’t stop.

New project!  New project, I say.  Same place, different phase.  More uncertainty in how to progress.   What to do?

I was supposed to get paid last week, but didn’t.  Because my company is paid by the State and because Kentucky is broker than broke, my company didn’t get paid for some reason.  Thus, I didn’t get paid.  It’s starting to make me a bit nervy, especially since I usually depend on my second paycheck to cover the mortgage and the other bills that creep in…

Shiny.  Sharp.  Silver.  Clip!  Clip!  There’s nothing more annoying than hearing it at church.  And there’s nothing grosser than a pile of bony flesh left strewn about the floor.  In the carpet.  In the couch.  In the air tonight.

Will I get two paychecks next week if I don’t get one this week?  Gyargh.  February ends Sunday.  The whole thing’s just getting tied up, put in a box, packed on a freighter, shipped out the the middle of the Pacific, dropped off at Midway, placed in a tunnel, buried underground, and forced to live the rest of its memorable existence with all the other old and forgotten months.

Losing weight is actually not so bad.  I’ve been working on portion control for a bit now, so that’s helpful with the Weight Watchers.  And actually seeing the numbers tick down is encouraging.  I love hummus.  And fruit.  And smoothies.  And fiber bars.  And all those things aren’t that bad.

Center and Right justifications rarely get used.  Show the love.

Have you ever had one of those moments where you were pretty sure you lost your sanity?  Where you lay on your college bed and stared at the white, brick walls, occasionally running your fingers along its cracks and splits?  Where you phase out all the noise and things are brought sharply into focus.  Where you wonder where your life is headed and where it’s been?  And the minutes roll by and soon you find yourself getting up and stepping into the shower, letting the hot water beat down and wash away yourself?  Where you cover your ears with cupped hands and listen as the rain-storm falls around you and patters on the tiled, nasty shower floor?  And when you step out and dry off, the stark realization of life kicks in; you pick up yourself and jump back into its meandering river, a cannonball ready to sink or swim.

Strange things we are.  Each individual possessing their own self.  Controlling their appetites and desires.  Some people snap and have no restraints, no convictions.  Other people snap and live lives of tedium and depravity, unable to enjoy even the simple, harmless things.  But most people snap with their insatiability.  They’re greed and hunger are never fed; their lusts are wild and untamable.  People are fascinating.  They’re terrifying.  They’re amazing.  They’re unique.  Even the copycats and mimes are their own selves, even if they copy and mimic.  What are we?  Who are we?  How can we rise above?  Should we rise above?  Is there anything wrong with complacency?  

I’m satisfied with my life.  I love my wife more than she knows.  I’m blessed and happy with the things I have, and I have plenty.  Sure, I desire more, and from time to time I indulge myself, but I say no more often than not.  I think about other countries and what they have.  Solomon was right.  All is vanity.  And yet, I’m okay with that.  I know my possessions won’t travel with me beyond the dirt, so I strive to enjoy what I have with my allotted time.  Anything else is just being ungrateful.  Unthankful.  And that’s absurd.  Even the poor folk in our great country have more opportunity than most of the rest of the world.  That’s not to say that they don’t struggle and don’t have problems—they do—but they have a shot at something.  They…

…the fog breaks back in.  The bones hiss and snap.  The juices stop.  The highways of the mind close down for maintenance and road repair.  The moments of clarity, not the John Mayer song, aren’t too many.  Mirages.  Mirrors and smoke.  Wicked, smiling faces.  Sad clowns.


Crystal said...

Great post today!

I'm sorry to hear about your paycheck. I'd be panicking because I pretty much live paycheck to paycheck. Hopefully things get figured out soon.

logankstewart said...

Thanks. Yeah, it's quite sucky not getting a check. Apparently this happens from time to time, but, like you said, I pretty much live paycheck to paycheck right now, and that makes things difficult. Soon, I pray, soon.

Kristopher A. Denby said...

Wow. I'm ready to see some straight fiction from you, man. You have a silver tongue.

logankstewart said...

That's quite a compliment, Kris. Although, if my tongue were truly silver, I'd say I'd have fodder for a compelling life story!

Straight fiction, eh? One day...