Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Shaken, not Stirred

I was taking a red potato out of the microwave (spitting and moaning in the boiling water in a distressingly lifelike way) when it occurred to me that today is my Friday. I can have chocolate-covered espresso beans for dessert, then, right?

I'm driving around this dead gray town in M's Pontiac because Monte refused to start yesterday morning, squatting sullenly behind the Cadillac (who won't start either), his battery dead or disconnected. He knows. If only I could tell him that no matter how much I love the new Caliber (15th! 15th!), he'll always be my special square. M is happily working from home now, tucked into an inviting little office carved out of a corner, surrounded by a carpet of dogs sighing in bliss.

This December town isn't festive. The plastic bows on the Sternberg lights are still the ones I spray-painted four years ago. The grit scattered on the street to prevent slippage is already caking in the gutters, dirtying the new snow. On the way home I saw a man with one arm and a woman with a very noticeable limp crossing the street, and I thought, that's what will happen to me if I stay here. Everything in this town seems poisonous to me right now, hazardous. The landscape is barbed and drained of color and warmth and some essential thing, some sound or light. Christmas looks to be gaudy.

The way the good people of Evanston were driving on the slick roads this week made me want to slip something in their water. I don't recall ever packing around this much malice in December; It's usually my goodwill-toward-men month. But as miraculous as this year was, it's also been a little cagey with me, dangling carrots. Everything is just out of reach. Also, this year I've seen the worst of some people I thought the best of. Disheartening, but no reason, really, to contaminate the water supply.

I am happy, really. I'm so focused on forward I might tip over any second. I'm just pausing to reflect that it's very easy to become complacent (as opposed to content, which is acceptable), and people who are simply frighten me. I have so much to look forward to that I have to shut my eyes and shake my head sometimes. Then I'm dizzy and I have to sit down, and while I'm there I start thinking again. A vicious cycle.


Blogger Doolin said...

You probably don't care but I'm enlisting in the army soon as a "trumpet" player...yup that's an actual job this time. I'll go in as a specialist. Had a really bad month breaking up w/ Ian..don't have anything keeping me here anymore, time to pack up and leave again...hope the new car is everything you wanted.

December 9, 2007 at 10:39 PM  

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