Saturday, August 02, 2008


Oh the resistance, coiling itself around me like a valuer blanket tangled about drowsy legs; just as I think I will at last generate a wee bit of electricity, I encounter one gauzy soft distraction after another. Even now, I am hearing the most ridiculous new age movie sound track imaginable, and it is my own fault. I perused through the CD selection. Just a handful of titles there- mostly classic rock, The Who, Pink Floyd, The Cream, but me, I thought it would be best to work without lyrics. Now I am soaring through a pg13 Disney movie, and I’m ready to vomit. Now I realize that Pink Floyd or Bjork would have been a great deal more acceptable. I can stop what I’m doing and attempt to adjust my environment…I do and the Pink Floyd case is empty, the Bjork disc won’t play. So you see, here every move you make is countered with some minor obstacle, and there is always an easier alternative, the consumers alternative; eat something, watch something, take a nap and wait for death.
It is a wonderful warm sticky tropical weather that holds me in pleasant suspension. The sun hides behind one of the many small puffy clouds that speckle the sky like a flock of lambs peacefully munching blue all the while growing fatter and fatter. In the background a voice cackles loudly in a one way exchange, a telephone conversation, no doubt, as there are many, "Uh huh"s, and "Yeah"s, and "Right"s between questions such as, "How many tenants do you have?" and "How much are your utilities?"
Other voices too coming from another room. One deep and rough and one small and high, both adrift in the electric hum of computer terminals. These two voices are similar, strangely alike despite the fact that one obviously belongs to an older man and the other to a little girl.
"You do? You know what the phrase ‘window of opportunity’ means already?" The older voice asks.
"Yes. Yes." The little girl voice insists. Outside the window birds sing, a car horn beeps and an air plane drones by. There is a soothing rushing sound like that heard in close proximity to crashing surf. It is the never ending river of traffic coursing over a nearby freeway overpass. A breeze rustles the leaves of the elm tree and palms shading the window. Far away down the street a little dog barks, a hollow, gravely bay. I lean back and scratch my chin. What else is there to say? I could go into great detail describing the fibers of the dark green carpet besieged by tiny white hairs and balls of lint. Even though there are fresh lines left where a vacuum recently passed over its plush mane, there are still small clingy things holding onto its minuscule loops. Now the cackling woman voice from the phone conversation speaks to the old man voice.
"That was a mental institution." She says. "The state pays them $900 a month to board each resident."
"God." Says the old man, "Why would anyone do that?"
"Because she loves them." Says the woman, "She says that anyone who goes into the business of caring for these people should do it because they love them. They need someone to love them. She says no one should even consider doing it for the money. You have to love them."
There is a bit of silence. Plenty to eat, plenty to drink, comfort, and rest. What else is there?

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