Tuesday morning I woke up feeling fine. I went about my normal routine of showering and getting dressed. For breakfast I made myself a berry smoothie. While it was blending up I packed some almonds into a plastic bag to eat for a snack later in the day. A few almonds fell onto the table so I ate them instead of putting them in the bag.
I downed the smoothie along with a couple supplements. Nothing out of the ordinary-- this regiment is quite established. I made my way to my bedroom to gather my wallet, keys and messenger bag when all of a sudden my right eye started to itch.
At first I didn't think much of it. Then my left eye started to itch. It was curious. All of a sudden it felt like the eyelashes from each lid had turned inside scratching the hell out of my eyeball. I swiped my eyes with my fingers thinking any lashes that may be irritating would be expelled. Only, the sensation got worse and my eyes started weeping goo.
Now had this happened on just about any other morning I would have called out. However I was currently 11 hours in the PTO hole and I didn't want to give up any more pay to take a day off. So I left the house, unable to really see but not before taking a picture of my eyes to share with everyone.
I got into work and took a second photo, this one was just 15 minutes later. I could only see out of one eye and my face had puffed up. I was miserable. I popped an allergy pill hoping that it would help. In the office kitchen I filled up a plastic bag with some ice, added a little water and some salt to make an ice compress. I alternated it from eye to eye while I went about doing my morning tasks.
After another 15 minutes I took another picture. This one was the most startling. My left eye had fallen on my face and become crooked. How could this be?
It was then I realized I'd become Lotney "Sloth" Fratelli from The Goonies!
OK, so that last photo slice is Sloth. Still I looked like shit.
The interesting thing is no one really noticed I was transformed into a deformed freak. Mainly because I stayed at my desk all morning and never turned around to make eye-contact with anyone who came by my office.
Later in the day I met up with a friend for lunch. I told him what had happened this morning and he said "Well now it just looks like your tired." So I showed him the picture of me from the morning and he exclaimed "Oh Honey! You really did look like shit!"
I've been remiss in taking care of myself the past few months. Mostly it has to do with an 180 degree shift from taking care of myself during the intensive drug treatment to raise my red blood cell and platelet counts.
I sort of stopped looking in the mirror for the most part. The only time I caught my visage was when I brushed my teeth or flossed. My beard sort of grew out as did what hair I could grow on my head. I looked like a cousin of Sam Beam from Iron & Wine. Well I suspect that's what I looked like, having not really examined myself in the mirror.
But this past Sunday I decided it was time to overhaul my look. I got out my clippers, sat on the edge of the tub in the bathroom and groomed. I trimmed and trimmed for what seemed like hours. When I was done I stood up, brushed the stray hairs off and looked in the mirror. My eyebrows looked unruly so I trimmed them up too. Then I saw it peeking out of my right brow. Its glint was unmistakable. It was beautiful. I had found my very first gray hair.
Certainly such a sight for others would send them into a tailspin of despair. But I don't know, maybe it's because I feel incredibly immature that such a site excited me. Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying immature as in telling fart jokes or laughing at the differently abled (I mean, those things will always be funny) I mean-- I don't own a house, my career choice is going to change, and currently I'm pretty much directionless. So a gray hair in my eyebrow was neat.
Granted, if a lot start showing up I'll probably fret, especially if they're just patchy in one place and not spread out giving me a nice ginger and pepper pattern. But whatever, I'm going to enjoy them while I can.
Brent told me while filling out some paperwork for a job, and being very prepared and professional, the HR director told him how effortless he had made the process. She added, "The young ones make it difficult." Brent took umbrage seeing as he's only 30.
I affirmed, "You're still young. We're still young." And then I started singing, with arms outstretched to my sides and chest shaking back and forth, "We are young, heartache to heartache we stand. No promises, no demands. Love is a battlefield."
"You've confirmed just how old we really are."
Oh where, oh where has my messenger bag gone? Oh where, oh where can it be? With it's corduroy lining and it's strap so long. Oh where, oh where can it be?
My six weeks of dog sitting ended last night. I reserved a ZipCar and picked Jim up at the airport around 8:30pm. I drove us back to the City. We had planned on getting dinner but Jim put the kibosh on that when he was stuck in Denver on a layover and asked me to pick up some bread and pasta for a simple meal at home.
Having reserved the ZipCar until 9:30pm I used the remaining 30 minutes to ferry stuff I had accumulated at Jim's to my house, which is literally around the corner, less than .10 of a mile. I basically moved into his place six weeks ago bringing anything that wasn't too cumbersome to schlep. Including my sewing machine.
Packing up the ZipCar was easy. I zipped to my place and unloaded everything in the car, or so I thought (foreshadowing!), dropped the ZipCar off at its designated parking space and went back to Jim's for dinner, wine and talk. His friend Lisa came over and we yucked it up for the next few hours. I didn't get home and to bed until after midnight, which isn't good as I'm still suffering from the worst head cold I've had in years.
Having not slept in my own bed for six weeks I had forgotten how damn comfortable it is with its memory foam awesomeness. Thank goodness my cellphone alarm went off otherwise I wouldn't have gotten up at all this morning (which might not have been a bad thing though I'm PTO deficient at work.)
My flat has undergone some extensive renovations and when I left to stay at Jim's the construction wasn't quite finished. So I've yet to enjoy the refreshed look of the place. One thing I luxuriated in this morning was the shower-- with its super water pressure and its seemingly inexhaustible hot water supply. My flat's hot water heater is larger than Jim's, which he has to share with his downstairs neighbor. I didn't want my shower to end.
I traded some words with my roommate after getting out of the bathroom. I think he's happy that I'm back and I'm happy I'm back too. As much as I love Cassie and Stewie I realize that I'm just not wanting to go back into pet ownership anytime soon. When you have to walk the dogs on a cold and wet morning when you're running a fever and feel like your going to die-- well, it sucks.
After dressing I went to grab my messenger bag but I didn't see it. I excavated the boxes and bags I brought back from Jim's and those that were up on my bed until I knocked them off last night (I had to put everything on the bed so the construction crew could put in three new windows and I never got around to taking anything off in the six weeks I was out of the flat.) Shit, I thought, did I leave my bag in the ZipCar? Fuck!
I jolted out of the house and into my truck. I raced over to where the ZipCar was parked-- but it wasn't there! I texted Jim to ask if he could take a look around his flat to see if by chance I left my bag there. I've yet to hear back from him.
My messenger bag to me is the equivalent of a child's blankie. It carries all my important things like: narcotics, a digital camera, sunglasses and my checkbook. I feel absolutely naked without the bag strapped to my body Walking into work felt so weird. In the seven years I've been in SF I don't think I've ever once left the house without some sort of bag (except for when I would run.)
Fearing the worst I'll have to replace the digital camera ($400), the sunglasses ($140), and the narcotics ($10,000). But none of those things matter more than the bag itself. I really love the bag. I bought it at Urban Outfitters in Seattle in 2005. Despite having to stitch up the straps several times due to ripping, wear and tear, essentially making it look like Frankenstein's monster, the bag itself is the perfect size for city life, its got brown corduroy lining, which I think is so neat and its the most lovely shade of green on the outside. I'm tearing up right now. *sniffle* Okay, I'm not really weeping. I'm still holding out hope that the bag is either at Jim's (why isn't he texting me back?!) or the ZipCar was picked up by the ZipCar people to get washed and cleaned (it needed it) and my belongings will make it back to me unscathed.
I went on-line to see if I could find a twin of my bag but I don't see it anywhere. I looked up equivalents but they don't quite match up. The most similar in size and style is a Jack Spade bag which is a ridiculous $325. Buying that would cut into my narcotic budget. (Dear reader, you do realize I'm joking about narcotics, no?) For what it's worth (apparently $325 retail) it is a pretty bag.
On Amazon.com I found some plain paratrooper bags. I also found some embellished paratrooper bags. Now you may or may not know I've got a thing for the Virgin Mary. No it's not sexual-- wanting virgins is terribly lecherous-- as is wanting a woman-- ha ha, I kid, I kid. I think she's a pretty cool gal and I love her in statue form and in pictures. I'm not even remotely Catholic but I do wear, from time to time, a Miraculous Medal my sister gave me after years and years of coveting it.
Well there are a couple paratrooper bags with V-Mary on them. And I realized something which is going to be complete sacrilege to any Catholics that read this blog (yeah I know, as if, but now they'll find this entry via Google, believe me). Anyway, the aura that surrounds Mary in her iconography looks a lot like the enveloping folds of a multicolored labia. Look for yourself:
I'll never be able to look at Mary the same way again, and neither will you!
Wait, is that an Angel poking out the anus? Eww. An ass angel!
Maybe Mary could help me find my messenger bag. I'm going to dial her up right now.
Ugh, she's not taking calls. Her ass angel says she'll call me back. Yeah right.
Slankets are so 2007. What's the new fresh 2008 style? The Lippi Selk'Bag1, sucka! I can't tell you how many times I've wanted to combine my puffy down jacket with my sleeping bag. Now I won't have to-- I'll just get one of these numbers.*
I can't wait to look like a sleek version of the Michelin Man.
*I actually really want one of these.
I used to never need an alarm clock to wake up. However in the last month my reliance on an annoying noise to stir me from my slumber has increased ten fold. It could be due to sleeping with Cassie and Stewie, which means occupying the same space while starring at the starless ceiling until a moment of complete exhaustion takes over and I'm knocked out. Because if I move I'm met with a growl from the little one and there's just no way of making a Great Dane budge so I can spread out my legs.
If we're supposed to let sleeping dogs lie, it's probably best not to lie with them.
I've been using my cell phone as my alarm clock. I set it to the klaxon warning sound which makes me wake up thinking I'm in a submarine that's been hit by torpedoes. More than once I've thought I felt the rushing water of a hull breech engulfing my body. But that might just be due to the drugs I take.
Today was the first day I've woken up without the clock. As I was dead asleep I heard what best can be described as a hurking sound. Huuuuuuurk. Huuuuuurk. My eyelids split apart and there was Cassie standing over me, choking. Before I could even think to react a torrent of hot humid partially digested doggie chow mixed with Great Dane gastric juices was unleashed on my face and torso. I muffled my scream so none of her puke would get into my mouth but taking in an exasperated breath through my nostrils caused her puke he find it's way into my sinuses. It burned! It burned worse than gonorrhea* or a Flaming Amazon. It burned worse than that first shot of Everclear I ever had when the priest at Our Lady of Pederasty tried to get me drunk so he could get into my Oshkosh-B'gosh overalls.
Now I'm sure most of the readers of this gross anecdote have never experienced the shear volume of puke that comes out of a dog that weighs over 150 pounds and whose height, while standing on hind legs, comes in at 78 inches. My conservative estimate is that it's around a gallon, which if you remember from grade school math, comes out to be 16 cups (or 3.785 liters for my metric friends.)
The smell of that much belly gravy is sort of like equal parts homeless man sweaty dirty taint on an 105 degree Fahrenheit day (that's 40.55 Celsius) after he's done five hours of aerobics, mixed with six day old pavement warmed roadkill du skunk and three squirts of Paris Hilton's signature perfume.
I fell out of bed, puke dripping off me, and dashed to the bathroom where I jumped into a cold shower (since it takes time I did not want to waste to get hot water) and vigorously washed my body. The cold water didn't help the burning of my nasal canals though. I felt the digestive juices seeping into my throat. I gargled shower water but it didn't help. Nothing helped.
As the water heated up I sat down in the tub letting the water flood over me. By this time my iPhone's alarm started going off. The klaxon warning filled up the apartment. I slid under the water and pretended to drown. It seemed like I was under the water for hours but it was only seconds.
I got out of the tub, wrapped myself up in towels and went to access the damage to the sheets and carpet. While I was in the tub, Stewie had helped Cassie eat some of her vomit. And they say dogs mouths are cleaner than humans. Yuck.
*I'm guessing. Thankfully I've never had an STD. Yeah, that probably makes me a loser and a winner.