Underthecurrent


lowered blood pressure
October 24, 2016, 4:54 am
Filed under: hypochondria, Uncategorized

Yesterday I fainted.  On a sidewalk, a gross one.

Luckily, not alone. Not smashing the old face, or doing discernible damage.  Not in the rain.

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What Happens Next
October 20, 2016, 11:19 pm
Filed under: unrelated thoughts, when I grow up

Waiting for the drilling to stop.  Upstairs, banging, drilling, almost the sound of pressure washing.  Over and over.  The Taj Mahal of renos.

Tick, today’s main event ends.  There’s one more big thing tomorrow.  The month is careening quickly towards being over.  The mostly-joking extended countdown ticks into “reasonable” countdown territory.

There have been a series of moving end points for this project.  First, it was about getting to last summer.  Then, it became about finishing the year.  Now, it’s a question of sometime between February and May, and a the bigger question of a clean cut or a slow fade away.  There’s a nearing reality of actually not doing this anymore, this starts to lead to the question:

What happens next?There is no obvious answer.  Almost five years ago, there was an apparent answer (this).  Before that, there was an answer (quit, travel).  Before that, pure pragmatics (graduate, gain the minimum amount of experience to open the door later).  For the last, oh, fifteen years there have always been fairly apparent steps and doors, everything unfolding in ways that seemed to make sense.  There’s an immediate next part (adventure) but beyond that it’s far less obvious.

*

The fascinating act of disappearing a relationship from the internet.  No outbursts, no inappropriate emojis soliciting comfort.  The absence having more meaning that the presence of things.

Online breakups are often preluded by the end of joint social media postings by couples who have almost completely documented their relationships in the semi-public (and haven’t had kids and lost so much sleep they can’t remember passwords).  If it’s amicable, there may still be friendly acknowledgment once in awhile, but soon that will stop too.

Suddenly, there will be a profile picture cull.  All those joint shots, blip.  If looking already, a new swipe-right shot will appear (fun! cute) [future life, if this is around in ten more years – that was a jokey reference to Tinder].  This is the major clue.

Is everyone else playing social media detective?



Island Life
October 19, 2016, 12:37 am
Filed under: when I grow up

“You should really go to the farmer’s market.”

“Did you go to the farmer’s market?”

“I’ll drop you off at the farmer’s market, you’re in for a treat, there’s a guy that makes crepes.”

It’s raining.  The farmer’s market is a series of acceptably shielded tents in a muddy field.  Some muffins, produce.  It’s okay.  Welcome to the island.  On the boat, the windows are kept open to ventilate the oil stove as the rain keeps coming.  A stray box of crackers is subsistence when rowing to shore seems crazy.  Eventually, the rain stops, a long hike to the few restaurants and stores begins.  In town, there’s breakfast whose quality is magnified by its rarity.  There is also a video-rental-and-fishing-tackle store doing brisk business.

The ocean is heaving with life:  seals, endless fish, birds.  Clear water all the way down.  Men pump and bail rainwater from rowboats.

The next night disappears into the rocking of the boat.  For the next few days, off the boat, things keep swaying.  At the pub, between the pints and lost land legs, it’s difficult to use a knife and fork.  Nearby, the farmer’s market is replaced with a community apple press.  One early morning, as the sun comes up, we throw our packs together and go.

*

Between now and an actual holiday.  There are forty four work days, broken up into increments.   A series of projects to complete, none particularly appealing.

And now for the next trick.  Right now a bureaucratic monster lies ahead, a multi headed beast that we are attacking bit by bit.  The kitchen table is a battleground of documents and records.

Every little thing’s gonna be alright.



October 4, 2016, 12:50 am
Filed under: work work work work work

A weekend of antibiotics and fever sleep ticks by.  The physical expulsion of all the mental twisting of the last week is bacteria all around.  Invading, wasting.

From bed, order: a candle that smells like patchouli, bran muffin mix and rainboots.

Reflecting on the past few years.  Years one and two: relative success.  Year three: burnout, avoidance as survival. Year four: avoidance as main objective, focus on other projects.

Four years ago, sitting in a small apartment on the ground floor.  A sweet little funny angled space, secured against the odds.  Sending out cover letters, cleaning up for interviews, lying.  Lying about having any intention of sticking with this, about long term goals and ambition.

Eventually the lies sound so good, sufficiently well polished, they seem possibly true.

What was the point?  Money.  Temporarily, money, which is a whole other thing to write about.  By the metrics of four years ago, there is now money.  Enough money to eke out middle class security, to have a few more dreams, to start something.  Staying too much longer undermines this, doesn’t it?  If all the dreams are foregone in pursuit of more.

Today is day 55.