Wednesday, December 21, 2005

A Long Boring Posting For the Shortest Day of the Year


The shortest day of the year, the rebirth of the sun; today was the Winter Solstice and for me, it went something like this:

Up at 6:00 to stumble out into the living room to crank the heat up … stand by the heater and wait for the roar of the furnace as it’s been breaking down on us a lot lately (the contractor never showed up yesterday); be that as it may the click and hum and blue jet flames proved all was well … into the kitchen and put some steel cut oats into a pot on the stove, turn the heat on low, cover the pot, stroll into the living room and OCD strikes and I have to straighten up the room, fluff up the pillows on the sofa, pick up some magazines, check that the water is full under the Xmas tree … back into the kitchen and set out my glass, my vitamins, my dish, spoon and silverware; check the oatmeal, recover the pot…back to the bedroom, into the bathroom, shave and shower and brush and roll on and back into the bedroom where my partner is still buried under the comforter peacefully. I take my clothes into the living room and dress quickly, then I run outside and start the car so it will be toasty warm when I leave, back inside to wolf down my breakfast…wash the pot out, dishes in the dishwasher, back to the bathroom to gargle, lean over the bed and kiss him goodbye.

In the car, I switch on WXPN, start the drive, stop for gas, stop for the paper, continue on my way; in my head I am adding and subtracting what must be done today, calculating everything. The twenty mile ride to work seems to go quickly, I pull into the parking lot and trot on in to the office, my co-worker has beat me in and is making coffee it smells good. I go to my desk and make a list and put away some files, and check my phone messages and take some notes and jot down numbers and one of my clients calls and asks for something and I write out a request while talking to them, and then the other line rings and another client is upset with me because they thought I could get them the world, and they had to settle for a satellite, and I say a lot of things that are sort of like a script I have memorized…and then I get up and go to one of the big bosses and sing and dance and square away a problem, and a few minutes later I go back to the same big boss and do another number and get another situation squared away and I feel good and see my supervisor (who rocks, BTW) and do a happy dance when I tell him that I got my way, and then I head back to my desk and several co-workers are gathered around the coffee pot and an impromptu discussion on religion starts and we talk and debate, and somewhere, I am sure of this, god or goddess is laughing at this; at us, foolish mortals.

Later on I am filling out more paperwork and the phone rings and someone calls to tell me their problems and I do my best to reassure them that I will do what I can with what few resources I have at my disposal…and then I read the email that talks about how my job is going to be restructured soon and I feel stress build and then I think about our office and it’s relocation another twenty miles south of here and I begin to stress-out more so I decide to leave the office around 11:45 to do some quick last minute shopping and pick up lunch.

I go to the big ugly box store down the road and drop a small fortune to pick up a few more gifts that I am sure will be forgotten as soon as they are unwrapped by the recipients of them … then I go get lunch and when I get back to the office I find that another co-worker has brought in lunch for everyone and I curse the luck as I could have saved a few bucks had I known…I read the paper and listen to the people I work with babble on about this and that and I kind of wish they’d shut up so I can read, but ultimately, the same voices from the same people, some who have known for almost fifteen years now, prove comforting in their familiarity. Later on, lunch over, my supervisor tells me that a situation has been resolved, but of course I have to call some people to get the details. I make my calls and am immediately told that someone else will have to deal with the details of said situation. By the end of the day, no one else has returned my calls…

I leave work at 4:00 and drive home and am marveling over the beautiful sky all pink and white and the sun going down an angry red jewel … I get home before my partner and hide the latest gifts I bought in a big box in the closet, and then I throw some left-overs into the microwave and turn on the TV and on the Sci Fi Channel they are re-running my favorite X Files episode of all time! While dinner heats, I cool my heels and watch and he comes in and we eat in the living room, and when the show is over, he cleans up the dishes and runs out to the store to get his boss an Xmas gift while I have to dismantle the filter on the fish tank in the living room and clean it out … it is foul and it stinks and after a while I get the whole damn thing cleaned out and restocked with charcoal and water and hook it back up and find that it is running beautifully and then I clean up the fall out and sit down and have a cigarette.

Happy Winter’s Solctice!

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