The piles of books today. The racks upon racks of CDs and DVDs and vinyl records, and so on and so on. An entire internet at my fingertips, chock full of tragedy and outrage, of suffering and hot lesbian sex. I sit dead center in the middle of my room and I am not the least bit interested in any of it.
I am not even bored today.
This is a bit worrisome to me, frankly, but not worrisome enough to raise my blood pressure. Not enough to be a thing. Worrisome, but just a smidgen. A smidgette, even. Or for all the Latinos out there, un smidgito. Smij-ee-toh.
I walk over to the window. Open it. The air outside is precisely the same temperature as the air inside.
Next, I stare at the cat for a little while. The cat stares back at me. She thinks this is a trick somehow, I suppose, this uncharacteristic purposeless staring. It is not a trick. Not at all. I simply want to know what one does when faced with the horror of having nothing to do.
I decide to head downstairs. I do so mostly because there is almost always something downstairs that I am supposed to be doing, and now seems like as good a time as any to do it. I move some clothes from out of the washing machine and into the dryer.
Then I sigh. I have just performed a household chore. But nothing has changed, really.
One of my daughters is sitting in the living room, staring at a program on the television. I am not even sure which daughter it is. Today, she shall be known as “The One Who Watches Television.”
“Hey!” I say to this girl sitting in my house whom I assume to be one of my daughters. “Want to go play in the mud?” I say. I attempt to sound enthusiastic. I fail. “That always gets Mom nice and angry!”
The girl just shrugs, does not even look up from her television program. “There is no mud!” she says. She is likely correct.
I wander outside. Out, out into the street, no destination in mind at all.
An old friend – someone I have not seen in ten years or more – is crossing the street outside of my house. She is a very tiny person, this old friend, carrying a dog of cartoonishly enormous proportions.
Her voice shoots at me out from behind the dog. “Katy Anders?! Is that you?”
It is me, although at that moment, I sort of wish it wasn’t.
My old friend sets the dog, which looks to be a mutant cross between a pit bull and a greyhound bus, onto the ground. She begins asking me whether I remember a variety of events which took place back in the Nineties. That took place back when we knew each other.
I do remember. I tell her as much.
This goes on for some time. Finally, out of pure frustration, I ask her whether she has accepted Jesus Christ as her Personal Savior. At the next opportunity, she picks the dog back up and wanders away.
I retreat back inside the house and stare at the cat some more. I am not bored. I am not anxious or depressed or angry or stressed out, horny or hungry or sleepy or grumpy.
When this has gone on for an hour more, I start to panic. What if I have gone stupid? What if that last sip of wine last night killed an important cluster of brain cells, dropping me below some critical I.Q. threshold at long last?
I phone my husband, more out of curiosity than anything else. My husband, who is also the husband of my brother, who in turn is also the husband of my wife.
I tell him my dilemma, hoping he can diagnose me. He is a physician’s assistant by trade.
“I am not a doctor,” my husband says to me. I know this already, as demonstrated by that last short paragraph I just typed.
“Well, are you in any pain?” he finally asks. “Have you been feeling down lately? Are you on any new medications? Are you having trouble sleeping?”
No, no, no, and no. Nothing like that at all. That is my whole point, or at least a part of my whole point.
He is almost making me irritable now, which is a big step forward for me today.
“Congratulations, Katy,” my husband says. “You are feeling comfortable. I diagnose you with having the kind of pleasant day the rest of us are always aiming for but rarely actually achieve. Enjoy!”
Then the bastard hangs up on me.
“Comfortable?!” I shout. The cat runs from the room, her worst suspicions now confirmed.
About this, I want to say something that proves my husband wrong. I want to write something. Something. Something. Anything.
Maybe I have been inside of houses for too long again.
Nothing to say today. Too comfortable to write.