Wednesday, August 23, 2006
Wrist Opening Day
When I rolled off my mattress into a graveyard of empty beer cans, pop bottles, and two overflowing ashtrays, I realized my life is long overdue for an aggressive regimen of simplification. I need stark purity. I need streamlining. I need masochistic discipline. Time to clean absolutely everything until it shines to blindness.
The symptoms are overwhelming. Every payday eve I rue the frivolous purchase of energy drinks in the morning, the harmful inhalations of thirty cigarettes a day, the frequent ten dollar hot lunches from purveyors of exotic cuisine. Then there's the 100 cheap beers a week, all in the evenings.
That's just the financial aspect. There's my health and happiness to consider, too. Aside from the tobacco, all this sludgy fuckery has made me slow. I've suffered two weeklong illnesses so far this month, and it's only the 23rd. One was fevers and aches, the current one, brochitis. Besides the illnesses, my general state of being leaves a great deal to be desired. I'm so lethargic and morose that I've lost my appetites for friendship, creativity, sex, conversation, and tomorrow. I'm coasting on autopilot. I'm a sad shut-in. I'm fucking appalled with myself.
My recourse: removal. Erase all my habits. Subtract my entire lifestyle.
I'll eat less. I eat all the time when I'm not hungry. Usually, this is just a salve for boredom. Exercise will make a spectacular substitute. The mild beergut will melt off, my muscles will define themselves, and my step will spring once again.
I'll change my diet. Fruits, vegetables, brown bag lunches. I'll get all those wonderful vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and save some cash in the process. No more italian beefs and chesseburgers and hefty plates of Pad Thai and Curry Beef. Pizza can fuck off. Not only will my temple thrive, my step will spring once again.
I'll quit smoking. Last time I did this, I lasted four months. I became a high-strung asshole. My inner tension led me to lash out in all directions, snapping derisive verbal jabs at people I like. I grew holier than thou. Not about smoking, but in other ways. (I will never, ever be able to chide someone for smoking cigarettes.) Playing a song I hated was grounds for me to burn down a friend's entire span of cultural interests in one hateful rant. The slightest criticism of me was grounds for me to shred the merits of that friend's deepest hopes and dreams. I was a nasty fuck. This will probably happen again. But, I figure, it's part of this whole simplification process. This will not help my step spring. Not a bit. I'll be lucky not to kick dogs and chew people's ears off.
Alcohol. If I quit smoking, the booze has to go, too. If you take the shithead I just described above and give him a couple drinks, he becomes five times worse, loses his clothing, and urinates in inappropriate places. See my archives from January to April 2005 for examples. No smokes? No booze. Clean Steve, all the way, and damn the withdrawals.
So what will I do to fill these voids? Easy.
I'll wander around like a crackhead, wondering at the sunrays, gaping at babies in strollers, a simpleton with no brain activity, wandering lost and bereft. I've always liked walking, and there's so many places to stroll. I may get bored from time to time, but it'll be for my own good. This will also separate me from my friends, keeping all my potential victims strangers.
I'll read books at bus stops, in grassy parks, on el station platforms. I'll be a city idiot, purposeless and aimless, a rube among sophisticates. Oh yeah, I'll stumble through libraries, too!
Without all the greasy fast food, poisonous cigarettes, and sloppy libations, basically, all the crappy things I use as substitues for living like a real human being, I'll be some sort of serene Zen fuckface with a santimonious expression but not a word of judgement to offer.
I will be empty, clean, and ready to write my mind anew.
Or, I'll be hopelessly adrift, disconnected from myself, and deeply depressed.
It might be a new leaf for me. More likely, though, upon success, I'll be celebrating Wrist Opening Day.
8:23 PM - Bottle Rocket Fire Alarm
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