Sunday, August 6, 2023

Even in Sickness

I'm pretty sure I have gotten Covid from Mr. Tree.  He's been hanging around for days, and only too late did I find out he was sick.  He wanted me to go to dinner with him last night, but I was feeling like Fido's ass.  I was going to be a hero and go out for breakfast yesterday morning.  And I did.  It was early, so I got a parking place off the Boulevard and ate at a crepes place I've wanted to try for awhile now.  They had something they called "The Classic Breakfast Crepe": eggs, bacon, potatoes, and cheese.  Just what I wanted.  

It sucked.  

The crepe was made of whole wheat.  I think the eggs were K-rations.  But it was big.  Really big.  And I ate the whole thing.  

When I got home, though, I was aching from head to toe with the fog of fatigue.  I went back to bed and didn't wake up again for two and a half hours.  

I felt like shit the rest of the day and didn't leave the house.  

So when Mr. Tree called and I declined, he said he would bring me something for dinner.  I was nice about it, but I dreaded it.  I didn't want to sit and chat with him that afternoon.  It was after five when he showed up, however, and he simply handed me a paper bag.  

"I'm just dropping this off.  I'm going to go.  I am not feeling very well." 

Indeed, I'd found out he's been taking Dayquil and Niquil for days.  He just coming back from Cuba, I'm suspecting he has and has given me a dose of the 'Vid.  Whatever it is, it is not severe.  I just feel like shit.  I will probably sleep away much of this day, too.  

While awake yesterday, I worked on old NYC photos.  I'm still enamored, but there are so many of them, I get weary.  But the music. . . ah. . . the music. . . keeps me going.  I let my Apple Music station play all the live long day, and it did not disappoint.  It carried me like a magic carpet as I worked my fingers to the bone.  

I don't know what they mean if they mean anything at all, but the photos resonate with me somehow.  There is no significance to them, really.  It was simply a place and a time and the way people were in an instant.  Much is revealed.  There is a strange intimacy, an immediate nostalgia for the people we were a decade or more ago.  The world has been bombed and attacked by microbes.  The globe has been baked and the people with it.  And yet. . . .

Later, after dinner, I poured a drink and read.  It was good reading.  I was revisiting H.S. Thompson.  If you want to learn something about style in writing, read Thompson and Hemingway and Faulkner and Fitzgerald.  That's a real boy's club, I know, and caucasian as hell.  You know I like other writers, too. I've recommended them to you.  But I admit to liking these writers for their literary style.  They have it in great abundance.  You only need to read for a minute to know you are reading one of them.  They are distinctive and distinct.  One could say exactly that about Gertrude Stein.  But. . . ugh.  I mean. . . I read a detective novel when I was in college called "The Dada Caper."  It was written entirely in simple sentences.  Not one compound or complex sentence in the novel.  It was a distinctive style, but it was much like the Chinese Water Torture--drip, drip, drip, drip, drip.  Maybe I'll show you sometime.  

So I was reading Thompson and laughing out loud, pausing and re-reading it and underlining things to remember and drinking with the music playing softly in the background and life was seeming pleasurable for a moment.  

My phone goes on silent mode early in the evening.  If you text or call me, I don't know unless I go into my phone to look.  I looked.  I had a lot of texts.  Most of them were from a group chat group from the factory.  Someone had posted a picture of a new bar opening in Grit City called The Capital.  Oh, my woke friends were quick to hate on it.  

"Ugh. A $20 cocktail while I stare at portraits of assholes?! No thanks I'll pass."  

The crew piled on.  

"They have portraits of assholes?!?!  Well, now. . ." I wrote.  Nobody responded to that.  That is, among others, one of my talents, too.  

The topic changed to the chances of lost or broken boxes and furniture by the movers of my friend who has left town belongings.  Again, my absurdities silenced the crowd.  

I got a text from the girl who will not ask me out.  I haven't heard from her in weeks.  

"It was nice seeing you on Thursday.  How are you doing?" 

It was an inopportune time for that question, so I replied, "I've either been drinking too much, or I have Covid.  Well, I guess they are not mutually exclusive."

She wrote back for awhile, but once again, the line went dead.  

But there were more texts from more people, and as I was reading Thompson, my replies got weirder.  A song came on I had never heard before, and I began sending it to all my pals.  That is when I knew it was time to shut it all down for the night.  Drinking and texting are not a good combo, but drinking and reading Thompson while texting is definitely a formula for disaster.  

It was dark now and I could barely keep my eyes open.  It was an early bed.  And it was a late rising.  This morning, I could not focus.  "Covid, motherfucker," I thought.  It feels like another sleepy day.  I have some Covid tests.  I will check today.  I am due to go to my mother's tonight for dinner.  Even if the test is negative, I will insist we eat outside.  

O.K.  I have been getting texts as I write this morning.  I have to go now and straighten out my conservative friend.  He's one of the "what about" tribe.  

"Yea?  What about Clinton?  What about Biden?"

I told him I hoped that was Trump's defense in court.  That's his logic.  

"Yea, but what about. . . ?"

People's minds are not very disciplined.  I dated an attorney for a long while.  She used to win cases for that very reason, she said.  Others were just lazy and dumb.  

I'll leave you with the song I sent to everyone last night.  I may have left you off the list. 

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