July 5th, 2008

Bad Days

It is an occupational hazard of writers that they can come up with lists of all kinds of things: flowers that a grandmother might plant, colors for sweaters in a catalog, reasons the guy in the black pickup changed lanes without signaling. Some of the lists, like “Things to Write When I Don’t Feel Like Thinking Up Something to Write About” are, or ought to be, filed in useful locations for easy reference. Others, like “Good Kinds of Soup” live in the folds of the brain to be added to as life presents more opportunities.

The day before yesterday, I added an item to one of those lists in my brain: bad ways to start a day. I have never written the list down before, but just for fun, here it is. It’s not comprehensive, but all the items have in fact happened to me.

Bad Ways to Start a Day

1. Officiating at a rabbit funeral.
2. With pen on your face.
3. Throwing up.
4. With an “out of order” sign on the Big Gulp dispenser at 7-Eleven.
5. With the top of the convertible slashed.
6. With a dead cat under the car. Followed by large grieving women in the driveway in flannel pajamas clutching a stiff and dead feline to their capacious bosoms.
7. Falling down the stairs accompanied by two baskets of laundry and a small dog.

You can probably guess which one started my day a couple of days ago. I have a lovely purple bruise on my left thigh, splashed across its own dedicated lump of swelling. I have an abrasion on my right foot where the strap on my dressier flip-flops cut into it. Thanks to my trusty yellow-flowered heating pad, the stiffness in my back from tensing up as I fell and from the ensuing adrenaline rush has made it so that I only whine about half the time now. And my ego, I’m not sure it’s ever going to recover.