Some Days, It’s Hardly Worth Chewing Through the Restraints: Lent in Casablanca, Night 31


My Friday sucked.

It started out fine. I slept okay, cleansed myself with ERDA Studios hemp oil & rosemary soap, and loaded up my chemicals.  It was a beautiful day. Hell, U2’s song “It’s a Beautiful Day” played, as if to reinforce the idea.  I downloaded Rockpile’s “Seconds of Pleasure,” and I was looking forward to enjoying some loud rockabilly as I wrote escalated e-mails.

Somewhere around 8pm, my chemicals Hindenburged. I don’t know why. 

It’s easy to feel put-upon and sad when my chemicals go south. There’s no reason, no explanation, just POUF!

It sucked.

It’s also rare. Normally, I’m okay. I can prop myself up enough to get through my day. When people at work have questions, I generally have answers. Today, I got my hugs, real and figurative, and nothing bad happened to me. I got to write something funny and creative, but still…I was in physical pain, and I was in the Abyss.

It wasn’t even the Abyss, really; it was sort of a temporary hole.

I came home, ate a ham sandwich and a couple tasty cookies, and chatted online with Workwife Wendy and, later, my friend Jen. I petted Ana-Sofia Vargas, and treated Wind to a can of his favorite wet fuel.

And now, I’m once-again immersed in my nightly 103 minute escape to a different time and place.

I can’t imagine little metaphysical meltdowns like mine would work in Casablanca. The undercurrent of danger and impending death would outweigh any little snits like mine.

The woman who yanked out Rick’s heart, then stomped that sucker flat wanders back into his life. She adorns the arm of a hero, tall and brave.  What does he do?

He gets stinking drunk. The next morning, he’s shaved, dressed in a natty suit and tie, fedora propped on his head, and he’s conducting business. He knows the nazis are tearing apart his club, but he’s over at The Blue Parrot, drinking bourbon and talking with Signor Ferrari about carrying charges.

Every few hours, it seems, TweetCaster pops forth with something like this: @BreakingNews: 5.8-magnitude earthquake strikes eastern Honshu, Japan; 4th quake over mag.-5 in 14 hours – USGS

Oh, and Japan has tsunami damage and extreme radiation.

Or, there are constantly bombs exploding hither and yon, and tornadoes killed a half dozen people in states adjoining mine.

I was talking with a friend about my 35 day hospital “vacation” a few years ago. For five weeks, I was hooked up to IV’s 18 hours a day, subjected to some pretty vile “wound care,” and being bed-ridden.

And my depression level was about nil.

My life is good. I have friends, far more friends than I deserve. In this economic depression, I have a job that pays the bills. Mostly, I’m happy enough. (Scheiße, what a hedge on that last sentence)

Mood crashes like I had Friday are really a kind of luxury, in the big scheme of things. In a world like Casablanca–or when I was in hospital–just surviving another day takes enough that one doesn’t have time to wallow.

Major Strasser is about to be shot, which is my cue that it’s safe to go to sleep. It’s 0628 EDT, 16 April 2011. At 1700, I’ll be settling in for another workday.

In Casablanca, it’s forever the week before Pearl Harbor. People there are trapped in survival mode. It’s a trying way to live, and I’m grateful to have a life that affords me the odd snit. 

I’ll be happy to go to work.

I’ll be happier still if I win the Lotto in 16.5 hours. (I promise: meet me at Rick’s if I do. The drinks will be on me!)


14 Responses to “Some Days, It’s Hardly Worth Chewing Through the Restraints: Lent in Casablanca, Night 31”

  1. Oh dear dear Tom.
    I would meet you at Rick’s in a heartbeat, Lotto or no!

    You are so right that living moment by moment in a crisis leaves no time for the “luxury” of a depression attack.

    Hmm. I just had a thought…maybe depression attacks are really downtimes (literally) for gathering energy and ammunition for the next crisis. Although some of us seem to gather more energy and ammunition than others, for sure. But…that is the first time I have ever EVER thought of depression (those mood swings, not the constant clinical type) in a positive light…like sleep or something. ANYway….I digress. I meander. And it’s because I am having a bit of a post-perfect-wedding letdown that is TOTALLY a luxury because I have NOthing to be depressed about!

    I am surrounded by happy furries. (five dogs…we are babysitting for the honeymoon). I am surrounded by dust…the dust of a lot of living beings shedding dead keratin. So I’ll feel better real soon, too.

    But, it helps reading your wise musings. Please feel better soon! Love, Me.

    • I figured it out: IT’S YOUR FAULT! Your post-perfect-wedding blues rippled down I-75! *snerk*

      I’m glad the wedding went well, even if you got somebody else to officiate, and I’ll take the occasional bout of male PMS over another peptostreptococcus sleepover in my nardsackery.

      If we have cocktails at Rick’s, I’ll introduce you to Annie the Soapmaker. She has awesome, natural products. She might also cut you if you anger her or cheat at cribbage. 😉 Happy Weekend with your regular furry CPA furm (sic), and your granddog. Hugs. Me

  2. Aw, tom. I’m sorry your Friday sucked. I’d think it’d be impossible to be depressed while listening to Rockpile, but sometimes the black dog is stronger than even rockabilly pop.

    I think one thing that helped me when I was struggling with chronic depression was the realization that “mostly happy enough” was okay. I wasn’t skipping down the Austrian Alps to “The Sound of Music,” but after a long streak of bad luck, I was still standing, my kids were alright, and I could still move forward. Or as a wise sage once said, “Ten fingers, ten toes, one belly button,” or something like that. Have a good weekend.

    • That whole “10, 10, & 1” thing dawned on me as I wrote this last night. I was just having a little case of growlyface. Today is 1000% better.

      And boy the Rockpile worked today. I have Basher hooked on…well, Basher.

  3. Sorry to hear of your craptastic Friday. Heopfully, it will be a short stint.

    • I’m sure Penny has a similar palliative effect on you, but watching Casablanca with Ana-Sofia Vargas and Wind (who’s actually dressed for Rick’s) and writing made things feel better.

      Well, plus Rockpile. Nothing like early 80’s revival rockabilly to boost the mood. 🙂

  4. Hey, if you’d suffered the nardsack attack in Casablanca in the 40’s, you’d have been done for. The best you could have hoped for was a ton of opium (and/or bourbon) and a few disgusting days.

    Turn off your DorkPhone, or at least the Tweety part.

    • You speak the truth about the nardsack attack (love the term!). Considering the antibiotics I was on in 2007 cost as much per dose as a 1940 car, I think you’re right: I’d have been toast. Drunk toast, to be sure, but toast nonetheless.

      • I liked the rhyme.

        Money wouldn’t have been the problem — in 1941, the availability of antibiotics was pretty much zero, no matter how much money you had. Microsurgery didn’t exist either.

        You would have been a goner. And then who’d pet Ana-Sofia and fuel up the nattily-attired Wind?

  5. When you feel down and out, lift up your head and shout, “SOMEONE’S GONNA PAY FOR THIS!!!”

    Or you could just shout “NAAARRRRDSAAAAAAAACCCK!” and mattress-surf down the stairs.

    • My neighbors have a restraining order against me doing the mattress-surfing thing anymore. Probablj should have worn at least a cape when I did it. 😉

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