December 23, 2004

bodily functions: self-pity, shame, shit

i'm sick. i came down with this cold yesterday, in a rather sudden way. the past couple days when i woke up, intimations of impending cold and attributed scratchy throat drymouth to closed doors and central heat, never believing that i could succumb to actual flu. that said, i got up at about 6am yesterday to drive my neighbor to the airport and was soothed in my fears by warm, nourishing shower. got her there well in time and came home to nap for another hour or so before work. i ended up calling in sick with a stabbing pain in my throat and a headache. napped the entire day. cranky. today i felt well enough to go in to work an hour and a half late and work through the day, in large part in a groggy stupor. at times, however, i managed to be sparkling exemplary salesgirl - quick at the register and terribly useful. i soothed one woman's holiday woes: listened to her tired babbling, helped her find everything on her list, wrapped three presents for her, and shooed her out of the store for a relaxing coffee while i worked on her things. she tipped me $4, but for every customer who is so grateful to me for brilliant service and beautiful wrapping job, there are another...oh, all the rest of them, who tell me i did a lovely job - much better than they could ever do - really, lovely, and just leave. i must have wrapped close to fifty packages, some quite large and tricky, and i have gotten two tips. one was the intensely harried woman who i relieved of holiday duties, the other was a pair of twelve-year-olds. the kids i thought were lovely (really). came in to buy presents for their parents, looked around for something suitable and left, no wrapping. came back a few minutes later, apologised, and said "this is really more cumbersome that i thought; i couldn't possibly get it into the house without mom seeing. would you mind wrapping it for me?" i thought that was a pretty impressive display of vocabulary for a twelve-year-old and i told him. wrapped their presents, and when i finished, they slipped me two bucks. i thought that was terribly classy of them to tip - in (wealthy neighborhood), you would expect more of the rich wasps...and a(not as)ps, and ips, and any other possible combination of other letters for that matter...to tip the service. nope.

today was rather trying, though. i hate being sick in public, running back and forth from work to the bathroom where i could discretely blow my nose on a square of toilet paper. a running nose makes me feel so disgusting, like some giant slobbering beast, leaving a trail of slime behind me, some horrific mutant slug-girl. having to blow my nose of toilet paper makes it even worse - being forced to use ass-wiping paper on my nose because my condition is too appalling for the proper product to be supplied - shameful and pathetic. i tend a bit toward the unintentional self-pity when i'm ill. even more unpleasant than runny nose is taking a shit while you're dripping snot. i hate it when multiple orifices team up to ooze in unison. shitting while on your period, sneezing so hard you fart, coughing while peeing, they're all in their own ways so unpleasant you just want to bury yourself in wet soil and decay. the day i fart while throwing up is the day i kill myself. why all the bodily fluid talk? well, i've begun reading fear and loathing in las vegas, and while that uses much cleaner language (pun intended) than naked lunch the short, direct style is a bit inspiring. hell, it makes drugs sound fun! i began reading that this morning and now norman mailer is starting up at me from the back of a book jacket in an attitude of intense shame and disappointment. i began reading him a couple of nights ago, but the book is just so bulky and cumbersome, i can't really lug it around the hose with me the same way i could a light paperback. that, and i tried to go to the library to pick up the sequel to the shit novel i already finished. i'm sorry norman, really. i'm so ashamed. but, as it seems that the library will never be open again, i might actually get around to him. yay!

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