The Unbearable Banishment: Wave after wave

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Wave after wave

More bad news on my doorstep. My God, it’s relentless. Doesn’t it ever fucking stop? Bukowski has a great poem about how it’s not an atom bomb or cancer that kills a man; it’s the accumulation of small indignities that finally does him in. Nietzsche speaks of the death of a thousand pinpricks. Years ago, I came across this quote from Chekhov and saved it:

Any idiot can face a crisis. It is this day-to-day living that wears you out.

I received yet another humiliating kick in the crotch yesterday. Mrs. Wife and The Daughters are away for the weekend so I came home to an empty house. I spent the vast majority of my life living alone by choice. I got married very late in life, not because of a lack of opportunities, but because I was reluctant to surrender my beloved solitude. I am still pretty much a loner—I have few friends—and try to spend some time in seclusion. But on this particular night, walking into a dark house with only my thoughts for company felt threatening.

Before going to bed I took the recyclables out to the garage. I opened the door and stepped into the pitch black. My mind played tricks on me. I imagined a badger or trapped dog leaping out of the darkness. I hurriedly walked to the corner of the garage, threw away the bottles and slammed the door shut behind me.

I went upstairs to meditate. Do you know what? Sometimes, meditating is a big waste of time. Sometimes, it’s counterproductive. Sometimes, it draws you in deeper to the very thing that you’re trying to spirit away from. I lay in bed and starred at the ceiling, certain that I’d never fall asleep. But I did.

* * *

I woke up this morning and contrary to my expectations, the sun came up. I went out for a run. It was early and nobody was stirring. Bono sang:

Lights go down it's dark
The jungle is your head

Can't rule your heart


I powered up my laptop. I received a kind word from a friend. Is this how it’s going to be? Okay, then. Scramble two.

10 Comments:

OpenID daisyfae said...

"It was previously a question of finding out whether or not life had to have a meaning to be lived. It has now become clear, on the contrary, that it will be lived all the better if it has no meaning." Albert Camus

it IS a slog. your li'l critters, however, provide the foundation. onwards...

October 3, 2009 at 11:03 PM  
Blogger ~E said...

Things always look better in the daylight. Glad you pulled thru.

October 4, 2009 at 5:06 AM  
Blogger Please Don't Eat With Your Mouth Open said...

I hear you on the wave after wave of bad news. Can I just have one year without something shit happening? Please? Plleeeease? C'est la vie.

October 4, 2009 at 7:56 AM  
Blogger savannah said...

the sun did come up and they will be coming home and next time, turn the light on in the garage! ;~D

unlike you, i married very young and had 4 children before i was 29, so, a bit of solitude would be divine! did i mention that my MIL lives with us now? *sigh*

October 4, 2009 at 8:36 AM  
OpenID hereinfranklin said...

I sometimes enjoy the evenings when Husband is away and, dare I say, look forward to them. A night here and there is fine. It's the 3 week jaunts to China that wear on me, especially if they coincide with holidays. Funny how the Chinese celebrate neither Thanksgiving nor Easter. For the record, the Mexicans don't celebrate Labor Day, either.

October 4, 2009 at 6:49 PM  
Blogger Sid said...

"Any idiot can face a crisis. It is this day-to-day living that wears you out."
Er ... what??? I still have my whole fucking life to look forward too. I'd like to think that things will get better. That there will be more adventures.

October 5, 2009 at 4:30 AM  
Blogger The Unbearable Banishment said...

Daisy: Thanks for the Camus. That's perfect. He's in good company with those other guys I mentioned.

E: God forbid the day we don't pull through.

Jo: One YEAR!? That's a lot to ask for. I'll settle for 30 days.

Savannah: You don't know how funny you are. We JUST had a light installed in the garage. It's so new that I'm not aware of it yet.

HIF: Well, the good news is that you're tagging along to Japan. That counts for plenty!

Sid: There are plenty of adventures. My literary friends and I are referring to the time spent between the adventures.

October 5, 2009 at 7:12 AM  
OpenID tomeoftheunknownblogger said...

I'm reading "backwards", so I'm unsure of what the other "waves" are.

Me, personally, if left to my own devices? I'd become a hermit. Having others around to look out for keeps me engaged in the world. Otherwise, I'd simply "fort up" and became that crazy old coot down the block.

October 6, 2009 at 9:29 PM  
Blogger A Free Man said...

I think life likes to kick our ass from time to time so that we get a bit of gratitude when it isn't.

October 7, 2009 at 2:02 AM  
Blogger Blues said...

I love this post and the quotes. I'm feeling it right now myself. I've been house hunting for four years now and every time i think I'm going to get something, I feel like a little rat scrambling after a piece of cheese that's being snapped out of my reach and I just don't know how much more I can take. Now that my husband's work is drying up we can afford something much worse than before. On the other hand, I have to be grateful for the fact that we didn't end up finding something before, because we'd be packing our bags to move out and find something cheaper. SO sick of this shit.

October 17, 2009 at 11:38 AM  

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