There were many plausible explanations for why water was seeping through my basement ceiling … none of them good. It was if my beloved can lights were crying — and so was I for that matter. Because the cruel defect causing this shitstorm would certainly not be an easy fix. Nor a cheap one. It never is. Nor was it in this instance, when it was determined that our master shower was improperly installed and blah blah blah it’s been slowly & quietly flooding the innards of our house for quite some time. (HOORAY for hidden toxic mold!!! Take THAT, my family’s respiratory systems!!!)
Fast forward to this morning — Day 3,48something of Operation Master Bathroom Remodel & Mold Removal. Or so it feels. I honestly don’t know when it began. Such is the mind-bending scope of the project, which is better described as endlessness wrapped in disarray wrapped in a billion sq. ft. of Visqueen. Stupid, miserable Visqueen — it succeeds in keeping like six grains of dust from escaping any given room … and yet takes the agility of a cobra to contort your way through it without incident. I have the agility of a wood stove, you see, and thus “incidents” abound & my blood pressure red-lines AND GODDAMNIT I HATE VISQUEEN!!
Indeed, tensions in my home are running high right now. Patience is not. The whole ordeal has taken its toll, and our already tight quarters have become significantly more so. We’ve been more-or-less confined to our living room, caged & doomed to an eternity of playing “Zingo!” for cash while snapping at each other sharply. Sometimes the power is cut, other times the water. Sometimes both. Sometimes it’s 300 degrees & when the TV works, my daughter insists on watching “Yo Gabba Gabba,” which is about on par w/ shoving low-grade LSD down your eye-sockets. Everything’s gone sideways in our house, and frustratingly, nothing is ever where it’s supposed to be. Everyone is irritable.
It’s not that we’ve spent too much time together, except that’s precisely what it is. We’ve run out of things to talk civilly about, and even uncivilly as well. A tense boredom hangs in the air like a thick cloud of drywall dust, which — ironically — also hangs in the air. Uneasiness abounds. Even the most innocuous of the mundane can spark a full-blown turf war of sorts; because why not? What else is there to do?
ME: Where’s my toothbrush?
WIFE: Look in the sock drawer!!
ME: DAMN YOU, WOMAN!!
And off we go, right into a heated 40-minute discussion regarding ACCEPTABLE & UNACCEPTABLE TOOTHBRUSH LOCALES that goes on for 40-minutes longer than it ever feasibly should. It is beyond dumb.
And if that sounds painfully similar to this whole ZOMG I HATE THE NEW INDYCAR CHAMPIONSHIP TROPHY! kerfuffle, well it should. Because it is. It’s the dumbest of Dumb Debates, and I’m as guilty as anyone for fanning its flames. Simply put, it was brought on by boredom & tension & because why not? What else is there to talk about? There’s a palpable uneasiness in IndyCar right now, mainly because the last race we remember was three fiscal quarters ago — and all the custom-made surfboards in the world & IZOD Girl’s rack won’t change that. We’re restless & bored and our focus is all queered up. That is no way to live. F–k this noise.
[peels back six layers of Visqueen to find some straight-up PERSPECTIVE]
You know what? It’s a trophy, you guys. And a rather cool one at that, frankly. If only because it’s interesting. But whatever. It could be a bronzed minotaur buying a hooker for all we care. It hardly matters. It doesn’t matter. Not in the grand scope of things.
Because in the grand scope of things, we’re down to our last 200 laps of the year. That’s it. That’s all we have. And by God, it’s time we started focusing on that. It won’t be long, after all, before the IndyCar season parachutes into that Vast Desert of Nothingness otherwise known as the off-season. It won’t be long before we’re begging for St. Pete to get here, but feeling as though it’s still some 48 lightyears away.
There are worse things than a mildly anticipated race. Like having no race at all.
Similarly, it won’t be long before my kids would rather jump head-first into a grease fire than play “Zingo!” with their parents. It won’t be long before my son will be holed up in his room playing “Halo 12″ or whatever as my daughter bitches about other girls & hates on her mom & does whatever else it is teenage girls do, which — if memory serves — can be quite unpleasant.
No, there are far worse things than being cooped up with my wife & two toddlers in remarkably close & dusty quarters. Like, for instance, NOT being cooped up with them at all.
Word. I’m out.
[exits through Visqueen-covered doorway ... trips & falls & almost suffocates self]