Change

I’m having the fucking night terrors again. It’s been a few months since the last round subsided, but nocturnal panic attacks are back and better than ever. Sometimes they barely wake me up, which is almost worse than jumping out of bed and flailing. Almost.

When I don’t end up pacing and clawing at my chest, I get up in the morning with the vague suspicion something terrible has happened. Gina inevitably texts later to ask if I’m okay, and that’s when I know it wasn’t just a nightmare.

Perhaps this is why I opened my eyes three minutes before my alarm went off this morning and instinctively grabbed my phone. Might as well beam more horror straight into my undilated pupils before my feet hit the floor.

As Unprecedented Acts of Tyranny go, it’s been a pretty slow day. America’s tallest dam is about to explode, and the current administration has been silent as revenge, I’m certain, for California’s support of the opposition.

On the local beat, Jonesboro’s conservative rag, The Sun, printed an editorial arguing for sidewalks. Local business leaders, from martial arts legend Joey Perry to Captain Kangaroo Court Kent Arnold, agree it’s time for us to step into the twentieth century. I’m glad all the Whos in Whoville have joined hands to sing the praises of infrastructure. If only the Glenn Beckian (pre-election breakdown) Agenda 21 Grinches on the city council would hear our song.

This begs the question: who the fuck voted for these assholes?

As we reflect on the apocalyptic boredom of hurry up and wait, the denizens of Facebook have turned to eating each other. I felt no shortage of angst this morning after I digested the latest missives on the failures of the last election. I rolled out of bed and stumbled into the kitchen to procure legal stimulants. I considered chugging yesterday’s cold dregs straight out of the carafe, but after staring into space for a moment, I acquiesced to my better judgment and reloaded the coffee maker. I took precious time to rattle off some bullshit on my laptop, then I entered the shower to lean against the wall, grit my teeth, and ruminate. (Is that what they’re calling it these days?)

I’m glad I voted for Dr. Jill Ellen Stein in protest so I can avoid the labels of misogynist and fascist and embrace my true category, massive fucking idiot. Going forward, maybe we can all agree to disagree about Bern and the DNC, but something is going to have to give else we’ll end up reelecting Mike Pence and sliding comfortably into President Tom Cotton.

(Don’t get me wrong. You can slide into long, tall, and fascist, with his consent, if you wish, but he’s not my type.)

I’m selling Valentine’s Day cards to ancient men. I’m waiting while widows count out the smallest possible denominations to pay for the pile of clearance they’ve pillaged. “Gotta get rid of some of this change.”

If you say so.

I’m thinking we already got rid of change, or at least the positive type. Hope was generally implied when we’ve bandied change about politically, so maybe we should use a new word for the current situation. “Decline” is one. “Catastrophe” is another. “Death Spiral?” Hell, I hope not, but what’s the first thing I yell when things aren’t going my way? Death spiral it is.

I’ve run out of breaktime. As a retail SwiftKey jockey, this is all I can afford. I’ll proofread on the go, as usual, so assume I know what I’m doing until 24 hours have elapsed. After that, I’m just an idiot (again).

Everyone should sign off this way, with excuses. “I’d have delivered a hard hitting exposé, but my cat is sick.”

Well, all twelve of you (hi, Mom), I got a liberal arts degree and went into the lucrative field of book shifting. You’re welcome.

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