No, truly. I have caught a bad cold. My boss, Ken, had one last week and he thinks he got it from our friend David (who has been around a lot, helping with the Klotz job) and Ken thinks, further, that he gave it to me. I don't know. I think I got it by working myself into the ground, not sleeping enough and not wearing a muffler when I go out walking. But I can't bear all the clothing one has to wear in the winter time. It's one of the things I hate about winter--aside from the deplorable, hateful, cold and wind; the wearing of so much clothing, to keep you from getting cold, that you cannot feel anything. Your hands get so cold, even inside your gloves, that you cannot feel that when you pulled your hand out of your pocket to get your subway Metrocard, you dropped a twenty on the floor. You are so bundled up that you are like Randy in A CHRISTMAS STORY and cannot move. I don't like it. I do, though, like New York; so I put up with it. I just bundle up as best I can before it is too much.
So now I have a cold.
Pat is filling me with medicines and homeopathic remedies and all that stuff. Fresh squeezed lemon juice, acidophylus, garlic, goldenseal, echinacea, zycam, emergenC, Cold-Eaze, Airborne... All of it. It's nice to have someone to look after you when you are ill. Because I am the biggest baby when I am sick. It is my experience that most men are big babies when confronted with illness. My boss won't let me come to work. I accused him of being scared of catching it. His reply: I had it. You got it from me. I want you to stay in bed and get better. It's funny. It's like having two boyfriends, like running two houses. I get up in the morning and do my housework and office work, then I walk down the block and do Ken's housework and office work. And he and Pat are both devoted to me. It's nice. One needs to be reminded that people care about them. So, while I am sick with this awful cold, I have a lot of time to reflect on having such wonderful people around me to say that they love me.
I've been lying around and sleeping and pissing and moaning about being sick. I pout. When I am not (actively) sleeping, though, I watch whatever I can find on tv. I don't want to get on the phone with anyone (cranky does not look good on me, even over the phone) and I don't want to focus on reading. When I try to work, it is too much for me. So television it is. I watched GREY'S ANATOMY and BROTHERS AND SISTERS (two of my favourite shows) and I watch movies (caught THE WAY WE WERE on TCM) and I see people caring for each other and loving one another. It moves me so that I wrote a piece about the cruelty we heap on each other (it's on my MySpace blog). I'm amazed that I have let myself become a (at times) bitter and angry, sad and depressed person but that there is still this core of optimism, this little bit of sunshine that lives at the center of my being that is still moved by the predictable emotions exhibited on a nighttime tv show or an old soap opera (because let's face it: THE WAY WE WERE is a soap opera that, because of the artists who executed it, is revered as art). I guess I haven't been dragged into the dark side quite as much as I had thought (speaking of which, have you all noticed how STAR WARS and all of its pre and sequels have been on cable ALL THE TIME lately? THAT'S heavenly). I suppose that the roller coaster of life that I have been riding may have taken me into a depressed state in recent years but the mere fact of optimism living inside of me and seeping out at opportune (or even inopportune) moments is something about which I should be happy.
My friend Jimmy has become the person I wanted to be and was on my way to being. He is completely healthy. He rises at five and works out, he eats a completely healthy diet, he has daily spiritual rituals that he practices. He is poised for enlightenment, for success in his life and his work. I got derailed. I know when. I know why. Now I just need to get re railed. Jimmy will serve as a great role model for me. Thank heaven I have people like Jimmy and Pat and oh, so many other loved ones to be my role models when I need one.
I began to cry last night and told Pat that I needed guidance, that I need a Socrates (that is Dan's teacher in the novel and subsequent film version of THE WAY OF THE PEACEFUL WARRIOR). His reply? "life is your teacher and the journey is the lesson."
Thank God I have these people, these journeys, these lessons. Without them, I would be nothing, I would have nothing. What is the point of being alive if you aren't going to learn something, at least every week?
This week I learned: wear a g-d muffler when you go out in the cold. And get some sleep, for pity's sake.