It is raining today! The skies are gloomy and the wind is frigid and I just, like, want to die because I’m going to have to walk all the way to my car if I want to get to yoga.
My life is truly hellish. How can I survive this?
But then, I think of Solzhenitsyn. (You know, the Russian dude who wrote all those long books I always intended to read, but haven’t found the time for, since I am, you know, quite busy.) Like me, he battled icy winds and frostbitten hands when he was imprisoned in Siberia, which is evidently located in a not very desirable part of Russia. He may not have even had a car! Think of that. He probably had to walk everywhere.
Well, that does it. I am inspired and strengthened. If Solzhenitsyn can do it, so can I. We are fellow sufferers in this abysmal vale of tears. (Note to self: Find out whether Colorado ski resort of the same name — Vale — was ever visited by Solzhenitsyn. This would make a good literary tie-in.)
Oh, God! When does it ever quit? Never, that’s when!
Today, I am being tested once again. Yes, you guessed it. I have cedar fever. My nose is red and bulbous, spewing and leaking snot all over my new cashmere sweater (although I’ve now decided I don’t like the sweater and may have to return it first thing tomorrow, if I can find the tags). I sneeze, I cough, I tickle, I am a veritable human cesspool and a fount of misery! (Note to self: Is this mixing metaphors? Remember to call writing coach this afternoon to find out.)
Oh, but I’m not feeling sorry for myself. Au contraire. As usual, I am thinking of others. Frida Kahlo, in this case, who is artistic like me, but not nearly as good-looking. I think she got run over by a bus or something and always kind of walked funny after that. So yes, of course, I identify with Frida Kahlo! Like her, I will take the pain of my relentless allergies and meld it into great art! I will not be taken down by pollen! I will thrive and survive!
So, I was sitting in my Land Cruiser, waiting for little Trevor to come out of day care, and some anorexic named Heather in a pink yoga outfit and a new red Cayenne comes up and pounds on my window and accuses me of cutting in the day care carpool line! She is, like, I am not kidding you, liberal with rage. I try to smooth it all over by telling her I’m in a big hurry since I’m late to pilates and Trevor’s nanny is AWOL (something about her mother dying in Guatemala. I said, “What are you trying to tell me? That you’re not a Mexican?” When she gets back, I’m going to check her green card again).
But Heather was all, I don’t care about your stupid schedule, we all have problems, honey, which made me think this is so what’s wrong with the world. We don’t care about other people’s pain. But I do! Being busted by Heather, just because she had a bad yoga class and can’t keep her shit together, I felt just like Rosa Parks. Remember her? She had to go to the back of the carpool line, too.
I am tired of keeping my journal this week, sick of all the hassles and problems and sorrows of the world. I’m just surrounded by so much negative energy that I am going to have to go to a spa to detox for a few days. I want to be thin and calm and quiet, like Gandhi. Unfortunately, I can’t afford to go to India like him, so will have to settle for the Golden Door. Ciao!
(Copyright 2009 by Ruth Pennebaker)