Saturday, October 1, 2016

A Blank Voice Mail On The First Of October

Last night was a 6 dollar night with the new harmonica.
This was not like the night that I made 80 dollars after having kicked myself for spending 12 on a new harp.

I wasn't kicking myself, just remembering how I always thanked myself for getting a new harp, regardless of how broke it left me. I just put the 3 dollars in my jar which was all that I had left from the night before and started playing.

I hadn't slept in 24 hours. I was up watching movies until the sun came up, at which point I realized that I had better go to the Quarter and get the new harp and a few other things before I drifted off and then woke up too late to do anything.

Renting The Couch

I woke up this (Saturday) afternoon, after having caught up on sleep.

My body was aching and I had been having strange dreams; which was proof that the macaroni and cheese that I had mixed the rest of the Pinto beans in with and eaten to make a quick meal, has got something in it that isn't good for me. The plugged up ear which had gradually cleared up and gone away about 2 weeks ago was back overnight; and in the opposite ear. Luckily it cleared about an hour after I had woken on a swallow. I suppose if I lived off of macaroni and cheese, and bologna sandwiches on white bread, I would be taking some kind of medication through some doctor to keep my ears clear and probably would be hitting them with some kind of drops 3 times a day...

There was a blank voice mail on my phone.

I was thinking that it was the guy who had expressed an interest in renting my couch; and I also thought that, after hearing my voice "greeting" (which is myself playing the guitar and singing the message) he had been scared off. I guess I need to change the greeting back to "please leave your message after the tone."

I never get to hear my greeting because I never call and wait for myself to answer, and have even forgotten what it was, but, I did it when I was drinking, and a lot of messages that are left have the people laughing as they try to leave them.

What Do I Do Now?

Harold is hungry; it is almost time to go out and play; I have a brand new harp, but it is in the key of A, and I need to at least flip through my Beatles scores to remind myself of what songs I have forgotten that I know in the related keys.

The biggest concern/disappointment has been not hearing back from the couch renter. I guess I was already counting my 20 dollar-per-day-over-the-next-few-days chickens before they had hatched.

The immediate answer to that and 99% of other problems, I have learned, is to get out and take my mind off them by working.

Monday is my eye appointment, and I should emerge from there with clear vision through brand new frames and lenses.

And the food stamp people are making me jump through hoops and are close to cutting me off for 90 days. They told me that I wasn't registered through the "LA Works" website. I went to that website to register, and their records told them that I was already registered.

Then, my "forgot username and password; please send" request hadn't arrived in my mailbox the next day (imagine that; it usually takes only 15 seconds) and so a whole weekend will go by before I can go to the office to straighten it out in person; so I have be up first thing on Monday to do that, so I can make my eye appointment at 2:30 PM.

It is a recipe for disaster; and when I was drinking, that disaster would be almost certaint -waking up hung over, looking at the clock, and realizing that I had missed both the eye appointment and also that my food money is going to be cut off for 90 days- that would call for a drink or three, wouldn't it?


alex carter said...

This is why I'd not bother with food stamps; they make you jump through too many hoops for money you can get in 2-3 good days of panhandling, which is a voluntary donation on the part of each giver and costs the taxpayer less.

Although, it might add an extra level of thrill to get food stamps and then trade them for booze and weed; free booze and weed from the government might make it worth the fact that you're really only "working" for $3 an hour when you get food stamps.

Speaking of movies, I sort of held a "move night" last night here. I watched Saving Private Ryan which was decent, then watched The Thin Red Line which had a few decent scenes and loads of WTF ... "arty" scenes of the Micronesian beaches and jungles and so on ... those were only tolerable to me because I grew up playing around in a lot of places like that and it was fun recognizing the plants. Then I got out some Stolichnaya vodka and watched, or tried to watch, Enemy At The Gate which is just fucking horrible. And as for the vodka, I had 3 shots which amounts to 100ml total, spaced over 2 hours and I had a headache when I got up so yeah, that was not worth repeating again either.

It's actually nice as vodka goes but I'm happy to say my tolerance starts at 0 and ends at 1, and almost all days should be 0. I want to be a nondrinker but not someone who's the "wet blanket" and turns down a shot when some momentous event has happened and someone opens up the 40-year-old whisky.

Daniel McKenna said...

Yeah, I had a "counselor" once in kind of an N.A. situation (it was good for knocking some time off a jail sentence if you signed up for "programs," so I admitted my problem with opiates and knocked like 5 days off of 30) and this counselor had the experience of being a recovered alcoholic himself -shows up clean cut in a shirt and tie and tells the "you might not be able to tell from looking at me now, but I used to live in an abandoned building and pour anti freeze through a loaf of bread to extract the alcohol if I couldn't find any" type of stories- this made him more valuable to us, as he could relate, and he knew where we were at because he had been there before and any other cliches that apply;
Well, after being x amount of time clean and sober and having turned his life around and gotten a job working for the state; one day he made an announcement to us all: He was going to have a drink.
His family was native American and when they held certain rituals (funeral, wedding? I forgot) it was VERY important that the family all share a drink; more important than a peace pipe, I guess...
And so, he said that he had discussed it with his AA sponsor and had put a safety net in place; like a guy from his group to T.A.S.E. him if he reached for a second drink; or to tail him at high speed should he get a crazed look and take off in his Jeep...
Well, I was astounded.
I thought: What a fuckin' idiot! Once he gulps down that peyote laced tequila then he could lose his grip on sobriety and one of us could come across him rummaging around behind the auto parts store one day: "Hey, aren't you Roy Dudley? Didn't you used to be a counselor at the Hampden County House of Correction? What happened to YOU?!?" type of thing.
I guess my point is; I kind of think that taking a shot because of a momentous occasion; and/or because it is 30 year old Scotch which is $239.00 a bottle is something that the AA people would have a cautionary term for, and the church people would also add that the devil will tempt you with older and older whiskey until he gets your soul.
I think I said something to Roy like; "You've got to be shitting me. You're going to jeopardize everything that you have going for you?"
And he said something like: "You don't understand, in my family, to refuse to participate in the ceremonial drink would be a slap in the face to my dead ancestors" or some bullshit out of a guy who has found an excuse to relapse.
No wonder the Native Americans were such push overs; leave a crate of whiskey near their encampment and then attack them 12 hours later LOL

Daniel McKenna said...

my problem with opiates should be in quotations

alex carter said...

I turns out, there's something called the "chipping boundary" or "chipping threshold" and that refers to "chipping", or taking just a little of a drug, which is not enough to get dependent on it again. So that, if I started taking 3 shot every night before going to sleep, it would become a ritual I needed to get to sleep, and I'd quickly develop a physical dependence on it again. But if I had one shot once in a while, and not as a systematic thing, especially not as a systematic thing before going to bed, I'm OK. It has to be something the body doesn't expect - like that rare wedding etc.