">'); win.document.writeln(''); win.document.writeln(''); }

The Indefinite Article.

Friday, July 02, 2004

Nothing of Importance Happened Today


I woke up several times last night. I looked up from the bed through one sleepy eye and saw a blurry 2:45 suspended in the black room. Again, at 4:35, still hanging there like a nostalgic apparition, refusing to let go of the room he once inhabited. I closed my eyes twice and forgot about it.

The third time the numbers we're clearer and more precise. Carol got to the alarm clock before i did. I sat up just as she came out of the bathroom. She eased back under the sheets, disappearing under their folds as if she'd never escaped them; the toilet quieted, and the house was quiet as a vacuum.

Every morning i have the same thought when i flip on the massive row of bulbs that line the top of my bathroom mirror, "I'm going to rip those lights out..."

the water from my new showerhead is fast and even. I want to imagine that i actually take quicker showers, now that there is no need to remove the handle and run it along my body to wet myself.

I have to shave too. Four days and i look like a mountain man. Four days and i feel as if i could itch the skin right off my neck - i could stare down at my bloody fingernails dirtied with my hair and skin and say, "ahhhh, that feels nice."

I wipe the steam from the mirror and it instantly appears again. I cover my face in a thin cream and shave quickly with no nicks. I used to nick myself all the time. I always came away with a spot of blood or two. Now, maybe my face has toughened, or my hands a little gentler -- either way, shaving seems to also go quicker these days; although, i don't think i could attribute that to my new showerhead.

I iron in a towel. I take great pleasure in this. I really can't remember where this comes from. If i troll through my most recent memories, i have always loved to iron clothes. Is is the smell? (the same sense that keeps me away from potpourri?) Is it the sound? (my mothers old ironing board used to creak early in the morning as she ironed. Now that i'm thinking of it, this thought gives me some odd comfort.)

why has this become so important to me recently? the control knob on my iron broke. now, just like our toaster, i have to unplug it to turn it off, and it only works on one setting: extremely, mind-numbingly hot. I wasn't too concerned, though, for most of my ironing jobs (pants and shirts) this is pretty much the setting i would use (maybe a little cooler). If carol ever asked me to iron a shirt for her, i would probably have to turn it down to accomodate the more delicate fabirc of her clothing, but it has been ages since she's asked me to iron anything of hers.

I caught myself staring at new irons at target on a recent trip and was immediately drawn to a $40 or $50 dollar iron much the same way many people might be drawn to a new imac: it looked so cool.

All chrome with a nice ergonomic handle with an open back. The name? The SHARK. "oh man, i've got to have this iron," i though to myself. I walked away before i spent the $50 i didn't have. I am the luckiest man on earth, my mother bought me a new iron for my housewarming. The iron's name? The SHARK. Karma, ladies and gentlemen, Karma.

As soon as i can manage a trip to my mother's house (she forgot to bring it to the party) i'll be ironing up a storm; my shirts, pants, carol's shirts, carol's pants, the baby's shirts, adolfo's little shorts all ironed to a starchy perfection.

I was expecting a fight this morning, but i think he was distracted with a toy he had searched out and become fascinated with. (It would be smart to think that this is what we should do every morning: just give him a toy and he'll be calm as you place him in his carseat. Smart, but mistaken.) It was a mexican toy. the one with a large wooden cylindar with a hole bored into its center attached to a stick by a string (just long enough to allow it to swing up). The object is to swing it up and over and land the stick into the hole. His object is to just hold it and gently place the cylinder onto the stick.

Adolfo, without a fight, sat calmly in his seat and allowed me to lock him in. He was squarely fixed on his toy. I grabbed his lunch, prodded his mother to hurry and started the car.

Traffic was light, mainly because we left early, 6:55. We got to the school about 6 minutes later and dropped him off without a problem. Traffic on the north loop was smooth until we hit 45, but even that moving, albeit, slower.

I made it to the office right at 7:30. David is out for the remainder of the week, Kelly returns from his vacation (straight into Calendar problems i might add) and i have a day crowded with conferences and Dr. Kumar's powerpoint presenation project.

(was it raining?) maybe it's just the air that's wet. i'm wearing a plain white undershirt. maybe i'm hot stepping out of the car; did i begin to sweat the second i stepped out of the driver's seat? My office is hot too. Is the a/c dead in here. The hallway is cool, so i don't even log in to my computer, i walk down the long hallway with my arms raised slightly so the cool breeze will evaporate my sweat. (maybe it was walking up two flights of stairs..) The main office is even colder; brooke is wearing a small sweater while she stares at her computer screen.

Kelly , my boss, is already in a meeting regarding the conference room meeting calendar, which has already seen some problems during its recent implementation. That won't put him in a good mood coming right back into the race, so to speak.

I chat and leave. (my office really isn't that hot, it was just my walking up the stairs.) My office really is warmer than it usually is, but i sit down and forget about it. I begin to like it. I get sleepy, but distract myself with a run to the file room. I pick films up for Neuro-Oncology conference this afternoon. Dr. Silverman zips past as fast as one can walk with a styrofoam cup of coffee. (coffee sounds good).

Sarah, the girl stationed at the film library front desk, helps me sleepily. She had arrived just minutes earlier. I remember that i'm sleepy too. I am on the fourth floor as quickly as i can get there. Here, in the tan zone is a starbucks kiosk manned by an older black lady, i pour myself a Guatemala Antigua, mix in four packets of sugar and a skim milk to the top, and get my frequent coffee drinkers card punched. (two punches, nine to go -- your twelveth is free)

Back at the office, i page dr. kumar, who comes by to re-visit conference cases. He chooses images, i compile them and put them into powerpoint. Donna sends me Dr. Raney's powerpoint file for Pediatric conference which i mesh with the existing presentation. Pat sends me another case for Neuro conference which Dr. Kumar will hate doing cause he's so busy. This month, the neuro staff (Dr's Kumar and Hunter) will get three additional radiologists. A godsend for them. The two of them have been doing 'head' reading for the entire hospital for the last six months or so. To put it mildly, they've been busy.

And the morning flakes away, leaving me in the hallway again, heading to the SBC conference room, where i will load the Pediatric presentations and have lunch. The conference room is cool. Lunch arrives while i am loading the presentation. I eat and fall asleep as Dr. Raney drones on about rare pediatric heart tumors. Does diana fall asleep at these things? I'm sure she does. Dr. H was asleep once. I've seen various fellows sitting there with their bellies full of salad and their eyes heavy with sleep. How much of this is soaking in? Do they retain the statistics?

Back in the hallway to the office. Dr. Kumar and his breath enter once more. He stays in the foyer to my office and reviews the unusally large load of neuropathology cases that are scheduled for review this afternoon. I burn all the pieces to my afternoon conference to disk and wait.

Next week carol and i share a weeklong vacation. Her nephew, alex (isabelle's 14 yr old son) is flying down this saturday for his own vacation. He'll be staying with us. I'm trying to plan some things that won't totally bore him. I wonder if he likes to paint. Carol and i have fantasies of finishing up the kitchen, painting the hallway, bathrooms, and adolfo's room. I've also got ideas in my head to start a woodworking project -- maybe a small bookshelf.

How much we will actually do remains to be seen. I do love to sleep late, i also really enjoy spending time at the movie theater.

the doctors are filing in. some came early and crunched on cookies and sipped diet cokes. others came late, dipped down to avoid blocking the projector view and quickly finding a seat. discussion begins. cases are presented. questions, almost more questions than answers.

the room always fills up twenty minutes after the conference begins.


Post a Comment

<< Home