Friday, February 17, 2017

Another Fried Day

His brain is mush as he joins the speeding rice burners on the 101 Loop. Pubescent males, in their souped-up Subarus and Evos vie for position on the four-lane expressway, lines zipping past like white bullets. There is no way he can keep up with the furious urbanites, fueled, as they are, with too must testosterone. He, by contrast, is on the other end of the spectrum, now sixty, and wondering what the hell it is he is doing up at this hour, heading toward Tempe and then Tucson after his community organizing course in Scottsdale. It has been a full day. He woke with a headache, twenty-one hours ago, at four-thirty, went down to a cafe to write at six. Then a long day teaching, collecting papers that he will have to grade for the next several days, every spare moment taken. After that there was the program meeting. As usual, he was the one to bitch about prescriptive criteria that the bosses ram down the throats of teachers. When most of his peers were on their way home to meals and the news, he left Tucson to drive a hundred and thirty five miles to Phoenix to sit in a three hour class. Now he was driving home and his brain was slow in processing the speeding stimuli flying at him through the wind screen. You just do some things he said to himself. You just do them because it is what you do. Buck up, he thought. Buck up and take your medicine. The night is short and the traffic fast and indifferent. Somebody will love you. Someday. Maybe. To keep himself awake, he thinks of sex, of a woman's mysterious anatomy. It works. The mind is good for something he thinks. For now, just love yourself enough to believe in something big, irrational, a bit crazy. Tomorrow is the last day of the week, another week in the bag. He has work to do. Papers to grade, meetings to lead and attend. It's what he does.

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