Sunday, 24 February 2013

Common Problems

“So now I'm kind of wondering where all this will go next. It's like I've been through some big event, like a festival, a big show or a huge banquet; I'm stuffed and tired, a little over stimulated and I'm thinking I am satisfied. Satisfied is an odd kind of word, I know what it should mean but I feel I'm just stretching it a little to cover the application here. I suppose I'm satisfied but I know fine well that there is always going to be something else, pushing it's way in just to steal that feeling. Unexpected, maybe a bit unwelcome, jostling with other things and struggling for impact and success and starting the whole thing of again. Perhaps I'm played out, perhaps it's steak and eggs and heavy duty protein drinks and build up time. Glasses of milky stout and beetroot and wholesome stuffing and ruthless exercising, is that what you do? Still part of me wants to lie back and just float, float in a sunny careless haze, down streams of low expectations, anonymity, invisibility, following tiny shadows in the sun. Here today and drifted another hundred yards tomorrow. Catch me if you can? You certainly will because I'll be going nowhere and there you go, you've caught me.”

Sheila slapped my face. I almost fell from the porch bench, I was aware of the warm timber and flies and bees and insect noises, I stopped the procrastination. “I'm fed up with your self searching bullshit, get a job, get some money, sort yourself out. You last job's done, ok, maybe it was satisfying but that's all history. Go and start something new.”

The playful slap hurt, the words were all I expected, in this business the jobs come, the jobs go and whatever money there is just disappears in some spiral event that usual centres around the things that Sheila wants to do. I reached down and clicked open a beer and smiled at her. She was staring away into the distance, avoiding my eyes and doing her passive aggressive thing, trying to turn me back around.

“You know Sheila, you're damn well right, I'm going to finish this cold beer and head right out and see what the opportunities are downtown.” She laughed and slapped me again, a little beer spilled and we play wrestled on the bench. We were both giggling and tickling and then we stopped and just lay still and held each other close saying nothing. Over in the field I heard a big diesel engine running, in the trees crows were angry at something and the insects stayed busy avoiding being eaten. Sheila was hot and sticky in her work jeans and cheesecloth. Her breathing was low and pretty and I liked that. I settled to stay still and she did too, on the warm bench. So I just stared up into the afternoon sun and dreamt away a little more. I still wasn't feeling satisfied, I wasn't feeling anything I could describe. Maybe that's the trouble with my trouble, my chronic common trouble, I just don't have the right words to describe it but still I know it's really there.

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