Bent Words

Bent Words

August 03, 2014

The feeling about the house this morning is like the first day I spent here just over a year ago. Quiet. It rivals growing up on the Lake, back when the water wasnít yet dominated by mini-mansions, jet skis and drunk neighbors who spend all their money on weekend-long second homes, fireworks and family gatherings. And although I miss you guys, I know what I can do with all this time to myself. I can jam things out Ė the laundry, the lawn, the dishes, the cooking, the garbage, the organization Ė without the judgment that comes along with it.

No one is telling me to slow down or relax (phrases which I despise). No one is bothering me for affection and fun when all I see is a giant disaster. A sticky table from pancakes with syrup, dishes not cleaned or put away, a lawn thatís past its neighborís equal, sticks littering the yard from the trees that were downed two weeks ago, clothing and crumbs lying about the floor and a very mismanaged garage.

You can tell me all day that these things can wait, that theyíll be there tomorrow, so why donít I join in the ďfun.Ē But thatís not my idea of fun. Abandoning bills and leaving the car looking like you live in it and overly bushy bushes and dying grass.

Not to mention camping and the company you keep.

Guys like V who ogle other women in tight shorts instead of ogling their wives whose bodies have been burdened by children and the many tasks it takes to properly care for them. Pointing out what they couldnít have if they were ten years younger and ten times more attractive but commenting on it just the same. S is a judgmental bitch who thinks she knows something about everything and gets pissed off when you point out that she doesnít. You canít ride, honey, not like me. So back off, settle down, relax and take the lesson Iím offering. She is ruthless, cocky, unwilling to bend and slightly insane and therefore doesnít know the meaning of self-deprecation or humility. Not a friend for me. L doesnít like me very much. Beer, booze, trees and jeans give her migraines and her oldest is a little tornado Iíd rather not have to babysit.

I donít need to be around all the crap. In a small space shared by ten other people who have never been the nicest of people to me, telling their stories that go back fifteen years while I babysit my own child and four others.

All I can recall is the fact that the last time we all got together, I got bailed on with the kiddo who surprisingly needed to be nursed, fed, have her diaper changed, entertained and not sit out in the sun all damned day drinking cocktails.

Nope. Not my idea of fun.

My idea would be to have my house properly cared for before spending money on more food, accommodations and booze for a camping trip. Then taking off, just the three of us and maybe one other couple to relax. I get to cook and clean and babysit all day Ė I donít need to relocate to a smaller, much more confined space, to do more of that. So letís hotely this shazz. Because Iím slightly claustrophobic, mostly anti-bugs and donít really feel like mingling with minors.

THIS is my vacation. Having you guys out of the house so I can read, write, clean, cook and sleep without being kicked, snored at or woken up too early. I can listen to the trees rustling in the breeze, eat tomatoes and black olives and artichokes in whatever dish I choose to prepare and I can clean up after myself so that the work doesnít accumulate before me.

I can reminisce over fewer responsibilities and a life lived on two wheels. Where I was queen of my being rather than begging for more time to myself.

Today I have mowed our entire lawn Ė about an acre. I trimmed the outskirts, mostly, but had to beg out of that after my hands went completely numb by the little two-stroke I pretended was a motocross bike (ding te ting ting ting ting!). I have trimmed all the bushes, used the leaf blower to clear out all the debris, watered the lawn, cleaned out and swept the garage, cleaned the oven inside and out, the microwave looks a little less disgusting and Iíve put away the many, many things that have not been put away for a very long time. I have swept and mopped the floors, cleaned the counters and am in the process of washing dishes and dirty clothes. Iíve paid the bills that were all due yesterday (wondering only for a moment how they became so far out of sight).

Still have to clean the bathrooms, put away laundry and cook up some grub but Iím feeling pretty proud of myself. Itís not easy to take care of an entire house, inside and out, all by yourself.

But thatís the beauty of me. I got this. Variable transmission almost got the best of me for pulling in the damned clutch so my arms a bit sore. Havenít met a motor yet that I cannot conquer. Gold Wing motorcycle (almost got the best of me trying to whip a shitty but heyÖ), Honda mower, Toro trimmer and blower, two-stroke whatever. I got this. Just give me a few kicks, pulls or pushes. Twist it up, turn it out and make it hot.

I have to remember that I got this.

This weekendís business trip = dominated. I can bet on the winning horse or hit a boxed trifecta and win if you give me a moment. I can talk Elsinore motorcycles with the king of Meredith Publishing if you hang around a bit. I donít know Poker without my queue card brought down in the fire but I still know how to have fun. Give me your player in Arkansas, your old man from Virginia, your young lady in West Palm. We can chat and come together over anything. Kids and complications, houses and eggplant parmesan, XR50s and XL650s, magazines and money.

I got this.

I want to, I will and I love to learn.

This week is my team leadís last week at Quad after a twenty-year stint. Sheís resigning to take care of her family. Props to her but woes to me on how I can handle all the extra work. I feel like a little kid swirling about in the madness of her parentís divorce. I go through moments of self-absorbed anger, evenings full of fearful tears and days of panic not knowing if I can handle all the stress that will follow this untimely departure.

We just purchased another printing company and that means more titles, more work. I donít know how to perform in all this heat, all this madness but I have to give it a shot and believe that I can conquer whatever extra crap comes my way.

I have to remember that Iím not alone Ė alone as I may feel Ė and that mistakes are bound to happen. But if I can just calm down long enough to make it all hot, this too shall pass.

Written at 7:57 a.m.