September–October 2010

September

Wednesday, September 1st–I had to get up early today–well, in the late morning–to prepare for the washer/dryer repairmen, who were due to arrive between 1 and 4pm. I think they got here around 2 or 3. They replaced both machines, which I’ve had since I moved here six years ago. I managed to clean the lint out of the wall myself, since the exhaust tube was rather short. I called the apartment office to cancel the work order and tell them that the rental company said lint-filled walls were a fire hazard and should be cleaned every six months, but they weren’t interested.

I had hoped to go back to bed, but got distracted. Later I spoke online at length with my old friend Jim, with whom I recently reconnected, and watched “Get Carter,” with Michael Caine.

Thursday, September 2nd–My allergies were awful today. I got up for a few hours in the afternoon, got bored, read, and went back to bed.

Friday, September 3rd–I slept late, went to the dollar store and Schlotzsky’s, walked Belle several times, and read, chiefly in a book on how to work from home. Thus far the book hasn’t been very helpful. I wasn’t really up for doing anything else.

Saturday, September 4th–I slept, read, and watched “Suddenly, Last Summer.”

Sunday, September 5th–As of today, I’ve been unemployed a month.

Monday, September 6th–I watched “Roman Holiday,” which is about as close to perfect as a movie can get.

Tuesday, September 7th–There were heavy rains most all day today, so I canceled my therapy session and slept in. I spent most of the evening reading Eastern religious materials.

During the evening I had a huge computer crisis. I was on a favorite Facebook page and saw a link to a news story about the steepest streets in the world. When I clicked on it the story appeared, but then a pop-up appeared in front of it, saying that in order to insure that I was a human being and not a bot I should play one of three offered games. Well, I didn’t want to play any games. There were three buttons for games and a fourth, which didn’t seem to be an escape or exit button. I pushed it, and entered a world of shit.

My desktop and screen saver went black and I got a security warning. The warning claimed to be from Microsoft, but had a name I’d never heard of, and a logo I didn’t recognize, and I know a lot of spam programs like to masquerade as legit software. It said I had acquired a Trojan Horse and suggested I run a security scan. I ran some of my own security software programs, but they didn’t help.

This “Microsoft” service then presented me with a screen of about three dozen types of security software, a few of which I was familiar with. I pressed “scan” and all three dozen ran at once. Most said my computer was clean, but five unfamiliar ones said I had a Trojan Horse and suggested I install their software for free to clean it up.

I sensed I was being taken, but I wanted a second opinion. But James, naturally, wasn’t answering his goddamn phone for whatever esoteric and squirrely reason.  So I ran a full-scale scan with my anti-malware software, and this lasted for over three hours. When it was over it showed no signs of infection, but my computer was still disabled.

I forget how I found the number for Tech Support, but soon I was on the phone to India. And they walked me through the steps of how to basically reset the computer to how it was a few hours before the attack, and that did the trick. I immediately went to that Facebook page and in the comment box under that deceptive posting I remarked that the link led to a nasty Trojan Horse. Within a few hours that posting, the link, and my comment had completely been removed from the page.

Wednesday, September 8th–There was more rain today. Belle scared the hell out of me this evening by actually running out of the front door as I was leaving. She got halfway across the bridge. I ran after her, calling her name, and she stopped long enough for me to grab her collar and lead her back inside. Well, I’d been told in January she was an “escape artist,” but this was he first time she ever tried that in front of me.

I had a business meeting with my friend David, and he took me by the grocery store.

Thursday, September 9th–I slid even deeper into depression and despair. My depression came upon me almost like a headache. The pressure inside my head was awful. I went back to bed and slept it off, almost as if it was a hangover. Then I spent most of the night mucking about with my photos on my disks, Picasa, and Facebook page.

Friday, September 10th–I left the apartment this evening to buy Belle some food and grab a quick dinner for myself. Then I fell into what is becoming my habit–about six hours of sitting on my bed, reading, and wishing I was dead.

Saturday, September 11th–

Sunday, September 12th–

Monday, September 13th–Before going to bed I read of another scumbag rogue cop going nuts. This time it was Officer Scott Fike in Washington, DC, who brutally abused, threw around, and murdered a pit bull at a street festival. I hope to fucking God the same thing happens to him.

This reminded me how much I hate cops. Now I do have some friends who are cops, but overall I regard cops as reckless, power-mad filth. Cops can get away with anything, and always have the backing of their fellow officers and the good old boy network to cover for them.

Tuesday, September 14th–I’ve come to dread going to therapy. I don’t like getting up early or commuting over three hours round trip from far Northwest Austin out into East Austin and back. But the session went okay. Not that I was able to pay for it. Afterward I spent about the last bits of money I had at HEB for next week’s groceries. After that is anyone’s guess.

After I got home I showered and took a nap. I got up and puttered around awhile, but was bored and tired and went back to bed.

There was a bomb threat today at the Eiffel Tower, coincidentally the same day that France banned the public wearing of the burkha. Big surprise there. I’m getting really fucking tired of how we as people of the world have to constantly walk on eggshells lest we piss the radical Muslims off. It’s like dealing with spoiled, undisciplined children: “Give me my way all the time or else I’ll blow up your monuments and kill your people!”

The blame goes two ways. First, conservative Muslims have no business moving into Western cultures, refusing to assimilate, and then getting angry when those cultures don’t accommodate their beliefs and customs. I saw a posting where some jackass was equating not wearing the burkha with public nudity. Well, if you feel that way, go back to a country where that’s the custom. It’s not the custom in the West.

Second, the Europeans are at fault for letting these people flood into and remain in their countries and for giving them more and more ground. Europeans are even more enamored of the insidious philosophy of political correctness than Americans are, and it is to their detriment. It’s dangerous when your fear of offending others trumps your survival instincts.

It’s a shame the more liberal and modern streams of Islam aren’t more popular, especially those which rely only on the Qur’an and mostly reject the backwards and outdated hadiths of Muhammad, as well as the virtual worship of Muhammad and every little thing he ever did or said. Sure, Muslims claim they don’t worship Muhammad, but the obsessive-compulsive practices conservative Muslims follow amount to worship.

It’s also a shame the more liberal and moderate Muslims don’t do more to take their religion back from the nut cases. Occasionally I hear quiet, mild mentions about “inter-faith dialogue” and such-like, but it doesn’t amount to much. Maybe the moderates still are reticent about opposing crazy clerics, and feel it sacrilegious. Maybe they still privately hold to one or two outdated customs themselves and are afraid to admit it.

And why are conservative Muslims so angry all the goddamn time? Is it because they live in hot, shitty, backward countries? Is it because they ascribe to a religion/philosophy/lifestyle that is counter-reality and counter human nature and about one thousand years behind the times? Is it because when you live in such an environment and have nothing to hope for and your manipulative clergy have no way to offer you a more pleasant life on earth, that anger, violence, repression, and intolerance seems an attractive option?

Wednesday, September 15th–I spent much of the day in a near-suicidal depression. I say “near” because at one point I actually started a list of what I’d have to do if I ever killed myself. (Find a new home for Belle, leave letters for certain people, make sure I had plenty of intact plastic bags with which to suffocate myself, etc.) Though I thrilled at some of the wording I was thinking about using in my notes, actually putting it down on paper was a little chilling.

I got a notice that I’d be taken off a little stop-gap job assignment. I was not working fast enough to suit this supervisor either. Oh well, no matter. I found the work frustrating and the pay wasn’t even close to being adequate.

I pissed a friend off today. He has a habit of posting affirmations on his Facebook status bar, and I usually disagree with and poke fun at them. They often seem to insist that everyone is in complete charge of his or her own life and the direction it goes. Well, maybe that’s true for some people, but certainly not for me. I’ve been bossed and pushed and ordered around all my life. I’ve never been in charge of my own life–just forced to live with the consequences of other peoples’s demands and orders.

I got a notice–with, as usual–less than 24 hours to prepare, that the goddamn apartment maintenance men and some bozo from an energy company would be barging unwelcome and unwanted into the privacy of my apartment, to check the energy efficiency of my vents. I don’t like people in my apartment, especially clumsy, ignorant workmen who knock things over and get underfoot, and I don’t like the fact that the apartment management has been pestering me almost constantly since January with roofing, inspections, ceiling replacement and painting, bridge and stair replacements, and running mowers and leaf blowers every other goddamn day. I just want to be left in peace and quiet.

My apartment complex was having a dog walk this evening. As a rule I loathe artificial and enforced socialization, and I have absolutely no interest in meeting any of my neighbors for any reason, but I thought it might be nice for Belle to meet some other dogs. I will do things for my dogs that I would never do for anyone else.

So we headed over to the unused club house, and close to 6:30pm some guy showed up with his dog. He was the organizer. No other dogs showed, so the four of us headed down to the nearby wilderness park. I would’ve preferred to stay around the complex, because it was really hot and the mosquitoes were eating me up. But we proceeded.

Belle seemed only partially okay with the other dog, who was very young and rambunctious. At times the other dog got a little too playful, and Belle hid behind me. I’m sure she would’ve been just as happy to go walk around the complex with it being just me and her. The way it is with me and my dogs, as it is with all great loves, we don’t need any outsiders–our love is sufficient unto itself.

The organizer of this activity worked for a church, and we were joined at the park by a couple that goes to his church, but which didn’t bring a dog. They were nice enough people, I suppose, but I had no interest in getting to know them. I don’t like Middle America at all, and church folk make me uncomfortable. They tend to be unsinkably optimistic, and I have to watch my filthy mouth and be careful not to say that I think Glenn Beck and Sarah Palin are ignorant cocksuckers.

They tried to draw me out on the subject of Austin and I had to confess I’ve been here much longer than I’ve wanted to be and have wanted to get the hell out of here for a decade. I’m sure I came across as fairly pessimistic and negative, try as I might to appear semi-pleasant. But I just can’t hide how miserable I am right now.

We were taken further into the park than I thought we’d go. I was constantly scratching at my legs and wiping at the sweat on my face. We were taken to a part of the park that I didn’t know existed. The group leader wanted to go further, to some waterfall, but Belle looked exhausted and I was really tired of all this and wanted to go home.

The other dog really started to bother Belle on the walk home. We were supposed to gather afterwards for food and drinks inside the clubhouse, but I learned the dogs would have to be kept leashed outside. Well, fuck that. I’m not letting Belle out of my sight. Plus this was a good excuse to get the hell away from this. We went home and Belle drank a lot of water and tried to get cool on the tile floors of the bathroom and kitchen, while I had a shower. We were really tired, and since I had to be ready for that fucking invasion, we went to bed early.

 Thursday, September 16th–The unwanted visitation went pretty quickly and trouble-free. Three workmen with ladders came in around 9:30am after I put Belle on a leash. I explained they couldn’t access one air conditioning vent in the bedroom because their way was blocked by books. They didn’t give me any trouble.

They went to all the other vents, took off the metal grates, slopped white epoxy or something around the inside of the vents to prevent excess air from escaping, replaced the grates and left.

One of the workers talked to me about dogs. I explained how good Belle is and how she isn’t yappy. He said he has one dog that gets on his nerves and is yappy, so he might have her put to sleep. Then I guess he saw the horrified expression on my face. I said, attempting an awkward laugh, “Well, gee, at least put him up for adoption.” He said he’d probably not do anything or leave the matter to his wife, then showed me a photo on his cell phone of a Lab he owns. But then he made the “joke” about getting rid of the yappy dog again.

Later on in the evening James and Nyssa treated me to dinner and pitched me on an idea. They think the time is right for a reality show with a neurotic celebrity and that I’m just the ticket. They suggest a travel show.

Friday, September 17th–I got a series of e-mails this morning chewing me out, which sent me into an even deeper depression than the one I was already in.

James pressed me to write some humorous history article that didn’t interest me. I tried it, then he wrote back a suggested revision that so bored and upset me I didn’t get past the third paragraph, and immediately abandoned the project altogether.

It rained a bit this evening, which stirred up something in the natural world and made my allergies really awful again.

Saturday, September 18th–I would rather eat vomit than watch childbirth. I think if I actually saw something so horrific and disgusting I’d have nightmares the rest of my life.

Another day of severe depression and despair. At least I killed off most of the day being zonked out on allergy medications.

Sunday, September 19th–I wish I could figure out what I want out of my life and what’s realistic for me to try to accomplish. I keep looking for advice and not finding it. Worst of all are my therapists, who always seem to want to change the subject to some topic they’re interested in or which they think applies to me, rather than what I want to talk about.

I watched “The Royal Tenenbaums.”

Monday, September 20th–I went into town, stopping first at the Stitt Library of the Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary. Back in the 1990s I used to have a courtesy borrower’s card here, and had checked out, among other things, some books on library architecture. I looked for these books this evening, in hopes of finding the plans to the Huntington Library. The books were still there, but the plans for the Huntington weren’t in them.

After that, I strolled across the UT campus, feeling very old amongst all the students who were leaving Kinsolving Cafeteria to go study. I tried to find a working Coke vending machine, but the one I found ate my money. I then went to the old Undergraduate Library, which is now some sort of computer center, but had no luck there. Then I just got a Coke and a baked potato at Wendy’s. It cost under $3.00. Though my card was accepted at that time, once I got home I learned the transaction had been disapproved, and I had to transfer money from one account into another to cover it.

The Austin Cinematheque had its first screening of the Fall season at the Texas Union Theatre–“Stolen Kisses”–my favorite Truffaut film. Though the print was very dirty it was great seeing the film on the big screen.

Tuesday, September 21st–I went to therapy and had a pretty intense session. My therapist made an observation about a troubled interpersonal relationship that I found most empowering. I went home and took a long nap, then I watched the extras on “The Royal Tenenbaums” DVD.

Wednesday, September 22nd–I went to the bank and grocery store, then later James and Nyssa came by and took me to dinner at Mandola’s–my first time there. Later on I watched Godard’s “Detective.”

Thursday, September 23rd–My allergies are bad again and I still have no work. My depression is getting much worse.

I don’t have a lot of problems, But the problems I do have are very large ones.

I watched Godard’s “Prenom: Carmen.”

Friday, September 24th–More heavy sleeping and depression.

I took Belle for a late night walk in Phase II of the apartment complex and some punk kid walked around us twice in a big circle. I got the impression he was casing the property for a robbery (there’s a lot of car theft and car break-ins here), and I sensed we were in real danger, so I headed back across the street to our Phase I and got the hell back home.

Later I watched Godard’s “Passion.”

Saturday, September 25th–Belle has been rearing up on my legs a lot lately. sometimes it means she wants to play, and sometimes it means she wants to go outside. I took her out at 2am and as we passed a clump of bushes and trees I could’ve sworn I saw an Asian guy hiding in them, standing up. When I walked past the point I thought he was all the hair on my neck stood up and I got serious goosebumps up my back. It scared the shit out of me. And once we got back home Belle sat at the front window, growling lowly.

I watched Godard’s “Oh, Woe Is Me.”

Sunday, September 26th–Belle rolled in something stinky during our first walk today–something stinky enough that I could smell it through my swollen sinuses. So I gave her her first bath–from me, anyway. She seemed to enjoy the experience, and ran around the house. She’s quite soft and fluffy now.

Later, close to 1am, I heard a god-awful noise coming from outside. One creature was clearly killing another, but I’m not sure who was involved–The neighborhood feral cat? Squirrels? Birds? Opossums? Skunks? Other cats? I ran outside to investigate, but the noise had subsided. Then Belle saw me out there and began barking, and so I had to go back in, because I don’t want the goddamn nosy neighbors bitching to the goddamn front office again about Belle’s barking.

I watched the melodramatic old Technicolor classic “Leave Her To Heaven,” and enjoyed it immensely.

Monday, September 27th–I slept late and opted against going to campus to see Kurosawa’s “High and Low.” At any rate, I got up too late to get there on time and knew by the time I got home it would’ve been close to midnight, and if Belle had started barking when I got back the fucking neighbors would’ve bitched to the goddamn office about it.

As it was, it was good I stayed home, because Belle got sick. We got up around 6pm and I took her for a walk. She had a solid bowel movement, then we went inside and I served her dinner and treats, which she ignored. Instead she vomited yellow froth, which is a common thing for dogs to do.

While I was showering she had an accident indoors–a bowel movement that started solid and turned to diarrhea. She continued to vomit. Later she indicated she wanted out, where she had diarrhea again and ate grass. She ate and vomited grass three times at night, and kept vomiting. She slept very soundly and didn’t seem agitated. I didn’t sleep at all.

Tuesday, September 28th–I’ve been going to therapy for three years as of this month, and so far as I can tell it hasn’t done one damn bit of good.

But as it was I had to cancel therapy at the last minute today. Belle’s condition hadn’t improved during the night. I’d not been able to sleep, so I monitored her. And even though the receptionist said it definitely sounded like I needed to bring Belle in today, apparently it wasn’t so pressing that we were able to get an appointment before 3:15.

While I waited I monitored reports online–since the radio didn’t seem to be carrying any–of a crazed shooter running amuck on the UT campus with an AK-47. But oddly enough, the only person he shot was himself, on the sixth floor of the main library.

At the vet’s they said Belle’s temperature and all seemed fine, but she was getting dehydrated. They gave her a shot for her nausea and pills for nausea and diarrhea. She hasn’t vomited since this morning or had diarrhea since about 2:50pm. She’s very weak and unhappy, but not whining or panting.

We went to bed around fairly early. Belle slept well. I woke at 1:30am and stayed up for an hour.

Wednesday, September 29th–Belle and I actually woke during the morning. She still seemed weak and had little interest in water. I dug around in my junk drawer and found a foot-and-a-half long plastic straw, probably designed to be used with a water bottle of some sort, and put it to work hydrating Belle: I’d suck water up through the straw, put my thumb on the straw’s end to hold the water in place, then dump the water into her mouth.

We lolled around most of the day, with her napping while I watched. Eventually I dozed off too, only to be awakened by James, who had come to take me to dinner. I pretty much dominated the conversation, as his wife Nyssa had wanted my account of my LA trip. Afterwards they ran me by HEB so I could pick up a few items–chiefly for Belle.

I gave Belle an anti-nausea pill and some straws of Pedialyte, then let her nap a few hours. After that I warmed up some canned chicken breasts for her and she gobbled them up.Then I gave her the rest of the chicken in the five ounce can and she ate that too. I was thrilled and happy.

Belle’s illness has taken my mind off my suicidal despair about my fucked-up, pointless life and lack of a job.

Around 4am, Belle went into the living room and kitchen and began knocking around. When I heard unfamiliar sounds I went to investigate. She’d gotten into the garbage and taken the empty can the chicken had come in and an empty plastic tray some chocolate cookies had come in, and dragged them into the living room. I worried for a second she might have gotten some chocolate chips, but if she did, they would’ve been of negligible size. But I took this all to mean she was hungry again, so I gave her another five ounces of chicken.

I want to start slow and get her used to eating again.

Thursday, September 30th–During our first walk this afternoon Belle took her first solid dump since Monday. That’s a good sign!

Tony Curtis is dead. I was a huge fan of his when I was a little kid. His films “The Vikings” and “Houdini” were among the first films I ever saw.

I watched Part I of “Sherlock Holmes and the Leading Lady.”

October

Friday, October 1st–I watched Part II of “Sherlock Holmes and the Leading Lady.”

Saturday, October 2nd–I watched “Boot Camp” and two episodes of “The Equalizer.” I’d forgotten how much I loved that show.

Thanks to the Internet in general and Facebook in specific I’ve looked up several girls I had crushes on in high school, and dear God, they all got ugly! I feel like I dodged a lot of bullets by having no luck with them.

Sunday, October 3rd–I slept as much as possible, then went to the dollar store to get something to nibble on. I didn’t have enough money to really go to the grocery store.

Monday, October 4th–I went to the Cinematheque and watched “Paris vu par” (“Six in Paris”), an interesting collection of shorts directed by Claude Chabrol, Jean Douchet, Jean-Luc Godard, Jean-Daniel Pollet, Eric Rohmer, and Jean Rouch. I got home late and had to retire just as soon as I walked Belle and showered, since I have therapy tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 5th–There are two “F-words” I avoid using, especially in the company of ladies and children, because they are just so offensive. They are “family” and “forgiveness.” Today my therapist became the fourth of his kind to broach the idea of the latter to me, but I fear he’s going to have a tough time trying to sell me on it.

After I got back to my neighborhood, I browsed in Barnes and Noble for the first time in a few weeks, then went to the 360 Primo coffee house to get a drink, only to find it was closed for business, soon to be replaced by a Greek cafe. I had a veggie burger at Elevation Burger instead.

A friend brought by four 3-day passes to the Austin City Limits Music Fest, asking me to sell them for less than face value, and saying I could keep one-third of the profits. He actually had six tickets but for some reason wanted to hold up on giving me the other two.

Wednesday, October 6th–The day was devoted to the selling of tickets. I sold three, then was brought two more. All the rest were then spoken for, but the prospective buyers then dropped out.

Thursday, October 7th–I sold the rest of the tickets today, starting around 7am and finishing about 9pm. I managed to grab a few naps in between all that.

Friday, October 8th–I was exhausted most of the day. I was up for a little while in the day, then went back to bed. I got up later and watched three episodes of “The Equalizer.”

Saturday, October 9th–I watched two episodes of “The Equalizer.”

Sunday, October 10th–I spent the evening scanning old photos and adding them to my Facebook albums.

Monday, October 11th–Since this was a day before therapy, it was short. I slept in, stayed sleepy, and went to bed early.

Tuesday, October 12th–My therapist continues to pursue this tiresome topic of forgiveness, when I’d rather discuss the problem that’s causing me to tear my hair out: how to fix my career and finances, so I can have a present and a future. Perhaps the topic is just not something he knows how to address.

Wednesday, October 13th–First conscious thought upon waking today: It’s not been at all worth it. The good times haven’t come remotely close to outweighing the bad.

Thursday, October 14th–I watched “Wristcutters: A Love Story,” then slept from mid-afternoon until the wee hours of the morning, tormented by a terrible sinus headache.

Friday, October 15th–I felt so terrible, both from allergies and depression, when I woke up this morning, that I took some allergy medicine and went right back to sleep for the day.
………
It annoys the shit out of me when people call a pizza a “pie.”

Saturday, October 16th–I woke up early and considered going to a movie at 12:25pm. I went back to my room and read, then got up and checked the clock and it was 3:24pm. I decided a nap was more in order, so I slept until 1:24am.

Sunday, October 17th–I spent the day puttering around and watched three episodes of “The Equalizer.”…

Monday, October 18th–I woke up early again, dammit. I took Belle for a walk around the neighborhood. It wasn’t even 7am, and yet all the suburban douchebags were already heading off to work. What possible reason could there be for starting to work that goddamn early? Ours is no longer an agrarian society, so why must we continue to adhere to this outdated model of rising and setting by the sun?

Tuesday, October 19th–I mentioned to my therapist that I didn’t especially enjoy the company of people my own age, that I tended to sympathize more with college students, though most would consider someone my age hanging with college students to be creepy.

From this we segued into my telling how I once wanted to be a college professor, but that my family wouldn’t allow it, because they didn’t want to pay for grad school. My income has always been so ridiculously small there was never a chance of my paying for grad school myself.

I added that the fact I couldn’t pass the math portion of the GRE also contributed to my giving the idea up. He said that there are some schools, like St. Edward’s and UT, that allow provisional admission. If you can work hard and score above a certain GPA in a certain number of initial classes, you can get in without the math scores. He suggested I go check it out.

The thing is, I don’t especially want to teach anymore, even at the college level. Is a Master’s or Doctorate worth getting at this point? I turn 47 in two weeks. Is it worth the trouble? What would I do with an advanced degree if I didn’t teach?

Wednesday, October 20th–I worried about the whole grad school thing, and watched two episodes of “The Equalizer.”

Thursday, October 21st–Nothing happened today.

Friday, October 22nd–Today is the anniversary of the day Belle was rescued from a shelter in Ohio, and it’s been traditionally celebrated as her birthday. So I gave her a nice, fancy dinner and lots of belly rubs.

Saturday, October 23rd–I spent most of the night in my room, re-arranging stacks of books and magazines. At one point I was on my bed with a painfully heavy bunch of magazines on my legs and lap, when Belle came into the room, jumped onto the bed, and climbed–all sixty pounds of her–on top of all of that. It was very painful and I eventually got her to move.

Sunday, October 24th–

Monday, October 25th–I got up earlier than usual and went down to St. Edward’s to pick up the graduate school information packet, because I am sure my therapist will ask about it tomorrow. I took some pictures of the campus. I still don’t know if a mere Master’s will do me any good.

I had to ride the repulsive 1M/1L buses today, which usually results in me getting a bad odor on my clothes. There was a homeless women on one of these buses who had Tourette’s Syndrome. One of her outbursts was, “AH YEE! MY BUNIONS! SEX! FUCKIN’ SHIT!”

After I got home I learned the job assignment I’d been counting on for a few weeks will probably not come to pass. Immediately I felt the wind knocked out of me and fell into a deep spiral of despair.

Tuesday, October 26th–Therapy. My therapist continued pushing for me to go to grad school.

I learned I’d not be getting money for rent, groceries, or bills for November.

This is a huge crisis, but by no means uncommon. I cannot lose my home and all my possessions. I cannot become homeless or be parted from Belle. Do I have any friends who would lend me that kind of money? If they turn me down, wouldn’t that pretty much kill the friendship? Could I get a last-minute crew to help me move out after-hours, after the apartment office closes for the day? Would someone lend me the money for boxes, packing tape, and a storage space? And what will happen to my stuff if I still have money troubles months from now and can’t keep paying for storage?

I got even more depressed and contemplated suicide. Would I jump off a building downtown or take a bunch of sedatives and tie a plastic bag over my head?

Wednesday, October 27th–Suicidal depression, panic, and paralysis.

Thursday, October 28th–Suicidal depression, panic, and paralysis.

Friday, October 29th–Suicidal depression, panic, and paralysis.

But I finally found the needed checks in the mail box tonight. I was so relieved I almost cried.

Saturday, October 30th–A “friend” scolded me on Facebook. Not a good time for that.

I had a pass for a free movie, so I went to see Woody Allen’s latest: “You Will Meet A Tall, Dark Stranger.” It was okay, but not one of his better ones. The premise was that life is totally meaningless and people screw their lives up with their follies, but it is the people who have something to believe in, even if those beliefs are totally ridiculous and patently false, who have the best chance at happiness.

Sunday, October 31st–

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