Quiet Mind

“Do you think the neighbors hate us?”

“Never thought about it.”

“Okay, well, now that you have, do you think they do?”

I still haven’t thought about it, but I shrug. “I suppose they might. Why?”

“We’re always walking around up here, loud, late at night. I bet they hate us.”

“They might.”

I put my coat down and sweep my dog up into my arms as I collapse onto the couch. The television stares back at me, empty, full of possibility: Hulu, Netflix, HBO. I can’t focus on that. I can’t lose myself in that.

“Oh my God, I’m so tired.”

I am too, but I don’t say it. “So take a nap.”

“I don’t want to take a nap.”

There’s an ache in my chest. Little pin pricks in my head. My palms are sweating as my dog takes to licking my face.

I’ve gotta make a therapy appointment…will the psych cut my sleeping pills off…she’s always bitching about how many pills I’m on. She has no idea what it’s like. If she knew, she wouldn’t hassle me.

“Babe.”

“Yes?”

“I need coffee.”

“Okay.”

That sonofabitch that cut me off earlier…I should have given him the finger…should have honked longer…why did I pussy out? Should have shown him what’s up. Man, I sure hope I don’t have to see that jack ass from the third floor when I take the dog out. Tired of hearing about the election. I’m going to lose it.

“Please, get me coffee.”

“Yeah, sure.”

Wonder if I’ll sleep tonight. I need to write…people are waiting on the next book…I’m going to lose them. I need to check reviews. Google my name. Check the blogs. Read too…been slacking.

“Want to watch a movie after you get back?”

I sigh. “I mean…we can…”

…I need to walk too…or get a run in. Yeah, get a run in. Do some weights. I miss lifting heavy. What did muscle and fitness say about mixing cardio and free weights? Two cardio days and three weight training days? No…it was the other way around.

“Babe, hello, did you hear me?”

I shake my head. “No, sorry. What were you saying?”

She looks at me, confused. “What are you thinking about? I can tell you’re thinking something.”

I smile. “Nothing. I’ll go get your coffee.”

  • For David Foster Wallace

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