Sleep is so overrated I did not sleep well. Let me restate that. I slept like shit. I coughed my brains out all night long, and now my chest hurts. Thought I was having a heart attack, but then remembered all the coughing and realized my ribs hurt because of it. I’ve been pretty congested for a week now, mostly from the cold outside, but also there are germs everywhere. I can’t get on the bus once without hearing ten people sneezing and coughing lately. It was just a matter of time…..So when I finally did sleep, it wasn’t enough. I woke up and realized how freaking cold it was out and that I had to go out there today. Worse yet, I had to take off all the layers of socks, slippers, 2 pairs of pajama pants and tops, and a sweater just to get a shower. (I don’t want to turn on the heat, and it only has been 68-72 in the apartment, which is just not worthy of turning on the heat for me.) And the landlord has the water heater set too low so the water never gets really hot unless it’s 100º outside and you want it cold. A quick shower later, I threw on some thermal pants, then my black pants over them, and a pair of socks, long sleeved purple shirt and began blow drying my hair. I must emphasize, I never blow dry my hair. I just don’t bother. It’s so dry here in this part of Texas, and my hair breaks off so easily, so it just seems better not to. But I knew I had to go out there, pay bills and get some food, and it looked like crap out, so I decided to blow it dry. I must say……I look fabulous! LOL. I haven’t had a “good hair day” in ages. And then I walked outside, where it was sleeting, snowing, and raining all…at..once. Grabbed my umbrella out of my car and headed to the bus. Bundled up like a burrito in my brown coat, pair of gloves, and scarf around my neck, I thought, “hell yeah, I will be warmer this time.” Of course I was hot. And then the bus had the heat blasting. Every time someone got on at a bus stop I breathed a deep satisfying cold breath. I know, you just can’t win. A young couple got on the bus. I thought of my husband. I thought of him always holding my hand on the bus. How he would whisper “I love you” in my ear as we rode. Was not a good day for thinking. Too cold out and I am still really angry. I began to think of the negative things about riding the bus with him. I thought of how he would think he was being gentle, rubbing his thumb on my hand. Then then nail of his thumb becoming painful, digging in to my already dry and sensitive skin, and having to pull away. He usually didn’t get it. Or how he would talk to every freakin person on the bus, asking inappropriate questions and making me uncomfortable. I don’t like to talk on the bus to strangers. I like to look out the window and just relax, knowing I am not having to do the driving. The anger usually would be a bad thing in most social circles, but for me it is helping. Every time I allow myself to think of the “sweet moments” in my marriage, I listen to those voices telling me about all the truths I need to be reminded of. Of course, I wasn’t alone, so it was quite amusing. I conjured up some friends to get me to the bus depot….a long and dreary ride in the cold wet day. I must say, Tony Stark seems to be the loudest voice lately. Bruce is usually quieter, softer (unbelievable since he is also the Hulk). Natasha is the negative, and Cap is the optimist. Hawkeye (Clint) is up there with Stark. Thor is just amusing.
Cap: Why do you freak out every time you see a homeless person wearing an old army jacket? Me: Because…. Tony (Interrupting): Because her husband has an old army jacket he wears constantly, it has holes from where he burned it and he never takes it off. It’s a reminder of him which frankly, is just plain stupid. You can’t think of him every time you see one. Me: But I do. Clint: Hey, give her a break, her heart is still dealing with all this stuff and it hasn’t been easy. He hasn’t even called her. He’s worthless man. Cap: I still don’t understand what the jacket has to do with this? Me: The jacket.. Tony: The jacket is more than just a jacket Cap. He wore it all the time, said he was honoring veterans because he could never get into the army, and he’s proud to be an American. Cap: That’s so nice. I would like him. He’s a patriot. Bruce: He’s a Mexican who became and American and he uses the “I’m a Mexican, it’s my heritage” every time he eats hot sauce or listens to Mexican music. But the rest of the time, “I’m an American” when he wants to feel good about himself and create a false sense of security for Cat. He thinks it’s cool when people come up to him and say “Thank you for serving.” Like he has any idea. He thinks the jacket makes him a bad ass…..but it doesn’t. Cap: So does he still want to be Mexican? Or American? Clint: At this time, our Intel says he has no freakin clue. He’s wishy washy on the whole “who am I” thing. He says he proud to be here, but he’d probably go right back to his roots if he could. Me: He did already. He’s eating beans I’m sure right this minute. ha ha Tony: Good for you. It’s about time you got a spine. He’s an idiot. He doesn’t deserve you. And it has nothing to do with his background, he just doesn’t put you first. Ever. If he did, you wouldn’t be sitting here talking to us in your head. Natasha: Got that right. I would have hung him from a chain in a dark basement a long time ago if he treated me like that. Clint: I would have put an arrow through his eye socket. Cap: Enough of that. She obviously needs us to make her feel better. Beating the guy up won’t help things. Let’s move on. Natasha: I have an idea…..Let’s take a bet how many morons will be wearing tee shirts and shorts today then shall we? Thor: I’ll bet 4. Yes, I believe 4 people will be dressed inappropriately for this weather. Clint: I’ll have to go with 2. And I just saw one of them already. Look at that guy! He has no sleeves! Me: (Giggling) Natasha: Okay but that guy that just got onto the bus, he’s way way overdressed. Does that count? I mean, he has a hat over his head and face, and a scarf over his face, and his jacket pulled up to his face. I mean, how can anyone breathe like that? Tony: Maybe he has an air hose tucked away in there. Is that even a guy? Could go either way…….And no, that doesn’t count. Me: Damn. I have to pee again. Bruce: But you just went at the last place! Me: I have a bladder the size of a thimble I guess…… Thor: I pray the bus driver doth not hit a bump on the way to the bus terminal. <sigh> Me: Me too. Damn, why did he get off the bus? Come on dude, let’s go already. I still have another bus to get on, and now I really really have to peeeeeeee. Tony: Heeeeeeere he comes…….(me, getting happy)…….nope, that’s not him. Sorry. That was a woman…..crossing the street. Bruce: Not nice man. That’s just not cool. (Giggling) Me: I’m glad you all find this humorous. But if we don’t leave soon…….(Bus driver hops on the bus) Everyone sighs relieved. (The bus pulls out, immediately hits a bump in the road. They all gasp..) Me: “OW!” Tony: You do realize you just said that out loud don’t you. I mean, you have to know the boundaries here. You say stuff to us, no one hears you. You speak out loud, everyone around you hears you……you get that? Me: Sorry. Couldn’t help it. (The bus finally pulls into the terminal. I try desperately to get off, but every idiot waiting to get on again is blocking the path to the restrooms.) Me: Damnit! Get the hell out of the way already. Tony: Good. You said it on the inside. Cap: Is that what they mean when they say “use your inside voice?” Natasha: Not exactly. Ok, you’re clear on the right. Go around that moron, go left now. It’s cold out, so you probably have a clear path to the ladies room now. I’m pretty sure the place will be empty on a day like today. (I open the door to the terminal. There are over a hundred people lining walls, sitting in chairs and just generally being in the way. The path to the bathroom is blocked.) Me: UGHH! Shit shit shit! Natasha: To you left. Buzz past ‘freaky’ over there, watch out for the dude’s packages…….whoah girl, you’re almost there. Okay, now left again. Damn old lady, please move your enormous shopping cart or I will hurt you! Made it! Go Go Go! Me: There’s a line. I’m doomed…….. (Finally get my cart leaned against a wall, find a spot for my umbrella, purse, and take off my gloves, nearly losing them in the toilet. Business done……whew.) Natasha: Ok, wash up and let’s get out of here. ( I later find out on the local news that the Greyhound buses were shut down due to the “inclement weather” and all these extra people are having to wait till tomorrow to leave. But this isn’t a Greyhound terminal. It’s Sun Metro. So why they hell are they here? Which is just one point, but also, the 1/30th of an inch of rain/sleet/snow we actually got should not have been a factor in this anyway.) Me: I need a cig. I really need a cig now. (Lighting a cigarette. Two seconds later, the bus pulls in. I put it back away till later……) Me: I will sit back and enjoy this ride. At least this time the bus isn’t crowded. Bruce: Uh oh……Did you see the big black cloud we are driving toward? I believe it’s going to get worse when we get there. Clint: There are cops all over the highway. But they aren’t doing anything. And there’s no cars piled up or anything. Strange place to take a coffee break ya think? Me: I think they are keeping that lane closed for something. There’s been a few accidents already today. People here can’t drive when it’s sunny. And when it rains, they become totally inept. So throw some sleet on the road, and all hell breaks loose. Thor: Your people call this rain? Snow? Sleet? I can do much better. Shall I show them the true nature of nature? Tony: No no, big guy. We don’t want to cause a problem now. Just keep your hammer to yourself. Tony to Me: You’re looking at every white truck that goes by. Why? Do you think it’s him? Hmm? You think your ex is in every one of those trucks, and he’s on his way over to your place while you’re gone? Let’s just think about this for a moment….. He wakes up today, realizes it’s payday, knows that you will be out and away from home, so he purposely plots and plans to go to the house while you’re gone and wreak havoc at your place. You imagine he’s there right now, happy to be there without you giving him the third degree, happy he doesn’t have to confront you, giddy in the fact that he can take whatever he wants and be gone before you get back. Right?! Am I right? Me: Hmm. Clint: Tony….. Tony: No no, wait, I’m not finished. You actually think he can plan that far ahead??? You think he is even thinking about you?? He is probably sitting in his mother’s kitchen, watching tv and trying to remember what pills he’s supposed to take today. Is it the white one? Or is it the gray one? I can’t remember, that was my wife’s job…..to think for me. Is my hair perfect today? The most important thing is that my hair is perfect, and that mom made me something to eat, because I can’t think for myself. I wonder if she washed my socks? Me: Tony……you’re mean. Tony: No, I’m not mean. I’m honest. Usually. Well, right now anyway. Listen, the humor in thinking that he is even considering a plan to come to your house, ransack it, or whatever……..is just ridiculous. He can’t think. He can’t plan. That’s what he had you for. You helped him. You did for him. You loved him, even though he had numerous flaws, you overlooked all of it, and continued to give him the absolute authority to make you cry. He made you cry, Cat. He hurt you. And I’m sorry, but right now, I couldn’t give a shit about him. All I care about is how you feel about you. Do you enjoy pain? I mean, pain’s good sometimes, makes you feel things. Mostly pain, but you get the point. But no one likes the kind of pain you’re in. No one. Ever. And he caused it himself. He swore to you, over and over, ” I will never, ever leave you again. My family will never ever take me away from you again. There is not one part of my heart that doesn’t love you.” Bullshit. You know it, and I know it, and all of them know it. The only things he’s thinking about right now is how to get himself to Hooters without mommy seeing him go. But You don’t care. We don’t care. He is not good enough for you. You have been through enough because of him. You have gotten your finances back on track after years with him begging you for every little stupid thing he wanted. “Let’s go out to eat”, “let’s go buy a new light” , “let’s buy a laptop, but only I can use it to download more crappy music that no one listens to”…….You have your diet back on track. Sort of……we won’t mention all the fudge you ate the other night……..but mainly, you are eating better, what you like and no burritos! Thank God because all the farting in the house was really putting a damper on things…….just saying. You are writing again. That’s something you’ve been waiting patiently to do for the longest time, and look how motivated you are! And look, you sleep better. Well, okay not so much, but at least no one is kicking you in the guts every night now. You can go to bed whenever you want to, you can eat when you want, go out when you want, and you’re free to talk to 6 knuckleheads inside your head whenever you want to. Bruce: Hey! Thor: Why are you thanking me for her flatulence? I had nothing whatsoever to do with it. Tony: Sorry. I’m trying to make a point. Still…… You are spending all of your time wondering who he’s with. What he’s doing. Whether or not he’s talking about you. But guess what. He’s forgotten all the shit he left behind. All the stuff he cares so much about in those boxes. He doesn’t even think about that. And he’s all about stuff. He has to buy more stuff all the time. He can’t have a nickle in his pocket without thinking how he’s going to spend it. And would he spend it on you?? Hell no. Listen, every time you think about some sappy song, some little thing he did you loved, remember all the big things he did that hurt you. Remember he walked out on you. Remember he never called you over the holidays. He never came to return the keys or get his things. He doesn’t care. We care. We love you. And you love you. You don’t have stress from wondering what brilliant scheme he’s come up with this week. Or whether you have to drag yourself to his mother’s house and be super sweet to people who talk about you all the time and make you feel worthless. You’re not worthless. And they’re all nuts. You remember that. Me: And I talk to the Avengers in my head in the bus……yeah, like I’m sane. Clint: Is it helping you? Do you feel any better? Me: Actually….yeah. I do. Clint: That’s all that matters. Maybe some other sad person will read this one day and say, “hey, that’s about me”……you never know. And even if no one ever reads it, you wrote it. And it made you feel better to get it off your chest right? Me: (sniff) Yeah. I feel a lot better. But if we run into him in WalMart, can you please put an arrow in his eye socket anyway Clint? Clint: It would be my genuine pleasure…..Now quit sniffling…..We’re at Walmart. Let’s go see what kind of jackasses are running the registers today! Yeah!
Me: I have to pee again. Pee first, then pay the bills. Then food……eat food.
Bruce: But you didn’t even take the little green pill that makes you pee today.
Tony: Probably the two pots of coffee…..
Clint: May I mention, your hair is fabulous today Cat. The rain/sleet/snow didn’t even mess it up!
Thor: Yes. I agree. It is nearly as beautiful as my own hair.
Clint: Quit being a bitch Thor. Cat’s hair actually looks better than yours.
Me: Thank you Clint. I may have to do this blow drying thing more often.
Loki: I can lend you some of my hair products and give you some tips if you like…..
Thor: Loki, get out of here. There’s no more room.
Loki: I’m filling in for Cat while she pees…..
Natasha: What? How is that even possible?
Loki: Fine, I’ll go. I have to go find my scepter anyway. There are so many……useless people here…that I can make to adore me…….
Clint: Why are you talking so weird?
Loki: Good God. This is what I have to choose from???! These people are totally unacceptable……I doubt most of them could even kneel if they tried to……and what is that strange apparatus that one is in?
Me: That’s an electric scooter. For people who have trouble walking. I had to use one of those once.
Loki: Alright. I am going to have to go elsewhere to find my subjects. These simply won’t do…….see ya.
(Bills are paid. Lines are long. People are stupid. No one moves. The whole freaking doorway/corridor to McDonalds is blocked by useless people who are just standing there with their carts in a daze…….)
Me: Oh my God. I want to punch someone today. This is not cool. Move your asses people, woman starving over here!
Thor: this body requires sustenance. I am hungry in other words.
Tony: Yeah, we got that. I would so love to drop a bomb on these people right now. Please? Can I?
Me: No. You are not allowed. You are here to keep me from losing my mind……remember?
Clint: Too late….
Me: Finally in McDonalds….oh this will be good. Just wait…..you will be shaking my head…
Spanish McDonalds girl: “Hello…….may take jur order?”
Me: “Yes, give me a number two meal.”
Spanish Girl: “You want the mil?”
Me: “Yes. The meal.” (Didn’t I just say that?)
Spanish girl: “You want large?”
Me: “No, small please.”
Spanish girl: “Meeedium?”
Me: (cringing) “No, SMALL.”
Spanish Girl: “We have large an meeedium.”
Me: “Fine, medium then.” (wtf? in my head)
Spanish Girl: ” Can I have jur name?”
Me: ” C-A-T. Cat.”
Spanish girl: “Ju write dat down.”
(ME READY TO RIP THE STUPID GIRL’S HEAD OFF)
Tony: Calm down……I feel thumping. Is that your heart? Damn, okay. You’re pissed off. Got it……CALM DOWN.
Me: (shaking my head….) CAT. C-A-T. How fucking hard is it to spell CAT ???? I even SPELLED IT FOR HER???!!! Every time I come here I deal with this shit! Seriously! What that F—-
Bruce: I feel thumping too. And for once it isn’t me. Cat, I think you’re heart is going to explode. Your blood pressure is going through the roof……Please…..breathe……breathe……slower…….
Spanish Girl: “Jur food Chat”…….
Me: Someone please fire that woman…..throw her in the fryer. Now.
Natasha: Wow……uh. That food sucked…….Can that even qualify as food anymore?
Me: Oh shut the hell up. Do you know how long I have wanted a hamburger.
Bruce: Ohhhhhhh. So that’s what that was……hehe. I thought that was mustard and ketchup between two pancakes of bread. There was a hamburger in there? Wow.
Clint: Uh, Guys, she’s really not in a good mood. Abort mission. We must get out now……
(From that point on, one thing after another irritates the hell out of me….stupid people standing in every aisle with their carts blocking the whole place, staring straight ahead……People blocking the area between the aisle and the registers so you can’t even walk by, every employee is either on a register or blocking an aisle with inventory and only 1 girl actually moved for me. I can’t get to what I need, and what I need is not even on the shelves, and now I’m hot again, so I take off my coat, and go to the meat section, now I’m cold and don’t waste time putting it back on……So far I have only found 2 of the ten items I need…….)
Clint: You know. You have the main stuff. Well sort of. Let’s just go look somewhere else for awhile. You need to cool off. Uh, calm down I mean.
Me: I guess. Won’t matter, the whole store is a pig sty and all the shelves are empty because everyone freaks out when someone says SNOW on the news.
(I peruse the fuzzy socks in an aisle by the jewelry counter.)
Me: Ohh look, aren’t these cute?
Thor: What are these? Didst a feline throweth up a furball?
Me: No, silly. They are fuzzy slipper sox. I love these….But I could see myself sliding all over the floor in them, they don’t have slip resistant dots on the bottom
Natasha: Don’t buy them…
Natasha: Look above the display….
Me: “Foster Grant IronMan.” Sunglasses? But these are socks?
Tony: Buy them. It’s a sign…..from Me.
Me: Pretty funny, but no. I can hold off for now.
Clint: Didn’t you want to see if they got any more DVD’s in? Maybe they have the ones you want and you can pick one up?
Me: I guess. So long as no one else pisses me off……
(So I head to the DVD’s in the back of the store. Just about everything is picked clean. I go up and down every one of the 3 aisles over and over and over again. Nothing strikes my fancy.)
Me: Damn. Nothing…. No Captain America: Winter Soldier. No Thor or Thor: The Dark World. No IronMan3. No Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol……no…….
ME: Oh my god look!!! Look look!!!!
Clint: ‘Jack the giant slayer….’ Yeah so?
ME: No……..keep looking. It’s a double movie! “Jack the giant slayer AND “Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters!!!!”
Clint: Ah… She’s back……look at that smile. (Turns to the others) I did that. ME . Not you, ME. (Smile)
Me: We can go home now. NOW.
(On the way back up the hill to the terminal, the sun is shining, no lie. And I am forgetting that Hooters is there, and it’s cold, but the sun is out. All I can think about is how rude people almost ruined my day. But I prevailed, I have my movie. And I am victorious.)
Man: “Excuse me”. (Wait a minute, he’s Spanish and he’s speaking to me in English?? That’s a new one. Oh Crap, please tell me he’s not going to ask me for money)
Me: “Yes Sir?”
Man: ” Would you happen to know of any buffets here? I mean, I think there is China Buffet, but any others?”
Me: “Well, there’s 2 actually, one is China Buffet, and the other is Hong Kong Buffet. But they are way over there, a few miles apart. They are the only buffet here, in this area.”
Man: “Okay, Thank you so much.”
Me: “You’re welcome….” Shit, I still can’t believe he didn’t talk to me in Spanish. Everyone always does.
(Still feeling wonderful, I hop on the bus, which is already waiting for me, and is, unusually quiet and empty. On the way back to the house we chat again about how nice it was to find a movie I wanted…….and to my surprise, all of my husband’s things are still here, waiting. He never showed up at all to get them, nothing was taken. Tony was right.)