Wearing a robe that could do with doing cartwheels inside a washing machine for an hour, I’m standing in the middle of my kitchen, one foot wearing a slipper. “Huh,” I softly grunt to myself as my eye slips off one foot and onto the other. Will you look at that. There’s my other foot, also wearing a slipper. They match. I feel a sense of accomplishment.
There’s flour on the floor from an abandoned baking project. It turns out you have to add liquids to the bread maker for it to make bread. I mentally beat myself up for days for that one. The burnt flour stares at me in contempt. “Four ingredients,” it sighs. “Four fucking ingredients.” The yeast died in the heat, and I feel bad for it not serving its purpose. Sorry, yeast. It wasn’t your fault.
The cupboard is still open from when I opened it last time. It’s empty. Empty, save for the last remaining bowl. The clean china makes the choice for me. Behind me, another open cabinet door. I see a box of frosted flakes from a camping trip I never went on. Who buys frosted flakes to go camping? Someone who is stops off at a supermarket on a way to the campsite. Someone who meticulously zig-zagged through every aisle, whimpering ‘camping trip’ under their breath. Bled of inspiration, while desiring nothing more than turning the car around and abandoning the trip, because, well, what’s the point.
The bowl translates from the cupboard to a clear square inch or two on the kitchen table. Yogurt — only a few weeks out of date, but it’s yogurt; what is it going to do? Go off? — leaps out of the container and onto the flakes. A quick rinse later, a spoon is clean enough to use, and I’ve teleported to the sofa. Pillow below me. Above me only blanket. On the wall, Netflix is gently asking me if I’m still watching. Yes, Netflix, and I don’t need your attitude. Sorry, Netflix, I didn’t mean to mutter under my breath at you, you’re doing a great job. Please just keep making the hours melt away and sink into the foundations of this building. I’m making a mental note to google if sadness weakens the foundations of houses, and instead end up googling when the next big earthquake in California is due.
My eyes are looking back at me in the mirror, and I notice my beard has grown again. How did that happen. Why is my body turning air and food and water into the hair on my face. I don’t want it there. It’s a waste of energy. My body is just actively fighting me at this point. When the yogurt and frosted flakes are gone, I’ll have to expend more energy; leave the house. Procure more food that I can turn into the hair on my face so I can shave it off again, tumbling underwater in the ever-cycling rip-current.
The water is gentle. It keeps me suspended just above the sharp rocks. Nothing is dangerous here. I am not cold. I am not hungry. I am neither thirsty nor sick. But the sun cannot reach me here. The warmth is drained from the world. It is 9am, and I know that today is a day for being gentle and accepting of the dim, the tasteless, and the devoid of warmth.
Maybe the sun will rise again tomorrow.