Carry That Weight

I’m performing without a net.  My wife’s pension documents are still screwed up.  I’m working quick turnarounds, a brutal test of stamina. In other words, I work from 9am to 2pm on-call, then 2-10pm care-giving and then show up at 6am for another care-giving shift.  It’s an altered state of consciousness, where one never mentally leaves work.  It reminds me of Roy Scheider’s character in All That Jazz (1979), the driven artist working himself to death.

We all remember scenes in films that illuminate important truths.  I have often recalled one in The Magnificent Seven (1960) where hired gunfighter Bernardo O’Reilly (Charles Bronson) educates a group of village boys who idolize him.  One of them says, “Our fathers are cowards.”  Bernardo pulls the boy across his lap, (at 5:40 in this clip) swats his behind and offers a remarkable speech in response.

“Don’t you ever say that again about your fathers, because they are not cowards! You think I’m brave because I carry a gun? Well, your fathers are much braver, because they carry responsibility — for you, your brothers, your sisters, and your mothers. And this responsibility is like a-a big rock that weighs a ton. It bends and it twists them until finally it buries them under the ground.  I have never had this kind of courage.”

Part of it is my frustration at the lack of trust the lenders are showing us by continually requiring more and more documents in support of our being “responsible people”.  Who in their right mind would be likely to default on a contract with a 60% down (as we have offered)?  I have to say it once again.  F*#^ CAPITALISM! I have to put my anxiety somewhere, and I have no internet or TV, so I book extra shifts at work.  I’m flooding the mortgage office with check stubs.  You want responsible?  Look at these, you mo-fos!  Now, give me my damn house!!!

I’ve passed three of the four tests to become a nurse’s delegate.  It’s going to be some weeks before there are enough new caregivers so I can move up in rank.  Meanwhile it’s change/dress/feed/bed over and over again.  When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.  I understand that, but what if life gives you poop?   Make poop juice?

Daisies grow outside the back window, and the cats are happy.  In a month this will all pass.  That’s what I keep telling myself.  “It’s showtime, folks!”


Filed under Communications, debt, Emotions, Ethics and Morality, Money, Self-Esteem, symbolism

19 responses to “Carry That Weight

  1. Deborah

    Oh, Mikey – I really hope you and Mrs I get your lovely house soon. It sounds a bit like pulling hen’s teeth, or knitting fog …x

    • Deborah

      Sorry Mikey – at the risk of cluttering up your comments thread with pedantry, I feel compelled (given the nature of my blob) to highlight my slapdash prose and say that should be, “a hen’s teeth” or “hens’ teeth”. Writing one hundred lines as I speak.x

      • Deb, I would choose your pedantry over their sophistries eight days a week.

        • Deborah

          …I am not having a good day with words. I see that I used the term ‘blob’ to mean ‘blog’ there. ‘Blob’ is our family name for ‘blog’, as is ‘blobbing’ for ‘blogging’. My Dad, 83, hard of hearing, thought he heard me talking about ‘blobs’ – and so the term was born. Our family never says ‘blogs’ or ‘blogging’ now.x

          PS. I may have to return shortly to correct/explain something I’ve just written. Bear with me.

  2. I haven’t had any coffee yet. I’m still a blob myself, so I didn’t even notice.

  3. Y’all are funny! As for you,Mikey, I don’t know whether to laugh or cry at your situation! I had to giggle at you saying mofos, but I hate that you’re all stressed and everything. The daisies are lovely, though, aren’t they?
    Wishing you, Mrs. Invisible, and the cats all the best and hope things get straightened out fast.

  4. Deborah

    Tenses can baffle some people. That should be:

    I bin to collidge.


  5. Ever mindful of polite company, you are. Myself, I put truckers and troopers to shame.

    We found the “perfect” house 6 months after leaving the city. At the time of our discovery we were financially maintaining two homes already, at substantial expense. One being a rental, whose lease was expiring, cost four times as much as the home in the city. We “purchased” our dream home in the country, preparing to leave the rental, hanging on to the VERY inexpensive city home until my husband found adequate work here.

    The monthly payment on the dream home mortgage was less than half the monthly rental.

    The mortgage company decided that we could not afford to pay less per month for our dream home than we were paying for our rental. They wanted us to sell the low-cost city home and keep the high-cost rental before granting us a mortgage. We lost out on the dream home when a buyer came in with immediate financing and bought it out from under us, while the city house waited in escrow.

    The lease was up on the high-cost rental, the city house was still in escrow and a strange family moved into my dream home. We packed the kids into a dingy two bedroom apartment in town for two months, for lack of a better option and my husband crashed at the thought of taking “thirty steps back”. Shoulda heard the cuss words coming outta HIS mouth!

    How many cliches can I insert here? We both know them all, not getting pissed off at hearing them is the fun part. Just be thankful that you’re a brave man. If your bravery evades you, you could always make stinkbombs to throw at the mortgage brokers.

    • Thank you for sharing that, J. How awful it must have been!

      I’m satisfied merely imagining “the chains they forge in life” (a la Dickens) that must be carried by their restless spirits after expiration. (owWWOOOOoooo)

  6. Quote: “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. I understand that, but what if life gives you poop? Make poop juice?”

    If Life gives you poop, then make compost. Deep, Dark, Rich, Wonderful, fine compost.

    The thing about compost is that it takes time. It starts as big lumps of stress and hassle and Cr@p that no one wants or think they have the stomach to handle and turns into a fine powdery substance that will in turn grow other parts of your life into beyond amazing.

    Hang in there… I’m crossing everything for ya that it will all settle as quickly as possible.
    We all know that bankers and financial people are often power happy underlings who only function well with rigid rule books and a calculator in their hands, but you my friend go deeper than that, you are softer and better and more caring.
    Real people like you are like a block of playdough in a factory that churns out bricks.. complete opposites, not made for the same end purpose.
    The financial ethics and thinking are an anathema to real people who feel and have common sense.
    Wring their necks? Love to, but that won’t get the paperwork done, Kick their behinds? Do it mentally, it may give you a boost whilst you hold your breath and wait for someone with an once of common sense to arrive on the scene.

    Take a Deeeeeep breath and believe that your compost is in the making… when it is good and ready, you will in time reap rewards beyond measure. Short term cr@p won’t last too long, the seeds being planted will grow long into the future.

    Now… if you want REALLY stressful, try the Dutch meeting Brazil in World Cup Football this Friday… ya don’t want to know high the two nations blood pressure might climb then LOL. (hint, be prepared for it to go off the scale)

  7. Mikey,
    I’m bummed about the runaround you’re getting, but not surprised. Like you, I often look to my movie heroes for inspiration in times like this. It used to be the outlaw Josie Wales often as not (especially when I felt the world had wronged me), but nowadays I try to find something to emulate in the likes of Jimmy Stewart — some of those more “responsible” fellows mentioned above. Hope the paper nightmare blows away soon and you get your house!

  8. I just realized that that photo is of you holding your phone to the mirror while you’re shaving. Man, you ARE working without a net! Slow down, friend.

    Also, I love how your post ends with a shot of grass and weeds flowering outside the window. That’s what I call “looking for the Good Thing”.

  9. I’m so sorry you are going through these hassles. We had some small bumps that last few weeks before our recent house purchase was final, but nothing like this. I see how lucky we were! Hope it all smooths out very, very soon.

    Those pooping people are so lucky to have a guy like you to care for them. I don’t quite understand though if you are working two shifts because you must financially or as an outlet for the current anxiety.

    Wishing the best for you…soon….

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