Friday, July 02, 2010

Of Dying Plants and the Patina of Happiness

As I saunter around my flat looking for meaning, a sense of purpose, or a cookie, I sometimes espy something that really drags me down, mood-wise. I'm feeling fine, but slowly I sink at the sight of something that just takes the edge off my patina of happiness. Little vampires that suck out my sense of well being. They aren't the big problems, like not having any money, balls or sanity, but they have a dark energy all their own. Here are five examples, each with a title and everything. Enjoy!

1. The Dying Plant, aka "The Little Green Prisoner."

You had high hopes when you bought the thing. But there it sits, beyond wilted. You tried everything, which means you watered it and then most likely subsequently over watered it. There is a gulf of horticultural knowledge between putting water on a plant and just about anything more than that, except maybe jamming a fertilizer stick in the soil. Until you finally admit failure and throw it away, it is a constant reminder that nothing, not even a fucking plant, should hitch a wagon to your star.

2. Cold Coffee.

Not iced coffee, just hot coffee that you didn't inhale fast enough. Once the heat is gone, so is the magic. It quickly goes down hill. A brown ring emerges, the cream curdles, and the coffee is transformed into something you don't want to see, never mind drink. Quickly clean the cup or risk experiencing a deep and profound sadness. I'm not sure at what point a cup of coffee gets too cool or cold to drink. Something to look into.

3. "The Sticky Shirt."

You don't dislike this shirt enough to throw it away or give it to charity (or an equally fat friend), but you don't like it, either. So every once in a while you find yourself wearing the fucking thing, and you can kiss your self-confidence goodbye. You tell yourself that you'll only wear it when painting or doing an autopsy, something messy. But there you are, waiting for a bus or buying a muffin or talking to a that shirt. In my case, it's a Hawaiian shirt that makes me look like a sofa. A bad sofa. Also known as "The Fatso."

4. The "Goldilocks Funk." Not good, but not rotten, either.

Unlike the other sad little things on this list, this can't be avoided due to the myriad sources. It could be an article of clothing that you pushed too far with the Febreze, a fart that won't leave and lingers for an eerily long time, or a neighbor using way too much lighter fluid for a cookout. These affronts to your schnozzen simply have to be endured. But don't underestimate the soul-crushing power of a stink that isn't pleasant, or isn't so bad that you seek it out the source and end it.

5. "Black" Socks.

Socks are a pain in the ass. Both for the 8 year old making them, and for people who buy "black" socks, only to get them home and discover that they are not quite the same color as all the other "black" socks you've amassed. Some are dark blue, some are really black, and some are not so black or faded. The result is a drawer jam-packed with socks that don't quite match, and you won't know it until you're out in the light of day. And once you get two socks together that actually match, you keep them together. I flick them off and join them, like star-crossed lovers.

You know what really ruins my mood, though? A mirror. Ha!

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