Thursday, February 26, 2009

Cutting Off a Bad Mood

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How I Did It This Morning

Today, I awoke earlier than I wanted, as Thursdays are soup-kitchen-volunteering days for my partner Pat and she gets up extra-early. She got up even before Toonces the cat had a chance to do her 6 am-ish ritual of marching around on us till we get up to feed her sister and her, and before her sister let loose her daily, plaintive cry, always issued at the bedroom threshold.

I woke up cranky with insufficient sleep and thought, Since I'm working from home today, I will spend no commute-time, and so I want to start the day with an activity just for pleasure, rather than instantly being my dutiful self. I'm going to go take a bath and read the rest of the "Lesbian Nation" article my brother-in-law Gary told me about, I decided.

The bathtub was filling up with bubbly-jet, hot water on this cold-porcelain morning and I eased into the heat. The article was fascinating, but discouraging. Why couldn't I be Ariel Levy, the author, or why couldn't I be a lesbian worthy of profiling, like the profilee, Lamar Van Dyke?

I finished the article in despair. Why didn't I lead such a colorful life? Why didn't I become a hot, young journalist? A friend once taught me the slogan, "Compare is despair," but that didn't stop me this morning...until:

Showered with Miracles

I stood up to shower and get going with the day. Standing in the spray, all in a split-second, I wished for the fortitude to shut the shower, go put on a bathing suit and drive to the pool for a swim.

My prayers were answered: I turned off the water, toweled myself off quickly, put on my purple Speedo and petted the kitties before alarming the house and heading out.

"Where's the other lady?" the lifeguard asked.

"Thursday is her day to volunteer at the soup kitchen," I told her as I walked to half a free lane. I hopped into the water, goggled up, looked at the pool-clock, leaned forward and pushed off from the pool-wall, kicking out my foul mood.

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