I wish she wouldn't do this:
She stands there and she doesn't move. It's like something from a nightmare but you have to sleep to have nightmares, right?
Sleep? Hah! It's four AM and I'm playing Bioshock. It's not some happy carefree night where I say Fie! to Morpheus and his handmaidens, Care and Worry. It’s four. It’s the hour of failure. If you’ve ever worked night shifts, or if you have night-own proclivities, you know that 1 AM is when the pros feel the juices flowing, 2 AM is cut-off for amateurs, 3 AM is a cautionary moment - but FOUR AM is the harsh silent totem that gives everyone pause. Anything past three is trouble. There’s a grace period between 3:00 and 3:15, but once you start getting into 3:21 or 3:37 you’ve spend the entire day that follows. That day is already upon you. It’s a taxi you haven’t called but it already ran you down and the meter’s running.
Four AM. I am battling crazed genetic mutants who wear party dresses; I am wearing a diving suit, and firing bolts of fire out my left hand. This is normal.
Look at the window: dark. Dead dark. There’s hope. If you can fall asleep before the first bird tweets; before the horizon smoulders; before, as the ancient Greeks said, the first UPS cargo plane screams overhead, then there’s a line, a border, a wall between the long day you leave and day you can pretend is still unborn.
I saved, laid down, and tried again . . .
. . . and four hours later, the recorded alarm from the Wildfire Biological Warfare lab bonged softly from the nightstand, and i woke up. God my daughter off to school - don’t know how I made her lunch, and worried that I’d sent her with cough drops, Snaps, a can of 4-in-1 oil from the utility drawer and some raspberries, because she doesn’t like raspberries when they get mushy - and found my phone. Tap: CONTACTS. Tap: DENTIST.
“Did you take any painkillers?” said Jody the dental tech. She’d changed her hair. I thought: I hate to ask if she’s changed her hair, because if she did it seven months ago, she could say yes, but you’d know that if you’d been in on time for your cleaning, and we might have detected this thing that troubles you today, but she’s not like that. (Short, curls on the side, red: it’s a good look.)
“Well, Vodka,” I said. It was all I had. I’d gotten up at 2:30 with the tooth screaming bloody murder, and aspirin did nothing, so I took a shot and sat down at my computer, thinking: this is just hell. I knew I’d go to the dentist the next day; there’s a point where you think Hey, this is the next day. They’ll be open in three hours. Hold on. Call up a game on the computer, Play through this level. But I finally fell asleep and woke four hours later . . .
. . . to no pain.
Oh, slightly numbness, but no pain. This puts a spring in a chap’s step! I called the dentist anyway, because I wasn’t going to trust this scumbag molar any more, and went about the morning’s work with cheer. Even made a tweet about how everything was dandy. Sat down in the chair at 11:30, called up my tweets, and someone said: hey, it feels better because the nerve is dead.
Took some X-rays; the dentist came back and said it’s dead, Jim, or words to that effect. Some more poking and zapping was undertaken, and the end verdict was ROOT CANAL. Fine; bring it on. I won’t be there.
Sitting in a restaurant now waiting for lunch with a friend; don’t know how I’m standing. Never had a night like that; still unsure how I got to sleep, except that I remember playing the game in my head as I slept. It’s still one of the most fully-realized and compelling environments I’ve ever visited, and reminds me of being utterly immersed in a movie as a kid, how it consumed you and drove out everything else, and how plain and ignorant real life felt when you went back to it. Ignorant of that other place. Probably why I saw Star Wars 12 times when it came out. I remember how I used to listen to the Jungle Book soundtrack with a certain disappointment, knowing it would never be unknown again, could never be discovered for the first time. With games, though, you can stay there for hours, and you can be you.
Meal, then nap. Then the day begins. It’s all upside down but at least it doesn’t hurt.
Went to Walgreens to get some antibiotics. SHE'S STLL THERE
I suppose that’s the point.
Makes me want to unnerve them by taking it to the checkout line, and buying it. I insist! Name your price!
Watched the first Sherlock from season 2 last night; brilliant, as Brits would say, although it seems a general expression of approval over there, not necessarily indicating the presence of substantial intellect. No reason it should; it refers to illumination, after all. It’s from the Latin, “Brillia,” meaning the small filament in a light bulb.) (Sigh. No. Googling . . . from the Italian, brillare, to shine.) I don’t know how it became “Smart.” In any case, all meanings apply.
Something struck me a few times: Sherlock is so young. It gives him a vulnerability he does not seem to recognize, unless of course he does and uses it to his advantage, but the whole subtext - and eventually Holy Crow-Text - is his inability to empathize and connect, that whole woman problem. It is solved, more or less, by a problem woman. There was little in the original story that showed you why Irene Adler was such so mesmerizing, just the suggestion that her intellect was on the Sherlock / Mycroft / Moriarity level, and that made her a rare avis, one who could never be equalled among the herd of Victorian women, timid or ninny-headed.
Let’s just say you get a pretty good idea in this one why Irene Adler was The Woman. It’s really, really good.
Now, someehow, to write a column and gear up for the busiest days of the week. But things are better and my mood expansive - only six days, and I can eat popcorn without screaming like Peter Lorre after someone dropped a hot rivet down his pants! There's always something to look forward to.
And you can look forward to this: more Main Streets. Started out as a little ten-page site; closing in on 50 pages now. Odd how that works. Enjoy! See you around.