Well, I am at the god-awful hell-hole snake pit again, which is why I have internet access. I have none at home right now. It makes me sad, but my life seems functional. I need to go to work. So I can communicate. I think it is causing odd synapse-formation in my brain. But that is how we people become what we are. Asked to control it.
My eyes are red with smoke. From every cigarette, every bowl that I have smoked. They are dry like my throat, the bloody throat. I imagine the ribbed walls of my trachea curled over like his little fingers.
My lizard is dead today. I killed him. I thought I might, but didn't think I would. I got him the wrong light. I had this little pimplefaced girl tell me it was okay. That it was enough heat. That it was probably enough. That I could just check the cheap thermometer I have that doesn't work. She didn't even listen when I told her what kind of lizard he was. I thought better of it. I thought it might not work. I checked the thermometer in the tank a million times, and it didn't change. Thought that was a good thing, but I should have known that meant nothing but trouble. Well, actually, it did look like it changed a bit. Which allowed me to convince myself. I was just so tired. And the light was blue and pretty. And Eddie was up bounding around, eating the crickets had just gotten for him. And even after all that, I still checked the heat from the light, 3 times. Whatever. I am sure everyone goes through this when someone, something dies... what they could have done. I am sure it's classic. Even for a lizard. I just feel awful.
Even last night, before I went to bed and froze him with the winter light, I was thinking about him. How long we had been together. What a fantastic pet he was. How when I first got him, I showed him to everyone. So proud. I feel like I killed my baby. I mean, of course a baby would cry if it were too cold, and I shouldn't use a dead desert creature as an indication of potential parenting skills. Even though he was my first pet. Like, truly mine. And of course part of me is surprised he even lived this long. And that I remembered to turn his lights off and on (just last night I was freaking about getting something battery-operated, in case there were a blackout like in 8/03, or--more likely--if I got my electricity turned off or something). I had often left him unattended for a long weekend, or had not fed him for a week or something. I boasted that he was easier to take care of than a plant. He was. It's proof how we take life for granted that I thought last night, "perhaps I should leave the day light on just in case... (he dies)" But then I thought, "He won't die. He never dies (duh)." And he's dead.
And he is still in his tank, with the daylights on, wedged behind his big rock, where he died. His little crunchy claws curled up in a way that I knew was unnatural when I saw them this morning. His little rosey mouth pursed the way it always was... God, last night he was so animate/this morning I knocked hard on the glass next to his head, just to see... just to start him the way that I knew I could, even when he was hungry, and I was broke, and I thought he was close to death (though I knew he was the animate form of a cactus, and could always lay close to death and be fine, kind of like me. They way he was very still, and hovered in liminal consciousness, until it was time to eat, or start himself from his routine... or to watch TV, which like me, he loved). No movement. The thickest of knocking and still I wanted to see a squint in his eyes, to know that he could come back. His rapid heartbeat clutched in the palm of my hand, and his powerless struggle in my grasp. The way he laid next to me like a heat rock, feeling my heartbeat and relishing my 98.6. The way he wore his hat. The way he sung off-key... Yeah, you get the picture.
Oh yeah, and Karl Rove is about to get indicted or something, but no one will notice or care today because Harriet Miers says she's looking out for the best interests of the country by withdrawing her unqualified nomination today, after several weeks of scrutiny. I bet no one on capitol hill wakes up with a dead lizard, and then has to burst into unwanted tears over that, and subsequently everything else that is wrong with their lives (isn't it amazing how that happens? It's like your brain sees it's opportunity to void itself of pain when something sharp and acute strikes you. It's what I like to call the "burnt pop-tarts syndrome" where something momentarily atrocious occurs, and all of the deep-seated pain that turns to blue sludge that causes mold in the corners of your mind comes flooding to the surface for it's chance to be set free. the problem is, that stuff doesn't really go away... it is just reminded of its existence... painfully... as I am most days. AAAAAHHH the MEANINGLESS OBLIVION!!! okay... i'm over it). I bet they all just keep going according to the plan, believing in the plan, living life by the plan. It's an evil plan. And I have no further intentions of talking about any of them, or their evil plans today. My friend is dead.
And don't give me greif about the self-aggrandizing sorrow. This isn't like the time I wrote the poem about the umbrella I lost in Port Authority, only to return to the shitty pizza shop where I had left it and find that someone had turned it in for me (of course then, only to finally have it break a year later, and still it was the best umbrella--a favorite accessory, by the way--that I have had). This hurts me. And I finally caved and told Molly, the girl at my work... the only one with potentially more problems than me (misery does love company) , and the self-proclaimed emotional communist who has to know everything that is going on. It wasn't like I was keeping it from her. It's just best to keep the bastard sheilds up for everyone at work because most of them are bastards, and it hurts less not to let anyone/thing in or be a person just to have someone be fake in return (though she's rarely like that). And mostly I don't feel like sharing things when I am going through them, just so someone else can jump down into the mudpit and wallow with me. But I felt very (or at least, "slightly more," which is "very" to me) grown-up by talking about it. Like I was being mature about it or something, despite wanting to keep it to myself.
I really want to talk with Tracy about it. Partially because we are pet-owner friends (she's petsat for me, and vice versa) and oddly because, since she lost her father in May, it's been weird how little we have talked about him. And I am one of her best friends. I am surprised at how well-adjusted she has been, how functional. Because she's had to be, of course. And in her case, it doesn't feel like she's holding back this brooding reservoir of pain. But still, something feels amiss in the way that we haven't had a good long talk/cry together in person. Perhaps I am just being selfish in thinking that she should do that with me. Part of me is feeling guilty that I haven't been a good-enough friend to her through this. I don't want to burden her with death while she's studying tort reform. But hell, I know that she will be able to understand. And perhaps we could watch some Eddie Izzard together, and I could feel some sense of closure in the circle (Even though we wouldn't have to watch that particular Eddie Izzard concert).
I went back to the Union Square Petco at lunch and returned the murderous blue night light I bought. The cute skinny girl with pimples that's nice (the one who nicely sold me the fucking light that she had no idea would work or not) was not around. But I am going to need that 9 dollars that it was worth. Oh, it's ugly. Eddie's still in his tank. I didn't have the time, energy, desire to remove him just yet. The new crickets I bought for him last night are probably eating his remains. Oh how the times have changed Eddie Lizzard. Someday they little calf babies will eat the grass that grows from my disintegrated remains as well. And the daylights will keep shining. I'm so sorry.