I posted the following note on Facebook on May 5, 2008, and though it predates The Mojo Wire by about five months, I consider it the first step towards starting this blog. I re-print it here, partly for that reason, and partly because I find some poetic justice giving the story of my sudden eviction a new home. --The Management.
I feel like a refugee tonight -- which is to be expected really, after having only a handful of hours to stack my most prized possessions into a becoming pile of leather suitcases and cardboard boxes. Notice was given mid-day, of course, and twelve hours are not exactly what anyone would call 'fair warning,' it was certainly enough to keep the ordeal from being the bad dash it would eventually become.
But I've never functioned well under immediate pressure -- no, I'm one of those fun, worn-down, self-deprecating, hyphen-junkies who's best work is done well after all hope is lost, and the only possibility is a eleventh hour save that'll only make you look more badass in a sideways, "I'm getting too old for this crap," Indiana Jones sort of way.
So for whatever reason, be it shock, laundry, or paralytic apathy, I didn't even get started shoving black t-shirts and flannel into my old sea chest until well into the night, when even my dear lady love, may she get well soon, had decided her Saturday had went on quite long enough. Which is not to say I got no sleep at all -- this would just be madness during such an emotionally trying time, and I managed to doze off for a couple ours in the mid-morning, giving my bed one last hurrah after downing a cup of coffee that would either keep it to a short nap, or give me the sort of screamer nightmares reserved for art students unfortunate enough to mix malt-liquor with herbal viagra.
I did it though, the pile by my [former] front door standing as either a proud tribute to nomadic thrift, or the heartbreaking pain of a materialistic part-time idolater leaving a chunk of his livelihood behind. There really is so much to go back for later -- Clerks figures, signed crap galore, DVD cases which might once more be displayed on a shelf [as opposed to their discs only being displayed in a 100+ count slipcase], an old Teddy bear even now I figure I should have taken, coats no longer worn but still loved, a Pulp Fiction disc MIA, and a scarf made by a girl who loved me once. And that's not to even mention the books, and the comics, and the plethora of things most of my ilk would have grasped in a tight kung-fu grip, and dragged along behind themselves as they were forcibly removed from the premises. But no, not me... for now, we wait. It will all be still be there tomorrow, at least. And hopefully, come tomorrow, the same sentiment will be true again.
Not that I was totally sensible in moving. It's May for god's sake, and I'm not going to need my winter coat anytime soon, but be damned if I wouldn't bring it along if I'd just be reassigned to work a calendar kiosk in hell. Same for my crooked Afgan, the two couch throws [even though I no longer have a couch], the books I've already read that like some teenage girl or college professor I have to have near -- lots of dead weight being carried today. And some of the stuff is sentimental and necessary; a wooden box, a note, a finger puppet, a mug, fat comic books that take up more room than I'd like. No discussion. Room had to be made.
Could anyone do this? I'm not saying I'm anything special, the only one capable of lashing things together and moving on, but... what would you do? Look around your room, house, apartment, eight-by-ten cell... What would stay? What would go? What if it was different from me, what if going back was even less certain -- maybe impossible? Clothes, dishes, books, towels, this gift from this person, but not this gift from this person? Maybe you'd never see this thing again, but you could bring it and another, if only you'd take out something big. Be pragmatic, be sentimental. Either way, be materialistic. Admit this thing is more important than that. Weigh the slight of object, to the worth of another.
Maybe I'm overreacting. It seems cruel to me, a trial that I wouldn't want to put anyone through, even in the mildly tame way I experienced it. Even those who in my mind I consider "perfect victims" -- a special few in this world who I'd wish no end of ill will upon, in most cases, those girls from "The Hills," hardly seem deserving. Granted that episode could be hilarious, but still.
Just conjecturing is hard. I suppose girls might have an easier go at it -- underwear is smaller, thongs, hell, even boy shorts don't taking up near the room boxers do. And so much of the female process seems prepared to take on the go -- makeup kits, purses, etc. Old picture of the Red Cross come to mind, the readiness of the female will to have everything they'd ever need stuffed into a canvas bag. Still.
It's not all bad. I made it, there's takeout food in walking distance, and MTV2, truly all a man might need to be happy. And I'm moved in comfortably enough, playing well the part of the gentlemanly guest, and tomorrow I might even hang something up -- perhaps the truest act of arrival, the modern equivalent of raising a flag, or killing the natives.
But it’s too soon, and too late, and I simply can't commit to such a committal yet. Unpacking is just going back over all those things left behind.