Lightning Strikes

Nothing happened today. Not in a watched-pot sort of way, but also not in a held-breath sort of way. 

Nothing happened today and it adds to the line of days that wall up January and build into 2016 and all of it conspires against my attempts not to rely on the idea of stasis. 

I drank coffee. 

My two pairs of pants do not feel warm enough. Wind is my least favorite weather, after all. 

I saw someone with purple hair and wondered for the fiftieth time if I could ever pull that off. 

Someone next to me chewed loudly. I wanted to stab something. 

My face looks the same as yesterday. 

Yesterday, my face looked the same as the day before. Nothing happened then either, so maybe it only changes when big things happen. Like when lightning strikes and shocks the hair white. 

Four years is the longest I’ve ever done anything. Jobs, apartments, relationships, schools. The calendar reaches four and I tap out and I don’t know if it’s boredom, lack of discipline, pure curiosity, or if, truly, each time the circumstances make for a correct, albeit opportune, ditch. 

I’m coming up on the start of my fifth year in my current job, and in order to prevent myself from fleeing outright, I’m taking a one-month reprieve. To Los Angeles, which is sort of a debatable place to ground yourself. It’s not like I looked at the calendar and thought, “shit, it’s been four years, time for a break.” But it’s never like that. Never the lightning. 

In a year, I’ve had roughly 402 cups of coffee. I’ve worn two pairs of pants at once for too many days. Every time someone chews near my head, I think about felonies. And always, I think my face looks the same. 

When the temperature drops below 30 and the air rips awake my throat, I breathe into my scarf, and there’s something about the fold of a steaming, breath-wet fabric that smells exactly like childhood. Childhood, as a unit. I think of being small as a consistent state, a comforting permanence. 

The truth is that is was then as it is now. Nothing felt stable. Everything changed all the time. Days made up of moments no one could ever be sure of or predict. But there were enough days where nothing happened that everything in retrospect was still. 

My mom and I played musicals on records and sang while we cleaned.

How many Saturdays?

There was a Skip-It at the bus stop. 

How many weeks?

We ate dinner at the table as a family.

How many years?

I always had a practical winter coat. Except the one year I got to have the pink one with the rainbow on the side. 


I keep searching for the unit, the package of what my life can be sold as. What I can rely on this to be. What’s the magic number? Anything more than four? Maybe breaking a pattern is the golden threshold, but I have a hunch that stasis itself is a lie. 

Nothing happened today, so I hope my face looks the same tomorrow.