October 27, 2017 (Friday)

by Yule Heibel on October 26, 2018

Yesterday it was dark as coal dust all morning, and the rain poured forth from above. Today, it’s clear, bright, sunny, crisp, and dry. It’s almost like it’s an altogether different day. Oh, wait…

Well, okay, it is a different day, but what does that actually mean, anyway? In a way, we perceive time as this “continuous now” – maybe that’s also what mystics and the religious think heaven (or nirvana) will be like. But this “continuous now” is not that hard to feel, even as a non-mystic or non-theist. If you let yourself feel it, “it” really is this permanent “now” – and only that – except it’s different all the time. “All the time,” …hah, how ironic.

Maybe I haven’t fully recovered from the fall I took on Wednesday, and actually cracked my skull when I banged it against the furniture. The cleaners were here, they had finished upstairs. I went upstairs to put back all the stuff I put away so they can clean surfaces and floors more easily. My cleaners really love the goddamn Pledge spray polish, and use it liberally, with abandon. It has gotten on the floor more than once before, and this time it got on the floor at the bedroom door. I went flying. I really didn’t know what hit me – just boom, down I went. Banged my skull against the chest of drawers, and maybe the door jamb, too, for it felt like I’d bashed both sides. Really hurt my right upper arm, too, as well as my right wrist.

M. & R. (the cleaners) were still in the house, and heard me calling, shouting out as I fell and as I sat on the floor, dazed, holding my head. When they appeared upstairs to look at me on the floor, I told them it was the Pledge, and then they, feeling blamed, tried to deflect and tried to blame me for 1) wearing socks (?????); and 2) laundering the dust cloths together with the cloths used for the Bona wood floor cleaner. R. tried to argue that there couldn’t possibly be any Pledge on the floor because he used Bona on it after M. dusted, and I replied that it (Pledge) goes all over the place when it’s sprayed, and that in this instance it went on the floor, too. Using a cloth to distribute the Bona in this case also distributed the Pledge – far and wide.

I got really angry that they tried to blame me for falling down. I wasn’t blaming them for the aerosol nature of Pledge – it just happened, and they didn’t notice. But to weasel out of taking any responsibility, R. tried to blame me. It made me angry. In the end I was swearing my head off about “the goddamn fucking Pledge,” and that they were never allowed to use any furniture spray polish ever again in my house.

I then spent fifteen minutes (really) trying to get the polish off the floor with a combination of vinegar and dish detergent. Barely dented it. I repeated the process yesterday; I think it finally worked. W. as well as A. have nearly crashed to the living room floor on previous occasions, and my fall on Wednesday was the last straw. [Oldest sister in Japan] actually broke her femur because of this stuff. It’s seriously hazardous. I only ever bought this shit because M. insists on using it, along with every other chemical the household industry can produce. Well, no more.

But I learned something about R., too. His lack of intelligence, his wiliness, his willingness to lie or dissemble and to try to shift blame. I also learned that I can be provoked to swear like a sailor in front of people I barely know. That kind of shocked me, but I was in pain and I got angry for being blamed for falling down on an oil slick I had no reason to assume was even there.

The floor was suddenly different. One moment earlier that day, the floor had the tactile friction which the be-socked me knew well; the next, it was like a sheet of ice. I guess the creation of that difference happened over time, which gets back to my point that time is a difference engine.

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