Wednesday, August 23, 2006


(Fade up. Cue Twilight Zone music.)

I am writing this yesterday. However, it's today to me. And I'm posting it to your today, which is my tomorrow.

I am speaking to you from the past!!!

Ooooh, scary.


9:02 am - So, here I am, home from work. I think I've got a flu of some sort. I've got a slight fever, a bit of the chills, and my thinking is decidedly foggy.

I called in to work a little over an hour ago. Nobody was in yet, so I left a message. No matter how sick I am, I always feel like a fraud when I tell someone I'm not going to be in to work. I feel like I should make myself sound horribly ill; like death is sitting beside me on the bed, polishing his scythe. As a result, when I call in I tend to ramble and sometimes I toss off a small joke. And that makes me feel like even more of a fraud, because it's bad form to have a sense of humor when you're sick.

I once called in to a job and left the following message on my supervisor's phone:

"Hi, this is Jim. I'm not feeling well, so I'm staying home today. So, I'm a home Jim. I'm going to do a few curls and run the treadmill. Ha-ha-ha. See you tomorrow."

The next day, I had to explain that it was a joke - see, my name is Jim and it sounds like the shortened form of gymnasium, gym? Ha-ha-ha. They bought it, but only after a prolonged session of scowling.

I guess the lesson here is if you're going to make jokes during your call-ins, they had better be good jokes.


10:23 am - Third cup of coffee.

I know, I know. Coffee is not the thing I should be drinking. It should be plenty of water or other actual thirst-quenching liquids. I think that's a load of hooey.

("Hooey", of course, is a substitute word for crap. It only seems to work when you wish to indicate falsehood or deception and it only comes in loads or bunches. Try calling someone a hooeyhead and you'll see what I mean. However, I digress.)

I've tried drinking loads of fluids when I'm sick, like all the best authorities say to do, but all that does is make me get up out of bed to pee more often. I've noticed no appreciable difference in the length or severity of my illnesses when I've had hooeyloads of coffee instead of water. Of course, coffee makes me pee more often than I'd prefer, also, but at least the caffeine makes me feel like less of a walking peeing corpse.


10:38 am - First commercial break in Green Acres on TV Land. I absolutely adore this show. And I'm amazed that something so self-referential and surreal could have gained a spot in the primetime line-up of CBS in the 1960's. It is the The Persistence Of Memory of sitcoms.

The first few episodes of the show were more-or-less normal by 1960's standards. The basic plotline (city man moves to the country and is continually bested and bamboozled by the country folk) was basically a reverse of the plotline of The Beverly Hillbillies. The show was populated with some of the same characters that appeared in both that show and Petticoat Junction, another "country-humor"” show. But, as the show progressed, more and more bizarre things began happening on the screen. Characters would notice the writing and producing credits on the screen at the beginning of the show, for instance, and make reference to them. Or - as happened in the episode I've been watching today - Eb, the handyman, sang a brief bit of the theme song, dubbed in Eva Gabor's voice.

Alas, it was cancelled by CBS when that network decided to purge itself of all of its old-fashioned programming in the 1970's. In one fell swoop, the network attempted to change its demographics by getting rid of anything that was country-tinged. The network executives had no idea that Green Acres, while nominally a corny country show, was actually one of the hippest shows on television. But, if they had had any idea, it never would have aired in the first place, of course.


11:26 am - More coffee and a big turkey sandwich. I have a ravenous appetite when I'm sick. Lucky for me, I have a big old bunch of cold cuts hanging around.

This past Sunday was supposed to be our last game of the season in my Sunday softball league - well, at least for the teams who aren't making the playoffs, which includes us, unfortunately - but we were rained out for the sixth or seventh time this year. I had bought makings for sandwiches for after the game. Some of the other guys were going to bring drinks and snacks of various sorts. We could sit around the park and enjoy each other's company for another hour or so, while chowing down after the game, before we pretty much went our separate ways until next April. But, as I say, a rain out, so we play next weekend for the last time. Meanwhile, I've had ten guy's worth of meat, cheese and rolls to munch on this week. It hasn't been easy doing the work of ten guys, but I'm giving it my best shot.

I'm watching a Little League World Series game between Japan and Curacao. I love the Little League World Series. It's amazing how well these kids play ball. The New England team, from Portsmouth, New Hampshire, is still alive, so extra rooting interest for me.

Well, Japan is off to a 3-0 start. They look like the class of the international division, although the team from Saudi Arabia (made up mostly of kids from American military families, I believe) looks pretty sharp, as does the team from Venezuela. The Saudis and Venezuelans play each other tonight.

Looks like Japan has this game well in hand, and I'm feeling a bit tired after the turkey sandwich (and the flu - duh!) so I'm going to take a nap.


3:13 pm - Good nap. I'm feeling loads better than I did this morning. I think I'll probably go to work tomorrow. I'll call in around 4:00 or so, if I'm still feeling well, and tell them. Wednesday is usually the day that Dan, my co-worker in production, foregoes the commute from Worcester and works from home. If I were out, however, he'd have to be in work physically, so I'll call and let him know he can sleep an hour later tomorrow.

More Little League on the tube - Staten Island, NY, vs. Phoenix, AZ. They're making a bit of a flap about one of the kids from Staten Island. He swore in the dugout the other night. Since all of the coaches wear microphones, the swear played in prime time. It was a choice swear, too, not one of your borderline jobs. The kid dropped the F-bomb on coast-to-coast TV.

The game was going into the last half-inning and his team was trailing 3 to 2, so the kid said - and I may not have all of the words exact, but the sentiment is as it was - "“All we need is one fuckin' run!" Immediately after which, his coach kind of cuffed him on the ear, which was also caught on camera.

The kid was excited and trying to get his teammates charged. The coach knew that he was miked, so he was embarrassed, but he also acted as a coach should act - as a disciplinarian. A kid could get thrown out for swearing, if an umpire heard him, but it appears that none did, so not a big deal, really. Thankfully, that's exactly the way the announcers are describing it, also. No over-reaction and hand-wringing. Somewhere, no doubt, there are a bunch of sob sisters who know nothing about sports decrying the whole thing, but not on the telecast. Good.


4:05 pm - Just called in and told them I was coming in tomorrow. And there was much rejoicing. Huzzah.


And, as you read this, it probably is tomorrow. Except it's today, but not yesterday. And I'll see you tomorrow, by which I mean two days from where I'm now writing this.

(Cue Twilight Zone music. Fade to black.)


Stu said...

Hi, Jim, this is Stu, typing to you from the past. It is currently 8:50am on Wednesday. You may get this as early as 11:51am on Wednesday, but that's impossible, as it won't be 11:51am for another three hours. Wow.

Oh, sorry you're unwell. Captain Trips is one tough bitch, so take care of yourself.

Thimbelle said...

I'm not sure if I'm in the past, the present, or the future, but I hope you're feeling better!

And FWIW, I *totally* got the Jim/Gym thing...

T. :)

Kailani said...

Hope you're feeling better. I'm a little dizzy, though, from trying to figure out where I am.