The alarm clock rang annoyingly at 5:40, as it always does. I slapped “snooze” and went back to sleep, oblivious to the strange morning that was in front of me.
Several snooze slaps later and I was staggering to my feet. I stumbled downstairs and poured a cup of coffee from the thermos, and poured some of that white powder that's supposed to substitute for cow's milk in it. I went on down to the farthest corner of my basement, where the last working toilet in the house is.
When the house was new, it was the only toilet. Back in 1918 when it was built (state of the art, gas and electric!) people thought the idea of defecating inside your home was disgusting. Indoor plumbing and indoor toilets were new. Heck, both my sets of grandparents had outhouses when I was little. So because the idea of shitting inside the house was so... ugh!, they put the toilet in the basement next to the coal room, which was at least as disgusting as human waste.
I started a new pot of coffee before starting my second cup, and drank sleepily as the coffeepot gurgled. I went upstairs to shave, shower, and brush my teeth.
I got dressed for work, and drank another cup. I filled the thermos with the fresh coffee, grabbed a box of honey buns and took Patty's car to work, as she was off school for Columbus Day.
I got to work and parked. Wow, great spot today. I must have gotten here a little early. I went inside and the guard said to sign in. I showed him my ID, and he said “you have to sign in anyway. It's a holiday.”
“Huh? I don't have to work today?”
“Well, there are a few contractors here...”
“Heh... in that case I'll see ya!”
I went back home.
About 8:30 the phone rings. It's Evil-X.
“Is Patty awake?”
I laugh out loud. Patty? Awake at 8:30 when she doesn't have school?
“Well, I have her permission slip.”
“What permission slip?”
“I don't know. She forgot and left it at my house.”
“Well, do you want me to have her call you when she gets up?”
“What do you mean you're outside?”
“I mean I'm outside!”
“Outside of what?”
“Outside your house, where do you think? I have that permission slip.”
I walked in the living room, where a looming shadow darkened my door. I opened the door, and there it stood.
“Uh, ya want to come in?” I asked, after Evil-X stood there dumbly for a minute like the door had never opened.
“You got coffee?”
Shit. I let it in, and looked at the paper. It was a permission slip I had signed for a school field trip.
I poured her a cup of coffee. As usual, she was Paxil's antidote, telling me how they were going to take my house away.
My God, but she's gotten fat and ugly. Uglier, I mean.
“I'll go wake Patty up.” I wanted to escape. Damn, how I hate being a nice guy.
I knocked on her bedroom door. “Your Mom's here.”
“It's 8:30. I'm sleeping! Tell her to come back later.”