Tuesday, May 8, 2007

622 days, 13 hours, 6 minutes, 2.4 seconds

She tries out the Day of Death clock for her father. Born September 7, 1916. Neither optimistic or pessimistic: Normal. Body mass index below normal. Never smoked. His time has already expired. He should have died Tuesday, June 19, 1990. Less than three months after they married. When her mother was still alive. When his mind was still sharp. She could go through a hundred Whens. They mean nothing.

622 days, 13 hours, 28 minutes, 32 seconds

A red letter day. Not only one intelligent person at Duane Reade, but three: the clerk who didn't try to argue, just passed it over to the pharmacist; the first pharmacist who saw sixty pills wouldn't fit in that small bottle but turned it over to her supervisor; the supervisor who didn't ask any questions, just gave her another thirty pills. And here she'd brought her husband along to defend her. He's sorry now he yelled at the repairman. Mostly, he says, it was a language problem.

622 days, 14 hours, 19 minutes, 58 seconds

There's nothing wrong. Except the refrigerator repairman comes at 8:45, not at 10:00, and her husband (the one who wanted him) is out getting breakfast while she sleeps. There's nothing wrong. Except that she's had a horrendous night: every time her eyes were almost completely shut she went through a slight panic attack, then the top of her head started hurting, then when she finally slept she had a nightmare. There's nothing wrong. The repairman moves the refrigerator out, turns it off, hears the sound. Nothing's wrong with it. She's back in bed by this time, unable to get back to sleep. When her husband challenges he says it's the water pipe that dropped down and is hitting against the coils. It's not his job to fix the water pipe. And there's nothing wrong. Nothing $100 won't fix. And he has to call the super to adjust the pipe or hose or whatever. Another $20, or $40, or $50. Which he should have done in the first place. There's nothing wrong except her blood's high (to be expected now that she's off the medication). She has to go downstairs and argue with the drugstore. Despite what some stupid clerk said last night, she knows it's been only two weeks, that the insurance won't process the refill yet. That bottle those pills came in won't even hold sixty pills, she knows they only gave her thirty. But try to prove that? There's nothing wrong. Her MRI's this afternoon, she has the workshop tonight, there's nothing to let go.