Monday, April 20, 2009

74 Exercise and waking up at night

Milton worked at the tool and die warehouse in shipping. One week out of 8 his shift would swing him into the loneliest hours of the night, whisper silent everywhere in the city except for the warehouses and the newspapers. The next shift around, Milton invariably woke up in the middle of the night clutching at his heart with his right hand while his left scrambled for the alarm which hadn't gone off because, naturally, it hadn't been set, Milton's graveyard swing shift was over and he was now on the most social working hours of the next two months.

It was frustrating because by the time the second swing was on, he'd stopped having the attacks, but already, on the second shift he was an hour later to start and an hour later to finish. This meant that traffic changed, his seat at the bar after work changed, his hairdresser changed. It didn't register with most people, thought Milton, just how much their experience was as much a slave to their schedules as their vehemently raised denials to the contrary.

Milton had owned a DVR but it just made things worse, he lost the sense of contact, the feeling that all over the city, people were watching all kinds of shows but some of them at least had to be watching what he was watching and that number had to be pretty big. Milton had been able to draw some comfort from that idea and with the DVR it was alright, it just wasn't the same experience; he sold it and didn't have any pressing desires within his budget so he socked it away in a corner of his flat in an old sock because Milton, above all other considerations, was a literal type who retained Puckish pride in his acquired obstreperousness.

It's not that he was a bad guy, it's just Milton occasionally did things out of light-hearted malice, it's not the ideal collision to describe his process but easy-going mischief-making only consumes more lines without adding sense.

The universal sarcasm  in the situation was that worrying about attacks that woke him up in the middle of the night kept him up until the middle of the night.

Milton had tried a number of carved idols, dream catchers and other occult paraphernalia to stop the attacks however even the best results meant he spilled wax on his leg when his ornamental hood (a bed sheet) brushed against his mail-order thrice-blessed candelabra.

So, despite all occult, chemical and logical efforts, Milton continued to suffer one shift out of 8. Whenever he thought of the situation it was all he could do not to shrug his shoulders, raise his hands up one last time to the heavens in appeal and give everything away before travelling to the most inaccessible and ugly mountain in the world to just sit there the world ended or he learned to sleep.

People are strange.

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