Wednesday, September 07, 2005

mid-semester blues

I am becoming a hunchback. Constantly curled over the keyboard like a question mark, my body has forgotten how to stand up straight. The sun is alien to me. A strange luminosity I squint at through my windscreen on my way to work or school. My skin—translucent at the best of times—is an even whiter shade of pale these days and all this caffeine can't be doing me any good.

Thanks to prolongued (computer) terminal exposure, I can no longer see more than a couple of feet in front of me. When I try to focus on a point a greater distance away, my lenses struggle and give up, probably figuring that everything I will ever need to see is available in .jpeg or .tiff format anyway. That vague fluttering I saw at the bottom of the stairs on campus this morning could have been a long-lost friend waving. It could have been a plastic bag caught on the railing. I'll never know. It doesn't matter much anyway, I stopped answering my phone last weekend. There's just no point: "No I'm busy. Yes tomorrow night too." If anyone does manage to engage me in conversation, I spend most of it trying to remember if it was Frank Kermode or Samuel Coleridge who said that Kent was the most individualised of Shakespeare's characters, whether or not the em dash is before the semi colon in the hierarchy of pauses and mentally re-writing leads for my article on relationships and culture shock.

I'm perpetually grumpy. I'm existing on toasted cheese sandwiches. I'm starting to get used to the headaches.

I'll call you when it's over.