Wednesday, December 1, 2010

4am Phone Call

Feels like something let loose in my throat and split open the scar tissue from utilizing improper singing techniques (aka screaming at the last show), paired with the sensation of my heart beat through my ears and brain… the remote control is going to be my God for the next few days of agony. Every fiber of me is shut down, due for renovation, and in sleepless pain. I’m sick. It’s the night before Thanksgiving, and several million chores have yet to be done. My mother’s house is less than spacious, even less-so in the face of 15 guests for dinner. Gotta get this thing up to code for tomorrow. Gotta… do… chores… (sleep).

(Phone rings!) Holy, sweet Mary Magdalind. Who- what time- 4am? What!

Sprung awake, unexpected, to a Thanksgiving Eve/Thanksgiving 4am phone call. Sloppy to get to the dresser, I make it just in time.

I don’t think, in these moments. These moments aren’t meant for thinking. 2am is understandable, bar-close, drunk, lack of better judgement, etc. 3am, meh, you can kinda apply the same logic, that’s a little more desperate than anything. 3am is almost more suitable than 2am, though. People are lookin’ for parties after bar-close, somewhere else to self-destruct, escape themselves, find a fight, who knows. 3am suits better because it says “Hey, I found somewhere or some people that’ll put up with my ass for at least 60 minutes, do you have any better offers." 2am, on the other hand, is like “Of all the low-lives on my list, you’re at the top. Entertain me…now.”

We’re not talking about either of those. We’re talking about 4AM!

The witching hour, the span of time where bad decisions, future pregnancy, long-term addiction, and dirt hill champions are made. When ambulances are called, super-heroes are summoned, and disaster has already stricken twice. This is the hour of the blackout, the dismembered, the moments of your life your brain will struggle to push through the paper shredder. Remember that time you lost your pants, tried to steal the keg tap, barely evaded the cops, never got that person's name after intercourse, ran off with your best friend's ex-significant other, and woke up naked on a couch? Yeah, that all happened between the hours of 3:30 and 4:30am.

I digress, a call at 4am in the morning could still fall into the booty-call realm of 2am or 3am, but 4am is on some other shit. 4am is almost degrading. It says, “I know we broke up months & months ago, but I haven’t been able to bring myself to touch someone elses genitalia, and I’d like to go with good ol’ familiar tonight, and not have to deal with you the next morning. Deal?” But then, a 4am call could inquire, “I hate you so f----ng much that I want to sleep with you to spite you... now” Which in that case, is almost a little more endearing. (Perhaps you've been the recipient of one of these calls in the past, or the culprit dialing out. Either way, these types of things go without saying.)

In retrospect, these are all easy and plausible notions to think while a phone is ringing in the dead of night, now…a week after the fact. However, in the moment, none of these come to mind. My first instinct was someone’s hurt, in trouble, thinking of doing it this time and ending it for good, arrested, or in a situation where their livelihood is at stake. I come from a family of healers and nurses (jea, they synonymous). I’d say worriers, but these folks have been working in the hospitals since Ireland, came over here and continued. If worrying was the verb to apply, I don’t think the tradition of working with the sick with pending anxiety attacks would be encouraged. Mom, Grandma, Great Grandma, all consolers of the soon-to-pass away and folks fallen to eyeball-deep in the gutter.

Thinking someone would need my assistance out of a ditch… it wasn’t. Far from it. Someone called for the potential opposite… to put me in the gutter. Not even thinking, I picked up the phone… it’s (anonymous name, I won’t even announce her already-given moniker, seeing that would drive her incensement further. I don’t know the code of a blog, but just for this one, I’ll leave’er out.) Didn’t wanna sound like an asshole, but it was the night before Thanksgiving Day, “Are you fucking drunk?”. “No”, she answered gladly. Which then brings me to a realm I didn’t even want to step into, I ask myself, “Then what the f--- is she doing calling me at 4 in the morning!?!?” First , I was worried that she was about to be Taken, like the chick in the Liam Niesen film, and with the only split-second she had to call someone, she accidentally called me before destined to a life of Prostitution and involuntary drug use in the dirty bloks of Eastern Europe.

Not even close, she goes on to quote something from this blog (my blog), and correct me on something I had written a month ago. Thirty days ago. 4 weeks ago. Please, I hope you’ve had enough time to absorb something someone said 1/12 of a year ago, for you to make proper critique at four in the morning (and it’s at this point, I’ve realized just how many times I’ve typed 4am, and am now thinking of different ways to spell the bugger.)

Drop my throbbing skull in the hand not holding the phone, wipe the ducts of my eyes, take a breath… Of all the things to call a man at this hour for, you call to correct a blog. Usually I’d have the decency to explain it a bit, but at this point, we go back & forth several times- “Ok, please. Call me when the sun is out. I’ll deal with it then. Goodbye”, my departing words. One of those hang ups where you can’t tell if it’s mutual or not, but could care a f--- less if it was.

The moments with women where you could easily stab the words in the air “Bitch please!”… but don’t… I believe is a higher power’s means of testing your tolerance and ability to proceed into the big picture.

I wanted to tell her so many things, wanted to tell her how she’s going to become a great nurse sooner than someday, how she weathers like a f’ng champion in moments her siblings and parents go at it like rabid dogs & republican pundits, that her smile can light up the shittiest dive bar in Milwaukee to bring a glint of future hope to any pass out drunk fortunate to get a glimpse before blacking out, that she broke the mold a long time ago and won’t have any problem exceeding future expectations. But I don’t… I don’t tell her a piece of it, because it’s f----ng four in the morning, I’m sicker than an ER, and I’m pretty sure I’m not getting back to sleep  ‘til the tryptophan kicks in from the Turkey… 15 hours from now!

Messaged her the next day, but forgot to include the part where I say get new friends and siblings, if they’re going to take online text as word of God before consulting you. In the heat of adversity, including a measly blog, the people in your corner won’t need any delineation from you to know what’s what. Chalk it up to miscommunication, and unless you are the chick from Taken, and a split-second away from being forced into an Eastern European whore house… please don’t call me at 4am. 

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