Friday, July 18, 2008

Journey Through the Dark Night

I woke at 9:15,in the p.m., and my room being the degree of H-E-Double that it is in the summertime, I slipped into a bath of sub-arctic temperatures, and promptly fell asleep. I awoke, and discovering that despite my lack of feeling I did indeed still have legs.

I dressed, and tried to determine what to do with the rest of my night.

I checked my email and in the corner I saw a banner ad for The Dark Knight (darn the charming level of shiny objects on the internet, that play perfectly into my impulsiveness). Instantly I had to see it. I knew my task.

My friends tend to dissipate when I work three 16 hour days in a row, and so flying solo to a movie, an activity I too often find myself doing, was my only option for entertainment for a Friday night...besides returning to bed (It was a long day).

I checked movie times, and found that the lamest theater in town still had tickets. I'm only one person. They have to have one lonely seat.

I became a geek possessed. Keys were already in hand. Shoes were on, and I was moving quickly through a black house. Because my feet worked faster than my mind, I remembered a nanosecond too late the large easy chair I had moved that very night precariously placed at knee level, between myself and the door.

In my frenzy to exit, my tumble was absolute. Landing on my face, I honestly took a quick breath, stood, and was out the door before I could utter an "ow". My senses came back briefly to visit. I turned back to the door for but a moment in remorse, thinking that perhaps my roommates upon returning home would suffer a similar fate. Maybe I should move that chair. My swift and dismissive justification?

"It'll be funny if they also fall, and we'll all have a good laugh in the morn' at our shared blunders".

Evil Jeff...Evil!

As I drove, that old awful feeling of dread returned to me.

Now, I don't particularly care for the word "hate". It's almost always hyperbole to use there a word that almost butts up to "hate" yet doesn't go too far over the line?


I know that's not in the dictionary, but let's just say it would be difficult to measure my level of "despise-ification" for driving in Utah. My "despise-ification" is exquisite. Forget just Utah. I believe that driving anywhere is exquisitely despisable. I have now decided that my only levels of tolerance are for instant teleportation or long meaningful walks to unimportant destinations (like duck ponds on contemplative evenings). Anything in between is ridiculously stressful.

University Avenue is a particularly hateful stretch of Provo, and the moniker given to "the fast lane" is hilariously ironic. Picture a group of small children wearing water wings floating without purpose or propulsion in one of the lanes of the deep end of an olympic-sized swimming pool.

On this night, I was even more distraught finding it impossible to believe that driving of this nature exists when all I want is to see Heath Ledger act like a method actor.

35 in a 50? Honestly?! Cell phones, radios and yes even laptops(!), should be banned in those people's autos that fail to meet a "driving with distractions" competency exam. Oh that such a test existed.

You there! The one surfing the internet while driving...Please pull off to the side of the road, and read your Mac Book Pro, like the rest of us do... in the tub. This is a sight that could only exist on this night.

My radio plays the generic noise that I can't seem to drive without anymore, despite the fact that the radio hasn't been "awesome" since Guglielmo Marconi. (Blips and beeps, and stuff like that. So Sigur Ros!)

Also, I ridiculously find myself pondering why there's so much "bleeding" in records these days? Everyone's "bleeding" in their song lyrics. Get a band-aid, and stop whining! Don't believe me?

Now I'm behind the diesel truck that makes me feel like Al Gore's love child. I picture puppies and flowers coughing, as the rich plume of black smoke pours into my glass face, giving me reminiscence of Nintendo's classic title "Spy Hunter". Decrease your carbon footprint! It just makes "popular" sense. Even Capcom realizes you only use toxic emissions to smite your 8-bit enemies.

The moon is peering over the mountains at me, like some evil big brother. He seems to be the mastermind behind the stone curtain, plotting to make my night completely "Bale-less". On the radio, I have no choice but to marvel at how Kelly Clarkson really seems to just "get" my experience in relationships.

I am flabbergasted. In all honesty at this point in my journey I've come to believe that I'm part of a late Friday night funeral procession. Why? Why are we going 10 in a 75? Is that even possible? Is there a Bichon Frise running in front of your car? I love dogs lady, but please...BATMAN!

At this crawl I now also have enough time in the car to contemplate the hilariousness of robotic assisted surgery. I'd tried out for a voice-over spot the day before, that advertised just such a service.

All I can picture is the robot being a "smart aleck", and when the doctor asks for a scalpel the robot mischievously hands him a pair of forceps. The doctor flabbergasted turns to the robot (who of course looks like Johnny 5 and has a cute name like M.E.L.Vi.N. or something) and it is producing a small computer generated snicker. It's android eyes squinting in delight, even though we all know perfectly well that surgery robot assistant's don't need eyes but for the sole purpose of making them look adorable.

Geesh see what you've done to me road? I've taken shelter in a ludicrous fantasy world where robots pull medical pranks on their masters. The machines truly have won.

On the car audio maker, I discover that I don't care for Death Cab for Cutie's new single.

Finally, I've arrived, having broken the barrier of late night driving foolishness, and found a surprisingly convenient parking spot.

Of course at this point I realize there is no hope in this endeavor.

This is "Dulls-burg" on a Friday night. This is the biggest movie of the summer.

I arrive at the ticket office, and a very small young lady tells me that there are no more tickets.

"Not even one?" I say, in a far more pitiful and outloud-ish tone, then this moment deserves.

On the long walk back to my movable torment, I see a pair of nerds walking peacefully hand in hand. They have a blissful smile on their smooshed faces, and the dream girl of this acne faced man-boys existence wears a classic batman T-shirt. She is the perfect woman at this moment in time. They pause and without guile look longingly into each of their four eyes. Their pleasantness mocks my pain, and pointlessness. They continue on their way, and as I turn to follow them with my eyes for but a moment, I think to myself...

"Dang, I've got to move that chair! My knee and face really hurt."


vonblake said...


Guy Mayhem said...

But did you see it? Did you finally go see it?

Jeff B said...

I did finally see it. And then I saw it again last night. Although I fell asleep for the last twenty minutes of the film. I was REALLY tired!

Blogenstein said...

I feel like I was there, driving University with you. Then again, when I was there 10 years ago, people were still surfing the web on 56k modems, so fortunately they didn't do it in their cars, because that would have had to require some really long phone cords.

By the way, it was that yellow chair, wasn't it? The one from the 1970s that is still in mint condition from being hermetically sealed in the time capsule that is the Villager Condo. Brought out of its sanctuary and torn from its lemony bedspread partner, by you, for the sole purpose of mocking its hideousness--like parading the Elephant Man at the freak show. Do you allow it any dignity? No. Each day it sits in your apartment, covered in dirty underwear, praying for death, but receiving a perverted clemency. But despite its cursed existence, every decade or so it gets to see things squared with its tormentor, if only for a moment, and this gives it the will to carry on. Carry on ugly, bright yellow, mint-condition, too-small, velour chair from a disposable decade, carry on.