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April 11, 2000

I'm living in a land between light and shadow. I'm not controlling the vertical or the horizontal. I'm so overwhelmed with trying to do everything at once that I find myself standing in the middle of the room staring at nothing, thinking about nothing. Doing nothing.

Some of the time.

The rest of the time I'm doing four things at once, none of them well, and still thinking about nothing. Autopilot. My job is not getting the attention it needs, and I'm afraid I'll miss some due dates or forget to follow up on collecting on our bills. I have a list, but it's just a list. It doesn't do the work for me.

Moving. I'm randomly filling whatever boxes I can get my hands on with whatever will fit. I make one or two trips a day to the new place. I even managed to put some kitchen things away today, but most of what I've already moved will have to stay in boxes until I know what I'm doing there.

On the other hand, those pesky phone calls that I hate so much haven't been done yet. The one I have made is to PG&E, to get the utilities changed over. But I still have to arrange for garbage and cable service, as well as ... Hmmm, maybe that's all. Well, that's not so bad, is it?

What else? While working and packing, I tried to enjoy the Giants' home opener in their new ballpark today, but it wasn't easy. For one thing, they lost to the hated Dodgers, and for another, baseball is a game best enjoyed in a state of relaxed concentration, and that seems miles beyond my grasp these days. The TV was on, but I can't tell you much about what happened.

I spent some time last night paying my personal bills, but with two rent checks to pay this month, I won't be able to keep all my creditors off my back. Another paycheck next week will go a long way toward improving my comfort level. I don't much like being broke, especially when I have a drawer full of bills.

And I still haven't figured my own taxes. I spent three months getting the Company's tax information ready to go to the accountant, but I haven't even looked at my 1040 form. It's good April 15 falls on a Saturday this year, because that gives me a couple of extra days. I need all the extra time I can find.

Here's how bad things are: Eric offered me a chance to go with him to tomorrow night's game at Pacific Bell Park, the Giants against the (hated) Dodgers. I had to turn him down. Now, there is almost nothing in this world I'd rather do that go to a baseball game with Eric, but I feel so beyond coping right now that I knew I couldn't manage it.

My neighbor Grady is upset that I'm moving. He doesn't want to have to break in a new gofer, I guess. He has me trained just the way he likes me.

Yesterday afternoon his car wouldn't start, so he asked me to give him a jump start. I moved my car to his end of the driveway but couldn't get my hood open. (Latch problem, since fixed, don't worry.) So he told me he desperately needed two cans of cream of celery soup and a bundle of scallions, and asked me to run to the store for him. In the middle of my work day, with everything else going on.

He didn't ask to go along, because he doesn't fit into my car very well. It's a Honda, and he's a Peterbilt.

Of course I did it. I wasn't sure what scallions were, but I got him green onions and he seemed satisfied.

When I got back from the store he was preparing some kind of crab dish. He told me he'd bring me some later. I've learned that I could starve if I relied on these kinds of promises from him. Several times he's told me, "I'm fixing one of my specialties tonight. I'll give you a call and you can come over and fix yourself a plate." When no call came, I had to forage for myself at the last minute.

I try to accept Grady the way he is. I think he means well, but his mind tends to meander. All of his other friends, the ones he's known since high school, take turns looking in on him, to make sure he's all right. They worry about him, and they've told me they're grateful that I'm close enough to run to handle his little emergencies, like the celery soup crisis.

Multitasking: On my better days, I can watch a ball game, read Pamie, work and pack at the same time. I gave it my best shot today, but it wasn't meant to be.

I have my Up Days and my Down Days. No use elaborating on which kind today was. Stay tuned. It can only get better.

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