I haven't slept since Wednesday. I have too much on my mind. It's not often that I get like this, but when I do I don't sleep.
I might lay in bed for a couple hours, or sit in my favorite chair in the living room, or my other favorite chair, a big plush leather one in our bedroom. I might even close my eyes for an hour or two, maybe longer, but I do not sleep.
There are times, when I get like this, that I really fall backwards. Where if there were anyone around to notice, they might worry. I had a therapist once who witnessed over the eight years I was with her, a couple of these spells. She would call them the "George goes under his rock" period.
When I'm in one I picture myself in a heavy Burberry raincoat. But instead of buttoning the coat under my chin, I button it over my head. I am completely sealed. No one can talk to me--no one can even see me and I can see and talk to no one.
Of course, I am not sealed in a raincoat. And of course, I have responsibilities to attend to, both at work and at home. So, like the good boy I am, I attend to them.
I have always thought, or pictured myself, with two spinning processors. When I have one of these spells, one of my processors goes through all the motions and niceties it takes to function in the world. The other is spinning away like mad, like an Iranian cyclotron, but it spins only for me and it spins darkness.
I could have gone last night with Whiskey to the Tempus Fugit, the bar near my house that serves Pike's Ale (the ALE that won for YALE) the most sublimely perfect beer the world has ever known, and where, somewhat inexplicably, the bartender speaks my language. We could have talked about LeBron James, or Hamlet, or the Springhill Mine Disaster, or any of the things we think about, somewhat randomly, as we course through our days.
But I was too far gone to go there. Too calloused about the world to want to be in the world.
So I sit in my chair.
Whiskey lay beside me. She puts her cold black nose against me and asks to be pet. I comply.
And we sit together in the dark. Until I can sleep again.