A Sideways Glare at Contemporary Society
I have a drop-lid desk. It’s very small and sits in the corner. When I go away for any length of time, I organize it, shut my computer off, push it back in its place and close the lid. My desk becomes an attractive piece of furniture — until I get back. Unfortunately, once the lid is closed, nobody knows what goes on in there, and every time I come home and open it up, all hell breaks loose. This is what I invariably find.
Mail — Here’s the deal: my bank pays my bills, my job is electronic and my friends (normally) live in the 21st century — so — I don’t get mail (except one monthly magazine that hasn’t figured out my subscription ran out in the 80s.) However, the minute I leave my desk for more than one sleep …
Every pizza joint, realtor, Sham-Wow salesman, car dealership and landscaper has a burning need to tell me how cool they are.
Junk food throughout the known universe is on sale.
The federal government suddenly has two new pension options they want to share with me.
Tony, from high school, found some old photos he thought he’d just “send along.”
Great Aunt Vera got the dates mixed up and sent, not one but two, birthday cards — three months early. (Yay! Lottery tickets!)
And the whole stack, teetering on self destruction, just needs the vibration of my footsteps to slide backwards into, and get irretrievably tangled up with, the other evil — paper.
Paper — Clearly, the 3 or 4 hand-written notes-to-self I left neatly in the corner were overcome by separation anxiety and panicked — ’cause there’s paper everywhere.
Post-it notes, in colours I don’t even own, stuck in places I never stick them.
Telephone numbers, written on scraps of paper — without names, area codes or explanation.
A napkin with the address, 1641 Vine #202, written in scrolling script. (Holy crap! The “i” is dotted with a heart!)
Receipts — lots of receipts. (Who bought the toilet paper, mushrooms, ice cream scoop and hand sanitizer?)
The warranty card from a can opener that broke two Christmases ago.
A refund cheque from Costco.
The airline itinerary I couldn’t find.
And one cryptic message (in my handwriting) that just says, “Freeze the meat!”
Then, after fighting with the paper for hours, I make the mistake of turning on my computer.
WTF? Nobody gets 282 emails in a week!