First of all, I don’t see what the big deal about Vicodin is. I’m now more convinced than ever that “addiction to painkillers” — as in, “Superstar ____________ checked into Betty Ford because of an…” — is code for something else. Even given my extremely limited previous experience with drugs (i.e., none), it seems to me that if you’re willing to throw your career away over the tepid buzz you get from Vitamin V, then you haven’t lived. (My advice: if you want a real boost, mix it with root beer.)

And while I didn’t attempt to operate a moving vehicle while under the influence, I can’t imagine plowing said vehicle into a stranger’s porch simply because of a Vicodin high. My jaw, which at times during the weekend felt like it was caught in a bear trap and at other times seemed merely to be punctured by jagged metal spikes, did slightly relax a few minutes after I popped one of the magic pills, which is pretty much all that was supposed to happen, but let me assure you, whatever Courtney Love is on, it’s a lot stronger.

Aside from my steady intake of prescription medication, I’m sure my weekend would be most people’s idea of hell. I took lots of naps, watched lots of TV, barely left the apartment and accomplished virtually nothing. People would tell me they sympathized with how “cooped up” I was, or how I must be getting “cabin fever”. Fools. Personally, I can’t imagine a better way to spend three days.

Staying home is pretty much the only vacation I ever get. Even when I’m on vacation, there’s always something to do or someone to visit or something to snap pictures in front of. In the course of my day-to-day life, I do spend a fair amount of time at home, but it’s rarely relaxing. There’s always some work to do, usually in one of the following categories: paying bills, filling out forms, cleaning, plotting a new career path, writing, or feeling guilty about not writing. Even when I take a sick day from work (which is rare), I feel the need to get things done. Recovering from surgery is the first excuse I’ve had in ages which really enabled me to give myself a break.

And being able to put aside all that other stuff for a few days gave me a new understanding of the concept of free time. I like it. I like wasting time and not feeling guilty about it. After I had watched about half the first season of “Buffy” on DVD, I started wondering what other minor elective surgeries I could have that might take me out of commission for a few days and allow me to catch up on some other modern TV classics. What if we rip out those tonsils already and I get acquainted with the Gilmore Girls? That gall bladder isn’t doing me any good, and I hear good things about “Smallville“. If only my appendix would rupture already, maybe I could get through “Alias“, too.

You might think with me leaving my job at the end of next week, I’ll have all the free time a person could ever want, but trust me, I’ll have less than ever. In addition to all the other things I force myself to do when I’m home, I’ll be looking for work, too, which is a full-time job in itself. If I want to relax, I’m going to have to be creative. I’m going to need a good reason.

Anyone need a kidney?

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