My air condition-less apartment has godlessly morphed into a slow cooker this week. The beast it’s been cooking is me, and I’ve been as greasy and helpless as a rotisserie chicken, roasting under the heat of LA’s hottest week of the year.
Of course, it also happens to be the one week that I’m not scheduled to work. I usually work five days, so going from five to zero is quite a change. House arrest has taken on a new meaning for me, as I have now lost count of how many consecutive days I’ve spent inside the walls of my apartment. Any innate sense of time I had seems to have been melted away. With it has gone any motivation to slug down to the apartment gym for my usual release from the monotony of being imprisoned at home. Instead, I hulk to the kitchen in search of carbs and full-fat butter to fill the void where my self-respect used to be. It’s been too long since my last approved trip to the grocery store. I’ve run out of desirable food. I’ve stooped to pillaging the salty, processed remains of a Nutrisystem order that I made the misguided decision to purchase after a convincing late-night infomercial a few months back.
I haven’t been to the backyard for sunlight this week either. I almost never go out there now. My days of taking the ol’ lawn chair for a sit have all but gone since I caught my neighbor (aka “The Mystery Masturbator”) greasing his own meat while staring down at me from his window. He felt some heat that night too, after my friend and I called the police on him. The thought of him perched above me as I try to soak up a tan has induced enough nausea to dissuade me from returning.
I’ve been keeping my shades shut in an effort to block out the intensity of the sun. I can’t tell if it makes it better or worse because I’m also blocking airflow into the apartment. I just sit all day with my small, drug store fan aimed at my face. I feel an obligation to shower twice daily now. Even so, I wake up in the morning so sweat-covered that I can spin my GPS bracelet around my ankle like an oiled-up dreidel.
Lethargy has set in. It is almost five in the morning, and I’m wide awake. I’m sweating like a hippo and watching Tosh.O on DVR. I just polished off a head of raw garlic because it was the only fresh food in my apartment. I needed antioxidants. I just peeled it and ate the cloves like popcorn. Then, after some research online, I swallowed two tablespoons of mustard to mitigate the damage. A dangerous routine. At least, a socially dangerous one.
I slept until the afternoon today. And yesterday. And the day before. I can’t imagine what things would be like if I didn’t have a job and the ability to work outside of my apartment this year. Confinement can breed madness. I will be returning to work this week. That should help. I mean, at least there will be air conditioning.
59 days to go.