When The Universe Is Out To Get Me, I Stay In Bed


I’m in a bad mood.

I ought to go back to bed and start again later, but this is also the perfect time to write a humor column. Not for my readers, of course, but for me, Debbie. Very therapeutic.

But can’t you relate?

Don’t you sometimes have a day where the garbage truck woke you up and your neighbor’s dog has been barking for 20 minutes and the milk is sour and someone is parked in your space and your laptop isn’t cooperating and you have a meeting you don’t want to go to?

On a good day, you will readily admit that it’s your fault the milk went bad or that the inopportune scheduling of the meeting wasn’t your fault. But, on a bad day, it simply seems as if the universe is out to get you.

I remember watching a TV show in which they were studying road rage. This hothead was driving along and had to stop because a construction crew had torn up the street. A worker in an orange vest had spun his sign from “slow” to “stop” just as his car approached, and the driver just lost it. “Of course! Of course!” he was yelling. “They had to tear up my street!” His therapist, who was riding next to him, tried to explain that they had not specifically chosen this street because of him, but there was no convincing the driver. The universe was out to get him.

“How selfish,” I thought. “As if the road crew even knows who this guy is.”

There is a great deal of selfishness that goes into rage of any kind, even mine. As if the universe even knows who I am.

“Get over yourself,” calm, rational, good-natured Debbie would say.

However, on a day like today, when things are going badly, Debbie cannot listen to the voice of reason — even her own. Instead, I yell out, “Oh, shut up, you know-it-all!”

I want to be miserable. I want to wallow in my self-pity.

Of course, I could take action. I could get to bed earlier when I know the garbage truck is coming the next day. I could talk to the neighbor about the dog. I could go buy fresh milk, park somewhere else, plug my flash drive into another device or ask if I can skip the meeting.

But all those things mean making an effort, and I’m not in the mood.

You know what I’m in the mood for?

A hot fudge sundae.

A hot fudge sundae would set the world properly back on its axis, the axis of me. All I need to do is find someone to make me one. And, after they’ve made it, and brought it to me on a silver platter, and fixed my laptop problem while I was eating it, I will turn to them and say, “Those were walnuts. I like pecans.”

So, you can see why it’s better for everyone if I really do go back to bed.