The air is cold as I step outside to make my way to work. It’s raining. Not the kind of rain you can really see, but definitely the kind you can feel. A mist. A cold mist that, like time, is unavoidable and painful.
I set off for my ride to work. My broken windshield wipers moving back and forth with the heartbeat of a jogger who’s suffering heart murmurs.
Wipe. Wipe. Pause. Fast wipe. Wipe. Wipe. Pause. Continued pause. Turn on and off again. Wipe. Wipe. Fast wipe.
My stomach growls. In retrospect, I should have eaten something for dinner that wasn’t someone else’s left over appetizers. I should have made food.
Admittedly, the appetizers were good. Applebee’s, much like a Disney witch, has made a living off of treats that will slowly kill you but cannot be resisted.
I go to McDonald’s for breakfast. My days are often filled with mistakes and I like to know that the first one for the day was one I chose to make. So I go to McDonald’s.
I pull up to the drive-thru speaker. A voice comes through from the other end. It is annoyed with me. It is high pitched, low pitched and guttural, all at once. Like a sad cow screaming at the dark. “Hemmum fu Memamols. Hen I pake mer murder?”
I’ve come here before. I know their code and I respond. Ordering a piece of what I sometimes pretend is meat stuffed between two pieces of what they pretend is a buttermilk biscuit.
I pull up to the window to meet the woman who spoke in code. She is pigeon shaped and has finger nails that look like corn chips, if corn chips were celebrating Mardi Gras. I immediately wonder how many bits of the paint or glitter from them have gotten into the food. How many have gotten into my food. If I cared anymore.
She looks at me. Angered at the air in general. “Knee birdie floor.” I know what this means and hand her my credit card. The transaction made she hands it back and turns, midsentence. The window preventing me from finding out the final message as always. All I made out was “Tavern ice may…”
I continue onward to work.
Upon arrival, I find there’s a parking spot by the door. I am both relieved and depressed. While it’s close to the building, allowing me to get minimal rain on me, I know that work will not allow more than one good thing per employee, per day, and I wasted mine before clocking in.
Entering the building I sit down early and start to type. For myself. Ramblings. Describing things from my day to the best of my ability. Hoping that someone in the dark reads them, understands, and in their minds, pictures themselves hugging me as I often picture being hugged.
People start pouring in. Each commenting on the rain. “Can you believe it’s raining out there?”
“Yes.” I think to myself. “I believe in a great many things. Rain is one of the least unbelievable of all of them.”
Another employee chimes in. “It’s probably going to rain for a while.”
Another, “Probably. It’s going to make the ground wet.”
Another, “Do you think it will keep raining?”
Another coworker enters the building, “Did you guys see it’s raining?”
The cycle continues.
Shortly before I am due to clock in. An email appears in my inbox.
It tells me that a self review has been planned for me. That I must decide for myself what my value is. Maybe the company knows how close to the door I was able to park and found me wanting.
Self evaluation is a dangerous road for me to walk down as the difference between how I perceive my value and how the company perceives it is an incredibly complicated and unintelligible exchange rate.
I set to it, saving my ramblings once again to throw into the well of the internet, making a wish as I do so, and get to evaluation.