Tuesday, February 25, 2003

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I seem to have either come down with another cold, or else the cold/flu I had before has chosen a new suite of symptoms in which to dress itself. I am leaning towards the New Cold theory, as it makes more sense. If being on cortisone lowered my immune system enough that The Flu That Everyone Else Had was able to sneak past, but I am no longer on cortisone and the symptoms are different, it can easily be assumed that my immune system and my physical strength haven't quite fully recovered from the flu, and therefore I am more likely to be suffering the result of any number of cold germs that I might have picked up in the last few days. I have been indulging in classic cold-catching behaviors lately, doing too much, around too many people, in the cold and/or at night, without proper nutritious meals in my tummy.

Getting sick is bad enough, but getting sick when you're also depressed is just plain mean. That feeling of overwhelming inadequacy that so often comes along with the depression is accentuated rather more than necessary by the fact that I am physically and mentally not up to most of the tasks I am undertaking. And with a new boss in the office, one doesn't like to be inept... I feel like I am being measured and found wanting, and that makes me feel sad and scared. Not scared of losing my job, per se (because who cares? I plan to leave anyway in May), but rather scared of losing my prestige as the Can-Do Fabulous Secretary. No matter how much I tell myself that I cannot control nor care about what other people think of me, I still want the world to love me... or at least those portions of the world with whom I come into daily contact.

I was talking to Caroline the other day about Instant Karma... it seems that, in this life, my wrongdoings tend to bite me in the ass almost immediately, with none of that mysterious lag-time that leaves one wondering which sins one's misfortunes are meant to recompense.

For example, when I was in high-school I made a little hobby of shoplifting — mostly costume jewelry, mostly from Emporium Capwell (the biggest of several department stores in Oakland back then... and now all we have is Sears). I stopped when I got caught, lifting a snakeskin handbag from right beneath the security windows (though I had memorized all the plainclothes guards and knew where all the cameras were, I was not aware that the security office was located just above the Accessories counter, and had little mirrored windows overlooking it), and have in the ensuing years become so scrupulous that I won't even take samples and freebies willingly.

But over the next few years after that, all of the jewelry I stole was either lost or stolen in turn by somebody else... not only that, but almost every piece of jewelry I valued, either bought legitimately or received as a gift, including some beautiful and sentimentally priceless things from my deceased grandfather, over the ensuing five or six years was also lost or stolen, or at the very least it fell apart. I paid for my sins in kind, immediately after having committed them.

So, with that in mind, whenever I feel that the Cosmos is treating me badly, I must try to think of what I did to piss the Cosmos off, and how I can put it right. One of these things, these little punitive-feeling phenomena, is the complete lack of comments on this here blog... nobody seems to have anything to say about anything that I've said in weeks and weeks and weeks. Although I do hear from people I meet in person who read my diary, and the feedback I get is positive, it isn't specific. And I'm not even going to claim that I am not begging for comments, I will fess up right now: I am trying to guilt-trip you into leaving a comment of some sort. I wouldn't have brought it up otherwise.

However, I have to get down off the cross and ask myself what I've done to the Cosmos to spark this apparent indifference. Is it that my posts aren't interesting? Perhaps so, but that never stopped anybody from commenting before. Is it that I have left inappropriate comments on other people's blogs? I can think of a couple of places where I left comments that were more like criticisms than support (and one in which I was mistaken in what I said, anyway). So that might be the problem. I should apologize to those people for my criticism, implied or blatant.

Since that time I posted a mistaken criticism (for which I must apologize), I haven't posted a comment on any blogs or diaries anywhere else. And that, I think, is why the Cosmos is pointing out to me, in the form of a month-long dearth of commentary, my wrongdoing. I have not been supportive, I have not left comments, I have not sent emails to the writers upon whose words and ideas I glut myself daily. I have been gorging at the buffet without complimenting the chefs. I consume without giving back. And that is a Karmic no-no.

So I am going to be making more of an effort to communicate with people, here in the blogiverse and among my personal email addresses. The whole point of life is to connect, as EM Forster tells us. You can't connect with people if you are simply observing them, sucking on their lives like a virtual vampire. You have to give back, react and reply and return what you receive.

But not right this minute. Right this minute I'm going to go home and rest. I'm so flippin' tired! I so hate being sick. You'd think I'd be good at it by now, but each cold is like the first time. Perhaps it's because each cold is in fact a new virus or germ, you never get the same cold twice. I'm sure there's a deep philosophical metaphor in there, but I'm too sick to look for it.

Nighty-night! (Yes, I know it's only afternoon... leave me alone, I'm sick)

Oh, yeah... leave a comment!!! PUH-LEEEEEZE!!!! Even if it's just an LOL or an emoticon or something. I need the love!

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