Mentalpause – 3 October 2013

Posted: October 3, 2013 in Dialog, Prose
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,




3 October 2013

In his book, Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking, author Malcolm Gladwell  states ” Addicts can articulate very well the consequences of their behavior. But they fail to act accordingly. That’s because of a brain problem… Damage in the ventromedial area causes a disconnect between what you know and what you do.”

This morning, as I approached Joy, she stood up from her box, waved and headed to the restaurant. She must have been waiting anxiously to go for her pee break. When she returned I asked, “Did I miss anything at noon yesterday?”

“No, I didn’t go up there. Jacques and I saw Stella then went over to his place. I still haven’t seen anything of Hippo. He got his check, was going to get a bottle then come to my place, but he never showed. He probably got shitfaced and was picked up by the cops. He’s probably in jail now.

“Mariah kicked Charlie out again. He was just a waste of space. She’s been sick with a cold and she also has Chron’s Disease. When I saw her last, she was doubled up with pain. She doesn’t have the time or energy to take care of somebody else. Last night, I heard a thump on the floor, so I went to her door and knocked. I could hear Precious meowing and meowing, but nothing from Mariah. I knocked again and called out, ‘Mariah, are you alright?’ She said, ‘I’m okay, Joy, I’ve made it from the bedroom, half way to the kitchen. I’ll be fine.’

“I used to be able to check on her by phone, but I still haven’t got things sorted out with Bell. I called them yesterday from Jacques’ place. I was talking to some lady in Toronto. First of all, I didn’t know the internet account, so I had to go home and get our bill. I didn’t know it was just two extra digits to the phone account. You’d think they’d have that on record. I was trying to arrange an appointment for someone to come over. She said, ‘I can have someone over there between eight and four.’ That’s no good to me. I have to make some money. They’re coming over on Monday between one and five. I’ll just have to wait.

“I don’t know what’s wrong with the damn phone. I’m not good with things electrical.  I’ve paid so frickin much money to them already. It’s practically brand new. Stella gave it to me. I didn’t keep the box, but it’s not like I’ve been kicking it around or anything. The center button and the two outside buttons are flashing, but when I pick it up I’ve got no dial tone. Sometimes I think it was better before I was human and just lived behind the dumpster. I didn’t have all these things to worry about. I don’t even miss the television. It’s all repeats now. It was nearly as good when I just had my dvd player.  I’d be watching the same old stuff all the time, but at least it was decent stuff.

“I’m also still going through this mentalpause stuff. That makes me bitchy, and I start crying all the time for no reason, like right now.  I remember when my mom went through it.  She was really hard to live with then. We knew to just stay away from her during those times. She had it really early. She had a hysterectomy when she was twenty-nine.

“I also have to pick up a card today. Yesterday it was Jake’s and my seventh anniversary of being together. He sent me a card it said Happy Eighth Anniversary. I said to him, ‘You dumbass, it’s only been seven years. This means you owe me a year.’ Maybe I’ll make a card. That would make it more personal, right? It wouldn’t seem cheap, would it? They say it’s the thought that counts.  I can’t afford a card anyway.

“I’m not going to the park at noon. I’m just going straight home to bed.”


  1. omtatjuan says:

    Hi Dennis I like your work. I also like the quote by Malcolm Gladwell about addicts.


    • dcardiff says:

      Thanks, I liked the quote by Malcolm Gladwell also. I’m not addicted to drugs or alcohol, but I have an addictive personality. If there’s something that I need to do, good or bad, come hell or high water, I have to do it. ~ Dennis


  2. Oh Dennis 🙂 mentalpause! lol, tell her it will be okay.
    Joy is sweet! I gotta give her credit for hanging in there with life. Seems like everything tends to fall apart almost at the same time, but they deal with life regardless.
    I think she better hold Jake to that one year…I’ve been away from here for a while, it’s good to see you doing what you do 🙂


  3. SiverBlack says:

    “Sometimes I think it was better before I was human…” That is heavy.


    • dcardiff says:

      Before Joy moved into an apartment by herself, even at forty-eight years of age, she had never lived alone. She always had someone to take care of the bills, arrange for cable television, telephone and utilities. Living behind a dumpster was less complicated, less frustrating. She had only one thing to worry about — survival.


  4. Keep up the good work.


  5. msinop1 says:

    Dennis, your actions in this life make my heart sing. That’s all, my heart is singing. God Bless you 😉


    • dcardiff says:

      Thanks so much for your kind words. I’m only the listener and chronicler; it’s the lives and personalities of these friends that come through. They are in every city, every town trying to get by from hand to mouth, day to day. I’m glad that you heart is singing, so is mine. ~ Dennis


  6. Linda says:

    Dennis, please tell Joy that she has many sisters out there suffering from that “mentalpause” too! 🙂 Life is a struggle for all of us but please tell her she has a sister out here cheering her on and praying for her! Blessings, Linda


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