The Outbreak

Thursday, December 22, 2005

So that's that. I guess we should have seen it coming in November when everything started to change so rapidly--when the outbreak seemed to metastasize, is that the right word for it? and everyone who died turned. Of course by then it was so hard to get reliable information, let alone compare it to a wide enough sampling of information elsewhere to put things together for yourselves, especially after the Coast and the clampdown...will that let up now? I guess these reports are the first sign that the wall is coming down again. Maybe. I don't know. Good news is the only news, maybe. We'll see.

I'm surprisingly calm. That's how I'd look at it anyway. But when Pa-Pa died I remember thinking the same thing, so perhaps I shouldn't be surprise.d The person who brought you happiness in life would not want you to be upset. No matter how things ended.

I don't know why he wouldn't stop drinking. Even when it was obvious what it was doing...the TIA and everything...oh, I can't. He was my dad, fuck it, I'm not going to run him down or hate him, I'll always love him, my dad. I've been there and I stopped, but I don't know what everyone else goes through. He had a hard life. His dad dying when he was 7, no birthday parties ever, taking the bus home from graduation alone, the uncle who robbed them. I don't know why he did what he did and never will. I don't know why I'm angry with my mother other than that it's okay to be angry with her because I've been angry with her before. But I love her too. I don't want this to have happened to her. I don't wnat her to feel this way. I don't want her to have been so hurt. I don't want to leave her behind. I miss my dad and I miss my mom & dad, momanddad.

Amy...what it boils down to is I can't go through this again. I love you and that is why I'm doing this with you, but it's also for me. I can't have it, don't want it. You starving is like him drinking--didn't you pick up on that? So that's why I'm doing this. There won't be a hospital to take you to for a long time, no treatment center. It's me, it's on me, do you understand? And I know what you say to that and that it's self-centered bullshit and I can't help it, I'm sorry. Failure failure failure. I've got to do this, even if you DIDN'T want to. I've got to save SOMEBODY.

After Dad and Grandma the house was useless--that was obvious. And no I'm not going to talk about it too much. I'm dissasocialaksj;lkdjlkj whatever from it, I know that, and that's fine. I was so used to it by then anyway, never thought of who they used to be. (But that's not true at all, is it? Look at that Mr. Stone post down there! This case was this case, is what I respond to that.) Nobody saw it which is what I'm grateful for. Nobody saw until it was alread done, a fait accompli if you will as it were so to speak in a sense. I'd nver seen them go so berserk before and I'm grateful because that's what I concentrated on, Ryan too. Just flailing, tearing things apart, trying to get up, down, out, wherever. I wish we'd known--known for sure--that it was all but over. Maybe we could have toughed it out another week? Not fallen apart? How I hate that this happened. Hate it, hate it, it's so black and bitter because what can you do but choke on it and HATE IT SO MUCH, everything since March, HATE IT? Regret is what frightens me you know. Mistakes you can't ever fix, things you do wrong that you can't ever make up for. That's the scariest. I mean isn't it? I learned that when I cheated. And the night I ran out of the apartment and woke up by the dumpster. That's unfixable, isn't it? Is it forgiveable but unfixable? Does that stay broken? Oh Daddy, Daddy, I love you!!!!!!! Why?

Ryan's gonna move in with Samantha's family until things get moving again, and Caitlin is going back to Philadelphia after Christmas, and Mom is going with her and we are going to Colorado with our cats and Mom is taking their cats. We're not waiting till they let the planes back in the air--we're driving. We wanted to leave by sundown but that's not happening. Maybe after dinner. There'll be rough spots but hopefully we're tuned in enough to avoid them and now that they're not coming back anymore it should get better and better. Amy needs her family and I need Amy, so really, that decision is made. Watching it all fall apart, well, I need

My christmas present for everyone was a big kiss. For you guys I don't know. I'm glad that you made it through. I might try to get back on here again in Colorado, if I can. But maybe not. Maybe not. Well, good luck. Good luck to you. I'm okay, I'm okay, don't worry about it. That's all.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Goodbye, Dad

Thursday, December 01, 2005

I've got nothing


Away. That's where I want to go. Maybe if we remove ourselves from the equation they'll stop killing themselves, both of them. \
But that's not true. I can't save either of them. Make that all three of them, even if she's in less danger now. Something's wrong there too. My brother and sister and I and the cats are trying.

I keep seeing old Mr. Stone's face at the window again. The window here in the computer room, that's where I finally saw him. I knew that old nightmare from when I used to live here would come true, I just knew it. I still had that total moment of collapse when it happened, my heart instantly felt like it had just disappeared and blood rushed in to fill the vacuum and I fell out of the chair. That was a while ago now and the next time he showed up from wherever he'd been hiding I was ready for him. I guess I broke YOUR neck, asshole, ha ha. And afterwards I threw him in his fucking rose garden before I called the crew to dispose of him. That time he yelled at Ryan and Peter from across the street about the roses, that was maybe my first memory of this house. I think that now this is going to be one of the last. Maybe I wanted to bring it full-circle.

Suddenly a dead face appear s in the window. shave and a haircut two bits

Monday, November 21, 2005

Why are these decisions that *I* have to make? Answer me that. I did not expect to h ave to be doing this at age 27, that much I can tell you. Fucking grow up, you babies.

And if I get one more comment telling me "you have problems but I'm living in dumpsters in the woods" or whatever I swear I will fucking hunt people down. Whoop dee shit! You're wandering around scared and alone! So is half the fucking country! Your problem isn't any more unique than mine, and if you think mine is less serious because I happen to have a house to live in and family to live with, I cordially invite you to suck my fucking dick. I am really sick to death of being invalidated, of having no one think that my problems are worth caring about because other people have it worse. It makes me feel like I'm going crazy and I know I am NOT going crazy.

That fucking guy. I'm ready for him tonight. Scared the shit out of me the other day, but no longer. If he comes back around I'm going out there and taking his head off myself, I don't care how dark it is.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

learned helplessness
post-traumatic stress disorder
borderline personality disorder
cabin fever

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Is it me, or does almost everyone turn now?

And there's nothing mroe fun to watch than the disintegration of your famiyl, is there?

Monday, November 07, 2005

the main thing we're concerned about now is our next-door neighbor. It's funny--he used to be the real stereotypical "mean old man next door"--he threatened to break my brother's neck if he broke any of his roses, and we're reasonably sure he shot our cat with a bb gun and left antifreeze out for him. But after his wife passed he really mellowed, and over the past few years my mom says he's become really nice. The thing is that no one has seen him for a few days. And they absolutely are more aggressive and determined when they get stuck someplace and are unable to feed for a certain period of time, I mean even *I* in my limited experience could tell you that. So we're worried about him in a couple of different ways, basically. He has had heart problems.

Amy and I got in a fight last night. I couldn't tell you what it was about, really. But we haven't been close in a while now. How did we not really notice that before? Or did we, and did we choose to ignore it? Last weekend was very nice, but since then, virtually no "meaningful touches," snuggling, that sort of thing. Very little talking about anything of import. We sort of go our own separate ways in the house. We don't really snuggle when we go to sleep or get up.

My brother is a mess too. He's actually been working, doing financial stuff for one of the fleets, but they sold him a real bill of goods in terms of what his responsibilities would be. He's working all the time, coming home late in the dark which none of us like. But he won't quit, and he won't look for another job. When my mom is able she tries to help him but he refuses the advice, so now she's got another thing to worry about, the last thing she needs, I assure you.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Free moment at the computer, this is so rare these days, it is cold and kind of close in here all the time.

Amy and I had sex for the first time in months this weekend. (It's a crowded house, but we managed. We had some experience in this regard, after all--we dated while I was in high school.)

It was nice, very nice. I wish it were the kind of Stephen King deal where the horrific end-of-the-world tragedy makes people all kinds of horny, but this has not been the case for us. Well, it has been for me, maybe. But everybody brought the same problems they had before the revenants into this whole situation with them, and they didn't go away. The things that are wrong with you are always wrong with you until they get fixed regardless of the external circumstances. I thought when we got married that that was the sign she needed to trust me again. I really thought that would change everything. What can I say? I'm not the world's most insightful person. the anniversaries of people's deaths come and go and I'm lucky if I remember it at all. I miss the intimacy. I feel robbed of it.

Do you ever get to wondering, especially now, if you are "worth" having survived? Not really "worth it," or "deserving of it," but like, why? It's amazing how arbitrary things are. It occurred to me that I could just as easily be gay as straight, I bet. So much of love is just a buddy-buddy relationship. Would that be hard to replicate with a man? The sexual aspect, yes, but the rest of it? I don't know. I don't think so. What's been happening has shown everyone (read: me) how really random what you consider the integral aspects of your life actually are. You envision yourself as a grown-up and part of your own family and the next thing you know you are in high school again, a high schooler. No one has any goals anymore, no one has any long-term plans, because no one really knows what's going to happen. Everything gets scarcer and more expensive because fewer and fewer people are doing anything. Is that true where you are? Without goals, without an endpoint as a constant, everything just becomes a big gray washout, too fluid to care about. I don't care and nobody cares. Everyone's life is just a sort of diseased parody of life. A dry spell that's lasted for five years, who gives a shit? It could last for five, ten, twenty more years if anyone lives that long--what difference does it make? It makes a big difference to ME--I guess that's hope?

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

I don't blame people who have it much worse than I do for being pissed at me. Dave, I don't even think that you ARE pissed, but I wouldn't blame you. We have not had it so bad. One family member, one best friend, a few friends of friends--that's all. Other deaths, other difficulties and tragedies and setbacks...I mean, these things could happen anyway. I try to keep that in perspective. But what can I say? Amy and I built a life in that apartment and now it's gone. I called over there yesterday and no one would answer the phone. I just wanted to see how they were--I care about those people, we lived in Fort Apache together for half a year. It's jarring and it makes me sad that we're not there anymore. Now I get to watch my family up close and personal as it falls apart, as my parents fail to hold it together for the first time in their adult lives, Xanax and cases of wine, tears and silence, boarded-up windows, cat shit, cold, dirty towels, yowling, rain, cabin fever, out of money, out of prospects, sitting around waiting to see what happens as the weather gets colder and wetter and snowier, waiting for Long Island to become the next Pacific Northwest or the next Gulf Coast, waiting for famine, waiting for the flu, waiting for bronchitis and pneumonia and laryngospasms, years of resentment never fully addressed, unequipped to deal with mental illness, two kids who never got anywhere and one who never got a chance, graduated too late, killers, dead neighbors, crazed neighbors, survivor's guilt, fighting over nothing, fighting over misplacing something, cats fighting, missing her family, the holidays, hopelessness.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

I'm sorry about that. God, I was so tired--I was getting MAYBE four hours of sleep a night for the last few days. Working overtime on clearing out the apartment. A lot of stuff got left behind.

Anyway. It came to blows, ultimately, and really Kevin was no match for Kurt, who limited himself to one punch but it was still all he needed. Knocked out teeth, broke his glasses. Kurt himself broke a finger. Mike and John and me broke them up as quickly as we could. But by now the atmosphere in the house was poison. Somebody was going to leave, clearly.

Everybody retreats to their corners. Then we start hearing hammering again and we figure they must have made up, or at least calmed down enough to get back to work. I'm halfway down the stairs to help when I hear shouting and pounding, like with hands. So I run right back up the stairs again, thinking it's the youknowwhats. Fuck 'em, I'm ready, I grab the pole with the knife and head back down and knock on the door to Kurt's area of the house. But there are no revs--Kevin's begun boarding himself into the basement. Apparently Kurt told him he wanted to buy him out of his share of the place, and this is what happened.

And me? I'm just in the wrong place at the wrong time. Kurt was very nice and very polite, but he asked us to leave. As soon as possible. They need the breathing room.

The next couple of days are spent packing and crying. This was amy's and my first apartment together. We moved in right after we got married. We'd been there for three years, hirings and firings, cats, Christmastimes, summers. I didn't wnat to leave, and I keep thinking to myself how UNFAIR it is. I think I'm angrier about this than I have been about anything. Not at Kurt, because who can blame him, really? I thought he'd kick us out about a week into this thing. I'm mad at, I don't know what. The world? God? The zombies? What fucking difference does it make?

We were lucky to get a U-Haul, since most of them have been stolen. Most of our furniture is still sitting in the U-Haul. Some things we had to give up. Amy's grandmother's piano--goodbye, no more lessons for you. She's devastated. They didn't want me to bother with all my CDs and I said fuck you. I brought them anyway, I don't care. We have the one segment of the sectional that Bobo used to lay on and Amy sits in it all the time--the rest is in the garage for now. I brought all the knives of course. You just felt like such an idiot packing up the TiVo box and the surround sound system but you do it anyway. I don't want to give up on that.

Seven adults and four cats in our house now. The cats are freaked out, fighting. Everybody is miserable. It rained for like a week so lots of stuff got ruined.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Okay. We've got the internet connection at my parents', which is where we live now. So here's what happened.

Kurt and Kevin had been arguing. Not so much that you'd necessarily notices--well, not so much that I'D necessarily notice, though Amy did. I think it' s just hard having this many adults living in one house, and would be under any circumstances, let alone the semi-siege conditions we've all been living in for months now. They're brothers in law so they tried to make it work, and it did for a long time. But it's just too much now, you know? Just too much.

The blow-up came when we were replacing the boards for the fall. We wanted to make sure everything was sturdy as the weather got colder, since to be honest we figured a non-trivial number of old people would be succumbing to the cold this winter, what with fuel so hard to come by. And right from the start Kurt and Kevin were snipping at each other. Snipping gave way to outright yelling.

Oh, a;lskdj. I'm too exhausted to finish this tonight. When my Dad got home late last night it meant I had to spend the whole night watching my mother. Too tire d now and I miss our old apartment, our old life. Holy God I msis it soo much.. Goodnight.

Friday, October 14, 2005

We're moving out

Monday, October 10, 2005

Tensions run high. Not really sure how much I can/should say beyond that. Not really sure how much I know beyond that either. It's a landlord thing, basically. Things are coming to a head. I'm concerned. It could end very badly for us. Still sick and exhausted.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Still sick. Coughing, achey.

I don't know why I acted, a few days ago, like it was this big revelation that I wanted to write for a living. I ALREADY write/wrote for a living, of course--what I mean is write fiction/comics for a living. That's what the whole purpose of this blog was at first, remember? Getting out of that funk I was in. I agree with all the writers who say there's no such thing as writer's block--there's just unproductive patterns you get into that you need to muster the willpower to get out of. To break out of. The Outbreak--that was the origin of the name, if you recall. Go back and check the first entries and see. And then lo and behold, out come the revenants. Is this what Alanis would call ironic? I can't remember anymore.

Cough, cough.

I've been rereading Clive Barker's Books of Blood lately, a) because there's nothing else to do; b) because it's October and it reminds me of Halloween, which I guess very few kids will be celebrating this year, huh?; c) because life is a giant Clive Barker story now, so why not? If things were normal I'd take solace in the fact that Clive was over 30 when he became the Hot New Thing with these books. I've still got a few years to accomplish something lest the sneaking suspicion that I'm worthless, which I used to assuage by hooking up with lots of girls and now try to ameliorate by creating fiction and stuff, actually become a reality. Or I would if things were the way they used to be. Maybe there'll still be a market for this stuff in a few years, maybe not. Who knows. No new TV season this fall. that's a bad sign, right? I really wanted to learn what was going on in Lost. Were the Sopranos supposed to come back this fall, or was it next year? Star Wars III? Cough cough cough cough cough.