Character Flaws

Since starting school again, I have mid-Monday crises. They usually begin when my chemistry professor asks something like, “What’s the osmotic pressure of so-and-so under these conditions…?” and I already know the answer. Not because I’m qualified in chemistry, but because I already read the chapter and finished the homework yesterday. This is where the crisis begins so that by the time my biology professor asks something like, “True or false: evolution is a fact?” I just want to pick up my phone, dial home and say, “I’m sorry, I can’t be a scientist anymore. I’m a writer instead. I can work at The Station to pay my bills. Don’t worry–I’ve thought it all out.” And I spend the rest of the day wrestling plotlines and character development in my head, on paper, and out loud until I’m pretty sure my wall mates know I’m talking to myself so I stop.

Since starting school, I have mid-Tuesday crises. They usually begin after biology lab, after DNA extractions, centrifuge, and chemicals I can’t pronounce the names of. So I chew the inside of my cheek thinking, I don’t want to be a scientist? This is where the crisis begins so that by the time my creative writing professor asks something like, “How does this short story convey emotion in the reader?” I pick that phone back up again and say, “I don’t think I can do it. You were right. I’ll be a scientist.” And thank God I realized that before dropping out of college, living with three roommates who eat all my food, and working at The Station until all my patient-empathy is dried up.

Since starting school, I have mid-Wednesday crises. They usually begin like Monday’s, and I let them. I don’t want to be a scientist anyway.

Since starting school, I have mid-Thursday crises. They usually begin like Tuesday’s, and I’m very distressed at this point. Writing is too hard to be forever anyway.

I don’t have crises on Friday. In fact, I put them on mute or pause or however you want to look at it. At this point, I just can’t wait to go home and sleep in my own bed.

On Saturdays, I think too much. So I talk to my sister about cats and other things that don’t matter. So I watch old movies from my childhood. So I look at all the books on my wall and wonder if I could live without them.

On Sundays, I get up at 05:00 because I have to work at 06:00. At 06:15, I go back to sleep. And by 11:58, I remember there’s a difference between crisis and crisis. By 12:30, I am watching a woman shrieking hysterically because she just lost her husband of many, many years. She is crying something like, “I can’t live without him!” and she kind of sounds like she’s faking it, like maybe she’s a cheap actress, but I’m not judging. We give her a blanket because what else do you give someone in this situation? I’m not a hugger. I’m not a writer or a scientist either. I’m just an ambulance driver. At 18:00 I go home, fold and pack up my laundry, shove my school books in my backpack, drive back to my dorm, go to sleep, wake up early because I like writing before science class, and I pick up right where I left off on Thursday.

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