Sunday, January 04, 2009

Angry weekend

It's been kind of a weird weekend. I spent a lot of it being pissed off for no clear reason, until things turned around today.

On Friday I was excited to go see "Gypsy" with L -- I had bought the tickets for Christmas, since it's a cool show and people are basically throwing themselves off the balcony from the sheer joy of the experience. I spent the work day of Friday getting random tasks done in the office and trekking from Rock Center to 9th & 55th not once, not twice, but three times. Given the traffic and bovine-like holiday crowds, this was very unpleasant.

As we prepared to go to the show, we didn't have much time to eat -- we ended up at the Most Miserable Subway location in Manhattan, the Subway the size of a walk-in closet near the West 4th train station. The woman behind the counter was hacking and coughing into her sanitary gloves and she smelled like B.O. The other people in the restaurant were incorrigible youths and a sad-looking old man. Once we made it to the theater, I was pissed with no clear rationale; after a woman cut me off, I grimaced and muttered, "she could have said 'excuse me.'" L pointed out that she did say excuse me, but this did not improve my mood. We wandered up to Starbucks to get a hot tea before the show and the crowds made me angry -- the lumbering, the slow pace, the random jerks who would clip my shoulder or smack me with their bags. I was livid, and I wanted to shove these offensive walkers, and I didn't understand why it was getting so far under my skin.

The show itself was fantastic; my foul mood lifted long enough to appreciate it. The young woman who sat next two L arrived in a long, ratty fur coat with makeup slathered on her face. She took the coat off to reveal a sequined red evening gown, bunched around her hips. She laughed raucously and applauded when no one else did. After the show we headed downtown and were going to stop for a glass of wine, but the bar was crowded and people were saving bar seats by placing their scarves across them. This was too much; I was tired of crowds, and slow walking, and compromise, so we left.

I spent all day Saturday in New Jersey for a continuing legal education session. I will be in New Jersey for the next five Saturdays, attending six hour lectures. I leave home at 7:45 am and arrive back home at 5:00 pm. This did not improve my mood, either; I came home exhausted and unhappy and did not want to do anything.

You know what improved my mood? A killer workout this morning. This workout was so good that once again I threw up in the middle of it. Following the third set of modified pushups I discreetly got up, walked out of the studio, and hunched over a garbage can on the main floor. I threw up, and then I went back in and resumed doing my crunches. And that was it. After the class I felt better, and right now I feel like a lot of then tension and anger I've been carrying for the last several days has lifted. We had a nice afternoon reading the newspaper at Chipotle, and then I read some more Cheever short stories at home.

I don't know what got into my head for the last few days. A lot of frustration with the demands on my time, maybe, combined with some of the negative aspects of city living. It is so hard to pull yourself out of a bad mood, even when in hindsight it is so obviously a complete waste of time.

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