Some much needed rest was desired here. My life had gotten the best of me the past seven days luring me into a frenzy of buying Christmas gifts for my money-eating family and fiancée. The only friend I really had was my bank, which always gave me enough credit to keep my life steady.
My couch, in my parents’ house-dirty with white bulldog hair-had lessened my delayed sleep from ten to two hours when my phone started jittering around in my right pocket emitting an Arctic Monkeys song, that band never ceases to remind me of my drunken and hazy college days where I would throw the few dollars I had into having a good time at some crappy indie club. I switched from a fetal to soldier position to put my right hand in the pocket, place the phone in front of my face to see the phone number: (473) 444-4072.
I picked up the call and place the phone next to my right ear, I heard a loud groan and then a scream of pain. Immediately after, the call was hanged by the caller-only taking 5 seconds to make me curious.
I called back and it was picked up almost instantly. However, the first 10 seconds after my “hello” were silent. Then, a high scream of pain and what sounded like a club hitting against a flexible surface was emitted followed by mix of loud “hello’s” and “what’s happening’s” from me for about 20 seconds. Then, I shut up and waited for half a minute only to hear nothing at all. I hung up.
The mysterious call reminded me that that day was the last day left to pay my monthly phone/TV/Internet fee. Also, that I hadn’t been paying monthly bills to my bank for a long time now. I couldn’t remember how long exactly but I knew it was a long time so I had to go make arrangement with the bank sometime tomorrow, I didn’t feel like it today.
Two blocks away I drove with my blue BMW(which I own only thanks to my Chase bank).My friend-the Sprint Cashier-was working that day. He was taller and skinnier than me, the black sprint cap put straight over his shaggy hair. He had colored tattoos of jungles running all the way through both his white arms down to his wrists and he stank of Axe. He still had the same eyebrow piercings in his right eyebrow and left lower lip. We had been friends since back in college and went to Ultra every year. In our senior year–we also went to the Bonnaroo music festival in Houston, where we had our first DMT trip. Fast forward three years and this is happening. Every time he’s about to go to a concert like Warped or something, he tells me how much I would love it and why I should go. I respond by telling him that that is why he’s working in sprint and that he should get a girlfriend and mature. He said the fee was $375 this month, about 50 more than the usual.
“Really? Why is this month’s so high?” I asked, genuinely surprised.
He responded with “Well, dude, it seems the two most recent calls were to… Lithuania? Together taking up one minute which… costs you exactly… 46 dollars, ouch”.
“Oh well, that’s nice to know. Here, swipe this card.”-it was a scam that phone call, a really well planned one at that. I could've treated Sarah(my fiancée) to a movie with that money, we haven’t been going out a lot lately ever since the marriage was rearranged to be on Sunday, February 13th.
“Dude, this card doesn’t have any money.”–He said
“What do you mean it doesn’t have any money?”
“I don’t know, dude. It just doesn’t show any money. Look here.”
I grabbed the credit card from his hands and walked rapidly into my car without waving him goodbye. When I got into the car I looked to see him smile. Back in college, we never greeted or said goodbye to each other. That’s the first time I hadn’t said goodbye to him in 3 years.
I went to Chase to see what was happening with my card. The clerk stated that I had missed my credit payments for 221 days today and my debt had been sold to a new creditor 3 months ago who now(because I still didn’t pay the monthly bills to this creditor) had a right to collect all my fully credit-bought property. I thanked him and then slowly walked away and it took me until I was fully settled in my car to realize this meant my BMW, my house and half my clothes.
I went straight to my house driving through 4 red lights. Getting off my car I saw my fiancée with a palm on her face, a blue tied businessman with a vampire smile and 3 couples of about my age looking to buy my house which had a “For Sale” picket sign stabbed to the ground next to my mailbox.
The smiling suit-and-tie guy(which now I know was my new creditor) walked across me, thanked me for bringing my car(which he called his) and pasted his phone number to the trunk with another “For Sale” on top of it.
I made no movement as Sarah lit up her powder keg of complaints about how my carelessness, poor decisiveness and blind dependence in credit money has left both of us without a house. Her white face became redder and redder as tears began distorting her make-up and as she pulled her dyed blonde hair up with her two-inch red nails. After about two minutes of shouting at me she stopped and stared blankly at me, as if waiting for me to complain back. I didn’t respond. Then, she let out an “uggh” and put both her palms in her face as more tears dripped out of her eyes. For a moment, she reminded me of the freckled, red-haired girlfriend I had back in college who would let out bursts of emotion and cry making a face palm whenever she talked to me about how mean other people are and the state of humanity. She started complaining again saying that she been telling me this would happen or months and that I never listened. It was true. She took her $15,000 ring of her ring and gave it to the creditor who then came and whispered in my ear an “I’ll let you keep yours.”
14 blocks I walked to my parents’ finishing at 7:00 P.M. I sat still in their couch caressing the dog in my lap staring blankly at FOX News. Both dad and mom kept telling me about how I should take Sarah out after I eat dinner there. I didn’t want to worry them, so I complied. If I had told them about the credit, surely they wouldn’t have implied throwing me out after dinner.
I bought some liquor wasting the cash I had and went to the grass next to the entrance of the I-95 express to sing and stare into the Milky Way with my homeless friend from college, Brian. He hadn’t changed much, which didn’t surprise me because after all he was 49 the last time I’d seen him. It was a happy night that night, a happy night I hadn’t in 3 years.
I drank until all my limbs were half asleep. Then, I laid down on the grass with the old white blanket(which surprisingly, Brian still owned) I always slept with. I remembered how I had no one to fall back on in college. Not my parents, not Sarah, not the bank. I never have. I didn’t dream that night, or at least, didn’t remember my dream when I woke up. It was the first time I remember having a dreamless sleep in 3 years.