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Jilly Gagnon Headshot

The Lost Weekend

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Perhaps it had something to do with Halloween, a weekend-long witching hour descending upon my apartment; or maybe karma, or Jesus, or whoever you think hands out punishments, was finally catching up to me for that incident with the mayonnaise; or possibly, when the Comcast van showed up at the end of the block Friday morning, they screwed up one of our wires; whatever the reason, the fact remained: as of Friday at noon, my house's cable and internet were gone, the signal-reader on my computer teasing me with a full-barred signal, but my windows coming up ghostly-white time after time.

The transcript of the horrifying events of this weekend from hell, one which undoubtedly will haunt my dreams for years to come, follows:

Fri., 10/30, 2:08 PM:
arrive home for a pitstop between unglamorous day jobs. Refresh my gmail then head off to brew a cup of tea, only to find that it's "still working" when I arrive back at my computer. Confused, I decide to shower, giving it time to work out its issues.

Fri., 10/30: 2:24 PM: My roommate comes downstairs and informs me that the internet has been out, and that he has been suspicious of the white van at the end of the block since earlier that day. Seem to hear the sound of a stifled scream from somewhere in the space between my ears.

Fri., 10/30: 6:15-7 PM: Abandon my babysitt-ee to check my already swiftly mounting pile of e-mails on his working computer. Though I delete all status updates from websites, daily-digest newsfeeds, and retarded forwards from my aunt immediately, it still takes a full 45 minutes to wade through the rest. Attempt to block out the sounds of Saw IV, and seven-year-old reactions to it, drifting in from the adjoining room.

Sat., 10/31: 11:28 AM:
Mother calls. Mentions a news story she'd seen on no fewer than three different morning shows, and the night prior on The Daily Show, about which I have no clue whatsoever. Give noncommittal assents to hide my paralyzing ignorance.

Sat., 10/31: 2:12 PM: Find a weird rash on the back of my knee, but without WebMD to inform me of its likely being a symptom to a new and virulent form of HIV that I somehow contracted despite my long-standing monogamy, am forced to simply rub at it with calamine lotion, take a Benadryl, and watch it go away on its own. Will probably die from this specific instance of missed on-the-spot researching by age 27.

Sat., 10/31: 7:16 PM: Pizza with the boyfriend, during which we exhaust all Tivoed episodes of South Park, the Antiques Roadshow, and "record all programs with actor: Steven Seagal." Attempt conversation, but without the safety shield of two open laptops between us, it quickly devolves into reading magazines.

Sat., 10/31: 11:49 PM: Without, or its infinitely less expedient counterpart, TV weather reports, I manage to simultaneously over and underdress for my night, resulting in clammy, sweaty skin, sopping hair, and a soaked-through wool jacket. Gag slightly at the smell of wet cat and sour eggnog that seems to have seeped through my coat and directly into my pores.

Sun., 11/1: 1:43 AM:
Struck by a feeling of certainty that Anne Boleyn had webbed-anus syndrome. Inform boyfriend of this fact. Neither of us can Wiki to prove me right, so the question dies.

Sun., 11/1: 1:47 AM: Without wiki confirmation of Ms. Boleyn's condition, I begin to doubt that she did, in fact, suffer from anal webbing.

Sun., 11/1: 1:56 AM: Begin to question whether I truly know anything and, if nothing I believe is actually true, whether my existence is in fact a reality or simply a figment of my, or some other malevolent being's, imagination.

Sun., 11/1: 9AM: Wake up at 10 and begin to bustle around, taking down Halloween decorations, cleaning the kitchen, and pulling together a load of laundry before realizing from a quick glance at my phone that daylight savings stopped overnight, and this entire hour of unforeseen productivity, an hour usually spent aimlessly fiddling with web windows, could have been put to the much more profitable use of sleeping more.

Sun., 11/1: 1:15 PM: Actually start reading the books on my shelves. Enjoy them enough to skip the Tivoed episode of Ace of Cakes I'd been saving as a mid-afternoon fix.

Sun., 11/1: 3:34 PM: Feel odd sense of liberation knowing that I can close my laptop for more than fifteen minutes at a time.

Sun. 11/1: 4:02 PM:
Clean entire bedroom for first time in months. Sense that my life is slightly less like a crappy sequel to Animal House with a female lead.

Sun. 11/1: 6:37 PM: With the extra time that seemed to appear out of nowhere in the middle of my afternoon, make a butternut squash soup, which I share with the boyfriend. Haltingly speak to one another about our separate days. Remember that I actually like his personality.

Sun. 11/1: 9:14 PM: Take a walk with boyfriend for ice cream and just to "enjoy the night."

Mon. 11/2: 11:06 AM: Cable guy arrives.

Mon. 11/2: 11:41 AM: Cable guy leaves, our internet and television restored.

Mon. 11/:, 11:48 AM: Flip on episode of Law & Order for background noise, start wading through e-mails. Surprisingly few are from actual people.

Mon. 11/2: 11:57 AM: Refresh e-mails, but find only spam. Facebook stalk out-of-state high school "friends" briefly. Catch up on important tweets. Check hit-counter on blog. Look at facebook photo albums of a wedding I didn't attend. Refresh e-mails and twitter homepage again. As I reach for eyedrops to help with the glassy staring and my having forgotten to blink, wonder how I ever managed to survive the last three days.