It is seeming stranger and stranger to me that this is my actual life. I don't know what lever hasn't clicked over yet, but I'm still struggling to realize that this job is not something I'm doing for a little while, but an actual adult job, that I go to every morning and come back from every evening, the cornerstone of every day that pays all my bills, the beginning of my career. Eeks.
In the same way, it's boggling to me that my apartment is actually home, that there is no other home that I go to, that there is no RA living down the hall making sure that I don't set the rooms on fire. As a result, I've already set the rooms on fire, but that's another story.
Oh, fine, I'll tell it now. I was lying, I haven't actually set anything on fire. But I am having some real trouble cooking. The smoke alarm and I have had some arguments, and while it won the first three or four days, I've finally conquered, since it's under the sink with its batteries disconnected. That'll show it.
See, the problem is
a) whenever I turn on the stove, there's smoke. Not a lot, but enough to set off the alarm, even with the fan above the stove on.
b) I don't have a skillet of any kind. I didn't think this would make much of an effect, but it has. See, I tried making a hamburger in a cooking pot, figuring that wouldn't make any difference. 10 seconds later, I was fighting a final, conclusive fight with the smoke alarm. 30 seconds later, I couldn't see into the pot because of all the smoke. 60 seconds in, I couldn't actually see the stove. 90 seconds in, I couldn't see the apartment. I opened all the windows, turned on the air conditioner and the bathroom fan, turned on both ceiling fans, and threw the door to the balcony wide open. It made absolute no difference. I decided to flip the burger. The bottom was burned to a crisp, the middle still frozen. I burned the other side, too, just for balance, pulled it out, and turned of the stove.
I drenched it in Ranch and stuffed it down, ignoring the gristle and purplish meat, squinting through the haze at the TV. I'll be damned if any burger is going to defeat me. Then I made a salad. It took almost no effort. I'm thinking of eating more salads.
By the way, someone insinuated that my purchase of the TV of the last post was a sucker's ruse, and they must have seen me coming for miles. I'll have you know that in addition to the fact that the TV is massive - which, if you read the last post, you must have surmised - it also only cost me $10, which is cheap, regardless. A bargain is a bargain.
When I returned to my apartment, I turned on the TV to 99 channels of black-and-white fuzz. I found an old paper clip in my desk and stuck it in the back: 98 channels of black-and-white fuzz and one channel of colored fuzz. Bingo. I pulled a shirt off its clothes hanger, untwisted it, and attached it to the back. 97 with black-and-white fuzz, one indistict channel and a new channel with colored fuzz. I gaze at the TV for ten or fifteen minutes, until I think figure out that the indistinct channel is probably PBS. Brilliant. I go back for more hangers.
All of my shirts, suits, and coats are in a pile in the middle of my bedroom. But I now get all 4 networks. Plus PBS.