The other night I lay in bed quite unable to sleep. Nothing was wrong, as it usually is when I wake up in the middle of the night, no racing heart or sweaty boobs, I just couldn’t sustain drowsiness and so awoke at one a.m. open-eyed and bushy-tailed. And then I did what I always do when this happens: I cracked open my laptop kept under the bed for just such occasions. I browsed blogs, checked stats (modestly unchanged from the week before) and followed links. And in the midst of this process, I learned that Dooce’s new book made the New York Times Bestseller list and that she’d be on Oprah the next afternoon.
Just then, the dark, dark claws of jealousy gripped me so tight, my stomach roiled and gurgled from the sheer intensity of it. Now usually, I can swallow such envy. During the day, I’m able to marshal the resources it takes to actually be happy for someone who’s accomplished what I hope to myself. I am much more reasonable in daylight, I assure you.
But this was after midnight and I found my id up and looking for a fight, while my rational brain stayed dormant and mute.
And so it was. No way at that hour could I process that this unimaginable success came to someone who does what so many of us do everyday: blog and parent.
But, but… Of course it’s more than that. I know. I do. Dooce is a talented writer and savvy marketer. She is a brand. And she lives up to it.
It’s just that how did it come so easy for her? There are so many other brilliant writers out there without book deals (I am not one of them. But why am I destined to be in the upper echelons of mediocrity? Why God why?). 40K a month in advertising? Are you kidding me? She doesn’t interact with her readers other than to tell them when she’ll be signing books! She’s kinda snotty and smug! She celebrates irreverent parenting! She thinks her apathy is funny! She phones her writing in more often than not these days!
SHUT IT, ID!
(For the purposes of this post, my id is represented in italics and unindicative of my true self.) (Or is that what the id is? Your true self?) (Who is this Eckhart Tolle guy? I think I need him to call me.)
See what I mean? Ugly, ugly jealousy. With big slimy teeth and dripping acid saliva. And talons! You should see its ragged yellow fingernails.
Anyway, as I anguished in bed, right there at 1 a.m., I noticed sinister shadows moving across my window blinds. I thought maybe there was a full moon and that my window might be open to the wind, causing the fluttering darkness. But no.
Now I’ve thought before that haunts plagued my home, but I’ve never actually seen anything untoward. This time though, there was no denying. Flying shadows! In my home! By my bed!
Maybe the light from my laptop was casting shapes on the blinds?
Yet I’d closed my laptop several minutes before, and the shadows now flitted across the dresser and the door to my bedroom.
This could not be happening.
I jumped out of bed and into the living room where my husband slept on the couch because my succulent sinus hacking drove him away a few hours earlier, forced him awake and made him hug me to squeeze out the jealousy juices with unconditional love.
It seemed to work because the shadows did not follow me onto the couch where I stayed with The Rock all night.
And you know what I think?
I think that my evil jealousy manifested outside my body and created a poltergeist embodied by dark shadows.
Seriously, that’s my theory.
So Dooce? I’m really very happy for you (I’m trying very hard to mean this, honestly and truly.)
Keep up the good work.
And meanwhile, I’ll shine a light into the hideous nether regions of my soul.
So no more poltergeists.
Id? (May I call you Malthazar the Awful, He of the Acid Saliva?)
Do we have a deal?
I’ll give you a ham treat.
I know how much you like to gnash sinew between your vampiric canines.