So, there I was, enjoying life and savoring a beautiful evening. An hour before, I had sped through the humid air under the cool embrace of an almost-full moon peeking out from behind scant clouds here and there. It was beautiful, even though I would have preferred to substitute the muggy Texas air for more dry and crisp fare. (Oh well, I suppose life isn’t always fair.)
By this point, my bike was safely corralled amongst the other bikes (most of which with questionably-thief-proof means of attachment to the bike rack.), my bag of homework and math notes was resting softly on my bed with other miscellanea, my door was locked, and I had a pint of Melancholy Mitigating Mint Chocolate Chip Blue Bell Ice Cream in one hand… (That has to be capitalized because it’s so darn delicious.) my PO Box key in the other. [To those that didn’t put it together right away, I was in the post office, heading to my PO Box. Which you should send me letters to, if you’re feeling daring.]
To backtrack tangentially, a week or two previous to this excursion, I had spent an evening browsing through the IKEA website, searching for lighting fixtures (A.K.A enlightenment, and lamps on occasion.) for my dorm room. (A single fluorescent light fixture for the entire dorm room is not conducive to semi-polite night-owling.) I found the perfect stuff, dreamed about how I would love to purchase it and have it delivered here so I can both take a step down the path to enlightenment and the path towards an IKEA lifestyle, and then set out to order it online.
But, like any sort of thing that I set my heart on attaining, there was a catch: Ikea didn’t sell those products online. I’d either have to traipse to Houston… or get a copy of the catalog. And, of course, compelled by optimism and a blind sense of “You can do it, tom!”ism, I did just that.
So, to reiterate, there I was, standing in front of my PO Box, putting my key carefully into the slot and trying to shove away all negative thoughts and memories of past disappointments (I’d tried to see if I got my catalog a few days beforehand.). I took a deep breath, closed my eyes in hopes of being surprised with something unexpected, and then swung open the PO Box…
What did I see?
Nothing at all.
I frowned a bit, closed the PO box and walked off. My keys found their way back into my pocket and I resumed eating my ice cream. At least I had that to comfort me as I silently realized that, in fact, this was nothing new.
Nothing like an IKEA catalog (or lack thereof) to make you feel ever-so-cynical.