What started as a little lower-back pain is turning into Backpocalypse. Third straight day in bed most of the time, with occasional movement to stay limber. I can cook a meal (although taking a cast-iron skillet out of the stove last night was a struggle) and walk the dog (as long as she doesn’t want a long one), but not sit for longer than a few minutes.
Saw my doctor yesterday. He prescribed prednisone (not helping so far), muscle relaxants (really not helping so far), and an x-ray. And physical therapy, which I have to set up. We’ll see. I’m hoping for recovery by the weekend. This shit sucks, although I’m doing a lot of reading and watching old Sopranos episodes on the laptop. It’s been interesting, seeing James Gandolfini assume the role of his life, the antihero who ushered in the golden age of TV. I recall showrunner David Chase despairing at how many of his own fans described Tony as “a good guy.” He’s not a good guy, and even the earliest seasons underline that.
Bedbound as I am, I’ve been spending some time reading the news. This is the one-year anniversary of the Oxford High School shooting out in the exurbs. I haven’t read a single word of the coverage. Anniversary journalism was created for editors, so they can plan for a day sometime in the future. I don’t want to read about anyone’s grief, I don’t want to read how the survivors are coping, and I especially never, ever want to see another hashtag like #(Name of city)Strong. I hate the way these events are so common now, all we do is read from scripts afterward. For years, self-appointed media experts have begged reporters not to write so much about the killers, but instead concentrate on the victims. The message has sunk in, so today I’m scrolling past photo arrays of the four students killed, because we heard it all a year ago. It was tragic when they were killed, and it’s still tragic. I don’t see this as news.
Meanwhile, the cases against the kid who did the shooting, and his parents, who are being charged with negligent homicide, continue to drag on. The boy pled guilty a while back, but his parents are still fighting.
So I turn the virtual page, and it’s all about the impending rail strike, and I feel insane just reading about it. Are you telling me, NPR and New York Times and all the rest, that we’re looking at a national strike over four days of paid sick time, and what’s more, that today rail workers have ZERO DAYS OF PAID SICK TIME? How the hell did that happen? How does any industry get away with that? Is there something special about railroad work that it can’t accommodate workers having four measly sick days? Can someone explain this to a woman flat on her back waiting for the anti-inflammatories to kick in? Because I’m done with the crossword puzzle already and I’m temporarily sick of Tony Soprano.