It’s a symptom. A tip-off. You’ve heard people say a clean desk is the sign of a sick mind, right? Well, look at my clothes closet.
I’m in deep weeds, ladies and gentlemen. Deep, deep weeds.
I wish I could tell you the strict regimentation was the result of a zealous spring-cleaning, but it’s not. No rearranging or straightening was involved, no tidying. All I did was snap the picture.
Look at the hangers. You’d think I use a tape measure to hang up my clothes. I don’t, but it looks like I might. Everything is carefully sorted and obsessively folded and neatly stacked — divided into sets and subsets. Shirts and pants are color-coded. Shoes are lined up and pointing south. In a final Freudian twist, a ‘Do Not Disturb’ sign hangs from the doorknob. It’s a cry for help.
You’d think with such a neurotic fastidiousness I’d look like a million dollars when I leave the house. Clean and pressed. Not a hair out of place, yes? Well, close. This morning I showered and shampooed and blow dried, I put on khakis and a blue and white striped shirt, brown loafers and no socks — nothing fancy, but presentable. Halfway to lunch something started brushing along my foot. I suspected a bug. I looked.
A sheet of Bounce hung out of my pants. A scented reminder from the dryer.
What, I ask, is wrong with this picture? My life, such as it is, has a dopey, slaphappy quality to it that I like. I keep books in kitchen cabinets and a bicycle in the living room, there’s a sponge mop in the shower, a stuffed sheep under an end table, dryer sheets in my pants legs, and okay, sure, bats in my belfry. I’m fine with all that. Perfectly content.
But mix a turtleneck in with the t-shirts and I come undone.
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