Don’t let anyone tell you that writing gets it out of your system. Or, if they do, demand to know what ‘it’ is. Because by the platitudinous standard, I should not have any more ‘it’ inside me for the day, perhaps for the week. For, Dear Diary, I really have been cranking up a literary storm this very hour. Decided to write something adventurous and just for fun. Which as we all know is the surest route to madness.

Albeit purgative madness. That is the idea. Getting ‘it’ out. Just as homosexuals used to out to each other, before out became in, which one must admit is a most refreshing development. I digress. Truth to tell, all I do is digress. My life is one long digression. And the current digression does at least involve two of us, Jane and me, and we are digressing toward a mortgage.

Oy. It’s a perfectly natural thing, a mortgage. All sorts of perfectly natural people get them every day without complaining. And without incident. At least Jane and I have outed ourselves to each other on this point. We hate any official sort of thing. And hate oversimplifies the matter. For me, the gathering of tax records, completion of mortgage application forms, validation of property title, proof of carbon monoxide detectors…and so on is very much like putting one’s head in a metal vise. My eyes glaze over. My mind clouds over. Darkness gathers. I gather my belongings and depart.

Which essentially is what Jane did yesterday, rolling off to a regional meeting of clergy…while we completed forms at the last minute. The last minute probably being the worst minute. But often the only minute. And frankly built into the last minute is a sense of portent and urgency, badly needed in the mortgage application experience.

I took a folder full of completed forms to the bank, breathed a sigh of relief, only to get a phone call from the bank. Where was this and where was that? The vise began to clamp, but not too badly. For I did look inside another folder, the colorful one the bank had given us in the first place. And there it was. The other document, the very one the bank had called about. I hustled over.

Although I did not hustle very far. For I had forgotten. The wheelchair repair guy was due. He had already phoned from San Rafael. So what to do but prop up my foot on the second of the raised beds, open my Alan Bennett and commence a pleasant read? Which lasted approximately 30 seconds. For there he was, driving up in his van, the repair guy. I surrendered my wheelchair, plopping into a recliner. The service guy would not take that long. Back to Alan Bennett, pleasantly drifted into that other land, reading. Drifting being the essence of the writer’s experience. And I was half reading, half musing, when my bladder made its presence known. The wheelchair guy was outside, working on my chair, well out of earshot. And there I was, a wheelchair user without a wheelchair. Guess what happened to my trousers. The disabled writer can drift with the best of them. But invariably he drifts into the rocks.

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