By Joseph Fontanazza
The afternoon sun shines through my cheap white shades to awaken me from my drunken slumber. The digital clock reads 3:47 pm as I jump out of my sky-scraping bed. The fridge is a welcoming sight for an empty stomach. I argue with myself if it is still socially acceptable to make breakfast. My happiness quickly turns to dismay. No eggs or milk, two slices of cheese and a single meatball in a borrowed container are my company. I guess a meatball is my brunch for today. As I eat the boiling hot-on-the-outside, but cold-on-the-inside meatball, some questions arise in my head. Why do I constantly get calls from my drunken friends, knowing fully well that I don’t have a car, and Why do I torture my neurotransmitters with malt liquor? Through my hungover daze, I remember that I have an article and a paper due. “Whatever, I’ll get it done later,” I confidently say in my mind. I have so much more important things to do, like play Madden. The first game I play ends with me scoring 70 points on the feeble computer opposition. The win proves two things: I’m good at this game, and I have way too much time on my hands.
My phone shows that it is 5:00 pm; I should watch Netflix instead of doing my work. Pokémon is in the queue, so I must watch them all. Because it’s been 11 years since I last watched the show, I start to notice things that I didn’t in the past. Brock was the originator of the “friend zone” and Ash didn’t need to be that dramatic every time he threw a Poké Ball. After three hours of nostalgia, I decided to do my laundry. There is no better time for me to do laundry that I’ve waited over a week to clean than this very second. My paper can wait because I need clean clothes above all else, but I’ll probably wear the same Nike hoodie I always do.
My phone now reads 10:00 pm, and finally a rush of ambition enters my clouded thoughts. I need inspirational music, so I quickly type YouTube in the search box. “Dream Chasers” by Meek Mill is the song I chose to play. I don’t know why, but a song about rising up the ranks as a drug dealer really makes me want to improve as a writer.
Eventually, I open up Microsoft Word to write my story for Professor Broun. The thoughts of a story formulate in my head but nothing stands out. I try the quick writing exercise that Dr. McKay once taught me, but starting the piece with “Once upon a time” or “It was a dark and stormy night” were the only words that crept into my brain. I pace through my apartment looking for some inspiration, but all I see is a stack of dishes that have piled up throughout the weekend. Even though I know there is nothing in my fridge, I keep looking, hoping that food will manifest.
I might as well wash the dishes while I have the chance. The dish soap has a sweet lemony smell as I clean my roommate’s mess. My hands wash with the dishes but my mind desperately tries to brainstorm. Still my vacant mind leads to frustration. I get back to my writing, and I try to think of something meaningful. Maybe something that would change somebody’s perspective on life. Who am I kidding? I have enough trouble getting something down on paper. Maybe I can write something about war, perhaps the great stories of the Trojans, or the movie “300”. Again, who am I kidding? There are streets in Philadelphia that I’m still not allowed to go to and I’m thinking about writing a story of the bravest men in history. Also, I don’t have enough fake blood, naked women, or cameras to make anything remotely like “300”. This is not happening. A love story perhaps. Now that’s hilarious. I wouldn’t know love if it slapped me across the face. I could write something about sports. I spend most of my time writing about sports, but I’m tired of it. I have already heard the last six reruns of “SportsCenter” in the background. Maybe something funny, but there is one fundamental flaw with that: I’m not funny. I could really use some time on the punching bag, but with how things are going, I’ll probably break my hand. This work is never getting done.
Joseph Fontanazza is a Junior at ESU studying English with a concentration in Professional Writing. His hobbies include trying to learn how to write, obsessing over sports’ statistics, and humming Ja Rule’s greatest hits.