Fortress of Solitude

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Whether or not Friday was a shame, it’s hard to say. He took the train back and forth. His earphones set atop his head, his book on his hand. But there was no music being played and the book was being read with a passing interest. He discarded the bestseller and brought out the cheap fantasy novel. He would go back to the bestseller when he really felt the need to or just never again.

He couldn’t remember arriving home, but rain was already making its claim outside. He had decided he’d take in a movie. There was a bunch he had bought from iTunes and he hadn’t gone through all of them yet. Shutter Island was on the hard drive. The movie drew him in, enough to go full screen and discard the passing conversations he had on Twitter. He really got into it, line and sinker. Even less than halfway through, he knew enough to know where the plot was turning. Still entertained, he followed along. Good movie to have. It will have to stay.

He found his father online and had a chat. An aunt’s conditions had worsened and she had been admitted into a hospital. Concern, that sentiment so alien and familiar at the same time was present. He learned she was stable, her son flying in from the States, the daughter present and taking care of her. He had not chimed in with concern earlier in the week when he first knew simply because he knew he’d sound fake and he hated it. It was better to do this using video conference.

Saturday was the day to receive the one weekend visit. The technician from the cable company came in, his belt flourishing with so many tools he would’ve probably stabbed himself had he tried sitting down. The upgrade went smoothly. The customer was glad to help disconnecting the right cables from the populated UPS and guiding the new cable along. The technician approved of the router and the sight of the mac mini. It was a probably a ruse, the usual compliment given to a customer to ease up the transaction but the customer played along. The technician even offered to replace the old cable, which the customer had re-routed to a different side of the apartment. The offer was accepted and the new cable was installed. After all was said and done, the speed test confirmed the speed upgrade and once again the customer was connected to the world.

Once again alone, he reflected on the day ahead. There was nothing planned. He’d called off the plans for a late night exit due to the rainy weather. He regretted it a bit, but the rain was already making its disappointing arrival. He watched another movie. The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus. Weird, sometimes in a good way. The plot didn’t thicken enough for him to find it entertaining throughout.

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He dusted off the guitar. After months of ignoring it, he tuned it up and practiced a few chords. Rusty. Very rusty. Still better than flat nothing, but a lot of practice is needed. He checked his iPhone just after midnight. There was a plan change that’d expand his data intake. It had not kicked in yet. Curses.

Sunday came early. He woke up uncharacteristically early. He did laundry and finished uncharistically early. He went through the cable channels, just in case. He had not even checked in while. He called the cable company and switched channels around. There was no more need for movie channels, so he went with more than a few that were French, including documentaries and such, with the preference to the HD versions. That went well, new channels opened up and non-watched channels were dropped. He hated not having the HD for Discovery, but for some reason that was the only channel that the cable company did not release the HD version without additional payment. It wasn’t exactly highway robbery, but the truth is that more often than not he’d just pulled the signal into the mac into a small window while he was on Twitter or web browsing, so there was no point for the HD version.

He took off for a big breakfast at the old casse-croute. He took the huge one, with a milkshake and a book. The book was proving to be a good read, as cheap paperbacks go. He hung around for an extra chapter and then took off to visit the comic store. The owner knew him, and had some old issues for him. Very old, actually. He wasn’t keen on vintage comics. Classic comics tend to be cheesy and then you have to stomach campy dialog and silly plots. But it was the origin of an old villain he’d decided to start following so he thought he might as well have them.

Following up on something that had been bugging him for a while, he took a small detour into a big store. He found the big plastic containers. It will take some organizing, but he was sure he’d find them a place just so he could store on all that clothing he just kept leaving around his apartment. The rain came harder now and chased him on the way back after he left the metro station. The rest of the afternoon and early evening was very productive. He set one amidst the apartment for bedsheets and tablecloths and store two in the closets, full of stuff that had been all over the place for a while now.

The remains of the day were spent on the net, with a small window to the cable channel watching a documentary on the Secret Service. He checked his iPhone again before turning in. Data plan was finally expanded. Excellent.

That will do for now, he thought.

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