I made the grave error of looking at my horoscope in the paper this morning. I generally avoid it like the plague, but today I accidentally allowed my eye to glance over it to read that from a possible five stars (good), I was down to two. It said basically that although I thought I might finally have a handle on things, I was dead wrong. Things were still a mess, as I would discover as the day went on. Thanks a lot. Everyone I know is having Karma problems these days, largely because of technology. Things break, nobody cares and nobody will come fix them.
At my Malice in Memphis writers group meeting on Saturday we were all commiserating. After two and a half months and nine visits from the repairman, I still had no icemaker. Then Friday the entire refrigerator (still under warranty) stopped cooling, and when I requested a repair, they offered next Thursday afternoon. Seriously?
Then the driver’s side door in my Expedition broke, so that I couldn’t get out of the car by myself. Does that really happen to normal people? I left the water on overnight in the barn again—very bad for both environment and the well—because I seem to be functioning at the level of semi-competent nutria.
Our Malice group decided that we would write a book about a list of anti-repairmen, either incompetent, uncaring, or actually destructive. Owner and manager of said list would be our serial killer, someone who has had one bad experience too many and snaps. The deaths would be a la Mikado—the punishment would fit the crime. The auto mechanic who punctures the air conditioning hose would find himself locked in a black SUV on the hottest day of the year in Death Valley. The man who did not repair the swimming pool robot would find himself shuttling endlessly, face down, in green slimy water while the robot trundled happily around the pool. You get the idea.
The good thing about all this is that because we are writers, we don’t have actually to do any of these things. We can get our revenge by envisioning the worst that could happen, writing about it, then letting it go.
Although that idea about the pool robot does have some appealing points…