I stretched trying to recall a few Tai Chi movements. I heard popping and cracking and I repeated the unfolding exercises until the din ceased. Starting with my neck and working my way down the arms and knees ending my ritual with a big resounding snap as I flexed my ankles. Rice Krispies had nothing on me. I realized it was time for that long walk to the bathroom and I made the journey in record time taking only a minute and a half to creep the ten feet to the toilet. I leaned against the wall with one hand for balance as I smacked my dry lips and made an attempt to clear my throat, which was a little bit sore from the constant drainage caused by a rhinovirus or the fact that I had spent the day before hanging out in sub-freezing temperatures on top of Heavenly at Lake Tahoe.
After I finished my morning business, I adjusted my flowered boxers and turned around to face the sink and the illuminating mirror above the washbasin. The lighting in my bathroom is that bright revealing sort that shows oversized pores and magnifies the length of nose hair. The whites of my baby blues were road mapped with red lines. I turned on the water and after splashing several handfuls of cold water across my face; I begin to feel in control of my destiny once again. I turned on the shower and waited impatiently for the water to achieve that perfect temperature somewhere between warm and scalding. The steam rose around me as I stepped from my shorts into the watery bliss and soaped my body from head to toe. I applied shampoo, then conditioner on my mane and rinsed for an indeterminable period of time thinking of absolutely nothing if that’s possible. I toweled off listening to the morning news on the old radio that had withstood the hostile environment of the condo’s nightstand. My cottonmouth was abated with mint toothpaste and a vigorous brushing that caused the gums to tingle in an invigorating way. The probing of the floss and a quick rinse with the complimentary bottle of mouthwash completed my oral work out. I had ceased combing my hair preferring to run my fingers through the short cut to save time. A little extra water and a wee bit of gel and that’s all she wrote. The entire shaving process having been eliminated since I now sported a grey beard that I found I either liked or had simply rationalized my laziness. I had rediscovered the eternally pleasing feel and aroma of a splatter of that simple cologne, Bay Rum, on my mug. A couple of shots of deodorant in strategic places and a fresh pair of skivvies were the next step. That one was followed by the final touch of a clean pair of khakis and a long sleeve cotton tee. I was reborn. I felt valuable to society again…until it was time to repeat the process of course.