Passion. I’m told I lack it. My wife reminds me everyday how much I don’t measure up. I won’t go into detail on that front, but I also have to listen to complaints at work. Partly because I’m the slowest UPS delivery driver the company has ever seen, and the rest is because I lack enthusiasm for our weekly roundups. Yes, round-UPS is what they’re actually called.
My workday started with an early morning interrogation from Denise at Central. Her butt may occupy the lead coordinator’s chair, but the company could easily replace her with an animated talking trout that mounts on a wall and it would be just as useful.
“Tim, honey, are you clear about your route today?” She clutches both chubby hands over her heart. Her bright red fingernails still slick from fresh polish. The noxious odor assaulting my nose. “I ask because I care,” she says.
“Yup,” I say, trying for some kind of emotional response. I dig deep in hopes of telling her off or something, but nothing bubbles to the surface. I shrug and walk away, overflowing with indifference.
That was the extent of our conversation. In my view we are both insignificant cogs in the wheel of this company, and in life. I’ve heard I have an attitude problem. So what if I run over the trails of orange every chance I get. Apathy controls the wheel whenever I pull away from the warehouse. So I’m thinking my life’s passion might be the rebelling against the direction some cones are trying to make me go?
Though completing only two stops so far, including an extended stay at Fatburger, I’m thinking the day is pretty much over while I drive across the waterway bridge. I glance into my rear-view mirror to watch several brown cardboard boxes float in midair. They rotate in slow-motion while my door-less truck carves a swan dive toward the swift water a hundred feet below.
Even now the sense of thrill escapes me. I have always envied those folks who stand for a cause, like feeding the homeless or fighting for equal rights. Some risk their lives for a belief. I search for a burning within, but instead I find myself in front of the TV and squelch the only fire inside with some antacids.
I see the water rush head-on and brace for impact. The view out my windshield slows to the point of freezing time. A mild revelation hits like the gleaming surface of the river will do in about forty nanoseconds.
Maybe, just maybe, my lifelong quest for passion is indeed the passion I possess. Too bad this is probably my last day at work, and at life. Oh well.
D.M. Woolston is an indentured webmaster/servant for his writers group website. Regarding refreshment, he enjoys a nice dark brew either beer or coffee. Being partial to Science Fiction, you can usually find him star-gazing where he wonders who is wondering back. You can also find him at https://www.dmwoolston.com or on Twitter @DM_Woolston.