This is key, my friend, this is of utmost importance: wash your hair last. It’s the cold water on your head and shoulders that makes the experience unbearable so put that off until the last possible moment. Don’t think about why you’re taking your fifth cold shower this week. Don’t bog yourself down with the details of this crummy downtown apartment on the H-1 exit ramp fiasco you’ve somehow slipped into.
The bugs. The noise. The endless sea of pavement. The complete lack of grass or anything natural. And why did you think it would be smart to live around the corner from a hospital emergency room? No matter, move on.
Turn the shower head to face the wall so the water isn’t streaming down on you and splash only as much water as is absolutely necessary onto your freezing cold body. Skip any avoidable parts like forearms and shins.
Forget about how your new landlord said water was included in the rent but forgot to mention it wouldn’t be heated. No that won’t happen until you fax a copy of your lease to the gas company and they make an appointment to come out to your unit. But that was a Friday when you asked and of course these things don’t happen over the weekend unless you’d like to pay the astronomical fee of course they can definitely come out on a Saturday. No? OK well it’s 3:30pm now and they’re just closing up so why don’t you get in touch with them first thing Monday? What’s that, you’re working? Well OK then, how about Tuesday?
Flip your head over and wash your hair from the bottom up leaving your scalp for last. The only option is to get this done as quickly as possible. Daydream back to that year you chopped all your hair off and sported a pixie. It worked for you. What was that 2000? 2001? Consider doing it again.
Think: Isn’t it ironic that the winds and heavy rains have picked up; that the temperature has dropped and for this random moment in time Hawaii feels nothing like a tropical paradise?
Change your mind. You are not the living incarnation of an Alanis Morrisette hit song from the 90’s. Jump out. Dry off. Leave the house for a hike.
In the woods forget that the apartment is infested with multiple species of cockroaches. Forget that they’re in your refrigerator, your shoes, your toilet. Forget that there are dead ones stuck to your towels. Never mind the $200 you spent on medication for your dogs’ rashes, the ones they broke out in after you sprayed eight kinds of Raid and Ortho around the perimeter inside and out. Forget what the professional exterminator said about how the problem is so much worse than you can see, about how you can never bring food into the house because the seal on the fridge is loose and they will continually get into everything.
It’s only two more weeks. You can handle two more weeks. When the ambulance sirens roar past your window for the tenth time that day remember what your soon-to-be-new-new landlord said about the noise out in Aina Haina. “It’s just that there’s a lot of birds. You know sometimes you’ll be woken up at 6 a.m. and it’s a little much. Oh and the kids next door, you might hear them laughing at bath time around 7 p.m.” There is light at the end of this torture tunnel. You’ll be in heaven soon.
And when you come home from your hike to find the electricity has been shut off and start to feel like you just might lose it, don’t start humming Liz Phair I want a boyfriend. We still don’t know where he is or who he is or if he even exists. Don’t slip into Woe is me. Certainly you’ve survived worse, haven’t you? Haven’t you??? And definitely don’t call the landlord and cry into his voicemail because like every landlord who ever existed, he simply DOES NOT CARE.
Instead remember the rainbow you hiked into this afternoon and thank your lucky stars you never asked your neighbor to turn off that pesky porch light that illuminates your bedroom at all hours. It’s time for melatonin and bed.