Whistling, For Whatever Value

That’s it. It’s finally happened.

The dishwasher has stopped working again. (No, that’s not what’s finally happened, though it’s the preceding event.) I am not even halfway through my coffee, but don’t fret, my beloveds. I am finally, FINALLY seeing the funny side. (There. That’s it. That’s the thing.)

I was hoping it would happen. I knew there would be some-damn-thing else, because there always is. I was just praying that the next thing to happen would be so absurd my response would be staring at the news for a few moments, my head cocked…and then, laughter.

And what do you know, here we are. “Look at that,” the Princess said, in a tone of wonder coming through text messages. “Three years of plague has even stressed out our dishwasher.”

She was a little hesitant to tell me the damn thing had stopped working again, probably because the previous incidence almost broke me. But the appliance repairman explained the problem so clearly and thoroughly I expected this sooner or later, so it wasn’t exactly a surprise.

Plus, it’s just funny. Three years of plague (not to mention everything else) is too much even for insensate machines. No wonder delicate, nerve- filled meatsacks are feeling a little frayed right now. And yes, it’s a first-world problem of the highest order, I am well aware. Though I’m sure another Well Actually will attempt to tell me so, at high volume, on social media.

That will be funny too, especially after I mash the block button.

The release of internal pressure is exquisite. I have finally, finally reached the point where absurdity has overcome everything else, and I’m Officially Seeing the Funny Side. There was a long period of time where I just…couldn’t, and dear gods that’s uncomfortable.

Sure, the laughter has a screamy edge to it, but it’s better than the alternative. And yes, a certain part of this coping method is whistling past the graveyard, so to speak. No doubt some will mistake my humor–always black and bleak at the best of times–for uncaring, or will take offense at my determination to crack a joke. That’s fine. You cope in your way, I’ll do so in mine, there’s room in the world for both.

I am just so relieved to finally be laughing again. The world’s on fire and the plague continues, yes, and as long as I’m seeing the funny side–however small–I can do my best to help those I care for, not to mention keep some measure of psychic integrity despite the onslaught.

I was waiting to see what would break me, and hoping it would crack in the direction of mordant amusement. Here we are, and it’s a bloody relief.

The dogs need walking, too. No matter what else happens, canine routine and habit must be upheld. It’s subscription drop day, too. And I need to get a character through burgling an arch-enemy’s house, not to mention shift to another book to get a pair of characters out of a pretty-much-destroyed apartment and onto their grand adventure.

I can relax now, for whatever value of “relaxation.” Weapons out, teeth bared, howling laughter filling my throat, I’m ready for the rest of this.

It’s kind of good to be back. Even under these acid-test conditions.