To be read in the voice of Nicolas Cage, Vin Diesel, or Clint Eastwood…
Zero seven hundred.
“Well, I’m awake. I guess that’s a start,” I think to myself as I sit up in bed, stiff and sore. The afternoon workouts were helping with the cravings, but my body is in shock from the sudden blasts of exercise. I survey the bedroom. It looks the same as when I went to sleep. Guess that’s another night without sleep-smoking. Not that I’ve ever done that before– but if this plan works, anything is possible. “I’ve got to be ready. Stay vigilant.” I repeat those words aloud, which wakes my wife. She rolls over and away from me, mumbling something about over-dramatic monologues, but I don’t have time to decrypt her riddles. I’ve got a date with coffee.
I find myself rushing through my morning mug, which feels like only half of what it used to be. Laurel no Hardy. Siegfried sans Roy. My blessings… Without the rains down in Africa. I don’t even finish the last couple of sips, they’re cold, forgotten as I frantically navigate a dozen different apps on my phone. I let out a sigh, “This whole world is going to hell in a handbasket, and we’re watching it burn like ancient Rome.” About this time my wife walks into the kitchen, “You mean Nero,” she says. I’m not sure why she wants to bring up the Matrix, but she recommends I check for messages from an app that helps track and assist with quitting smoking. What’ll they think of next?
It turns out, I do have an important notification. My senses of smell and taste should be back to running at full capacity, not to mention a boost in overall power levels. I take a deep breath and hold it, analyzing the air, while flexing my biceps and trying to see my reflection in the front of the oven. I catch a glimpse of my wife trying to sneak a picture of me. She’s probably impressed by all my new powers, though I’m not sure I notice any changes quite yet.
Thirteen hundred hours.
I’m walking into the grocery store when the powers hit… But not like I’d expected. They say that our sense of smell is the strongest, and if you smelled what I smell, you’d say it too. The grocery store lobby is a volatile mix on a good day, but on this day, a child has recently experienced an explosive bowel, which in turn caused another shopper to empty his stomach. I’ll spare you the more graphic details of my newfound senses, but I detect what might be best described as a rotten two-piece meal from Captain D’s.
This war is fought with a thousand daily battles, and though some victories are sweeter than others, some stink. I’ve got to be ready. Stay vigilant.