This is my office. This couch. That dog. It is a comfortable place to sit for an hour or two at a time, but if I sit there all day my body tells me the ergonomics aren’t ideal.


I sit here first thing in the morning too, while I drink coffee and push the world around on my phone. The dog climbs out of his bed to join me there, to make me pet and scratch him really. Then the kids need to be woken, and breakfast needs to happen, crumbs on the counter, dishes strewn. The coffeemaker shuts itself off.


Once the kids are up in their rooms again, virtual classrooms echoing down the stairs, the dog fixes me with his pleading stare. GTFO. GTFO. GTFO. But I have an eye for my inbox and an idea to workout here on the keyboard, none of which is flowing, none of which is easy, but the only way is forward, and I ignore the dog most of the time, despite knowing he’s right.


The kids come down at intervals to eat whatever snack food we have. I suggest they have an apple, a carrot. More plates. Less order.


My 15-year-old says, “Dad, this water bottle has the perfect amount of water in it for bottle flipping. Watch!” The dog farts.


Somewhere, inside me, things are tipping over from chill to antsy, from content to irritated. I get up. Clean something. Pay a bill. Send an email that needed to be sent. It doesn’t help. I have stopped tapping away at the keyboard and allowed myself to fall into a doom scrolling death spiral. I close those tabs and then reopen them.


I know what I’m resisting, and I don’t know why I’m resisting it. My wife loudly conference calls in the next room. The dog has left me to curl at her feet. The couch is starting to strain my back. Maybe it is starting to digest me.


I check the temperature. I go upstairs to change, grab my shoes. The dog meets me at the bottom of the stairs, tail wagging hard. He thinks he’s coming. He’s not. I love him, but he’s part of the problem, and the problem is now, and the only answer is to GTFO.

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