Today dawned dark, well, for me at least. Before I even opened my eyes I knew that, as far as my temperament goes, I was not fit to leave the house. Viperous, petty, rage-filled, taciturn are the modifiers that come to mind. In sum, I was in the kind of mood that deserves to locked up like Pandora’s box and thrown into the loneliest depths of the deepest ocean.

I opened one eyelid and cursed the sun for raining on my parade because HOW DARE THE SUN SHINE WHEN I FEEL LIKE A PIECE OF TRASH STUCK ON THE UNDERSIDE OF A PARK BENCH THAT HAS BEEN PEED ON BY DOG.

Readers, gone is my cheer of yesteryear. Banished are the pretensions of Pollyanna. The Unsinkable Molly Brown has gone belly-up. Julia is having a Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day (or week).

I woke up too late, I had weird dreams about Indian manuscripts (which—believe me—you don’t want to dream about), I didn’t have time for coffee, my toast was limp, I forgot to send an important email, I flaked out of a meeting (and I HATE PEOPLE WHO FLAKE OUT OF MEETINGS), parking was more expensive than I thought—so was the coffee I ended up buying. And I just wrote a paragraph full of comma splices—I also DESPISE commas splicing because, DANG IT, commas are just too weak to bring together complete clauses. All they can do is stick sad little lists together like knock-off brand scotch tape; commas are not the punctuation of champions, but that of imposters, people who have no real ideas and just parrot back and list meaningless information they did not come by honestly and they do not understand.

I sat down to revise a paper and realized it was not, as I had optimistically described to someone, “nearly perfect,” but rather a sloppy pile of meh. Lo, how the mighty have fallen.

Vitriol filled my spirit and expended itself in little bursts of angry energy as I pounded the keyboard. But it was just sound and fury, signifying nothing.

Instead of working, I wandered into a slough of existential despond. What am I doing? And do I like it? Should I move away this summer? Stay? What is worth leaving for? Or staying for? How do I get my gas bill to stop being so high? Why is February such a bummer? Do my neighbors hate my guts? Is it going to rain tomorrow? Why can’t people in Cleveland learn to drive? Is this crick in my neck permanent? Am I comma splice of a person?

And here I’ll stop, because, gentle reader, no one should have to wade through this cranky blather for 800 words. I’m keeping it short because I’ve got a short fuse today.

The thing about complaining is, though it feels good for a while, it looks pretty ugly written on a page. I know my struggles are small and my reasons to be thankful sprawl happy and large by comparison. So I’m embracing the day—in its terrible horribleness, and I’m confessionally admitting to my sourness of spirit. Here’s to a better evening and the promise that, after bad days, joy will cometh in the morning.

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