I have an existential crisis every time I have to fill my Brita water pitcher.
Maybe there’s something to having incredibly mundane tasks forever tethering us to what it means to be an awful human being with an almost vampiric never-ending life, just so we never forget. Is this humility?
Anyway, any time I have to fill the Brita up, it starts by me saying to myself,
If I have to fill this pitcher up one more time …
But then I have to, and then I say …
Where did I even get this pitcher? When? How many times have I filled this already? How old am I? Oh god, I forget again. Then sometimes, I gotta get the calculator to minus 1981 from 2019.
My aunt always wants to find alternatives to having to buy three 24-packs of bottled water every couple of weeks because she’s a senior who has arthritis and has to ask other people to lift them and put them away for her. And my first suggestion is always a Brita water pitcher … As if we haven’t had this same conversation 70 times when she tells me that she’s old and has arthritis so how can she lift it? but she keeps talking about how she can do none of the alternatives that she keeps talking about.
You know, I used to iron shirts for this really rich white guy in New York City. He lived at the MiMA on Theatre Row, one of those luxury hotel-looking places. My first job was ironing like 30 of his shirts. I’d come in and most of the time he’d never be there but the ironing board and iron would be set up for me. He paid me something like … I forget but it was pretty fair. Anyway, I completed the job and it turned into a pretty regular thing. And I grew to hate it, but I was so broke at the time and he always called me right on time when I needed money the most so I just kept doing it until I moved outta New York City altogether.
Anyway, he was a cool guy but I hated it because it felt superfluous. Like it was only ironing, but what next? Just because you have the money, will you outsource tying your shoes too? Is this how you lose your humanity? Does it all begin by this? This untethering from the basic shit we have to do everyday to keep ourselves functioning and connected to ourselves, and human?
Anyway, a couple of weeks ago I dropped the Brita and I almost lost my shit. The pieces went flying everywhere. A part of the handle broke and chipped off and I forced it back and washed the pitcher again like it was new. There. Was it an accident? Or was I trying to kill myself with and through the Brita pitcher? I wouldn’t do that. Because that would be absurd, right?