Day Two: Creature of Habit

Eighteen days without Internet in my room.

I’m adjusting slightly, but only slightly. I still compulsively and mindlessly attempt to get on the Internet in my room, and each time I end up brutally disappointed and brought back to reality, but I don’t seem to ache as much as I did when this treachery first began.

I have, to ease the pain and distract myself, constructed a routine. It goes as follows:

7:45 a.m. – Wake up from sleeping on the mattress that I’m confident is filled with clay and not any reasonable sort of bed-stuffing. My sleep these past two nights has been riddled with dreams that are just real enough to convince me they’re not dreams, but strange enough that I wake up fucked.

8:00 a.m. – Bowel movement. Whenever I move to a new place, I tend to poop a lot. I’m not sure why.

8:20 a.m. – Leave Internetless room for the day. Good riddance to that hellhole.

8:21 to 8:25 a.m. – Walk down Central Park West to 59th Street/Columbus Circle subway station. Wait for B train downtown.

8:35 a.m. – Get off subway at 42nd Street/Bryant Park station. Walk to Bryant Park and sit until it’s time for work.

9:00 a.m. – Begin work. Read a lot. I think I checked 2,000 pages of corrections my first two days.

I’d like to take the time now and apologize to my fellow interns who spend their days sitting with me in that tiny room off of the kitchen. My constant sniffling and runny nose cannot be pleasant. Bear with me, I’ll get over this cold eventually. Or die trying.

1:00 p.m. – Lunch. Explore the Fifth Ave/42nd Street block for places to eat. Current favorite: pasta at Café Metro. Next week, I’m going to give Bravo Pizza a try.

5:00 p.m. – Leave work for the day. It feels really cool to walk out of that building and join the other habitants of Manhattan on their treks from work. I wonder if they can tell I’m an imposter?

 5:15 p.m. – Sit in Wifi reading room of the NYPL. Spend precious time on the Internet, first time all day. Resist urge to watch porn. Wonder where the books are, consider hunting for them at a later date.

6:00 p.m. – Take Subway back to Columbus Circle. Search area for something to eat for dinner. Hot Dogs and Pizza so far. Who knows what tomorrow holds.

7:00 p.m. – Take up residence in the lobby of my wretched building. Internet connection varies in quality. Curse god for putting me in a building that doesn’t have Internet in the rooms. I’d curse my uncle, but he is paying for this place, so I can’t really complain. Damn it, damn it all.

10:00 p.m. – Leave Internet for the night. Tell it I love it. I’ll miss it so much.

10:15 p.m. – Shower. Try not to touch any of the floor/walls with bare flesh. Curse the water pressure for being weak. Curse everything. This is the darkest part of my day.

10:40 p.m. – Watch DVDs on my laptop. But not too many, they have to last me until June 1st.

12:00 a.m. – Brush teeth. Go to sleep on that mattress that I’m confident is filled with clay.

Unfortunately, this is only my schedule for days I have work. Dear god, I’m afraid of what will come on the days I have off. The gaping eight-hour hole without Internet is going to be a nightmare. Maybe I’ll explore the city. More likely, I’ll spend it in bed weeping, only getting up when the cleaning staff comes to change my sheets. Eighteen more days of this. I have my doubts I’ll make it through.

-Ben Cosman