A mind too full

It’s 5:15 in the morning. I’m still a bit on the groggy side. That comes with the gig. I enter the elevator that will take me to my day job, but to get to where I gotta get, I can’t just press the number of the floor. Nope, these days, we have to punch in a code to get the proper clearance to operate the elevator during non-business hours. It’s a security thing, to keep the weirdos of the night from barging in at 2 a.m. because they simply have to have a 10,000 Maniacs song dedicated to a friend whose appendix just exploded. I punch the code and see the light flash green, which means I’m cleared to head on up.

Next target, the radio station door. There’s no longer a need for a key because the lock is now controlled by a super-secure, drunkard and crankhead-resistant key pad. That means another entry code, which I enter, yielding another green light. My work day is three minutes old, and I’ve already entered two security codes.

Later on, I have a minute to check my e-mail inbox. To get in, of course, requires the proper password. No sweat. After that’s taken care of, I decide to catch up with my check book, to see if my latest arithmetic is halfway in the ballpark. I call the bank-by-phone teller, and punch in my account number when ordered to do so by the foxy dominatrix on the tape (in my mind’s eye, she wears a black camisole and a Catwoman mask). She then asks for my PIN number, which I fire up flawlessly. That’s a number you just gotta know if you’re gonna make it here in the fast cash, ultra-convenient, koyannisqatsi (life out of balance) modern world. I am now cleared to fix the tattered math of my account. (I keep forgetting to enter those damned gas purchases!)

Later, I have an appointment at my internist’s office. As part of signing in, I have to cough up my insurance ID number, which, fortunately, is my Social Security number. No problem. In the afternoon, I have to pay some kind of Mickey Mouse utility bill to the county, and they need my parcel number on the check. I am just slightly amazed, hell, even impressed, to note that after months of writing these checks, I now remember my bleeping parcel number, fercrissake, and am able to jot it down on the check.

At home, I open my mail and find a problem with the Discover card statement. I have to call, where the operator asks, for security purposes, my mom’s maiden name. Got it. I need to check my e-mailbox, so I have to fire up that password. Nothing much there, so I move on to the Yahoo mailbox, which I’ve established as a handy back-up. That account requires a different ID code and password, which I now remember since I began using them three times a week. Later that night, it’s time to call my favorite 800 number, 1-800-HOTSTOX, where I can get the latest mutual fund picks from a super hot topless stockbroker babe. To talk to my personal agent, Xaviera, I have to enter a MasterCard number, plus the expiration date.

So with all this data stuffed in my head, I’ll hope you’ll forgive me the next time I see you and completely blank out on your name.