Pinch me, this cannot be real, I said. So he did and pinched a nerve. I would have thought god to be a cerebral kind of guy but he is all the way slapstick. It is day three now of waking up feeling my back in deep freeze, feeling the soldering gun poke it alive just to get out of bed. But maybe it’s the rain that is knocking on my joints. August came in doing its best impression of fall and, to be honest, these days I do not mind the summer leaving early. For me, the grays are colorful enough. There really is nothing quite like looking up at the sky and letting rain cleanse your eyes of the night’s rust. Best reserved for the nice part of town, though. A person could go blind blinking through rain seasoned with smoke from good ol’ american coal burning upwind. But that’s neither here nor there. The nerve is real, the day is real, and I am not seizing it like it seized me. I have gone to see the doctor more times this year than in the whole of my life. Stress, they say. All that tension, in your head and muscles, you’re not releasing it properly. Exercise, walk, eat better. It all sounds great, doc, but I think it is all a test from the great Chaplin upstairs. The physical pain I can bear. It is when he turns my golden years into satire that has got me worried.