marcel barang

Going cool turkey – 4

In English on 31/03/2013 at 9:54 pm


Fag free? Looks like it. It’s been two weeks since I stopped taking Champix pills after completion of the three-month treatment, and the physical need for nicotine has gone.

What remains is the fancy need – the fleeting thought at odd times of how good it’d be to light up – but that’s easily dismissed, like a pesky insect, like that Juno down the street now that I’m gonad-poor and crumpled, dismissed with a flicker of the brain. Or a sugar-free look om to pacify the lips.

These last few months the downside has been a steady revolting gain in weight.

When I flew back from France last September, I weighed 83 kilos for 1825 mm in height. Six months later, I haven’t grown any taller but I weigh as much as 89,000 grams. In all justice, I can’t blame only Champix or cessation of cigarette consumption for those extra six kilos of lard: during that time I’ve been unusually sedentary due to excessive working sessions on the one hand, and on the other a growing incapacity to … simply … walk any longer – believe you me: of three years’ standing.

In the last few weeks, after a particularly painful ordeal in the street that had me mincing steps like a nonagenarian afflicted with delirium tremens, I’ve been consulting with one fake (Dr Amnuay) and two true (Dr Charoen and Dr Manoj) specialists of bone and nerve and cartilage messes and if I’m for the moment mobile and full of pep, it’s because of pills gobbled morning, noon and night this week and the next at Dr Manoj’s whim come what may.

You’d better believe it: I did extensive laundry by hand this very morning and even ironed no fewer than three shirts this afternoon in splendid heat. The last time I forced myself to wash a few clothes – two weeks ago, it was – I had to fetch myself a stool as my haunches refused to give a hand and lit up flares in protest.

The overwhelming feeling at the moment is of distress, or should I say désarroi: I’m an able-bodied man everyone says looks ten years younger than his real age without even trying – and also feel like it most days, damn your eyes – and yet what’s happening inside that wholesome body belongs to the terminal stage. Did I tell you about high blood pressure? And those feet and ankles that keep inflating when I worship the digital lares a tad too long? How boring can I be?

On the plus side: it looks like Saneh Sangsuk’s masterpiece The White Shadow might see the light of day States-side. Just because a butterfly once flexed its wings in the Amazon and many years ago I partook of Korean food with – but hush! What was that, Leonard, about ‘spiritual thirst’?

There’s Diaodai Tai Fa Khlang two-thirds trussed into French on my screen, and Le Seuil has yet to send contracts for it: I checked this very day with the main recipient. Please, please, please, may all things fall into place for once, ma chère Anne,

and I’ll go and have dinner now and be content.


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