This little monster, based on the Napowrimo.net prompt for Day 10—a lot of things happening at once—is a bit of a hybrid, combining bits of actual conversation or correspondence with sarcastic interjections by me. All of this is framed by the news that my desktop computer’s hard drive is beginning to fail. Is this really a poem? Whether it is or not, I’m going with it…
The technical term for it is ‘piling on’
‘Your hard drive is failing.’
This is Nancy. I’m a nurse at a hospital you’ve never heard of. Your father, who has never talked to you about any serious health problems he has been having, or about what he might want you to do on his behalf should he become incapacitated, has been admitted to the hospital with a urinary tract infection, dehydration, low body temperature, and apparent dementia. We think he needs some kind of palliative-care arrangement, either assisted living or hospice, but he insists he wants to go home. We don’t think he fully understands the situation, so we’re looking to the family for guidance.
‘Your hard drive is failing.’
Unfortunately, we can’t handle that here. We don’t have the training. Any return that involves home-office deductions or depreciation, we can’t do here, even though thousands of Americans like yourself have home-based businesses, from consulting firms to eBay shops. We can only help you with complicated returns that don’t require anything more than a scratch pad or a box of matchsticks to compute. I’m sorry.
‘Your drive is failing.’
Effective June 1, 2018, your rent will go up to reflect the new property taxes. Property taxes have increased by 17% due to the levies passed by the legislature which just adjourned in March. Never mind that we increased your rent by twice as much last year, when property taxes actually went down from the year before (which we didn’t mention because we didn’t want to bother you with unnecessary details). You’ll stay here. Of course you will. Because you can’t afford to move anywhere else…
‘Indeed, as I indicated before, your drive is failing…’
We’re required to keep your education level on file since we use it as one of the factors to determine your rate, but we never collected it because your policy began before we started asking about education. Please log in as soon as possible to provide your education level. If we don’t hear from you, we’ll have to nonrenew [sic] your policy, add a new metric that makes it impossible to sign up with us again at the rate you’ve been paying, and quite possibly come up with more unnecessary new language.
‘…and then you’re going to want to get that failing drive replaced.’
We want to make sure that people in a caregiver situation are taking care of themselves. So you have homework…
‘You’re going to want to get that failing drive replaced.’
Amount you owe. Subtract line 74 from line 63. For details on how to pay, see instructions.
‘Once you get the copy done, you’ll probably want to replace this bad drive.’
(9 April 2018—posted April 10th)