May 6, 2009 at 1:56 AM | Posted in Journal | Leave a comment
  A long time ago, when we had first moved to St Louis in the mid 80s, we lived in the Blackjack area.  Our phone number was 355-6650.
Blackjack Nursing home’s phone number was 355-6660.  Guess how I knew that?  To make matters worse, they had some promotional material printed up with our phone number on it.
I was working third shift at Majik Market (my first job!), and I would get home and go to sleep at 730 am.  About 9 am I would start gettting calls.  My mom and dad were at work and my sister was in school, so I’d answer the phone.  Frequently, they were disgusted with me for not knowing the right number.
  Many times it was a sweet (probably) old (definitely) lady (ambiguous determination at this point), misdialing.  I would wake, disoriented, and my throat was dry, making my voice sound even more gruff and deep.
  A pause.  "Oh.  This isn’t Spanish Lake Nursing Home, is it?"
  A forced breath on my part.  "No."  My eyes weren’t even open.
  "Oh, I’m terri–"
  I had already hung up.
  Eventually I learned, and unplugged the phone in my room.

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