It’s 1:40 a.m.

I roll over. Kirk’s not there. “Hey, are you almost done?” I call out hoarsely from three hours of sleep.

“I’m finishing up right now,” he says from the couch in the living room. He’s still working. His job is ridiculous.

He crawls into bed next to me. “Hey,” he asks, pending a question.


“So we still don’t know if the motorcycle shipped or not, right?”

A few weeks ago, we bought a motorcycle off craigslist – a dirt bike, actually – and had it shipped (or rather, are waiting for it to ship) to Costa Rica. We’re scheming again – trying to figure out how to make money without a job.

My chest feels hollow. “No … we don’t.”

Two thousand dollars. Just sitting there, in a warehouse in Long Beach. Kirk’s worried. Maybe in this moment, exhausted and on the brink of sleep, he’s not, but now my mind is reeling. Where is the motorcycle now? Is it still leaning up against that stack of cardboard boxes in the warehouse? Did Miguel do something with it? Is it even in Long Beach? Has it been sold? Is someone racing it in the desert? Is it on craigslist? Is it in a heaping pile, ditched after being used for a drug run? Who runs drugs on a motorcycle?

“Will you try to get a hold of Natalia tomorrow? Or send me Miguel’s number and I’ll try to call him,” said Kirk.

“Okay, yeah.”

I’m not falling back asleep. My heart’s racing and this stupid song is stuck in my head from a TV commercial where a dorky Asian guy is sitting at his cubicle rocking out with headphones on looking at photos of himself from Vegas on his screen saver. Hit the lights, ohh oh, hit the lights ohh oh …

Miguel, our shipping point man in Long Beach, is worrying me. I sent him an email yesterday. I haven’t heard back from him yet. I called him twice on Friday trying to figure out what was going on.

“It hasn’t shipped yet?”

“No, no, eet has not sheeped yet,” he says, babbling on in his thick Spanish accent something I can’t understand whatsoever.

“Ok, thanks Miguel.”

I hung up. Immediately, Kirk calls.

“So we don’t know why it hasn’t shipped? We gotta find out why, Lauren. From what I read about these guys, we really have to stay on them. Stuff can just sit there, weeks go by, months. Then what happens to it? Two thousand dollars just sits there, unnoticed? We’ve got to look at it as cash. Because that’s what it is. Two grand. Just sitting there. We need to stay on top of this.”

My stomach twists. I roll onto my back. I need to calm myself down. I try to think of something I really like.  A table full of deserts. What? No … how about something I can look forward to. Christmas dinner. What is with the food? Kirk’s family coming to visit. That’ll be fun. The Stone Brewery, the Safari Park, Ruby’s on the pier … But will I get enough days off from work? What if I get hired at this new restaurant? Will they hire me one day and let me take a week off the next? Do I really want this job? Should I even go to the interview in the morning? Damnit, it’s nearly morning now.  Okaay, forget that stuff. How about sheep? Should I count sheep? Who the f actually counts sheep?!

Oh jeez. What if the two grand is gone? Why did we even do this in the first place?

Hey! I say to Myself, that’s unfair.You can’t just shoot yourself in the mental foot with those kind of questions. There’s no need to get all bent out of shape. Your letting your imagination hijack your rationality. Hit the lights, ohh oh, hit the lights ohh oh …

Damn that song.