Archives: Steven Erickson

The Entropy Shuffle

Entropy, all my cells diminish gradually. I’m not half the man I used to be. Oh, I believe in entropy.

  • sung to the tune of “Yesterday.”

It’s been the sort of month to make one think about entropy. Things fall apart; the center cannot hold. Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world. Or something equally Yeatesy and apocalyptic, but of lesser scope, fit to the scale of my life.

A few weeks ago I had to drive my wife and daughter to the airport. We woke about 3AM. I went out to warm up my wife’s car. At a quarter to four we went out, suitcase and baby in hand, to find the car had ceased running. And it wouldn’t start up again. I’d not fueled my car up the previous day because I’d anticipated driving my wife’s higher-mileage vehicle while she was out of town. There wasn’t enough gasoline to get us to the airport. The nearest station was closed. As was the next, and the next. Then, the next. Siri proved of no use, telling me no gas stations were within miles, even as I asked the question from the darkened parking lot of a gas station. Stupid Siri. We’d about despaired, planning to risk limping on fumes to the airport. Just as I drove out of the last gas station I saw the lights of another about a quarter mile down the road. Lights, meaning open. Saved!