And this is why I don’t blog more

People think writers love to write. And, to an extent, that’s true. I love writing much more than I love auto maintenance. Or accounting. Or internal medicine. Or any of the million other things I perceive as “complicated”. And it’s true that, when it’s flowing, writing delivers an electric high and a gaudy sense of power.

But when the words dry up and the inspiration stops, it’s like having every functioning part of your psyche sedated and restrained. In the wrong circumstances, it’s debilitating.

And, for some reason, blogging pushes these two extremes much farther than any other medium I’ve tried. (Notice I conveniently added that “I’ve tried” phrase in order to avoid having to compare blogging to writing a book. I’ve tried blogging.)

When I have something to say and an idea to write about, I love blogging. A few of my favorite writings are buried here on this blog. When it’s there, I can crank out a post I love in half an hour without doubt or second-guessing and never look back (except to smile and feel proud).

But when it’s not there, blogging terrifies me more than any project at work. Nothing sounds good. Nothing feels original. (In fact, I feel like I’ve written this post before, but I’m too afraid to look back and find out.) And I don’t know why, but my momentum is so easily lost in this medium. All it takes is one misstep – one potential post that I can’t make work…and it’s gone.

So 40 days of blogging truly scares the crap out of me. And sliding into a funk on January 31, before I’m technically even supposed to have started, does not bode well for the next six weeks.

Here’s hoping something interesting happens tomorrow!

Welcome to 45

It took me forty-five-and-a-half years to discover how college girls with low self-esteem feel. I went to see the doctor this morning for a “routine physical”. I was anxious and apprehensive, not sure what to expect. I debated with myself for what seemed like forever, trying to decide what to wear. In the end, what I wore never really mattered to the doctor.

He kept me waiting forever, he violated me anally, told me I was fat, then left me half-dressed and crying.

Now I’m just waiting for him to call.

[drops mic] I’m out.

(Hey, you’re going to get 40 posts in 40 days. I’m not going to guarantee they’ll all be LONG.)

Double Shot

ImageSo two years ago I was faced with a bit of a moral dilemma when Creepy-Waving-Angry-Piss-Drunk-Pickup Guy neighbor’s speedy, misguided attempt to navigate the corner of 8th Street and 3rd Avenue was abruptly intercepted by my mailbox.

I knew I needed to at least talk with him about it – I didn’t care about the mailbox, but this neighborhood’s lousy with kids. Seriously. In the summertime, this street looks like an Irish ghetto. I don’t want him driving drunk up and down my street.

And, as you may or may not recall, that made me sad because Creepy-Waving-Angry-Piss-Drunk-Pickup Guy was also Bobcat Guy, who often came and cleared my driveway for me. And, as I suspected, the driveway clearage stopped immediately after that conversation.

Flash forward to tonight. Quinn and Molly had just pulled out of the driveway when a knock at the door revealed a slightly wobbly Creepy-Waving-Angry-Piss-Drunk-Taurus Guy. (Same guy. Different vehicle. Come on, keep up with me here, people.)

He sheepishly stammered something about how the corner was really slippery and he’d done it again. Then he turned to leave and staggered awkwardly toward the Taurus that was perched on top of our snow pile, with the lights winking cheerfully toward our front door.

A minute later he was back. With some difficulty, he explained that he’d locked his keys in the car (which, by the way, he’d also left in gear, with the wheels spinning hopelessly in the snow) and he was going to walk home and see if he had a spare pair.

By this point we’d realized that we didn’t have much choice but to involve the authorities – partly because of the real public health risk he posed and partly because he’d rammed the electrical box in our yard half off its concrete footing. (But he missed the mailbox!)Image

A few minutes later, Sartell’s Finest arrived to find Creepy-Waving-Angry-Piss-Drunk-Taurus Guy trying in vain to unlock his car with a coat hanger (is there any car made in the last 15 years that you can still do that with?) while his poor wife and I looked on patiently.

“Hey, Pissy,” crooned the sweet young Sartell police officer. (She used the familiar version of his real name.) “Whatcha been up to today? Been watching the game?” I truly felt for his wife as I saw her jaw clench and I knew that this had turned into a pretty bad day for her. But honestly – how much worse a day could it have been, given his condition?

He was taken into custody and I’m not sure what will happen. I just know I’ve gotten a solid, healthy wake-up call. And those are probably good things to get every now and then.