I’m a mess. I’ve started this post several times, and each time I get further away from the theme I started with. Let me recap…
I started writing about the memoirist’s challenge of writing about real-life events that don’t follow a natural story arc. I drafted three paragraphs about how many of the stories I want to tell don’t have a great ending. I have lots of tales with lots of building action, but there is rarely a climax (get your mind out of the gutter, I’m talking about literary climaxes, not the naughty stuff that you’re thinking about). Even if there is a climactic moment, there is rarely a good dénouement to sum it all up into some convenient moral or life lesson. Sometimes I have to dig deep to find – or manufacture – a way to tie the threads together into something worth sticking around for the last paragraph. Naturally, I couldn’t figure out a way to end that post, so I abandoned it. If I figure it out, I’ll try again. Stay tuned if you’re literarily-minded. Don’t bother if you’re looking for sexy climaxes. It will be disappointing.
Next, I tried writing about the insanity that pervades my work life. It’s been brutal recently. I’ve had moments of depression that would likely qualify me for some DSM V diagnosable conditions. It wasn’t just me, either. My colleagues are feeling the strain, to the point of impacting their physical and emotional health. Nobody should cry at work, but it’s happening. I couldn’t figure out a way to present the turmoil without unfairly eviscerating those that I believe are the cause of it. If I can do it fairly, and not put my employment at risk, I will revisit the topic.
I also considered writing about my adventure yesterday in which I served as chauffeur – substituting for my daughter who fell ill at the last minute – to a group of 15-year-old girls who were scheduled to visit a zoo 60 miles from home. That tale seemed to hold a lot of promise – giggly girls, zoological exhibits, and GPS-related tribulation – but, as I spent most of the day sitting in a park near the zoo organizing a six-inch pile of paper – from the aforementioned job which may be causing dysthymia (I looked it up) – I couldn’t figure out what to write that wouldn’t be filled with misery.
Next, I tried writing about grilling. Grilling is a good go-to topic that appeals to many readers, and I figured it would be a good distraction from the insanity: a simple description of the joys of cooking over a live fire. Unfortunately, I ended up grilling an absurd collection of dishes. I smoked potatoes – two russets and one sweet – for an hour. Then, I grilled a Southwest-style pork tenderloin marinated in orange juice, Worcestershire, molasses, and garlic; rubbed with chili powder, cumin, oregano, salt, and pepper; and served with a fresh pico de gallo. I followed that with Asian-style grilled asparagus, bathed in soy, sesame oil, and garlic. Finally, and inexplicably, I decided that prosciutto-wrapped, rosemary sprig-skewered shrimp cooked over the coals would be the perfect accompaniment. Yes, it was delicious, but talk about manic, multiple personality disorder dining. I couldn’t figure out a way to make sense of all that multi-cultural grilled protein and vegetation. Madness.
In between anxiety-ridden thinking, working, chauffeuring, and grilling, I helped my wife stage the house that my in-laws are moving into tomorrow night. After decades of life on Maui, they are relocating a half-mile away from my house. I love them, but this is not likely to be a salve for my recent angst, at least not in the short term.
I’m giving up. The preceding paragraphs are the best I have to offer. Forgive me…and pray for me. Or recommend medication. I’m open to suggestions.
I should probably listen to Slayer. That always makes me feel better. \m/