It has occurred to me that I might seem very uninteresting.
I suppose I’ve always had trouble telling people what it is I like to do. Lately and often, I’ve been asked this question. For one, I hate talking about myself. I hate having to make myself seem interesting or mysterious in a five to ten minute span. I’m over that.
I can’t say which books I’ve found to be influential or what I’m reading now, if my attention span allows me to do such a thing in the first place.
“Oh, I like to cook…it’s my job. I also write, and read from time to time.”
I see it in their eyes. Their clothes. The Patagonia fleece and brown boots which means they hike a lot or something, so the thought of sitting in one’s room to read and write is awfully boring. But maybe not.
I realize my lack of eye contact is misleading. But I swear, I’m solid. I just don’t trust you yet. My eye contact says a lot about how I feel about a person. I don’t just lend it to anybody, unless I need to be impressive.
“Wait, why am I so nervous explaining myself? I like who I am. I am comfortable and sharp and aware. Why am I doing this to myself again?” (Of course, said to myself ten minutes later as I’m digesting another rushed conversation.)
I think about how some books, when translated into movies, don’t always work out so well. You have to thin out some things. You also have to add twists and pit falls and dinosaurs and stuff. Do you realize how short our attention spans are these days? Yeah, exactly.
You want content. You want it to be good. You want to be challenged. Excited.
You want to feel something.
I understand that.
And this is where my mind starts to connect the dots.
I’m not some expert on writing. I don’t host workshops because I got a degree in writing or was featured on a more popular blog. I don’t write about writing (except for maybe this one) and I don’t call myself a writer. Just as I don’t call myself a chef or any thing of that grandeur.
But there is something sacred about a story. Your life is a story. And I’m not trying to get all narrative on you, but there is some truth in it.
In these small conversations, where we have to sum up our lives in a tiny paragraph or five minute conversation; it’s just hard. And I’m not so good at it.
So I reach deep deep down. Into the marrow. Into whatever it is that makes me, me.
And I sit there and feel strong. loved. important.
I embrace the insecurities like an annoying companion, and leave it when I need to. They will never leave.
Because in the span of 500 words, there’s so much that can happen.
like that time I was chased by dinosaurs…