The life and times of an ethnically ambiguous little lady.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Out of Ideas

Leaving the house these days has become stressful. This is what happens when you’ve mined your life for every possible shred of a story. It’s like I have nothing left to write about. Travel experiences? Check. Childhood? Done. Complicated parental relationship now that I’m a grownup making my own decisions? Absolutely. Relationship drivel? Of course. My fear of getting older, having kids, and possibly having made some bad decisions? Indeed.

I thought about writing poetry but realized I have as much skill in that area as I do in solving quantum physics. I thought about writing fiction, but I’m simply too literal. And for some reason, whenever I try to write something that may not be completely true, I take from my dreams, which are insane. I had an idea recently for a story about female clown who realizes she’s missed out on her calling as a stripper. WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME? Besides, aren’t dreams just twisting your reality? So really, I’m just writing my brain’s version of nonfiction.

So now when I go out of the house, I pray for something amazing to happen or at least for . . . something. Sometimes I wear ridiculous, nonmatching outfits with my skirt as a shirt and my shorts as a hat, hoping someone will engage me in a conversation, but I forgot that I live in New York and no one cares. I’ve gone from hoping to pass a burning building on the way to work just so maybe I can save a baby or a dog, to wondering what it would be like if I tripped in the middle of the street and got hit by a car.

Please don’t be concerned: I’m not trying to kill myself. The thought of having to write a suicide note is simply too stressful to even think about going through with the act. But a possible near-death experience could provide some useful fodder. Just think about it! Say there’s an accident on the subway. A sharp turn, by a haphazard, half-drunk subway conductor throws me from my standing position into some poor man’s lap. I turn to him to apologize and suddenly, we stare into each other’s eyes and realize it’s kismet. Or maybe I fall on an old war injury of his, which stirs up flashbacks from Vietnam, causing him to curl into the fetal position while shouting out military commands. This causes the train to come to a halt as someone has grabbed the emergency break and delays the train for hours. An angry mob attacks us and almost kills the Vet. He’s holding on by a thread. Maybe I feel so horrible that I caused all of this chaos that I accompany him to the emergency room as he keeps thinking I’m his long lost daughter, Consuela, anyway. Maybe when we get to the hospital our doctor is cold and standoffish but his heart is stirred by the Vet’s case because he reminds him of his father. And I am so stirred by the doctor’s compassion, that I decide that maybe I want to be a doctor.

Or maybe I’ll just settle down and have a family. Have a kid, adopt a puppy, start a blog about the magicalness of my puppy and my kid called “Buppy: Why a Baby and a Puppy Is All You Need.” I’ll be so transformed that this is the only right way to live that I’ll go on the lecture circuit. I’ll call my converts Buppies. Maybe I’ll realize that this is all I’ve ever wanted, and then I’ll resent myself for having tried to be different for the sake of being different. And then I’d get sad, because I’d want to tell my grandmother that she was right all these years, I just didn’t realize it before she passed away. Nah, that can’t be it. Maybe I’ll just work on that story about the stripper clown.

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