I’ve always had a problem with having a ton of ideas invade my head from time to time, which I promptly forget when I get home.
Thanks lousy short-term memory.
But if I’m actually able to get the idea written down or spoken into the notes section of my phone; I become giddy at the prospect of writing something that I am extremely proud of.
So, I get my music ready. My drink (non-alcoholic…most of the time). And I start writing what will no doubt be a magnum opus that will be remembered for a long time.
Except…it literally never comes out that way.
At first the idea flows and I feel it is going to some place really good. Then I basically smash head-long into the brick wall of doubt and dissatisfaction.
Occasionally, I can recover from the massive psychic headache I just acquired and finish the thing I set out to do but then I start looking back and what I’ve written. And proceed to junk the whole thing.
Again. And again. And again.
It’s a vicious pattern. For it just never seems to flow correctly.
Oh sure, maybe there is a good line here, or a thought here that seems original. However, most of the time my brain sees the repetitive drivel of a man coming ever closer to his mid-30s who seems increasingly diminished in his capacity to fashion a coherent piece of prose that doesn’t look like the product of what comes out of a bird’s mouth to feed their young.
But I must get something up, so thinking I’m merely being too hard on myself, I hover my finger about the mouse pad, take a deep breath, and click the publish button.
Certainly I will see the error of my ways as an influx of people flurry to the page and read the comedic/poetic gold left there.
And hey! After obsessively refreshing the page 600 million times, there’s a hit!
Somebody saw it! Yeah!
So, not wanting to seem too concerned, I walk away and figure I’ll come back in an hour to check.
30 minutes later I check again. And its still 1.
Okay, patience, I think. I’ll actually give it an hour.
45 minutes later. Still 1.
Oh, c’mon! Who wouldn’t like a twitter version of the Revolutionary War?
Apparently all but 1 person.
And as time continues, and it reaches the end of the day, I sit staring at the same number than I stared at 14 hours early.
1. Sometimes it’s a few. Sometimes its no one at all.
It’s discouraging. No doubt. I wonder why it is that I can’t seem to write anything that would be enjoyable to a lot of people. I’ve given up on the caviar dreams of professionally blogging but certainly something on here has to be worthwhile. At least more than the tumbleweeds that are passing by now! And its taken me a long time to really realize the problem.
I am a hack. At least a self-imposed one.
When I originally started this whole thing in the first place, I attempted to come up with a name that I thought would be memorable. And by accident, thinking of how often people thought I was…well…a little ramble-y sometimes with topics I would discuss during history classes, it all, as the saying goes, fell neatly into place.
Ramblings of an average midwesterner.
For that, in the end, has been what I’ve always been. And what this whole blog thing has really been about.
The average midwesterner part is easy enough. Location-wise I have so far consistently lived in the same area for most of my life and the average…well…I can’t claim much in the way of exceptionalism nor have I ever really felt so or felt the need to.
But I never had the thinking on the rambling part right till now. For rambling was never about going on and on about a particular subject here and there and tailoring the approach to a particular audience. Anyone can prattle on and on about this gripe here or this subject there, or this funny idea over in that direction. What I’ve always wanted to do is have the forum to travel up to the moon, bounce around a little while, and return to atmosphere, maybe not exactly in the same place started but at least the same neighborhood. I’ve wanted to wrestle with an understanding of a world in which you think you gain the reins only to notice they aren’t attached to anything anymore. Truth nimbly steps from side-to-side, and your best hope is snatching a tiny tear of the cloth.
Because in the end, the writer is not the vessel by which the cornucopia reveals its secrets and wonders. We are chasing the scent that waifs silently upon parched air, begging for release from a force that we can’t be sure isn’t just the product of a fever dream. We are the suckers who thinks they can cheat the system and mold truth and existence of generations by the light of a worn factory line. But maybe one day we will be able to bite through the hardened shell that shields us from the lasting glow of universal truth. So in the end, I have to keep writing no matter what. Even if, chances are, I’m just going to keep writing to myself.