Putting ideas into words. I do not usually remember dreams when I wake each morning, but I never wake up empty-headed. I don’t have writer’s block. Is that a problem? It can be. Too many ideas can also be a problem. If I want to write, then I have to distill those ideas that are running through my head, or get rid of those and try to bring in the ones with which I want to work. Random words, fragmented sentences, blurry images; they are all part of the process.
Today is not special in that regard, but it’s worth taking the time to try to work with the process. There is no bombardment of influences, but in a short hour (the same as a long hour), many new routes appear. Here are some of the countervailing winds that wafted past me, remembering that I wanted to latch onto a good idea.
- Waking thoughts included such positive nostrums such as ‘never give up’, ‘no pain, no gain’, ‘words and their meanings are always important’. I decided to do my morning yoga session–very short, sun salutations–then my stretches and stomach curls. I thought about the importance of this for ‘centering’. I thought about getting my daughter be involved in an interesting project this afternoon.
- A friend had highlighted some topics that bothered her and some struck me sharply: Facebook’s revealed attitude towards women, and Maya Angelou on the topic of ‘respect’–both are worth reading. Our troubled world–always pressing our thoughts.
- I read the newspapers and saw some stories that made me smile or made me puzzled: the US Postal Service will be selling clothing from 2014. Is this really where the business should be headed?
- A Washington Post letter writer thought all the commentary about changing the name of the Washington Redskins was a bad attack of the thinskinnedness–change those ‘Chiefs’ and ‘Blackhawks’; tackle other issues with names to satisfy ‘animal-rights extremists’ (Bengals, Colts, Jaguars, etc.).
- I listened to the radio: WAMU’s/NPR’s Diane Rehm was trying to raise funds but got enthralled, then distressed by a local report that a dog was wandering along a highway. Well-known for her gravelly voice and her beloved pet dog, Maxie, she pleaded for one of her fellow broadcasters, who’s an animal expert, to get to the scene. Misplaced priorities, I pondered. She plugged the radio station and again told us how she did not need a radio to which she could listen in the shower. TMI?
- I found my wife had run over the bicycles in the garage. Is the world a safe place with the mother car?
- Tiger Woods was commentating about drugs testing and new rules changes. Was he being the ultimate diplomat? Was he playing it utterly safe? Did haters hate him more? Did his fans admire him more? Would he win the match play tournament, which would start today?
- Barcelona would be playing AC Milan in the UEFA Champions League this afternoon. More thoughts on soccer commentary likely later.
- I recalled a conversation during the past weekend about what it means for a person to have hope when that person is in a very desperate situation (imagine the simultaneous circumstance of: being homeless, being in bitter cold, raggedy clothes, days without a decent meal, having no money, someone beating you in the face). How hard it is for those of us who have not had to live through that to understand what hopelessness may be like. I read Courtland MIlloy’s column about the need for more black teachers. Connected?
Just a short hour. I also have a swathe of resident ideas and thoughts. I have not yet decided about what I will write.