Thursday, May 26, 2016

four weird traits about me

Just four? I have so many. Ugh. These prompts are starting to get on my nerves. But I’m determined to finish all thirty. I usually fizzle out on things like this. Not this time! So, four weird traits.
1. I really enjoy doing absolutely nothing, by myself. I’m perfectly happy sitting in a chair, with nobody else around, just thinking. I joke that I’m an introvert who fakes extroversion really well. When I’m around people I’m animated and engaged. But I’m happiest when it’s just me. And my dogs! I frequently get advised that I should have more activities. People who say this to me are often scheduled beyond belief. A lunch date can only be planned for “two weeks from Wednesday.” That’s fine for them, but not for me.
2. I keep lists of character names, book or chapter titles, scene descriptions and snippets of dialogue. Maybe all writers do this. These things just pop into my head. I was working on the second floor of the library last week. There were workmen changing out a small art gallery area, so random furniture had been pushed here and there. I spotted a customer sitting in a chair facing out a huge floor-to-ceiling, wall-to-wall window. He wasn’t reading. There were no other chairs or tables or customers near him. He was just watching the world. And if you read #1 on this list, you’ll know I was thinking how much I would like to be doing exactly what he was doing. I wrote “The Brilliance of the Man in the Orange Chair” which I will use at some point.
3. I’m socially awkward, but only in very specific ways. I’ll say something benign that is interpreted in a negative way. I won’t realize right away that I expressed the thought in a poor way. By the time I do realize what has happened, I’m frozen with mortification and can’t figure out what to do or say to fix it without sounding defensive. Because nobody perceives me as socially awkward, I come across as aloof, when all the while my brain is trying out and rejecting explanations, clarifications, apologies, and other strategies to fix my unintentional faux pas. I’m a lost cause.
4. I have hoarder tendencies which I combat with very minimalist surroundings. If I see even a hint of things piling up, I institute my Every Time Rules. Every time I get up, I must put something away. Every time I leave the house I must take something with me. Every time an item in my house reminds me of something unpleasant, I throw it away. One happy aspect of getting older is that with the object out of view, I’ll never think of it again.
I’m not reading ahead on these prompts. I’m hopeful, for my sake and for yours, that the remaining topics are less about me and more about … anything else!

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