Today I’m thinking about love. Alright, fine, I guess I’ve been thinking about love for a few days and keeping to the writing-from-a-place-of-truth law of the Cocoverse, I guess I’d better talk about it.
Do note however, that I am writing this blog very late on the day that it is due, using a 25 minute Pomodoro session during my lunch session and planning on polishing and primping it immediately upon conclusion of day job obligations with at least another 3 Pomodoros.
My delay in writing is, as ever, directly related to my reluctance to write it. I don’t want to write about love, because not only will I then have to think about it (which I am doing anyway), but in the writing process, I have to face my thoughts about love. Don’t want to. Want to brush them into the corner under the pile of dirty laundry, which I don’t have to look at until next Wednesday (which is the next designated laundry day in the Cocoverse).
Sometimes being a writer sucks that way. Experience has taught me that, now that I am writing about it, that I have absolutely no idea and no control over where this self-conversation is going. It could take me to wonderful and delightful heights, or painful and uncomfortable depths.
Yah, I know, likely both, but I’m not up for a roller coaster ride today, thank you very much. I’ve had enough drama in my personal life this month, thank you very much. Do I really have to look at this today? Can’t I just tell you an amusing story about my co-workers new found obsession with the TV show Glee? Or the child-like delight of another colleague at his name appearing right after that of an A-list star on a film credit list? Or my super insider sneak peek at a fine cut of the short film “Rusted Pyre” (it was awesome by-the-way; hooray to the CSSC and Year of the Skunk for making it happen!) I could even just make something up about the Cat Lady who made her first appearance in last week’s blog entry. Anything not to talk about me. Sigh. Squirmy though I am and likely will continue to be, it is time to pull off the band-aid and tell you some of the love thoughts. But first, I’m getting a nice cup of tea.
Back with the tea. Earl Grey, straight up. And a glass of water. Procrastinating? Who? Me? By the way, if this was a script, this is the point at which I would delete the entire preceding paragraph and start this story at the real beginning, which is right around here somewhere. Though I leave it in for your edification (your word of the week, for which you should thank me cause I was going to make the word for the week “epigenetics” but I decided to take pity on those of you for whom science is not a religion), as I thought you might want a look at how I really write these delightful missives, so carefree and conversational that, apparently, they look effortless. After a tiny and completely non-scientific poll of several readers of this blog, it appears that the prevailing thought is that I whip these confections off within a period of between 30-60 minutes. Hmmm. Maybe I’m doing something wrong, or have horrifically slow keyboarding skills, but no. Sorry to show you the little man behind the curtain, but typically a post of 1,000-1,500 words takes between 2-5 hours. You see how much I love you that I do this for you gratis every week? Well, while it is true that I do love you, we all know I love me more and that writing the blog is in its essence, a gift to myself as it is a private master class in writing taught by me for the edification (now that I made you look it up I may as well use it twice ), of self. See, I even tried to take a deliberate turn into writing about writing and still ended back a the L word.
Love. I have lots and lots in my life, that’s for sure. Friends and family and colleagues and even a few folks that really don’t know me well, but seem to have developed an inexplicable warmth nonetheless. I started thinking about love in new ways this week out of a conversation about character and motivation. My friend was telling me that he was hanging-out at a restaurant with a woman who I had known him to be dating not long ago. But he made a point of clarifying that it wasn’t a date, rather they were hanging-out. Totally not getting the difference from where I was sitting. Apparently it had something to do with him not having the expectation of a romantic type conclusion to the evening. I’m still not sure I get it, but my actual understanding of his POV isn’t the point. The point is, that the conversation strongly reminded me that characters in a scene, as in life, have differing expectations. I wonder if his date thought there was a difference? It started thinking that I spend a huge amount of time thinking about my feelings of love, who I have them for and who I don’t, who I wish I had them for, or should have them for and who engenders feelings the like of which I would delight to chuck in the recycling bin as a total waste of time, and quite frankly a bit embarrassing to boot. I have spent very little time in life contemplating the love directed my way. Romantically and otherwise.
I am always shocked to find out that someone even likes me.
Anyone actually saying the words out loud to me can expect a bemused “Why?” to pop out of my mouth, particularly if a glass or two of wine have already gone in. Little time also thinking about what being loved does to people. How has the fact that this person loved me and that person didn’t, changed me? And why do some people seem to fall in and out of love faster than the seasons change, while some of us, once begun never truly stop.
I can think of only one time in my life that I truly fell completely and forever out of love with someone. It was the strangest thing. It happened in an instant, in the time it takes to snap your fingers. One moment I loved him. The next moment I discovered the latest betrayal, the latest link I was supposed to over look in a long, long, long chain of things that had to be over looked. And snap. Something broke. Not my heart, but the chain around it.
I realized that my love for him was killing every single thing inside me that was good and bright. So I stopped loving him.
I’m still surprised at how easy it was, and from time to time, I’ll look inside at the place where the love once lived and marvel at the empty room with the clean fresh breeze still blowing through. Sometimes I wonder if it makes me a bad person, that after carrying a torch for the guy for nearly fifteen years it was such a simple and painless act to snuff it out. I know that it hurt him very deeply when I withdrew so absolutely from his life, and I think that some part of me should be sorry for inflicting that pain, but I have no idea where that part of me is.
And…there it is, the truth that all this disconnected rattling around about love was meant to reveal. I’m not sure that I know a thing about it. Love. Hmmm. Earlier today a colleague gave me a couple pieces of writing with the hope that I could “add my special touch”.
She knew they weren’t good, but couldn’t tell me why. No problem. I read them. I could see exactly what was wrong and how to fix it. I could have taught a class on it then and there. About writing I know. About love… I just don’t know. Love is a mystery to me.
I can hear the TV in the background now shouting out “Boxes from Krypton are not toys!” A rather delightful statement, don’t you think? Maybe romantic love is my Kryptonite? Maybe the reason I can’t seem to work up the Mojo to finish the long labour of my feature Rom Com script is that the closer I get to the subject, the faster my super powers get sucked away. Or, I could just be looking for excuses. I do find that is another weird side effect of writing this blog, I’m rapidly losing my ability to find a good excuse and really sell it.
I feel now like I should sum up and tie this all together for you by pointing out what I hope this post is meant to teach you and I about writing for the screen. But I don’t think I will. This week instead of going out with my usual bang and cymbal crash and statement of the bleeding obvious, I will just lay it down. Gently lay it down. I love my family. I love my job. I love my friends. I love potato chips. I love baseball and martinis. I love the colour purple and the smell of vanilla. I love my guitar teacher and my book club peeps. I love the Canadian Tenors and Oban whiskey. I love books and I love stories. I love films old and new. I love when people laugh at something I’ve written. I love the feel of cool rain on my face. I love the long deep blue of twilight. I love the warm strong arms of my love reaching round me to pull me close and the soft happy sigh of his breath on my neck.
In the Cocoverse, while there are any number of Laws, there are also a few Mysteries, the First of which is Love.