Thursday, August 11, 2011

great lists!

this kid has got it all right
o hello my little tender ones.  it's been so long, hasn't it? well, your faithful narrator has been through a bit of a whirlwind, but i'm back to talk about more things that are great!  there is still joy.  when there is nothing else, there is the ever-present possibility for joy! life is so very short. it is heartbreaking and astounding and the point is to feel everything, isn't it?  it's what we do.  what a thing to marvel at.

so. let's get started, shall we?

let's talk about something that i have a personal obsession with: list-making. this fella has always got a handful of little post-it notes and recycled tear-ups in her back pocket of to-do's, don't-forgets, here's-a-thoughts and read-this's.

for example, i just emptied out my pocket and here i have a list of authors to read [lydia davis and amy hempel] as well as a little grocery list of red wine vinegar, PAY TUITION [not available at grocers, but certainly list-worthy. yikes!], graham crackers [for melting peanut butter and semi-sweet chocolate chips on. healthy life choices. don't mind if i do] and coffee.  now, i've just made myself a nice little cup of coffee only to discover that my cream has gone the way of the irish elk.  that is to say, brother, it's way gone.  so, do i add cream to my list?  no.  i re-write the list.  nothing fills me with a greater sense of purpose than writing a fresh new list to crumple up into the safe pit of fabric where my spheroidal ass will keep it warm and protected from the elements.  an added-to list gives one more things to stroke off.  what satisfaction!  what accomplishment!

but i've stumbled upon a new challenge.  it's called the list of 100. you can do this for anything.  you could do the list of 100 things to do before you die, or 100 things you've already done and you're still not dead, 100 things you want to say out loud, 100 people you want to touch with your hand, 100 animals you'd like to rub faces with.  the potential is limitless.  just like joy.  limitless!

it's also an excellent tool for getting those atrophied creative veins pumping again.  sit down and write a list 100 anything.  100 character ideas, 100 plots, 100 story titles, 100 opening or closing sentences.

now you may come to a bit of stalemate in the process of writing your list of 100.  you may feel that some of what you're tossing in is inane, pointless, dull as dishwater even [am i martha stewart?].  don't let that stop you.  the idea is that you work through this and come up with things that you otherwise wouldn't have.

just like i always say, my little tender ones:  i get naked, you get naked.  so. here's the beginning of my list.  in an effort to get myself writing again, i figured i should start with some titles to get me thinking.

hopefully one of these little babies will spearhead a great story that will land me in an issue of mcsweeney's!

on that note, let me leave you with one more list of to-do's:

- feel everything
- love, love, love