I’ve not posted in a long while, long in the internet-based-relative sense. There are a couple of essays in the hopper that go into the trip to California last weekend, and how about that one where most of the Springfield firefighters were wearing pink tee shirts for the past couple of weeks? The Heathens have had some heart-warming/making-me-want-to-shake-them-violently moments too, but none that make sense beyond the immediate family.
I’ve got a bit of a problem.
Let me explain. I’ve been trolling through old posts, working on a new writing gig and trying to cultivate some ideas. This has led to a disturbing recognition: I’ve degenerated into a predictable pattern. The essays all seem to go in this order (aside from movie reviews):
1.) witty/funny/poignant situation, whereby I mock/slander/observe humorous scenario
2.) realization that corny/ignorant/insane protagonist is more than family member/illiterate neighbor/idiotic friend
3.) wax all nostalgic on significance of observation/friendship/shared love of bacon
4.) tie story back around to the beginning with funny ending/pithy insight/verbal group-hug
5.) add in gross/humorous/embarrassing picture to amuse you, the reader
Holy crap. My writing has taken on the tone of the NBC psa-s that invaded my childhood (see picture above). These amusing anecdotes have been informing me for over two decades on the importance of awareness on such topics as bone density and stroke prevention. Always narrated by a television star-du-jour, they were meant to impart a certain seriousness, especially as it came to the topic of prenatal care.They sort of worked in a roundabout way, as I found myself at nine years of age asking my peers if they were appropriately concerned about diabetes prevention.
But the recurring theme with the public service announcements (along with that musical theme song you’re humming right now) was a steady and predictable wagging of the finger at you, as if to say “look, I’m Bill Cosby, and I’m funny as hell most of the time, but right now I want to talk to you about a serious problem we all face: chain smoking house cats who don’t get enough excercise”. As hyper-consumers of all things that came across our screens, we immediately cast an accusing eye at the lazy housecat sunning himself in the window box, curious if we caught a whiff of mothers Virginia Slims emanating from his twitching tail.
My point? It worked, but only up until a certain point. I no longer concern myself with some supposed Real Housewife Of The Greater Tri-State Area offering up 30 second lectures. They’ve lost me, they’ve cried wolf in a boring fashion too many times. And I worry that the essays I offer you are heading down the same path.
So here’s my solution/conditional offer.
I need some new perspective, and I like where a lot of you are coming from. I want to offer you a non-paying opportunity for me to be lazy just a bit longer: I want you to author some posts for me here. If you’re funny, if you’re boring as hell, it really matters not. I just want to see what other people who read this site might say, given a platform. The only requirement is that your work be limited to somewhere in the neighborhood of 1000 words or less.
Maybe you can jar me out of my stilted patterns.
Maybe you can make this site about more than a Seinfeld-ian loop of nothing in particular.
Interested? Let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org