A Profound Look Back at the Week: March 15-21

Spring is upon us is so is snow because that’s the kind of world we live now — there are no rules but there’s a grand solar minimum in progress, apparently, so I don’t know how things are going to look in a decade or two. Well, I do have an idea but I want it to be a surprise.

Winter forgot something

Clearly, winter forgot something so it’s been back for a week now, ruining people’s plans but not mine because I don’t make plans. At least I tell myself this and most of the time I believe it. Making plans is asking for trouble — you get snow, hail or zombies. Or a virus, of course. A virus is always a favourite.

Little C. had plans to go to the zoo this Saturday. Not to see the animals, no. She had elaborate plans to go there and dig for minerals. Apparently, the crew that expanded the monkeys and apes enclosure left a pile of rocks that featured some truly beautiful ones, with quartz buildups fit for a museum and hse found some of them last Sunday. I totally understood C.’s enthusiasm.

So she made a list of what she would need for the dig (hammer, chisel, brush, mask, gloves, water, a sandwich, and — my pride, joy and proof that I’ve taught her something about life — a “notepad for facts”. Did anyone tell her what to take? No. She watches mineral-finding videos on YouTube, I guess she got it from there. Alternatively, she knew instinctively what you need for a rock dig. That genetic stuff is scary.

It started snowing on Monday. It’s Sunday now and it’s snowing again, rendering her plan impossible. She has learned about disappointment. She’s also learned about anxiety: she’s worried that either the worker crew will remove the rock pile or that some other kid will find the pretty rocks before her. Anxiety builds character.

Never waste a good spurt of inspiration

I boasted/complained elsewhere that I’ve been bursting with ideas, probably because my time to put these ideas into work has been limited. But you shouldn’t waste a good spurt of inspiration so I shared sime of it to alleviate the pressure of containing it: I finally convinced Big C. he needs to give podcasts a try.

Let me explain: my lovely husband is a very vocal man. Where I’m a lot more comfortable writing, he prefers speaking. He also has hard, unpopular and often fascinating opinions on pretty much anything, and a pretty cool* sense of humour. And when he was a teen he dreamed of becoming a radio DJ. It was only a matter of time, really.

I made a list of possible discussion topics for him, put them on pieces of paper and made him draw them randomly. As luck would have it, the first topic was electric cars. We did a trial run yesterday and we both learned some important things. C. learned that preparing a script rather than relying on a few notes is a very good idea and I learned — for the second time in a week — that the pressure of having an unseen audience, even if it’s only potential because you’re recording, not podcasting live, worsens the rambling problem all of us have before we learn to speak properly.

We’re doing it again, with a script, soon. This will likely put me off EVs forever but I’m halfway there anyway, so it won’t be a big loss. And then we’re doing the next topic, which is Bulgaria vs Romania. That should be fun, where the word fun can be interpreted in numerous ways, not all of them humourous. What can I say, we’re trying to keep ourselves entertained. So far, we’re succeeding.

*He knows how to use sarcasm and uses it well. He’s not rainbow unicorn funny.

The new thing I tried this week

I remembered this week I’d had this idea to try a new thing every week. It was a sort of a tentative New Year’s resolution and as is the fate of all NY resolutions it sank into oblivion soon after I saw the back of January 3. I did have breakfast half a dozen times this year, so that one almost stuck. And yesterday I tried to do something that, unlike breakfast, I’d never ever done before. I tried to start writing a short story not right after I got out of bed and sat at my desk.

Normally, my routine is as follows: get up, stumble into living room/office, turn on laptop, continue to kitchen, make tea, sit down with tea, start writing. Fiction first, while the mind is freshest*, then work. This routine has worked perfectly well for me for years now.

Yesterday I got bogged down by Twitter, thinking up the topics for this Profound Look, and random browsing before I remembered I’d planned to start a new story. I’d been awake for two whole hours when I realised this but I refused to let this stop me.

Venturing into unfamiliar territory makes some interesting feeling cocktails — the apprehension that danger might lurk in the dark mixed with the pleasure of doing something you’ve (almost) always enjoyed. The suspicion that in the two hours between waking up and opening a new Word doc your knowledge of grammar has evaporated mixed with the excitement that fills you when you’re about to start making a fictional person suffer.

I got 994 words in before I had to stop for reasons outside my control, namely, because Little C. emerged from her bedroom and when Little C. emerges from her bedroom fiction cannot be written because there is too much spoken language around. Here’s to trying out new things.

*It’s been scientifically proven that we’re most productive soon after we open our eyes in the morning. I don’t care about the coolness factor in being an “owl”. The brain’s best right after waking up.

Profound poem for next week

Roses are red

Violets are blue

If violets can do it

Then so can you


This being my blog and all, it’s the place I feel most comfortable peddling my writing, so if you’re in the mood for some dragons and vampires, or mysterious vanishing planes, try The Lamiastriga (which you can’t read for free on this blog) or Sky High (which you can read for free on this blog or on Kobo).

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