Keen observers will have noted that I have been physically, intellectually – but I assure you not emotionally – at a distance from Blogcritics for the last several weeks, beginning, really, when we went on vacation to Orlando in late May.
Some of it is just logistics: the behind the scenes, administrative duties of the site continue to take up more and more time, and now that we are in a position of having to focus on the business side of things, that is another time-eater. And the two trips – Orlando, L.A. for a wedding for several days over last weekend – left me completely out of touch for only the second and third times since the site began almost two years ago.
But it goes beyond all of that – it’s mental exhaustion, the reservoir has been perilously near empty for some time now, and to switch metaphors, it was time to let my fevered brain lie fallow for a while. So really, the administrative duties, the focus on keeping the site afloat, the trips, have allowed me to focus on something while the creative juices built back up.
The last 2 1/2 years have been a revealing experiment: I have found that I can write about my thoughts and reactons to life, popular culture and the news of the world on a daily basis for extended periods of time, and become a much more disciplined thinker, expressive writer, and better communicator in general in the process.
But I have also learned that there is a bottom to the reserves, that like any other muscle, the brain needs time to rest and recoup and without breaks what was robust, firm and juicy becomes wan, brittle and desiccated and needs to lie fallow for a time.
The good news is (for me anyway), I am really starting to miss actual writing (as opposed to linking to news stories, doing “check this out” posts) and starting to feel the juices flowing again. Consider this:
We’ve lived in our house for a year-and-a-half now and had the same curtains up in our bathroom for most of that time, but just this morning, for the first time ever, I was stunned to realize that at the right time of day, the pattern of light, window frame and curtain reveals a near-exact replication of the Shroud of Turin, backlit to startling effect, in triplicate. Really.
I sat there in the big tub with the Light pouring through the tripli-shroud and over me, beams of balm soothing my jagged, scarred soul – might not have noticed something like that a few weeks ago.
I wonder if they will try to turn our house into a shrine of some sort – of course all that traffic stomping through would require upkeep and maintenance and each visitor would have to get into the tub for full effect and then we’d have to start charging admission, etc., etc.
Some things are better kept private.