I sometimes type wearing fingerless gloves. Because my hands get cold. I just snapped a pic and sent it to The Rogue Accountant and said, "I feel like Janet Jackson!" He texted back, "You look like Marv from Home Alone." My writing confidence is now depleted. ("We're the wet bandits!")
Hey party animals! Thank you so very much for your kind words on my last post. Your comments made my heart ache in a good way. There are so many bad heartaches, you know? There's the country music lyin', cheatin' leavin' kind. There's the break-up kind. There's the eating faux-meat-tacos from Taco Bell after midnight kind.
But there's a good kind of heartache too, and I think it comes from realizing how crazy-blessed you are to be around such awesome people. Thanks for being awesome. If you were here, I would have baked cupcakes for all of us!
.. And then you probably would have gagged ... because I'm very hit or miss when it comes to The Baking Thing.
Sursly though, thanks for making the second anniversary of the day I turned 29 so wonderful. Those little shouts of encouragement couldn't have come at a more appropriate time for me. (Happy Birthday to you, Lydia!)
I stumbled across the coolest story this weekend and I knew I had to share it with you.
I know I've mentioned this a time or a thousand, but I'm very fond of my city. I actually live in the suburbs of my city, probably 20 minutes or so from downtown. When I was a teen, I lived twenty minutes or so from a Wal-Mart and a Sonic. Teens in these parts live ten minutes from Starbucks and Menchies and an honest-to-goodness mall. So when people mention the small-town-ness of where I actually dwell ... it just doesn't even make sense to me. I love cities and the sticks. I kind of feel like I get the best of both right now.
This post has to do with the city-part of where I live. There are storybook streets in my city. There are old battlefields and quirky shops and fun local legends. There is a bakery that only makes dog treats and, when you walk out the door of the bakery, you can look down and see bronze dance-steps embedded into the sidewalk. Like a couple of swanky ghosts decided to dance the Charleston just before you pushed the door open. Tall mountains scrape the storm clouds. Sunsets burn up the sky. This certainly isn't a perfect town, but its charms are obvious. And the best part of this city, the most charming part of all, happens to be the people. My town knows how to bring the quirk and celebrate individuality. Fabulous people abound.
In the newest edition of a local publication called Chatter, Merell McGinness interviewed Oterius "Sandy" Bell, better known as The Flower Man. Here's a quote from McGinness's article:
"He’s been dubbed the Midnight Matchmaker, the Midnight Florist or simply, The Flower Man. But while Bell has been spreading flowers and love throughout Chattanooga for more than 20 years, he’s had his fair share of hard knocks. Homeless for more than 13 years, he survived on the blossoms he sold late night in downtown restaurants and bars, eventually securing an apartment. Despite a recent colon cancer diagnosis, Bell takes it one day at a time and continues to count his blessings, hoping that everything will – as it always has in the past – turn up roses."
Later on in the article Mr. Bell says:
You can read the full article here, if you're interested. I thought it was the sweetest. My favorite part is that when he was facing some serious discouragement and disappointment, he reached for something blooming. And that instead of being paid for his handyman work, he asked for flowers.
Paid in roses seems like a very sweet way to see the world, doesn't it?
It made me think about writing and how, cheesy as this sounds, I've always hoped that whatever I'm writing resonates. I was sitting with a group of writers once, and somebody asked us what our BIGGEST dreams were for our work. The first thing that popped into my mind is that I want to write something that lasts. Maybe that won't happen. I don't think I'll ever write thrilling, pulse-pounding fiction. I'll never be an expert at marketing. But I still have this little hope that maybe there's one thing I'll write that has weight to it. Somehow, in some crazy way, maybe these words will leave my imagination as one thing and bloom into something new - a dream first, then a thought, then ink and pages. And then even though they're only ink, just words on a page, maybe they'll have weight-enough that somebody feels like they're holding onto them. I hope I can write a paragraph or a chapter or an article or a book that somebody can press against their heart and keep. Because those words made them feel brave, or helped them remember, or just reminded them that they weren't alone in all the worrying and doubting and wondering. I don't know if I'm capable of that sort of thing, but it's what I'm aiming for.
Thanks for the encouragement, Mr. Bell.
All this talk about flowers reminds me of this song, which happens to be one of my most favorites:
One of my goals this year is to pick out 1.) a favorite piece of art (that isn't a painting) 2.) a (new) favorite perfume (because my favorite has been discontinued *shakes fist at Origins*) and 3.) a favorite flower. I have no clue how I'll ever narrow down a favorite flower. Pretty sure I'll always love wildflowers the most. Violets, in particular. I love the look of Peonies but I greatly dislike the word "Peony". (I'm partial to dark pink roses too) (and Gerbera Daisies) (and lilacs ...)
Do you have a favorite flower?