remarkable times

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July 28, 2001--

C:   "Hey! Wake up!"
ME:    Mgfh . . . huh?
C:    "Come on! It's past noon already, get up!"
ME:    What? Who the heck are you? And where's all that blinding light coming from?
C:    "I'm your Conscience. It's time to get up. You haven't moved for days. Weeks even. Look at that last Dateline. July 8! What have you been doing for a month!?"
ME:    Nothing. Nothing's been going on. There's nothing to write about. Leave me alone!
C:    "Come on, you know better than that. Look what you wrote in your Preface about people thinking nothing remarkable goes on their lives. But cool stuff is always happening"
ME:    Yeah, but sometimes that's true that there's nothing to talk about. No sense in boring the rare visitors to death!
C:    "Don't make me smack you! You're just being lazy."
ME:    So what? Anyway I did make that spoof web page for Christine and Julie. I notice that they haven't commented on its latest iteration. I'll probably get flame mail any day now about it from them.
C:    "You know there's been more going on in your life than just that, as fun as that has been for you. What about your promotion at work?"
ME:    Oh, yeah. They made me an "Associate Buyer." I noticed that I haven't seen any "promotion" in my paycheck, and its been over a week since I've assumed the duties! I'm even still using the former buyer's Identity! So what's up with that!?
C:    "That's just probably a cost savings measure. Temporary I'm sure. Why don't you bug all the bosses about it and make a real stink? That will impress them with your 'teamwork!'"
ME:    Yeah, forget about that! The check's in the mail, I'm sure. Oh, and we're going down to St. Augustine, Florida for our 20th wedding anniversary. Staying in some beachside Bed and Breakfast overlooking the clear blue Atlantic.
C:    "Well, there you go! Talk about that."
ME:    Yeah, that is real exciting stuff, but just for us! OK, so there's a dozen words. That will be a great start!
C:    "C'mon, don't be so caustic. Try some Creativity for a change, huh? Writing's real work. You don't just fall into it like you do your bed!"
ME:    No kidding! Why do you think I haven't written in so long? Even stuff I started a month or two ago I find tough to get back into to finish and polish. You know I loath rewriting stories. There's that lazy streak again.
C:    "Well fine! Just forget about the whole thing. Why don't you just close the site down and stay in bed!"
ME:    Sheesh! For a Conscience you sure are grouchy! Lighten up a little, eh? OK, I'll get back on the keyboard and type something. I do need to do something about the old Dateline still there. It's getting embarrassing! Even if no one's coming by! Give me a few minutes and I'll start, OK? And turn that blasted light off will ya! I can't see a thing with you shining all over the place!
C:    "Alright, I'm leaving. But I'll be watching. If you're bluffing just to get rid of me I'm warning you, I'll be back, brighter and louder than ever."
ME: OK, OK. I'm moving. Just get out of here, OK? I'll think of something. I can always finish that piece on "near death" experiences.
C:    "Oh yeah, that'll bring in the masses. Nothing like a chipper piece about death and dying to lighten everyone's load! I'd stay away from that one if I were you . . . wait a minute, I AM you! Anyway, you know I always know better about these things. That's what I'm here for."
ME:    Oh, that's what you're for! Good thing we got that straightened out! I'll have to remember that for some future story that I get flamed for. "My Conscience was supposed to warn me about that; it's the one that failed, so don't blame me!" Hey, there's an idea! I could write about YOU! Wait a minute, who'd believe I had one!
C:    "Go ahead and laugh. Man, you're full of yourself! You know I've bailed you out plenty of times before. Hey now! That would make a good story! Tell them how screwed up you were way back when and how I saved your butt so many times. You could write a novel with all of those episodes! You'd make a bundle shilling that story."
ME:    That's what YOU think. You're just a little too close to that one to see clearly. Talk about how tedious the reading of that would make! Sheesh! If you think people are stampeding away now just wait till that kind of story hits the press. Good call there! Besides I've already done that with The Meeting and the story about the Court Martial. You don't see people beating down the doors to read those stories do you?
C:    "Well maybe they are. Have you looked at the site statistics yet for those pages?"
ME:    No, I don't want to get depressed. It's better just to put the stories and stuff on the Web and let what happens happen.
C:    "Yeah, now that's a first rate strategy! You'd make a great Corporate Strategic Planner, I'll say!"
ME:    I thought you were leaving! You want me to start something new or don't you? I can go right back to bed you know! I don't need these insults!
C:    "OK, OK! Don't have a coronary. I'm leaving. Just get on with it, will ya? Everyone has their slumps. Just sit down, type a few words, see what happens. Something will show up."
ME:    Yeah, thanks for all the encouragement. You're a great help. Why don't you find me some ideas now and then instead of poking me between the eyes like you're always doing, eh?
C:    "Hey, I'm just doing my job! You'd be in great shape if I wasn't ever around. You know what happens to people then! They don't come back from that!"
ME:    Alright, alright. See? I'm moving; I'm up. Now go away and let me get some work done!
C:    "OK, but I'll be watching. You can count on that!"
ME:    Great. Thanks a lot. Where's that keyboard?

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