Wednesday, July 13, 2011

How to fend off blogger's block.

Like most human beings, my life is overwhelmingly segmented into a matrix of predictable behaviors and routines. Does spinning this silken web of familiarity around ourselves make unforeseen events easier to withstand?


I won't further muddy the already murky shallows of my mundane daily schedule by expounding on each act, but for the purposes of this entry, please humor me while I lay out my blogging cycle. I knew you'd be excited.

Spinning tales of profound insignificance every two or three days typically begins with an appetizer of warm desperation served on an empty platter of insecurity. After I've posted a piece, I usually allow about a twelve-hour grace period before conjuring up and silently chanting this well-worn mantra:

"There's nothing left to discuss. You've covered every topic, sometimes even twice, and it's time to give it up and get back to building a scale model of downtown Pittsburgh out of oxidized tricycle spokes. And enough with skewering Michele Bachmann. She's hot, evil, divinely chosen and crazy. Deal with it."

Inevitably, a little dashboard light in my frontal lobe flickers with the spark of an idea, and inspiration can invade my soul like a subterranean ear zit, or lurk in the shadows a la Dick Cheney behind a White House hibiscus tree.

And while I try to maintain a strategic idea reserve for the leaner days, it's usually a paycheck to paycheck existence.

This morning was such a case of creative bankruptcy. As I peeled on my disgusting bike shorts, mounted my two-wheeler and set out, I ruminated and drifted and wondered, what inspires others? Whose work do I admire and what motivated them to create? Where did they discover their muses?

What drove the ancient tribes of the British Isles to construct Stonehenge? Was it a majestic alter for worshipping their dieties, was it a primitive calendar system or was it an eerie foretelling of the average Londoner's dental structure?

Who could ever dispute that the Holy Bible isn't an inspired document? And what bigger muse than the big guy(s) himself? It just seems like God or J.C., or both, could have edited it down to something you could read cover to cover, like Harry Potter, and maybe Jesus could have written a little epilogue saying that everyone was really tired and they were up against a deadline when they got to Revelation, so they pounded out a cool ending over mozzarella sticks and a half rack of Icehouse.

I've always heard that Led Zeppelin's epic sonata, "Stairway to Heaven" was penned by none other than Beelzebub himself, as Jimmy Paige simply held a pen to paper and allowed his hand to be guided by an invisible force. As an impartial listener, I'm afraid I've got to give the nod to the devil-inspired music, especially after hearing what Pat Boone and Stryper had to offer.

And last but not least, how about the condom? I understand that necessity certainly inspired this invention, but what kind of trial-and-error process could this have entailed?

"Okay, we've ruled out tin foil and baby socks. All we have left is that sheep bladder drying out on the fence. Who wants to try that? Yes, I can see you're still bleeding, but we have to figure this out before our funding gets cut."

Don't worry. I'll eventually figure out something to write about.

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