The introvert’s reward

When I tuned into The Next Chapter on Saturday afternoon, Shelagh Rogers was interviewing two “exuberant” extroverts. They spoke of wanting to be charged by life, engaged in every moment. They didn’t want to be sitting in the corner, observing instead of experiencing.

Also this weekend, I read parts of Still Writing by Dani Shapiro. I’ve been grazing through this book for weeks. I’ve renewed it twice already, and I think I need to buy my own copy. It’s full of pithy, wise thoughts on the writing life.

Here’s the paragraph that struck me after the exuberance interview:

“I was working on the proof of one of my poems all morning, and took out a coma,” wrote Oscar Wilde. “In the afternoon, I put it back again.” Let’s face it: most of us are perfectionists. We spend our days searching for the perfect turn of phrase. And we consider this a good time.

Together, these ideas brought me to the following:

Poor Min. He is constantly trying to seize the day, and I’m usually drifting along in his wake, half listening and half wondering how the conversation the two teenagers had (loudly) on the sidewalk in front of our house in the early hours of the morning would translate into a fictional scene.

With my exuberant family members in mind, I vowed to face the rest of Easter weekend with more engaged attention. And succeeded, I think.

But now that the work week has arrived, and with it a little silent, solitary writing time, I’m going to reap my introvert’s reward.

still-writing

Audiovisual angst

My husband bought a new TV.

For some people, this might be a simple procedure. But not when you live with an audiophile. When we first moved in together, I agreed to cut down by one bookshelf if Min would cut down by one stereo system. Because he had THREE. In an APARTMENT!

For the last two days, there have been wires all over my house. There have been friends threading wires, electricians slicing holes, other electricians fishing wires through the crawlspace. My six-year-old son was even enlisted to blow-dry paint. I made two complete dinners Tuesday night to feed different shifts of helpers.

One room is now finally back together. (With a new TV that looks exactly the same to me.) The other room (which is inheriting the old TV) still looks like a bomb went off.

And through this whole process, I’ve been thinking about a Jane Urquhart interview I heard on CBC’s The Next Chapter last summer. She said her greatest fear was the loss of privacy. She talked about needing, and treasuring, times of silence and solitude.

She should be very scared of TV replacement.

I am. And if anyone needs me, I’ll be at the coffee shop.