While reading a wonderful post about a far flung friend’s tumultuous journey to Burning Man in the Black Rock Desert earlier this year, a pretty obvious truism struck me – in order to have anything to write about, you need a story to tell. Given that I shy away from telling stories about anything that might involve close friends or family, and that I cloak anything about my work in a veil of almost complete secrecy, you begin to see that I am left with very few adventures worth recording.
My stories become filled with people I have shared train carriages with, or that were the life and soul of a hotel bar while I sat quietly some distance away trying to ignore their antics (yes, man with a beard in the Holiday Inn two years ago – I still remember you).
I have become uncontroversial in the extreme. Vanilla. An every-man. And yet I know that many of my beliefs (or lack of) fly in the face of most of the people I know – either in the real world, or through the internet. That’s not to say that the people I know through the internet are not real of course, but who’s to say the girl who’s blog I’ve read for the last several years isn’t a bearded college professor?
I could write at length about my growing fascination with comic books, my age old fascination with conspiracy theories, my total and utter lack of faith in any kind of organised religion. Writing about any of these things would involve standing out from the crowd though – inviting judgement, and criticism.
Maybe I shouldn’t be so careful. Maybe I should stand up from time to time, and empty my head – call out those I’ve been questioning, recount theories, and stand up my ideas to be agreed with or knocked down.
I seem to have become rather adept at writing at length about nothing at all. It’s not a skill you might be proud of, and I have to confess I am not. I don’t even realise I’m doing it. I guess in some ways it’s a little like living behind a very high castle wall, where you only post snippets for others to read through arrow-slits high overhead.
As ever, there is no particular point to this post – it’s just me, sitting in the dark of the junk room late at night once again, churning through thoughts, and pressing keys to make letters appear on the screen in front of me. Maybe that’s enough though ? Maybe kindred spirits will happen upon my vague ramblings, and recognise a little of themselves in my distant words. Maybe they will reach out, and maybe we’ll become unlikely friends.