Monday, October 11, 2010
The cup (Part I)
This is a combination of this week's writing task (where we have to select an object and write about it) and the Free Writing exercise that Amy recommended all the way back in the first week. I am not putting physical pen to paper, mainly because I am at work. I don’t usually write things by hand at work, unless I am filling out a form, and seeing as I am doing something non-work related I don’t want to arouse undue suspicion. That said, an image popped in to my mind of a piece of writing – a report, I think – that one of my staff once pinned up. It had my illegible red pen scrawl literally bleeding all over her print-out, and I gather it was pinned up on her cubicle wall as testimony to my crappiest-manager-in-the-worldness. So while freeform writing might appear an acceptable endeavour if I were managing staff, which thank the heavens I’m not, I’m not surprised I don’t handwrite on hard copies any more.
Anyway, the point is that I have had trouble pinning down one item to write about and I suspect part of it is that I have been over-analysing the task, over-thinking the object, second-guessing the narrative, to the point that it all seems like too much hard work before I’ve even started. Part of me worries that I have too many objects, and many of them don’t have a story or inspire emotional attachment at all. Exercises like this can inspire guilt because it’s hard to pin down just one. Other times I just feel defeated by the prospect that writing about a chosen object is going to be hard work and just come out sounding lame.
Actually, I think I might be premenstrual.
I did actually start writing about the plaque sculpted out of sugar that was on the top of our wedding cake, which is now sitting on top of the mantle in the living room, but the piece sounded so lame that I couldn’t bring myself to continue. Worse than lame, it was hard to render the conversation I’d had with my friend the cake-maker without sounding mean. I just wanted to share the funny story about how she asked me to show her a picture of a cake that I liked, so I found one of a double-decker square job with plain stucco white icing and Japanese flowers on it and she ended up making me a double-decker rounded job with squiggly smooth icing, real flowers and “antique” gold braiding. But the fruit cake was succulently gorgeous and the plaque was a late addition that matched my wedding “branding” in that it had a bird taken from a Florence Broadhurst wallpaper design on it and the whole thing really was made with love. And my friend has recently survived a mastectomy and complications from a breast reconstruction and I am so fond of her and her husband I just couldn’t bring myself to write something about the plaque that might come across as mean. So here I am.