It has been little over a fortnight since I last put metaphorical pen to paper yet somehow it feels like it’s been decades. I am going to assume that this over-exaggeration of time lapsed is simply another compulsive symptom of becoming a “real” writer – in the same sense that alcoholics count every second that they have been on the wagon, a writer is tormented by every day when all they produce is yet another blank white page.
It would be lovely to blame writers’ block or psychological burnout or other such professional hazards, but I’m afraid to say my absence is due to much simpler, baser reasons – it’s been damn cold this month.
Yes, that’s right, I’m attributing my creative block to brain freeze. All the snow and slush and gale force winds have completely smothered, drowned and blown away every creative notion I might have had.
As well as trying to keep warm, I have had other distractions – work for one. Along with writers’ block and mild alcoholism, one of the greatest threats to a writer’s career is having to balance an actual job alongside it to ensure you can pay rent. But somehow among it all I have found the time to get started on a few of the New Year’s Resolutions I wrote about here a few weeks ago.
Full of goodwill, a friend and I went along to a local drive to give blood for the very first time. I’ve never been particularly squeamish about needles, unlike my father who used to stand facing the wall when I received my boosters as a child, but up until this point I hadn’t even had blood drawn at the doctors more than once. I was a little nervous, but mostly just excited, after all, giving blood is one of those selfless good deeds which really does save strangers’ lives. But as full of good intentions as I happened to be, my body wasn’t quite prepared to cooperate. Whether it the extreme cold or the excessive consumption of Baileys and cheese over the festive period I’m not sure, but my blood decided it was staying put. After squeezing the life out of my bicep to bring forth a vein, a very lovely, very patient nurse, did her best readjusting the needle to find a steady flow but to no avail. My body was having none of it. After producing less than a Martini glass of O Positive my body decided it had done enough for the good of humanity and went faint. It is amazing just how quickly the goodwill can fall right out of you when you find yourself upside down under a full-powered electric fan.
But I had given blood for the very first time, as little as it was in the end, and bonus life experience, I had fainted for the very first time too! It wasn’t on my list of resolutions but hey, two birds one stone!
Now completely at ease with the idea of needles, and with the bruised inner arm of an intravenous drug user, I was determined to continue on a roll – More holes in my skin!! So in an effort to feel more like a grown up I did what every seven year old girl does with her First Communion money, I got my ears pierced. And none of this pissy gun thing in Claire’s Accessories, I walked into a serious piercing shop where other people were waiting to get holes in their tongue, nipple and various other painful places, and proudly asked a woman with more metal on her than the Golden Gate Bridge, if she would put some little holes in my ear lobes. And the lovely metal woman obliged, giving me an endearing ‘bless your cotton socks’ look I had expected. I even got a sticker.
In other resolutions news, I have successfully baked two batches of scones by Granny’s foolproof recipe, made what can only be described as an ‘Any Veg Going’ soup and have only been to Tokyou once.
I’d say five out thirteen ain’t a bad start by the end of January. Whether I have started as I mean to go remains to be seen.