Tuesday, January 30, 2007


I'm not very curious by nature. Some things interest me, but for whatever reason I'm just not curious about most things. An alien with five legs, three arms, and a hand protruding out of his forehead could sit down beside me and ask for an aardvark sandwich and I would respond "sorry dude, I don't have one just now."
My wife Jilda, on the other hand could be an investigator. In three minutes while standing in the checkout line at Foodworld, she can meet a total stranger and get their life story from birth which includes their marital status, how many kids, their names, where they live, what they drive, where they went to school, where they work, their annual income and any recent surgeries. It's a gift.
I'm more of an observer. I take in information through my sense of smell, taste, sight, sound and touch. I let life wash over me like warm waves from the gulf of Mexico and I take it at face value rather than asking probing questions or wondering why. I like taking mental pictures and putting my own meaning with them. I know that's not very scientific, but my pictures are much more interesting to me.
I probably shouldn't mention this now but as a kid, I used to add captions to the pictures in our school books. My fifth grade teacher would whack me with her walker if she knew. But I looked at the pictures and imagined what they were saying instead of reading the text. I came across one of my old books some time later and howled when I read what I had written so long ago.
As I study writing and writers, I'm finding that I've become more curious. What makes a piece of writing good? I've come to understand that some things can't be taken lightly and that it takes a deep dive to bring understanding. If I want to improve, I have to look more deeply and develop a sense of curiosity. Only time will tell if I am successful.

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