Saturday, March 15, 2008

By the Book

MySpace has fallen incredibly silent in the last couple of months. It almost feels like I’m at a party with a bunch of cool people but we’ve run out of conversation material and now we’re all sitting around the living room staring at each other’s shoes. It’s an uncomfortable silence that I feel compelled break and I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t break it with something boring and common place, so... how about them Cavaliers? I’m stoked about Big Ben Wallace. Are you enjoying this weather? What is left of the melting snow may be dirty and ugly, but I’m loving that I can get around without a stiff winter coat again.

I’ve been in a weird funk for the last few weeks and I think it had a lot to do with the book I was reading. It was Ann Packer’s The Dive From Clausen’s Pier and it was book number 7 for the year, which sounds really bad when my goal is 40 and we’re already 3 months in, but it wasn’t grabbing me, in fact, it kept putting me in a bad mood and I’d walk away from it for days at a time. Why not just give up on it you ask? Well, because I’ve never been able to do that. I force myself to finish a book because no matter how much I loathe it or become bored with it, it’ll irritate me to not know how it ends.

Anyway, the novel actually had a pretty good premise. The main character is forced to do a lot of soul searching when her high school sweetheart turned fiance is paralyzed in a diving accident. At 24-years-old she has to make the choice between her own happiness or the obligation to stay with her fiance whom she had gotten bored with even before the accident. She felt a calling for a more fullfilling life that didn’t involve her mundane hometown or her childhood best friend and so she snuck off to New York City without telling anyone and began to build a new life for herself. And just when she succeeded in this new venture she realized that she wanted her old life back.

I suppose if the book had simply stuck with the storyline I would have been alright, but all of the introspection, the not knowing herself enough to know what she really wanted, the constant search for something to define herself by, it all hit a little too close to home for me. I wanted to reach into the pages or the picture show of characters I had running through my head and slap this girl silly which made me want to slap myself because she and I were a little too much alike. She was probably mentally stronger than me though, because in the end she endured the hatred and disappointment that came with choosing herself.

If I wasn’t married yet and I wasn’t in love with my fiance anymore and he became a quadriplegic I would have stayed out of guilt, out of pity, out of fear of disappointing anyone who knew me, and all the while I would long for a different life. I don’t know if that makes me a good or bad person, but fortunately I’m finished with the book so I won’t have to think about it anymore.

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