I recently discovered my writer’s block. It is surprisingly well developed despite the short amount of time that I have been writing. There are condos and some sort of “hippie food store” already being built on the block. The issue came up when I realized that I wanted to specifically avoid certain topics in my blog. Topic avoidance wasn’t the main issue. For some reason our brains developed some sort of weird device. If someone were to run in the room and say, “Whatever you do, don’t think of a dancing purple hippopotamus in a lumberjack plaid shirt and a matching tutu, holding a bloody axe” we would probably say “Oh, the Narcotics Anonymous meeting is down the hall two more doors on the right”. I am not sure why “Whatever you do, don’t think about [fill in the blank]” immediately causes us to think about that thing, but it can be annoying. In the same fashion, “Don’t write about this stuff” instantly made me want to write about that stuff.
When I started this blog, I wanted it to be entertaining and sometimes informative. I made a list of topics that should be left alone. I did not make that list out of fear of reprisal. I am not afraid that someone won’t like me, nor am I afraid that someone will say mean things about me (or my writing). I am also not really afraid of offending people, usually. I want the blog to be something people enjoy reading. I don’t want it to be a typical rant-type blog where people either completely agree or feel uncomfortable. I read a couple of those types of blogs every week, but if I don’t agree with their viewpoint, I stop reading. Eventually, I find myself skipping posts because I don’t want an opinion forced at me. I would like my reader to look forward to posts, not cringe at them. I made a set of guidelines to counteract my inner crowd of imaginary anthropomorphic bunnies [Harvey, Frank, and Roger] (Sure, most people have an inner child, but children are creepy).
The first guideline is that I don’t want to write too much about politics. I know most people don’t agree with my political views. In the last presidential election, 1% of the people voting thought that both Barrack Obama and Mitt Romney were not the right men for the job/James Bond Villains. 1% of people voting thought that, while it is good for big businesses to provide jobs, maybe they don’t need to devastate the Earth to do it. 1% of the people voting thought that government services like Welfare and Food Stamps have issues, but the money spent on fraudulent claims of those services are far outstripped by [picking at random] members of Congress holding a meeting at a $100,000 a day resort in Hawaii. Unfortunately, that 1% did not even vote for the same third party person. I am part of that 1%. People say that I “threw my vote away”. I didn’t. I had hoped there would be enough people to vote third party to actually have a chance in my lifetime. My vote doesn’t usually change the outcome of things much anyway. If it did, we would not ever have a new bond (high interest loan on future taxpayers) or a subsidy (large taxpayer donation to a corporation) bill pass. I decided that politics is too controversial, too depressing, and I have no power to change anything. Also, since I usually write this at night, I don’t want to have nightmares of leech/lizard hybrids firmly attached to my wallet and spine.
The second guideline is a strange one, for me. I don’t want to write about tech or video games. I love tech and I love video games. Why would I not want to talk about those things? Well, for one thing, it is not entertaining to everyone. I assume that doctors will cure the horrible affliction of “not being entertained by new technology” soon. The second problem is a logistics problem. I don’t have enough time to adequately research the new tech and I do not usually get to play with new tech for free. I used to be able to play with it in the store, but now they have beefed up security. That still doesn’t explain why I don’t write on that glorious, divine subject that binds all men together. “Peace on Earth and Goodwill to man?” Don’t be ridiculous. “The ability to frag someone miles away and then mock them?” That sounds right. I say “men” because I have never seen a woman really into video games. I have seen women play games, but usually they are games like Tetris, Peggle, and the like. I am sure there are women who are hardcore gamers, but they are like neutrinos. I am sure they exist, but I have never seen one.
The third guideline is to not talk about current events. There is a logistics aspect of this one, too. I can’t do any personal investigation into stories, so I am basically parroting what news sites are saying. I can’t really say funny things about current events because I don’t have all the facts. My writing would only become lazy and predictable. A problem with current event stories is that I often read more about a story and change my opinion. For example, quite some time ago, a woman sued McDonald’s because a cup of coffee spilled in her lap. She won $30 million. I joined the rest of the country in mocking frivolous lawsuits. Then I found out more facts about the case. She had actually sued for lost time and medical bills and the jury awarded $30 million dollars. The coffee was so hot that no one could drink it in the courtroom (fortunately, my sister “Ceramic Mouth” was not one of the people in the courtroom that day). Lastly, she had to get skin grafts on her crotch. If I was on a jury and someone said, “Well this liquid was so hot, I had to get skin grafts on my crotch”, they have won their lawsuit. “Your honor, I would really like to hear a lot less about this, is there any way we can say she won and not hear the rest of her story?” By the way, the $30 million dollars was the profit McDonald’s made from one day’s worth of coffee sales. If I write about current events, I would often be embarrassed by my previously incorrect opinions.
So I have to learn how to get past writer’s block. Granted, I am playing fast and loose with the term “writer”. I am sure I will be able to find a subject that can be funny soon. That will be a relief, for me anyway. It is either that, or this becomes a blog about really old video games I just picked up recently. I will title it the “Anti-Insomnia