Steve (my writing partner for those who haven’t kept up with my posts here) and I used to play Scrabble® a lot. He used to get all the best tiles. In how many games can you get a “J” in the first few rounds, when there is a perfect double or triple letter spot open in two directions? He used to win. A lot. It pissed me off. Until one day I just said, “You are really good at choosing tiles. Do that in life.” Ever since, we often remind each other to “choose a tile” when things get challenging. It’s amazing how much you can choose the easiest path by simple declaration.
I’ve always said I have great “parking karma” – I always find a parking space. (In Los Angeles, that’s a big deal.) Of course, that’s UNLESS I’m in a foul mood, then I can circle the block for hours until I remember that I have great parking karma and find a space! Someone then, magically, pulls out of a spot right in front of me, and voila! I’m not late for my court da… I mean movie.
I know that sounds very “new age”. And my definition of someone who is “new age” is someone who is willing to believe anything. Well, I suppose I’m willing to believe anything, but I do some investigation and end up not believing a lot of stuff. I don’t believe in iPods, for instance. Who thought up that myth? Little white buds that you stick in your ears for aural pleasure? Next, you’ll try to tell me that they can translate foreign speech for you on the fly. Sounds like something out of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. No fish in my ear, Bud!
Sorry. Back to choosing a tile.
Things have gotten, shall we say, “hairy” in the last several months. Both Steve and I have been talking a lot about what isn’t working, which, using the “choose a tile” metaphor, is like choosing that it doesn’t work. Very recently, we both noticed we were doing this, and started choosing other tiles. Things began to appear. Opportunities. Like magic. Okay, not really magic, they were already there all along, but we started noticing them or remembering them and choosing them. That’s the magic of real magic, it’s not magic at all. Okay, I even confused myself with that one.
Are we out of the woods, yet? No, but the trees look pretty while we’re here. And we can see a quaint village in the distance. We’re close enough to see the smoke from the chimneys and the rabbits eating out of the rutabaga gardens. Okay, I tend toward folk imagery. I grew up in the sixties and listened to Jethro Tull. Shut up.
I noticed this afternoon that I’ve been pontificating a lot, lately. Yes, I know, but more than usual. I think I’m gearing up mentally and spiritually to write fiction again. I choose that tile. Better than a “J”.
Steve still chooses fireworks and liquor, but that’s him.
Geoff Hoff is co-author of the best selling satirical novel Weeping Willow: Welcome to River Bend
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