Monthly Archives: October 2020

Curiosity

Perhaps because of where we’re at, creativity has been on my mind. There are the gardeners (Gardener’s World’s Monty Don anyone?), the bakers (The Great British Baking Show), the chefs (Chef’s Table, The Chef Show), the musicians, the writers, the artists, the photographers…

As far back as I can remember I have wanted to be a novelist. Not a journalist, or an essayist, not a memoirist. (That sounded quite Seussian…I diverge…). My pull to fiction had to do with my upbringing, the need for safety, the need for hope. I’ve been an avid reader since I could. It’s where I go when the world and it’s people, my world and my people, become too much. I’ve been reading more than usual lately…

And that made me want to write too, to be the calm respite in the angry chaos. The deep breath in a time when you are holding your own.

Now, I wonder…is it that I actually want to write or is it that I love the romanticized idea of the writer. To be clear, I have written a book so I’m not an idealist as far as the time spent, the work involved. And it isn’t a terribly good book. I say that with full objectivity. But it was a first attempt. That book was proof that I could do it.

With all of the artistic shows, the documentaries I’ve been watching, the theme seems to be that these people bring creativity to everything that they do. They seem meant to be doing it.

I saw a Chef’s Show with Robert Rodriguez as the “guest” (not exactly a guest, but you’d have to have seen it for it to make sense. I highly recommend the show). He’s a director, making films since he was a kid, then he segued over to how he wanted to know how to make chocolate so he took an online class. I should mention, he learned how to make chocolate from the bean. He said how he teaches his actors to draw and paint, an unleashing of creativity.

A guitar sits behind me as I type this. It’s in tune, but I don’t know how to play it. Not well anyway.

My lessons ended as one of the lesser losses of COVID. But truth be told, I wasn’t really enjoying them anyway.

So I wonder…are the Robert Rodriguezes of the world different? Are they more talented, more gifted, perhaps just more focused? Or have the rest of us filled our minds with so many hacks and so much social media sameness that we have lost perspective of the work it takes to do something small and beautiful. Something unique. Something thoughtful. Something that only we could come up with. Maybe we’ve lost the curiosity.

I’m going to look for it this weekend.

Love.

-Lou

What Hope Looks Like

For

Every woman spoken over in a meeting.

Every woman who had something explained to them in which they knew more.

Every woman who had to smile when she didn’t want to because otherwise she’d be a bitch.

Every woman who had to keep their breath even despite raging inside.

Every woman who was told who they were.

Every woman that had to look at a man patronizing her.

Every woman that had to meet “Gee, shucks” fake innocence with facts.

Every woman that had to answer the hard questions while he pushed them aside.

Every woman who had to weigh smiling and being likable and not smiling and being too aggressive.

Every woman who has seen incompetence rewarded because of the way you were born.

Every woman who was held back in a job for showing strength.

Every woman who cried at night because her soul was breaking.

So what I mean to say is

For Every Woman.

She

Is

Speaking.

Vote.

-Lou

Maple Trees

It feels like time to begin. Again.

It’s been so long, friends.

And the country has gone mad.

But there are far smarter people with which to discuss that.

So for today, may I make a suggestion?

Find a maple tree, one whose leaves are changing at the top.

Walk right up to the trunk so you’re deeply under the canopy.

Look up.

And take a deep breath.

Then do it again.

Because life has gotten to be a place where you need to remember that we have seen insanity before.

And the trees are still there.

And so are we.

Love.