Saturday, March 5, 2011


As some of you may have noticed, this week I have posted a little less frequently than has been my recent custom. In the year or so I have been writing this blog, I have gone from occasional blogger to frequent blogger, revving up my blogging pace a bit last August and then again, considerably, in November.  I have loved writing so often, found I have much I want to say.

But also? It's taking its toll. Writing is hard work. Wonderful and exhilarating and deeply fulfilling, but also? Lots of work, very time consuming.

I know the answer for many would be to simply write briefer, simpler posts for a while. But that's not going to fly. Because me? I am long form. I can't help it. I have vowed to try to be shot and sweet, churn out fluffy bits like a "real" blogger is supposed to. I've even written posts vowing to do this.

It doesn't work. Of the 140 posts I have written, a handful are shorter than 600 words (many more than double that).  And one of them was the announcement of my father's death, choked out between tears and numbing post-mortem tasks.

Even my purportedly "Wordless Wednesday" posts? Full of words.

Sometimes I think: "Oh, this one can be concise, pithy, this is one thought, one idea, one story... how long can this possibly get really?" But then a funny thing happens on the way to the "page." Between my brain and my tappity fingers on the keyboard more thoughts poke their way in. I make associations, spin fancy flights. In my world, convolution happens. all. the. time.

And what was simple has become complex; full of words; words that need to be made just right, arranged and rearranged, expanded, shortened, pushed and pulled, tugged this way and that.  And it has to have a button, an ending that pulls it all together, circles round to the beginning, does a special hat trick. I won't hit publish unless it's got that final punch.

And I've wondered where my son Ethan gets his annoying perfectionist streak from.  Silly me.

In any event, what I am (as ever, long windedly) saying here, is that if you continue to find fewer posts coming out in the next few weeks, don't panic. I'm not grinding to a halt, just taking a little slow down period, down-shifting, as it were, to a lower gear.

This year really started with a bang. The winter holidays were hard. My gall bladder was galling me, and I was also all keyed up in anticipation of my then-upcoming surgery.  Then there was the actual surgery.

Around the time I started finally feeling nearly fully myself, recovered from the operation, I got a nasty viral bug that begat some nasty bacterial bugs. Finally the knock-me-on-my-ass sinus and bronchial infections were vanquished by nasty knock-me-on-my-ass antibiotics whose course was fully run at the end of February. Right in time for March.

And March? Have I mentioned March? Not my favorite month right now. Or probably ever again.

I used to love March, full of the formerly happy dates of my parents anniversary and my father's birthday. The first budding days of spring. The earth emerging from her hibernation in a spray of flowers and golden green shoots.

Before children, when my parents were younger old folks, active and sprightly, I would often go to visit them in Florida during March, to be there for my Dad's birthday, swim with them in the inviting green gulf.

We would walk the whiter than white beaches of Siesta Key and marvel at the coolness of the pure quartz sand beneath our toes, comb the black sand of Venice beach for fossilized shark teeth treasures. We would dine as often as possible outdoors, quayside, crack open lobsters together, decimate them, greedily sucking the meat out of even the tiniest legs.

They were so full of life, then and there. Remembering this makes me smile. And cry.

My first two posts of this month? About last year, my Dad, and the ending. Intense. Re-visiting my grief. I don't want to go on and on in this vein here. But I am not finding any other words easily coming to me right now.  And I'm not going to push it, write about nothing just for the sake of taking up cyber-real estate

So there may be fewer words for a while. But not forever. Expect a few more highly intense posts around the 13th, and again the 25th.

I do have a few posts that are nearly done, just hanging out in the hopper, needing a tweak and polish, and some of those will hopefully go up. I will also try to put up an actually Wordless Wednesday post or two (well, one that has less than 100 words to it, to wordy me that's wordless) so be on the lookout for that, too.

There is also something big I am working on, about kids, the future, hopefully ready to launch at the end of this month. More on that soon. Today: just the faintest tease.

So if things are just a little bit quieter here at The Squashed Bologna for the next little while, do not despair, keep checking back. For like the Iris's bulbs lying underground, I will emerge from this fallow time, send fresh shoots up through the hard earth, seeking sunshine, reaching again for the light.

In other words: I'll see you around, pardners. (Yeah, I saw Rango today with Jake. Why do you ask?)

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