Let me start with an apology, I did not post last week. My life has been turned upside down and it has taken a few days, or more, to get back into the grove of it. So, without further ado, here is last weeks post.
It happens to us all, we bravely step out of what we don’t even realize is our comfort zone and suddenly feel uneasy. One minute we’re driving home from work thinking to stop at the store now so another trip isn’t necessary later. We’re driving past a store that we don’t usually shop at, or maybe we do, but today we’re in a different area of town. The thought it’s the same store, fleets through our mind and on impulse, it’s on the way, we drive in, find a parking space, exit our vehicle, and walk inside the store.
Here’s the thing though, it’s not the same. I’ve gotten complacent in my life, found the niche that is comfortable, the stores that carry what I buy regularly, people I come to know because I interact with them on a weekly basis. In fact, just a few days ago I helped a co-worker with a writing assignment and it talked about this very thing. The relationships that we make, tenuous as they are, with those who we interact with at the grocery, gas station, bank. But it’s more than this, it’s that we get to a point where, at least I, have quit seeing what’s there. As someone who professes to write about people, life, I need to see them and I’ve become desensitized. In my day to day life I’ve cornered myself into a little section of the city I live in and rarely venture to other areas and more importantly, really see those around me. I don’t like to think of myself as prejudice or a prude, or more so, common Anglo-Saxon average white housewife/postal-worker/mother etc etc etc. Guess what I found out in going into a store on the other side of town? I found out I’m the very person that really irritates me. Imagine that. Those people who look at someone else who isn’t dressed in the societal ‘norm’ and therefore we, the societal norm, sees them as… how do I put this delicately? People Of Walmart. I didn’t realize it had happened, but as I walked around that store feeling uncomfortable, it was obvious. So in response, okay, actually it was already planned, I went to Gencon this weekend.
What is Gencon you might ask? It’s a gaming convention and includes a writers venue. I went on the pretence of attending several of the writers workshops they were hosting. It didn’t happen. My daughter and neice accompanied me, the friend who was supposed to come with my daughter, ditched her so I didn’t feel comfortable in leaving her to her own. She met up with some ‘online’ friends, not comfortable leaving her with people I’ve never met before. But let me tell you, Gencon, like many anime conventions, is a vast expanse of sights, people dressed in any number of costumes. It was great. One of the many represented were steampunkers who I absolutely love. I’ve yet to try writing a steampunk novel, but one day I might give it a go.
Yesterday I had a very enjoyable day with a writer friend Cyndi, and as we talked, I mentioned Gencon and how entertaining it would be to really be who we want. Ie; walk around life dressed in… a Gencon costume. She reminded me of my comments about the store and how people had been dressed, saying that I should think of them as wearing their costumes. As it often happens, I must admit she is right. Hmmm, really makes me think, and reminds me to be who I am at heart, open minded and accepting of others in their nudity, sort of speak.
Back to the reasons in this post, our comfort zone and the box we tend to put ourselves in. As writers, crawl out of that little area of the world or you will lose a huge amount of material worth cataloguing for use in future writing endeavours. I’ve been given a slap on the face and back to the reality of the world around me. I’m watching you, remember that. One day you may be a character in my story.
If you could dress in any fashion you felt spoke to your inner self, what would you wear? How would you appear to the world?