Addendums


Every once and a while, I write something that I realize later was inadequate.

On a small scale, it happened last night. I posted the link to the Lori McKenna covers, and realized later that I should have mentioned in the post how much I love her version of “In Your Eyes.” It’s a great song, and the original is a classic, but Lori performs it, per her trademark style, with an emotional rawness that makes it real. You totally 100 percent believe that she’s not just singing a song, she’s living it. And I love it.

A larger scale example is my Reconstruction post about Single Mothers. Discussing it with someone afterwards, I realized that I totally failed to bring it home. I wrote this decent, removed piece about the issue, about what I’ve learned from single mothers I know. And it was an OK post. For it to be a good post, for it to be really worthwhile, I should have taken it a step further. I should have made it personal. I should have addressed why those lessons are relevant to me — Part of me fears that sort of parent I would be, were my life ever to move in that direction. I’m a great uncle, because I’m able to have fun with my niece and nephew without having to worry about what I’m teaching them. Making sure they grow into mature, responsible, well-adjusted adults is the responsibility of mom and dad; Uncle David can make them laugh by rolling his tongue without having to worry about whether he’s teaching them it’s OK to stick their tongue out in public. And in many ways, I’m so just a kid myself; I love getting down on the floor and playing with them on their level. Would I have what it takes to actually be the adult, even when it makes them unhappy? Who knows.

I’m writing this post because I just did it again, and realized it immediately but too late to edit it, this time with one of my responses to a formspring.me question: Where were you 10 years ago and where will you be 10 years from now?

My answer about the future is true — I have no idea — but inadequate. I should have gone on to say, I have no idea, and I like it that way. There is nothing about my life today that I could have envisioned 10 years ago. I mean, almost literally, zip. Some of it’s good — gracious, who would have thought I would have written a book with astronauts? Some of it less so — I would never have dreamed I’d be divorced. But all of it completely unimaginable. And that’s what I hope is true 10 years from now; that I can look back, and say, wow, there would have been no way in 2010 that I would have thought ____________________. I hope that even trying to guess now would look comletely stupid in 2020.

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