Just Dropping By: Umbrella, Taxes, Messes, and Murphy’s Law

What good is it to have a blog if you never actually write on it?
Between here or there it seems like I just haven’t had the urge to write lately in general. I’m tired. I’m in a constant state of “busy.” Business is going well, but myself and my staff are all borderline haggard due to whatever winter related maladies and never ending viruses we keep passing back and forth. The general public breathing all over you on a daily basis thing…

That coupled with a few nights of less than adequate sleep and all of a sudden your immune system is compromised and it’s too late so you just cross your eyes, cover your mouth when you cough, and deal with it.

We are coming up on one of our busiest weeks of the year, Ridgway Rendezvous, the biggest chainsaw carver festival in the world, and every year I promise myself I will be well rested, well prepared, and coast my way through this fun but chaotic time.

And every year, it sneaks right up on me. Fortunately, Zoe, Rendezvous organizer and personal cohort of mine is pretty much where I am right now. As in, instead of doing work outside of our traditional workday, we go skiing.

That of course leads to this.
My system for doing the taxes for the bar is very high tech and organized as you can see.
This random jumble doesn’t stop here as you can probably imagine if you’ve known me for any length of time. It also has sprawled to my counter tops, my purse, my desk… And although it’s on my to do list… Skiing and sleeping and running and eating and hugging my puppies and kissing my fiance and leaving work at work are higher priority at the moment.

Yesterday, the roof started leaking at the bar.
Also, the ceiling fans we just replaced in December are all junk and need replaced again. (That’s just a time consuming irritant more than anything but the fiancé and I are quickly becoming a pro at fan installation.)
My brand new bar stools need sent back this week because every time someone sits on them the wrong way a handful of ball bearings goes spilling across the floor like a sea of marbles.
My full time cook went part time for personal reasons.
A long string of everything old, used, and crappy we have at the bar started shitting the bed a few months ago, and just when you think you’re in the clear… Boom.
So yes, leaving work at work and saying “fuck it, let’s ski…” is really a logical coping mechanism.

I think my lack of writing has been due to this internal pressure to always write as well as possible within a structured medium for this blog. To share but not over share. To be relevant. To write about what’s important in a clear and concise manner.

As I delve deeper into the novel, Umbrella, by Will Self, my thoughts on the above have kind of transmographied.
Self ditches the expectations of written prose in this book. The vocabulary is strange, the only time I’ve ever been stymied so much by syntactical choices by an author so much was when I plowed through Pygmy by Chuck Palahniuk. There are no paragraphs clearly carved out. No chapters. Mid sentence there are complete shifts between present day and World War I.
At first, the lack of structure really bothered me. I thought maybe it was me – I didn’t have a big enough vocabulary or worldly enough view to “get it.” But just as in life, just as in the past few weeks of my life… Cross your eyes, cover your mouth, and plow through… And it starts to get enjoyable. Even if it’s not always pretty, or easy to understand, Umbrella is a decent story tucked inside a story tucked inside a hot mess of keeping track of a million characters who only appear for a page or so, and a garbled pile of Cockney slang.
Pretty much everyone’s life in general.

I get that there are rewards for being a traditional writer, a traditional blogger, or even living a more traditional life than I do. There’s the whole readership thing. Those who tough out my stream of consciousness posts and still come back for more are real troopers.

Still, I am embracing this mess. Like the piles of receipts overtaking my kitchen. The Murphy’s Law bearing down heavily on my business. The fact that I can’t figure out what to write about so I just write. The fact that even though I try to engage and interact not only here, but in my everyday interactions and it’s hard. It is what it is.

More importantly, though… There are bigger rewards for staying true to you. Will Self made the Man Booker shortlist with Umbrella in 2012. I have deeper relationships with the people I actually do engage with than if I tried to maintain hundreds of acquaintances. I can write whatever I feel like writing about and not feel like I’m letting down an audience, a publisher, or myself. I can write about piles of crap and stacks of paper and when things fall apart and know that it’s not a self pity thing, but instead a memorial to the irony of it all.

So yeah. If you made it through this post without falling off, bless your heart. This has been life lately.