Thursday, January 25, 2007

What's Up, What I Like, and a Cute Kid Story

Let's see.

Work is going much better since I proclaimed my independence from repression.

My writers group starts tonight. This is a very good thing. If I have any ability to predict the future based on accurate assessments of the motivations of people, I would say that this group will be composed of serious writers that intent to write a novel or short story for publication. The moderator will be the professor from the class I took the previous semester. He is a published author at St. Martin's Press of several mysteries and thrillers, and is talented in my estimation to boot (the two don't always go hand in hand, although one is obviously a strong indicator of the other).

I'll be reading the chapter I have been writing for two months now. Understand that I don't have much time to write seriously. As it is I have to cheat my lunch hours longer, and at home it is tres difficult after giving the kids baths, reading stories and putting them to bed. My brain at that point feels like a shriveled prune. I have just enough energy to watch one TV show (I know, that's cheating), then to crawl into bed and read until I fall asleep (I know, that's not cheating).

Speaking of, have I told anyone that you have to watch Friday Night Lights? The relationship between the coach and his wife is priceless. They are so real, and yet so perfect -- but not in a Brady Bunch kind of way. This might be biased male perspective, but she is in many ways the female ideal, in a realistic sense. She's no pushover, yet at the same time, she gives so much. When her husband decides he doesn't like what she is doing, he insists that she quit. What does she do? She tells him to deal with it. He laughs and says that there's never a dull moment. He's typically blind like men are when it comes to emotional nuance, and she is acutely aware. You just have to see it to understand. So tune in.

Oh, this is why I wanted to write a post today. A month or so ago, Emmett refused to let Jackson sleep in his bed. Jackson was crushed, and told me as I tucked him into his own bed that Emmett didn't love him anymore. I explained that Emmett is only three; that he is going through a phase that will soon pass. I also told him how much Emmett tries to be just like him, how he laughs at all his jokes. Why do you think he always wants to play with the same toys you play with, I told him. Nothing satisfied Jackson though, and I know he went to sleep with that weighing on his mind.

Emmett has refused to give him a kiss goodnight many times since. But two nights ago, Emmett and I tucked Jackson into bed first. "Emmett," I said, "do you want to give Jackson a kiss goodnight?"

Emmett leaned over the bed and did so. As Emmett turned and pulled a plastic dinosaur from the toy rack along the wall by Jackson's bed, Jackson said, "I love you Emmett."

I could see the anticipation in his eyes as he watched Emmett. There was a pause. It was a long pause for me too, time enough for me to hope fervently as well. For though I knew it was true, Jackson needed to hear it.

"I love you too Jackson," Emmett said, still fascinated with the Brontosaurus.

Jackson looked at me and beamed -- his smile comical for the missing front tooth, angelic in its unguarded radiance.

A coworker and nascent friend told me candidly that he doesn't like kids, and may never have any of his own. I feel sorry for him.


Bernita said...

Might be better if your coworker doesn't - too much ego there.

Alan said...

Hi Scott!

I think this is my first posting to your blog, but I bookmarked you a little bit ago when I began frequenting 'My Irrationalities', followed your blogger profile and saw the Thomas Covenant was one your favorite reads. Then after your post over there, I wasn't sure where to respond. Now I'm glad I came back here.

Your post made my eyes mist over. I had one aborted attempt to be raised with a brother, but it came too late in my only-child life and I only hated him. Then it turned out that he had schizophrenia, so there was never a future for us as his illness took him away from my mother and I.

As for Thomas Covenant, I began that series back when it was first published and I was away from home for a summer vacation with my mother, so I was hooked by the whole displacement milieu. I too nashed my teeth at Covenant and his horrible way of treating such a magical place. I wanted to smack him in his head and tell him to just accept and enjoy it! I think that was Donalson's intent though. Because the protagonist was so unlikeable, it got us to appreciate and love The Land instead.

Anyway, that's enough from me. Thanks for having a nice blog and for being a good writer.

Scott said...

Bernita - Agreed. At least he knows himself enough. People like that tend to produce angry children and dysfunctional adults.

Alan - Good to see you. It's not often that I meet strangers here. Thanks for the huge compliment. Sorry about your bro. They can be such a gift, and it feels bad to hear when it goes wrong.

Anyone who has read the Covenant series has something to say. Those were powerful books. You are spot on I think. Donaldson knew what he was doing to make us hate the protagonist, but I never drew the conclusion that the real star was the land. It just left me with such a dreadful feeling for the entire series. And yet, I picked up all six books.

Alan said...

In the Second Chronicles, Donalson laid waste to The Land itself, and I guarantee you, I wasn't hurting for Covenant at all. My grief was for that beautiful, hurting land.

Yet, have you seen that the Third Chronicles is being published? I tried to read it in the store to see if I would get hooked, but without Covenant, I wasn't drawn in. I guess I'm hoping that Covenant will finally come around to loving The Land the way I grew to. So I'll give it another try.

mr. schprock said...

One of favorite things is watching my girls do stuff together: shopping, eating out, seeing a movie, etc. They're really good friends. I am very proud of that.

Toni Anderson said...

Kids :) Just love those little moments :)

Enjoy your writings group--good luck!!!

I actually liked Thomas C :/

Moni said...

Hiya. Glad to see you pursuing your writing; doesn't matter where or when you write, just matters that you do. :)

Might you share the story you're going to read in class with us? ;)

"Emmett leaned over the bed and did so. As Emmett turned and pulled a plastic dinosaur from the toy rack along the wall by Jackson's bed, Jackson said, "I love you Emmett."

Awwwe...that is too precious. :)

Have a fab weekend.

Shesawriter said...

Thanks for the show recommend. I never watched Friday Night Lights, but will check it out. I'm always looking for new ways to procrastinate. :-)

Bailey Stewart said...

At least he's smart enough to realize that before he has kids. I once said, as a callow youth, that I didn't want children. Now as I approach that big half-century mark, I wish I'd had the opportunity to have one. You have couple of special fellows there.

Patricia said...

Scott, I just finished reading Turning Angel by Greg Iles. It was a great suspense novel. I definitely recommend him. Plus he lives in Mississippi! LOL. Also, you need to read my post on critiques since you about to join a writer's group.

Beth said...

I say "thank you" from children everywhere. Not liking kids. That's so strange to me. So foreign. It always makes me feel like there's something inherently wrong with the person who doesn't.

Loved reading about Jackson and Emmett. I can't imagine have two boys. I have a boy and a girl so the dynamic is different from your sons, but familiar in many ways too!

Ultra Toast Mosha God said...

Dogbowl and I profess our love for each other much more often than we used to.

Plenty of Pantera and Newcastle Brown Ale will do that to you..