Back to the fold.

I’d like to say that the weight of expectation is heavy indeed, but the fact remains that my scant handful of mostly American followers are probably just wondering where that blogger from Austria went?

Maybe she’s skiing or listening to eine kleine nachtmusik and eating Mozart kugel for inspiration. 

I can't wait to get back and blog about AAAGGGHHHHH !

I can’t wait to get back and blog about AAAGGGHHHHH !

The truth is that my head is so fuzzy with failure that the usual tumble of words can’t escape to the screen. I spend all day wrestling with an internal dialogue so fraught that there is no room for the one pursuit I am measured favourably by.  Not award winning, mind, but readable and possibly relatable if you’re a tad neurotic and easily irritated.

I’m sitting now at yet another shopping complex cafe that is pumping an unfathomable mix of techno music to a suburban crowd – there is no twerking so far – downing a $4.70 cup of soy froth infused with the merest hint of a coffee bean. No one that should care knows I’m here; they are busy in another part of the country figuring out how to beat the retail downturn. The fact that introducing new brands doesn’t seem to be working doesn’t deter – they are doggedly fixated on an eventual turnaround – a consumer awakening if you will.

As I linger over my cup of foam I am recalling time recently spent with a new friend. I like that I can find a new friend during this personal era of entrenched habit. She is one of those women who can elicit the truth in all its unvarnished glory.  Listening as I vented, much as I appear to be doing now for therapy thy name is WordPress, she wisely intoned the following:

You appear to me to be one of those people who thrive when thrown into the lion’s den.

This is the truth – the uncomfortably palpable truth. I have enormous admiration for self-starters; those disciplined folk who unfailingly act with certainty and purpose. They are winners.

My form suggests, however, that I will remain miserably installed in a paying gig that affords all the job satisfaction of a toll booth operator until I AM FORCED NOT TO.

Frankly I would have fired my unmotivated arse aeons ago.

Forced challenges (or the electric cattle prod effect) have been historically effective in my case. When the Year 10 coordinator ‘volunteered’ me to represent the school in a statewide public speaking competition I was forced to rise to the occasion. Crafting an engagingly humorous paper on the place of patriotism in Australia, I threw about words like jingoism, quoted Orwell and Habermas and flailed both arms about to demonstrate my disdain for palm cards. I was on it. Unfortunately the rapidity of my delivery rendered the entire speech unintelligible and I came second to an Albino soporifically explaining the mysteries of computer science.

At university I was obliged to meet the essay writing briefs of an Arts degree with a double major. All I did for three years between raising children and part time administrative work was write to deadlines. So very many words and such quantities of cask Shiraz as I valiantly typed away at literary critiques, short stories, profiles, travel articles and poetry – it was unrelenting and wonderful.

Cocky with HD’s and a tutor’s vague suggestion that some of my work may have been publishable I submitted articles to newspapers and for a minute at least the life that should have been was tantalisingly within reach.

It has been suggested to me that a depressed state does not lend itself to creative endeavor and while it’s fortunate no one thought to mention that to Dickens, Conrad or indeed, the entire Russian canon, just quietly I’d prefer to avoid the paths of Plath and Dickinson.

So right now, as I dust the film of cocoa off the screen of my ipad, I am going to hit publish on the WordPress site and for better or worse, get back on board. It is not the end of uncertainty and self doubt and it is most definitely not the final word on dealing with the paralysis of indecision, but it’s a bloody start.

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About Learning the hard way

Jane is of the belief that her life's purpose may well be to serve as a warning to others. She is unsure as to why she speaks in the third person...
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7 Responses to Back to the fold.

  1. You are such an entertaining and engaging writer Jane. I don’t know anyone who can make writers block sound like a travelogue and the mundane world of the shopping centre schlep sound interesting with your poignant observations. Fuzzy or not those cognitive cogs are still ticking along. Sylvia Plath you are not, although I’m sure it feels like self annihilation not to express.

    • Learning the hard way says:

      Awww, thanks lady. Hopefully I can get back on a roll. My thoughts on shopping centers and hipsters are well documented here in the back catalogue…both provide endless commentary.
      Thanks for reading and commenting 😁

  2. Oh and I guess we are to take you back with open arms, no questions asked? Pfffft! And Austria? I thought you were a down under girl.

    • Learning the hard way says:

      Do you have any idea how many kids at the summer camp my daughter is working at wanted to know if her family understood American when we were there? I mean, a little less time canoeing maybe and a bit more time learning about a few of those cute little countries beyond the USA…?!
      We had fun messing with them about riding kangaroos though.

      • The educational system here is bollocks as you might say. We’re quickly descending into third world country status. I’m looking forward to heading about the trip. I hope you tried some chocolate milk using Hersheys syrup.

      • Oh, and it’s great to see you back. I can’t tell you how tickled I was to see your smiling face again.

  3. Learning the hard way says:

    Ours is not too dissimilar despite politicians endlessly banging on about investing in education. In fact, as we careen to the end of a mercifully short election campaign, the minority party leader has been getting much mileage from describing both major political parties as ‘racing to the bottom of the barrel’…which they are. Unfortunately the vast bulk of the voting majority are morons – plain and simple. ok! time to get my happy on. Very, very nice to hear from you, Mr. Ofalltrades 🙂

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