I found out that Olivera was not a very interesting person and soon got bored and got a little mean and started to work in words such as "independent" and "Connecticut" into the conversation because I knew he couldn't pronounce them. I gave up on Olivera but he didn't give up on me. He called for another date but I said I was busy and to call me in a year. A year would go by and he'd call to see what was going on in my life. Then he'd ask for a date and I would say no, call me in a year. This went on for years. The last time he called, he said one thing he could count on was that things were always the same when it came to me. And that time, I forget if he even asked for a date.
I don't think he meant what he said as a compliment (ha ha ha) but it was definitely true. If anyone wrote my biography, I'm sure they would be bewildered by how little happened with so much time. I'm not sure what to think of that, to tell you the truth. When you come from a family of dramatic characters, having a long period of calm is something soooo nice that it's hard to give up. Doesn't make for interesting conversation though.
But that's my own perception of myself. And I could be wrong.
Everyone has a voice in their head that causes some problems when it starts talking and won't shut up. That nagging critical voice that just keeps going once it starts. When Stephanie Pearl-McPhee talked about the creative process at her book signing last October, she talked about how she had a really difficult time with the voice in her head while she was writing. It was relentless in making fun of her for even thinking of writing, let alone something about knitting. She finally came to terms with the voice and since she is a knitter, especially a knitter of socks, she told it to "put a sock in it." But she also said that if anyone really, really knew her deep inside, they would just hate her. And there she was in an auditorium full of fans still at full attention waiting to get their books signed. So who is right?
And then there are people who have no little voices in their head and you really wish you could send over the one that belongs to you. I read a book years ago called "Shooting the Boh." It was a true-life adventure of a woman on a rafting trip that attempted to go down an uncharted river in Borneo. Once I started reading it, I could not put it down. It was fascinating. But the more I read, the more I realized that I really didn't like the person telling the story. And as I read further, realized the people that she was writing about and making sniggering comments about, had a hard time dealing with her too. It really made me laugh to read her account because even while recording the things that happened, spending time rewriting the things that happened, she never was aware of what was really happening. But then, I guess both perceptions could be right, I'd lean more to what other people thought of her however. Ha ha ha. Interesting book, insufferable person.
I can't post something without a picture so I found this linoleum block print my friend Janet printed on January 17, 1973 when she was sixteen. She's the one who saw the Russian "War and Peace" with me. She was also the one who kicked Gina Lollobrigida in the shin but that story will have to wait for later. This print is a self portrait of Janet (but she'd deny that). Janet, Pam and I were all artistic girls when we were in high school but Janet always felt like she could never be as "good" as Pam and me. I just had that feeling. Maybe she told me. I don't think she continued with an art career but she was good. Really good. I think she had a grown up voice in her head before she became a grown up. That kind of sucks. I'm not sure what I'm saying here...just that a little voice is probably a good thing but when it stops you from doing what you want to do, follow the advice my friend Lucy told me....tell that voice to "shut up and sit down!"