It is snowing in Chicago. It is cold and quite and crisp. I wore my boots tonight. The big honking winter boots that take ten minutes to get the liners situated and the laces tight and the pants/sock threshold worked out so that no snow will touch flesh and no folds in the pant-leg cuff fabric will leave crop circle marks on my calves. I wore three shirts, two pairs of socks, my wool pants over my cargo pants, my blue fuzzy vest, my snow-ball-proof jacket that I've owned since the early 1990s, my rabbit fur hat, my scarf that matches the hand knitted mittens made by mother, which I wear over thinsulate gloves even though the calluses on my hands are so thick that I couldn't tell if my fingers were frost-bitten or sitting in a pot of scolding water, and my boots. I don't get to wear those boots very often, so it is worth the ten minutes. I wore all these layers and ventured out for dinner, for laughs, for the recounting of memories with friends, and the destruction of new memories by the glass full. On the slog back home many of these layers were either unzipped, unbuttoned, or jammed into pockets while I battled snowbanks and White Castle temptation. At one point I wished I had my bicycle. That thought was quickly followed by the realization that I still couldn't get service at the White Castle drive through on my bike. To me, Sliders get more magnetic the rougher the weather is. Bourbon also helps.
Someone once wrote that a blank page is intimidating. I agree. So many options, so many collisions of inward and outward thinking, so many people to piss off, or impress, or brush aside. The blank page is intimidating. But a blank page has a unique beauty. All the things that have happened since the last blank page was filled up are just waiting to be written down. All the emotions are crawling out of memory, brushing off the cobwebs, and lining up in a cue right behind my eyes, waiting for my fingers to let them return to the present. All the fleeting elation, all the incarcerated fits of rage, all the soft-edged dreams, the nail bending failures, the heart wrenching realizations, the unexpected successes, the gravity-laden guilt, the intrinsic wonder, the bold arrogance, the scaring beauty, the pedestrian complacency that otherwise goes unheard outside of my brain pile. All the 5am twitches that make falling back asleep so much better. All these things beg to get out of us, all of us, anyway that they can. That was what a blank page provided to me once. No doubt, more than once. I haven’t filled a page in a long long time. I haven’t opted to destroy the seemly endless void, the abyss that the blank page presents, in, could it be, years? I have different outlets now.
I don't think they are getting the job done.
I miss the blank page.
Rather, I miss the full page. With all the spelling mistakes and poor grammar that a full page boasts once I have filled it up.
Maybe tomorrow, when the snow is melting, I'll fill some pages.