Sunday, July 30, 2006

Just Like Riding a Bike

I last rode a bicycle in 1996. A few weeks ago the expanding price of gas combined with my expanding hip size inspired me to haul out the old two-wheeler. This morning I finally got around to giving it a whirl.

I stood in the street for a few minutes assessing the situation. The seat was too high. I lowered it. The seat was too low. I raised it. I got on the bike. I got off the bike. I walked it down to a cross street. Too busy. I walked it further down to a more private spot and when I arrived there, I recognized the feeling. I was stalling. I got on the bike and began to pedal.

As I pushed off from the curb, my head buzzed with excitement while fear clenched my stomach. I could be killed by a passing motorist! If I practiced, I could ride across the country! The truth, of course, is somewhere in between. If I just keep pedaling, anything is possible.

Now I'm at my desk. I'm halfway through Larry's Party by Carol Shields. I'd like to finish it today and begin writing the annotation. I also have a scene to edit and I'd like to get a new draft of that done today. Again my head buzzes with possibilities. I'll never finish this book! I'll write the most eloquent scene ever written! Again, the truth lies somewhere in the middle.

If I know anything at all, it's that persistence is my practice. I stew and squirm and walk around the desk. I let the dog out and let him back in. I make a cup of coffee then decide I want tea. But eventually, I will push off and that's how the work gets done. I'll tell you about the ride when I get back.

Here I go! Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!


Anonymous said...

Just wanted to say thanks from a fellow Ohioan. I was recently accepted to a few creative writing MFA's and with Goddard as my top pick, reading through your blog has been enlightening.

Anonymouse said...

Hi Jason:

So far, Goddard's been great. A ton of work, but really enlightening. Good luck and, if you choose Goddard's Port Townsend program, perhaps I'll see you in July.