Everything is copy. Not my line, but how I wish it was.
This was something that Nora Ephron’s mother used to say to her and for a long time I’ve wondered what it meant.
Three days have passed since I started trying to take the lid off of my squash bottle. Three days of wrapping tea towels around the deceivingly sharp lid and getting that excruciating pain in your palm that you only experience whilst trying to undo something you desperately desire.
Thinking that a squash bottle might defeat me after everything that’s happened recently is utterly depressing but it wouldn’t be first time I’d cried about a kitchen related disaster. This squash bottle is just a pinch of salt compared to letting the pasta boil over seventeen times in eight minutes, making a cake substituting vegetable oil for olive and having someone take a bite and stare at you, wondering if it contained cyanide or just plain weeping on the floor when the cork screw breaks. Funnily enough, I’ve managed to get into a wine bottle without the assistance of an opener in around three minutes, not three days. Make of that what you will.
Of course, I’d like to tell you it was Ribena or Robinson Fruit infusions but it was ASDAs own tropical squash.
When day three arrived I wasn’t even sure if I wanted it. Deep down I knew this beverage was not going to blow my mind but I needed to do it. Like it said something if I didn’t.
We all get like this from time to time. Attach ourselves to a single act and then steak our success on it. If I can put this desk together, I can do anything. One of my other thoughts from last week. Four screws later I knew I couldn’t assemble the desk and I left my self-worth on the carpet, wallowing, next to the Alan key.
Flicking back through the week’s events I’d written the squash bottle saga down, you guessed it, three times. But it didn’t make me sad, it made me laugh. Throwing it in the bin and wasting a pound on a new bottle would not have been the end of life as I knew it but I couldn’t let go. Why did my life hang in the balance because I couldn’t defeat the blue plastic?
Eventually I managed to disembody the squash lid with the help of my last surviving knife. This I know because I wrote it down. I also watched on as a friend pieced together my new desk. Funnily enough that area of my life did not receive as many words as the squash situation.
During the day, evening and sometimes in the middle of the night I will write down things I’m thinking on my notes page or in a book I keep in my bedside table. Events that will seem small in a day or twos time but currently live at the forefront of my mind. Not only do these make me laugh but they add some closure to the matter. Once somethings written down that’s where it lives, it becomes easier to move on and accept it for what it really is.
I’m not sure I would have survived certain moments in my life if I hadn’t written them down. Would they still be in my head? Floating around aimlessly as I so often do when the hoovering needs completing. Sitting in the bath crying, I’ve said it before it’s the best place to cry because you really can’t get any wetter and it’s so dramatic, about something actually worth sobbing for and the squash bottle would re surface and then I’d have to cry about that too because it hadn’t yet been dealt with. A bit like when a child gets upset after falling, manages to move on and then cries again when they remember the nasty ordeal.
Imagining how one must feel If they never write any of their thoughts and feelings down makes me slightly uneasy. That may be because it’s more normal not to and I’m worried I’m weird but I need to get things out.
That’s when I realised, I wasn’t upset about the squash after all. I wrote that event down because that’s all it was on the surface but it was more, much more. The squash held the key but that’s not what I’m writing about is it. I’m telling you I couldn’t open the squash bottle, but the reason it upset me was that there wasn’t anyone there to open it for me, and that’s what I actually jotted down in my book, disguised by the upsetting squash lid.
That my friend means everything is copy. Even an event that seems so small.
There is always something to write, I wrote this about a squash bottle. Eight hundred and thirty-six words to be precise.
Who would want to write stories when real life is clearly so much more interesting?
Lots of love,