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  • Writer's pictureA.S. Morris

Teaching a parrot to talk....

Every so often people ask how I determine what I am going to write about. There is no rhyme or reason. Sometimes, which is likely obvious, my writing is truly therapeutic and my way of coping with something in particular. There are plenty of unpublished blog posts that capture that subset of writing. The majority of my published writing is based on daily experiences that occur to me or within my family. Antics and shenanigans. The primary struggle with determining what to write is narrowing the focus.

“There is no man...however wise, who has not at some period in his youth said things, or lived a life, the memory of which is so unpleasant to him that he would gladly expunge it. And yet he ought not entirely to regret it, because he cannot be certain that he has indeed become a wise man...” Marcel Proust, Remembrance of Things Past

The past few times i have been in Target or Barnes and Nobles I have scoped out the journal section; shocking. While I may live on the interwebs for my blog, I am a sucker for a beautiful journal. I also just enjoy flipping through the many options and ways that appeal to folks. Blank pages, lined pages, graphing sheets, hard cover, spiral bound, fancy leather bound and everything in between. However, the past few times I have been drawn to the same journal; 300 Writing Prompts published by Piccadilly. They publish several other guided journal books from "why I love you" to "would you rather." I usually get a chuckle each time I flip through one of their guides. Things I have never thought about are all over these pages. For example, if you had a parrot, what phrase would you teach it to say? Your soul is also challenged by questions asking what you think life is like after death. Perhaps I'll train my parrot to help Saint Peter at the gates of Heaven.

Finding topics to write about isn't my weakness. Usually my struggle is if I want to share it. As my blog is public I do try to be mindful of what I disclose in my writing. My writing is meant to be therapeutic and that can come with a dark level of honesty. A dark level in which taken out of context could be painful to others. I'm not here to ruin anybody's day. In my nerdy type A way, I do wonder why Piccadilly hasn't published 365 writing prompts, a daily exercise to guide your misguided thoughts. I also think they are trying to challenge people to keep their writing meaningful and succinct. The book is roughly 7x9 in dimensions. I have terrible penmanship and am not of the school of brevity when it comes to my writing. If I truly think about what i would teach a parrot to say and artfully describe this through words I am going to need more than a third of a page.

If you average the time my 35 blogs would take to read its 122 minutes. It’s almost as though I have written my own Lifetime movie. As I sit here this morning looking at the large picture window in my living room I've decided I'm putting up the tree today. (Sorry, husband...) So perhaps this is a Hallmark special. I've checked all the boxes including depression, anxiety, life being shaky, stress at work, stress at home, small town, mountain view, add a tinsel covered pandemic and Id say I have one hell of plot line. The unpublished blogs we will leave for the Lifetime special. Perhaps I'll teach my parrot to sing carols, get him a Santa hat and everything. This is not to be confused with the Santa Claus parrot fish which is also a thing. Have yourself a merry tropical Christmas.

Anyway as I have decided we are decorating a couple weeks earlier than normal this year, I noticed last night on my way home that several folks are already on that holiday train. I'm guessing its cause 2020 and why not. Or perhaps COVID is still a thing and state governments are starting to issue new mandates ahead of holiday gatherings. Or because people still can't follow directions and WEAR.A.DAMN.MASK! So if you can't wear a mask, I get to start my holiday joy early. Perhaps I'll place a Santa on my lawn wearing a mask with you non mask wearers on the naughty list. Remember he sees you when you’re sleeping, knowns when you’re not wearing a mask.....or however the song goes.

I also just have a lot going on a work and when I come home I’d like to be greeted with festive lights and decor. I may leave the lights up until March if I have to. I think a lot of us are curious how the end of fall and winter will be. What kind of lockdowns will be in place and how hard it will be to keep spirits up? This is hard for the average person let alone us less than average people who battle with depression and anxiety. As we enter the literal season of snow globes, I am trying to prepare myself for that incessant shaking and where the snow is going to land when the storm settles.

I think I have finally figured it out. My parrot will say "wear a mask." Perhaps it will be just annoying enough that people will listen. He will only stop saying it when people can follow directions. Or maybe I’ll teach him to say "clean up your Legos..." I’m also tired of having to say that phrase...

In the spirits of Game of Thrones, winter is will you prepare?

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