Thursday, February 21, 2008

A Little More "Bought Sense"

Have you ever had someone hit a raw nerve that you had no idea was raw? It is an excruciating pain, not at all unlike that first instance when you bite down on something and a pain shoots through your mind, body, and soul and you realize the pain is actually in your mouth, in a tooth you had no reason to think might crack. I had one of those riveting experiences recently and it left me with much to think about and consider.

I was in a setting not at all conducive to anything but civility, and civil we all were as we politely exchanged our thoughts and ideas, but there was one person who kept dropping hints of dissatisfaction, deep sighs of frustration, and a good reason why anything anyone else thought promising was anything but. I found myself empathizing with that person, assuming they might have had a long, unpleasant day and that session with us was the time they finally decided it was okay to start to let the built up tensions go. Heck, I've had bad days, too.

I was feeling magnanimous for being so silently understanding when suddenly a few words were said that hit me in the mid-section like a bowling ball. Nothing big. Nothing overtly insulting or inflammatory, but the underlining ramifications were so vile and mean-spirited it was breathtaking. I almost started to hyperventilate.

What did I do? Very briefly I determined that I needed to set the perpetrator straight and with the breath I was about to exhale I was well on my way to accomplishing that when suddenly it dawned on me! This is so, so rich and so, so prime for my novel "Bought Sense!" This is exactly what I've been needing to bring out the true negative, mean-spirited nature in a character I've been toiling with developing that is such a wonderful little actress that she's been hiding her venom even from me - the writer who made her up!

I couldn't wait to get out of that setting and to my notebook! I was civil in that hour of civility which meant I didn't lose anything other than a quick, hot breath. Best of all I won another priceless glance into one of those extra special human natures that we only get an opportunity to glance ever now and again. It was all I could do not to run up and give them a great big hug, an extra little squeeze and a truly exuberant thank you for opening this perfect little door!

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