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The Upside Down Side of the Upside


There’s an upside to being up.  

You’re the life of the party. You can convince yourself that your kids think your jokes are cool.  You’re intensely creative (never mind that the midnight writing session yielded the word ‘the’ 200 times – it sounded good as you were writing it).  

But the Upside has a downside too.

I should start by saying that, unlike a lot of artistic geniuses, I (scribbler unextraordinaire) don’t have an active inner monologue or even a dialogue.  The voices in my head sound more like an episode of the noted pundit punch-out show, Sniping, if it were re-enacted by poo-flinging monkeys (which is pretty much like the real show, without the monkeys).

But therein lies the part of the downside of the Upside.  

When I’m navigating the Downside, the voices aren’t exactly helpful, but, aside from the suggestive whispers about how to permanently deal with the downside, they mostly buzz quietly in the back room in my brain.  They’re a soundtrack for fantasies that get me through the days or weeks or months when the rest of my being feels like it’s being cradled under a wet carpet that needs a few more air holes and a good cleaning (one of the downsides of being a bad housekeeper is that even my mental carpet smells musty, but that’s another post).  

Right now, the voices are a bit louder. They’re an accursed cacophony (why can’t I get a freakin’ symphony in exchange for my internal alliteration once in a while?) an always at the wrong time.

My grocery shopping drive time, for example, is blog idea time.  Last night, however, as I was spilling my guts to Siri (who hears, records and mostly obeys, unlike my kids) the inner chorus was getting out of control.  

“Oooh, that’s a good idea,”  they said as one of them pointed out the absurdity of trying to plan a healthy breakfast for the kids while standing in line with a box of Sugar Cubes Cereal and another started giggling about my repetitive stress disorder brought on by seven-year-old Thing2’s recent 1000+ requests for a certain Harry Potter-related app.

Each of the voices had a different idea and they were practically singing them to me.


In a round.

And even when they get sorta hard to understand, they’re impossible to tune out, and they refuse to take turns.  

Last night I just listened and squirmed and giggled and thanked the powers that be that most of the roads in Vermont are two lanes so I’ll never have to explain to the cop who pulls up next to me why I was laughing maniacally.  

Don’t let my purple complexion fool you, though.  This really is a Downside.  

See, all this giggling should be going to the blog – my place get the inner multi-logues out of my head and down on digital paper.  The problem is that at moments like these it seems like that paper is being used to housebreak an imaginary litter of puppies.

Then I remember none of the characters in my head have had puppies – ever (one of the few things that hasn’t happened in my fantasy land) and I get down to the business of disciplining the mental troops this morning to create one remotely publishable post out of the half-dozen that got started last night as I squirmed in my chair trying to remember why I was giggling.