Wednesday, September 22, 2010


I have a confession to make: I'm not smart. I'm not stupid. But I'm not smart. I can't pull a quote out of the air to suit an occasion from "one of the greats". Heck, I have no idea who the greats even are. Put me on the spot. I dare ya. Ok, "What goes around, comes around." Have no idea who said it.

Please don't ask me for my stance on INSERT ANY GIVEN ISSUE. I may have one but you'll be able to slice up my rationale like one of those Japanese chefs at those restaurants who do all that fancy chopping while you sit there and watch, hungry as hell and waiting for the acrobatics to stop so you can freakn eat Gosh Darnit! Also, I do not sit and mull over a soul-delving question and research. and sleep on it. and talk about it and mull some more. My reactions are usually knee-jerk.

Protons and neutrons make up an atom, right? Is the nucleus the centre? What about a that made up of atoms? The capital of Bolivia is...? Wait...or is Bolivia the capital of another country? I think it's in South America. But look Yugoslav parents, I do NOT believe that eating ice cream in the winter will cause a sore throat. So there.

My depth is limited. There's only so far I can go people. I cannot take a beautiful moment in my day and equate it to some profound truth in life. Or at least, I cannot express it eloquently in prose. I'm terrible with numbers. We are sworn enemies, me and numbers (or numbers and I). We've never gotten along. I thought words and I were BFFs but I'm not so sure anymore. When I read some of the beautiful (see? what an overused word), awe-inspiring (cliche alert), message-ridden (that sounds diseased) posts of yours, I want to cry. For two reasons. 1) I'm proud of y'all and sincerely joyful to read your works of art 2) I feel so unworthy and out of my league. To be sharing the blogosphere with some of you? I mean, seriously. Feel free to kick me out of this club anytime now. Membership expired.

Maybe if I smartened up? Started going ape-shit on Wikipedia. Memorized a quote each day. Took a few night classes in astrophysics, Women's Studies, Something Century Literature, "The Greats", I could catch up. But who am I kidding? I'm 34 and really don't have the desire to be smartened up in the schoolroom sense. Meh.

And no, this is not a "Fill my sails with wind" attempt at "You are the wind beneath my wings" sympathy plea. It's just me realizing how great you all are. And it WAS also a "how shit I am in comparison" revelation but now, it's not. Because hubby sent me an article titled, "Are you the next Steve Jobbs?" And for the record, the guy is an arse. He's a lucky, genius-in-many-ways arse but an arse just the same. And here's an excerpt from said article:

Virtually every ambitious business leader sees themselves as the next Steve Jobs -- and virtually all of them are dead wrong, writes Dan Pallotta. It's fine to try to channel Jobs' creativity and managerial prowess, Pallotta argues, but there's nothing to be gained from weighing your own skills against someone who's clearly out of your league. "Such comparisons spiral you into depression. They demotivate you, demoralize you, and generally suck every last bit of enthusiasm and aliveness out of you," Pallotta writes.

So, I may not be "one of you" (aka: my greats) but you all inspire me so much that I have the courage to keep puking all over this little, not-at-all-enlightening space. And maybe someday I won't be so cold in your shadow and have sunlight on my face.

Did you get that up there? That was going to be the end. And it was my attempt at a clever sign-off to this post. Maybe you'll get it if I point up higher to the "wind beneath my wings" reference??? I guess it doesn't work so well when the "writer" has to explain it...

So, after describing to hubby how great you all are and making a matter-of-fact declaration that "I'm not as good or good enough to be a 'writer'," he basically told me off. But in the "stop comparing yourself to Steve Jobbs" way. And then he offered me some advice in a warm and fuzzy, supportive husband kind of way. So now, I say to me and to you, I'm a gunna stick around and see what a 34-year old, not as "learned", rough-round-the-edges, cliche-lovin', shallow (cuz I said I wasn't "deep"), ADD (that's attention deficit disorder) person-who-likes-to-write can do with and for herself.

Somewhere over the rainbow there's a t-shirt slogan/bumper sticker that hasn't yet been written. I vow to you, on this day, that like Forrest Gump accidentally found the happy face t-shirt design by wiping his dirty face on someone's shirt while running across the country all hairy, I will find and write that slogan and they will shout it from the rooftops. Or, I'll just keep on keepin' on.

The End.
ps. Thanks honey. Love you. Oh and...You Complete Me xoxo
pps. You all ARE really great.


Michelle said...

I have a confession to make: I have not blogged in perhaps a month, not because of my busy move or lack of time, but because I started reading "Eat Pray Love" by Elizabeth Gilbert and was so blown away by her beautiful way with words and descriptive style that I have been feeling rather inadequate. I was ashamed, being immersed in such educated, well-practiced and fluent writing, that I ever thought I could be part of any literary circle, let alone call myself a writer. But as time went on and events occurred I found myself thinking in paragraph form and editing my feelings to fit an article of some sort. I realized that I have something to say, and it doesn't really matter how I compare to other writers, I need to write. I think you do too. I know you're not looking for compliments here, but I for one LOVE your blog and check every day for a new post from you. You have a way of bringing up subjects that make us all stop and consider how it relates to our lives. Lets both try to remember that this is about sharing life stories, giving and receiving advice and generally keeping in touch. Its not about the quality of our writing, or how we compare to others. I have been comparing myself to others my entire life and am tired of it. Please don't check out of this blogosphere yet...I am not sure I can keep this up without your support and input....

SwedishJenn said...

Awww Michelle. Well said! Though you are, in fact, one of "my greats" so I'm not at all surprised. Mon wrote a great post awhile back about the fact that if we "do art", we can consider ourselves "artists". Or something like that. I think about her message there often when I doubt myself. Mon, can you give us the link to this post? I think we should all read it from time to time. Or at least those of us who don't consider ourselves one of "the greats". I'm not going anywhere Michelle, if you don't. Let's stick around and see where this schtick takes us. I am happy to just blog along through life. I will not be the writer of the next great novel. No Jane Austen here. Nor am I a starving single Mom with an entire series about a magical wizard and his friends battling evil at Hogwarts ready to let loose on the world. But someday I will take shape and so will you. xoxo

Monica said...

"Heck, I have no idea who the greats even are."

SNORT! lmao

the irony is that the 'great' bloggers are usually feeling the same. that they can't write as well as someone else THEY consider great.

what draws me to blogs is someone being themselves, chatting about life... sometimes it's to fabulously written blogs, but mostly it's not.

there are too many bloggers who feel inadequate though. one blogger i used to read all the time had fab book recommendations, but she felt inadequate because she wasn't doing crafty things every day with her kids. so she quit. such a shame.

we all have our niche, our voices, i blog to express myself first. and i've accepted i'm not poetic or really funny (like YOU!). but my blog seems to touch others because i'm authentic, and my bent is philosophical. not for everyone.

but i couldn't read blogs like mine all day every day! variety being the spice and all that.

as for my post... always freaks me out when people say... Mon you once said.... i think... i did?!

actually i think i wrote on an issue similar to this recently... who knows where that is... :D

SwedishJenn said...

Heya Mon. I figured you'd fine the line about "the greats" good for a chuckle, seeing as though I know you know who "they" all are or at least have your own personal list. It's hard to reach your full potential when you're constantly comparing yourself to others and the outcome is usually, "I'm not as good/good enough." But nobody ever got anywhere without taking a big risk of some kind. So, I'll risk it. There are people in this world that relate to me on some level. Just gotta find em'. Thanks!

sue said...

well, if i had a mind to compare i'd be out of league here, as far as i can see you've certainly nowt to worry about on the writing front.. witty and entertaining:)

over from holistic mama.

SwedishJenn said...

Thanks for stopping by Sue and for the compliments. I always chuckle a bit when folks tell me they have come over from Mon's corner seeing as though it's such an enlightening space. Actually, if it weren't for Mon, I could likely count my readers on 1 hand.

sue said...

hiya Jenn, there's alot of thoughtful insights over at mon's place, that's for sure. but, you know, enlightenment's most often in the little everday stuff. it's always surprising what triggers those wee moments.