Well, yes…everyone should have those things. But, I was thinking of something else, or rather someone else. I think everyone should have someone like my Dad. I don’t care if this person is your dad or even related to you or even a man – we’re going for essence here, people.
God bless him, my Dad is known the world over as being the consummate realist. He’ll straighten his attorney tie – to choking – on your brilliant idea before you’ve even finished hatching the plan. It’s not that he’s a pessimist. He built himself and his successful career from meager bricks, so he believes that the unthinkable can be created, that palaces can be built out of sticks. He just likes to remind you constantly of how hard it will be, the challenges up ahead, the jagged edges that threaten your path.
It’s always pissed me off, and he knows it. Remember my sponge post? I like everyone around me on my bandwagon – it makes life easier when what I’m soaking up is good, good, good – and agreeable. Naysayers be damned. Why is it necessary to bring up dog shit when we’re talking about chocolate. That’s just wrong.
Yet, it’s also a little brilliant – his realism. When I’m able to slow down (and chillax) long enough to listen to him, I always learn something that my full-steam-ahead self hadn’t taken into account. Frequently, this saves me money, time, head- and heart- ache.
So, I was shocked the other day when he responded to one of my blog posts (he subscribes and his attention is indefatigable) with this email:
I have been thinking for some time that you should put your blogs in a book and have them published. They provide food for thought about a wide variety of life issues and are fascinating to read. All you need is a good and catchy title. I am hard pressed to believe that you would be turned down. More people need to read them. Love, Dad
After my first thought: Isn’t Writing Roads a ‘good and catchy title’? I thought, Damn Straight! And, then, my third thought was: WAIT! Where’s my Dad’s realism? I read that email over and over looking for it…but I couldn’t find it. Turns out, just like my Blackberry that I lose on a regular basis, the realism was sitting in my own pocket.
I read that email about 500 more times. And watched my own version of ‘reality’ (read morose self-talk) set in. I’ll bullet point it for you:
- Um, yeah, me and every other blogger on the planet.
- Apparently I need 100,000 unique visitors/month to get a book deal via my blog – and while I’m close I’m not quite there. cough, cough, cough…
- Of course you’re saying this – you’re my dad. It’s practically your job to say this.
- The book industry is dying.
- Do dreams like this really come true? For me?
- And do you think the advance will be substantial?
He is my Dad. So I can blame him for my realism upchuck; I did learn it from him. This apple didn’t fall far.
But this isn’t some psychobabble themed post about how badly our parents screwed us up. Quite the opposite.
The point is: How good is my life? Someone that’s known me for 36 years, 5 months and 3 days – for every second I’ve been here; someone that’s seen me through the good and the bad, the tattoos and the loser, high school drop-out boyfriends, the time I snuck out in the middle of the night and nearly gave him a heart attack, the hayride through the Himalayas that is a woman’s life in the 90’s and 00’s. That someone thinks I’m good, thinks the world would benefit from what I love to do and share, thinks it’s practically a gimme it’s so reasonable that this dream should come to fruition.
The answer is: My life is very good. And so is my Dad. And, “HEY PUBLISHERS! At least one person is going to buy my book!!!”
So…let’s get on it.
Image credit: tedkerwin