Hey all! I’ve had this post written for a while. I was planning on drawing a comic for it, but moving is hard. So here, have a post. I’ll resume with the comics on the next one.
They say that the truth is stranger than fiction. This may not always be the case, but I do believe that real life can be a fountain of inspiration for creative writing. I’ve talked before about drawing on real life to accentuate your writing, so today I want to just tell you a couple of true stories.
The first happened at an IHOP. I was there with a friend of mine and it was pretty empty. There was an older gentleman sitting at a booth on the other side of the restaurant. He appeared to be a regular there, because the waitress asked if he would like his “usual.” I remember him asking her for coffee, and telling her that he was waiting for someone. She agreed to come back later when his friend had arrived.
A few minutes later, sure enough, another old man walked into the restaurant and went over to the booth. The two men greeted each other with a fist bump.
This is a true story. Seeing this made my day.
Another story happened in the market. I was browsing one of the aisles for something I needed, when a mother, her two children, and an older woman – my guess was the grandmother – came into view. The two children were a boy and a girl. The boy had one of those mini, child-sized shopping carts, which I never understood. I really do want to know who looked at a child and said, “You know what this needs? A miniature battering ram on wheels.”
Anyway, the mother was chastising her son for pestering his sister. As she passed behind me, her son said sullenly, “I don’t love you.” To which the mother replied, “That’s fine.” This, in my opinion, is the proper response when a child says something like that. But then the grandmother pulled him aside and began telling him off: “Who bought you that toy? You go and apologize right now!” This, I felt, defeated the purpose of the mother’s neutral reaction to her son’s outburst.
Anyway, the thing I want to draw your attention to is that the son said, “I don’t love you,” and not, “I hate you.” I found this very interesting because the instance of a child saying, “I hate you,” is very well-known. I’ve seen it happen on TV shows and everything like that, but I never considered that a child might express the exact same sentiment with different wording. This is what separates the fictional scenarios on television from real life. Not that a child would never say, “I hate you,” just that it is not the only possibility.
Speaking of children…
I was very young. Maybe five? Six? I was with my mother in a Joann’s Fabrics, and I was wearing a little blue dress with a picture of Simba (young, not grown up) from The Lion King on it. We were standing at a desk, possibly while my mom got some fabric cut, when another little girl saw my dress and ran at me screaming, “Mama look at that girl’s dress!” She then proceeded to grab my dress in both hands and pull it out to look at it. Her mother stood by helplessly while I shoved the girl’s hands off of me and said “Stop it.” She just picked up my dress again, so I pushed her hands away once more. This time it worked and she ran back to her mother.
Real life does funny things. Got an interesting story? Tell me in the comments.
Word of the Day: Accentuate (v) – to give emphasis or prominence to.