So I have been on a memoir kick recently, analyzing how writers share their past in a manner that affects readers’ present, and everyone’s future.  Last weekend I finished Five Men Who Broke My Heart by Susan Shapiro, where she tells exactly as the title implies.  As with every read, there are lessons learned which brings me to blog about something I don’t like to blog about for it is so cliche for a 23 yr old, single gal to blog about love/relationships and the shit storms that ensue from both.


I was talking about the cliche to Angie once, after a day of really bad stories in workshop, saying that people our age do not know how to write on the subject of love/sex/relationships as we have little experience from our reality to even narrate the fiction.  She said that it is not an issue of experience but rather, lacking the words to describe our feelings.  Particular to the South, she said, we are unable to talk about our emotions in a way that truly personifies what we’re feeling.


In Shapiro’s book, an ex-boyfriend emails her about meeting up to discuss his book about to be released.  When they meet up she begins an impromptu interview asking him about their relationship, leading her on a chase to do the same with all of the other major lovers in her life.  While she dosen’t disclose the specific details of the interviews, the reader comes to know the men through the title she gives them–Mr. Studrocket, Beach Boy, the Biographer, Root Canal, Batman–and the memory snapshots each shared.  It was through her essays that I came to realize that there is nothing unique about our relationships, nothing new happens to us that hasn’t happened to anyone else.  Everyone has their Studrocket, Nice Guy, etc., the situations, the individuals, they are not unique or special–and I’m going to stop treating them that way.


I’ve been thinking about this recently in the frame of the Periodic Table.  There are [x] amount of elements <<potential partners>> that each have certain properties that seperate it from the others on the table <<physical, emotional, biographical info>> and combined with a second element <<you>> different reactions can occur, different bonds may form, in the end if possible between the two, you create a compound.

Some compounds are more prevalent in certain climates.  Some are highly explosive, some impossible.  Some bonds are weak but sustainable, and others are unbreakable and last for centuries [these are the ones with the hightest value].

Of coarse, I’ve begun an outline to write this essay.  I had always invisioned myself writing a group of essays like Shapiro’s one day, feeling that with enough time and maturity [meaning, enough impressive info found via googling] it would be interesting to meet back up with these guys that seemed to hold such an important part of my identity for whatever amount of time.  [Already, I feel really evolved from the girlfriend I use to be, so this could be interesting to do now to some extent…maybe that will happen with the essay].


So that wasn’t so painful, or cliche, but I didn’t really whine or talk about anything too personal [save it for the essays?].  The reason I was moved to talk about it in the first place, shows some hint of reconizing something that I’m trying to work through presently.  My own Mr. Studrocket [and you’ll have to ask me or read the book to find out what this character entails] is causing me worry, I actually cried about it the other day.  It came out of no where.  I was alone, but still embarrassed to have done it.  This is when I remembered that this situation is not unique, not special, just one compound that did not, will not, should not ever form.  For now, I have to get back to reading about ionic bonds.


Here’s the big question, for the essay: there are 117 elements, would it be best to have one for each guy? [I’m only up to about 55] or just stick to the most explosive, repellent elements? if I made it fiction, I could have 117 and group them like on the table…or maybe just ask Chelsea Handler if I could use her list?


One response to “lessons.learned

  1. The most important thing is to get the events down now. Even if you don’t have the emotionalexicon for what you went through, you can plump that all up later.

    Writing is about scaffolding, Grosgebaby.

    Also, single out your shortest, most volatile relationship. That man is Francium.

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