During the noon break, I went into the lunch room to take part in a birthday celebration for a senior employee. There were approximately a dozen people in the room. I helped myself to a large piece of cake on my way to take a seat at one of the tables.
As I wolfed down the delicious German chocolate cake, I casually listened to fragments of the various conversations taking place around me. Some were talking about ice fishing---one woman proudly announced the large catch of Walleye her husband and young son had brought home the day before. Others were commenting on the snowmobiling conditions in the area. A man described the features of a new machine he intended to purchase during the coming weekend. Another person bitched about something a supervisor had said a few days ago. They were the typical mixed-company lunch room conversations.
At a lull in the conversations, a woman asked me what I had been doing recently with my spare time. She wanted to know if I had been ice fishing, snowmobiling, skiing...or what? Thinking about getting another piece of cake instead of thinking first about my response to the woman’s question, I said, “None of the above. For the past year or so, I’ve spent most of my free time at my writing.” It was a dumb thing to say.
“You’re writing?”---came the question of surprise from another woman. In addition were the chuckles from the men and giggles from the women. With a mouth full of cake, I mumbled, “Yeah.”
“You are writing a book?” The smiling first woman said. “Yeah,” I mumbled again.
Fortunately, the conversation turned away from me when the first woman declared, “I’ve always wanted to write a book. I have this wonderful romance story in mind that would make a fantastic book! It would make a great movie too!” A woman, silent until now, joined in to say basically the same. One of the men said he had a great story about Vietnam that he should write. And so the conversation continued among the dozen or so people in the room. I was content at that point to just finish eating my piece of cake.
Finished with the first piece, I decided against a second, politely excused myself and left the room to go back to my work. I stopped at the Men’s Room along the way to take a leak. While shaking the dew off my lily, I couldn’t help but to laugh. Not at my lily, but at the conversation that had occurred from the mention of writing a book.
Yesterday, I was visiting with one of the salesmen at the local Ford Dealership while I waited for my Built Tough, beat-to-shit Ford pickup to be serviced. The salesman said to me early in our conversation, “By the way, one of the gals you work with said something to me the other day about you supposedly writing something?” It is a small town! I looked around for a Men’s Room, but not seeing one handy replied, “Nah, nothing serious. Writing just keeps my hands and fingers out of trouble.” The salesman grinned, winked, and said, “Ya know, I’ve always been interested in writing a book. Let’s go over to my office and I’ll tell you about this great story I want to write.” Now, I politely asked him where the Men’s Room was and told him that if the Service Guys weren’t finished with my truck, I would be happy to come back to his office to hear all about it.”
As I shook the dew off my lily, I couldn’t help but laugh. Not at my lily, of course, but at how many “fellow writers” there are. Then I thanked the writing gods for my truck being ready to go.