I get nervous, on occasion. Inexplicably jangled, the sound of wind on the windows filling me with sorrow. Jumpy, I expect a knock on the door that never comes. I am dismayed by the choice between toast or an English muffin. There is too much to do, and time is rubbing up against my skin,and did you hear that the earth’s topsoil is going to be entirely depleted in just 60 years?
I’ve learned a few soothing mechanisms. One: organize my kid’s art supplies. It almost always works. Could be the pretty colors, the sense of order and control, the notion that I can set the stage for successful, unbridled storytelling and creation. A tiny slice of God Power. On the first day, She created Mason jars full of washable markers.
I wonder if Norton’s Office Supply is still open. My dad did a lot of cool things for me, including: teaching me to throw a Frisbee; driving to every 7-11 in town to find the one serving Pina Colada Slurpees; letting me tag along to Norton’s. I think he understood my pining desire, the itch in my fingers at the sight of reams of ruled paper, sketch books, binder clips, rulers and triangles, typewriters (and eventually word processing machines), and — The Pens. Oh, the pens. Shelf upon shelf filled with cups filled with pens. Ballpoint, rollerball, felt tip, calligraphy, fountain. Ink, gel, highlighter neon.
The fact that they would let us TEST THE PENS absolutely blew my mind. On a little scrap of paper filled with other customer’s scribbles, I could uncap possibility itself. I could try genesis on for size.