Friday, July 20, 2012

The Dark Night...and Day

Some impressive streaks are coming to an end.  On the positive side, my season-long winless drought on the tennis courts finally ended this evening. My streak of futility came to a halt at the ghetto tennis capital of Minneapolis, the Read Sweatt Tennis Center..."Home of Inner City Tennis".

The name Sweatt on the sign outside isn't just a name, it's a strong indicator of the conditions inside the building.  The neighborhood doesn't seem terribly dangerous, but I do know that inner city tennis doesn't involve air conditioning.  My shirt was instantly soaked with "sweatt" before I'd even pulled my racquet out of my bag.  Luckily I love the hot weather, and we pulled off a 7-5, 6-3 win, and our team won the match-up 2-1.  The bad news is that we're already statistically eliminated from qualifying for sectionals, but a win's a win, and that hadn't happened in a long time.

That was the bad streak that ended today.  Unfortunately, I fear a good streak is also in jeopardy.  I'm approaching 150 consecutive days of blog posts, but I may have to hang up the keyboard and focus all of my writing effort on grad school essays.  With today's half-day Friday at work, I decided I'd sit down and officially start writing my first essay.  I would tackle the "easy" one that asks about career goals.  The problem is, I quickly learned that there's no such thing as an easy essay...odd that that the word easy is embedded in the word essay, huh?

Seven hundred words about myself should, in theory, be a walk in the park.  I figured I'd have a solid draft done between noon and the tennis match in the early evening.  My first rule of writing is that it's much, much easier to edit than it is to create something from scratch.  So I always just start typing crap on a blank screen and go back later to polish the big, steaming mess I'm left with.  For whatever reason, I couldn't even get the crap to come out this afternoon.  I have a bad case of mental constipation and can't seem to find the writer's laxatives anywhere. 

For the life of me, I couldn't find the right balance between concise writing and too little detail to make any relevant points.  If things even out over time like I claimed a few days ago, I wonder if tennis success breeds writing failure.  Because I would have gladly traded a win for a decent draft of an essay today.  I typed, deleted, re-typed, and re-deleted thousands of words today, but I can only describe what I'm left with via a visual metaphor:

Good thing I only have about fifteen of these things to write...and today's was the "easy" one...and the draft isn't even finished.  So it looks like blog posts are going to be fewer and much farther between until mid-October.  Depending how bad things get, I may start a new blog-free streak that rivals what I've accomplished thus far.  I'm guessing that won't help the ad revenue.  Enjoy this while you can, because the dream is almost over...

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