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Write Therapy

Updated on September 6, 2009

Just because...

So, I've had nearly a three-month hiatus from posting hub articles. No particular reason, other than it being summer, and me just not feeling the inspiration.

I was taking a long walk/run down into the east part of town yesterday morning; however, and it occurred to me why I needed to pick up where I left off. Because. Just because.

Because this is a community of writers, where we publish some things that have meaning, some with very little meaning, and and some with absolutely no meaning whatsoever.

Because it forces me to sit down and focus my thoughts into one activity, instead of the dozen or more that I typically handle.

Because I want to further my writing career - and since I work out to keep my body in shape, similarly I need to work out ("use your words!", I tell my kids) to keep my writing crisp, so I can be a multi-bazillionaire author!

Because I friggen feel like it - and that trumps all!

Crazy talk

Previously, I've written about how it seems our culture tends to link the scientifically-literate left-brainers with craziness, as demonstrated in movies like "A Beautiful Mind" or "Proof" (see Are All Geniuses Crazy?) Now, I find articles that imply creative types (right-brainers), such as writers, poets, etc. tend to be depressed and melancholy (see The Sylvia Plath effect.)

Hold on, whilst I pour another martini...

Okay, so what gives them the right to say that? They're even pulling Aristotle against us. I mean, what does Jacqueline Onassis' husband know about this stuff anyway?

The theory is that certain famous artists, writers, etc. have been thought to be bipolar or depressed. However, and this comes from my new hero, "creativity researcher" (how do I get that job?) James Kaufman, PhD from CSU, San Bernardino: "such research is often fraught with methodological problems, including selection bias, controls that are not blinded, reliance on biographies that might play up mental illness, retrospective designs and unclear definitions of creativity." Sha-ZAM! Take that, theorists!

Is that martini glass of mine empty again?

Hey wait, is that the same JC Kaufman listed in the bibliographic references at the bottom of the article who wrote the book, "I Bask In Dreams of Suicide: Mental Illness, Poetry and Women"? I like poetry. I like women. I've taken a Philosophy course in Logic - is someone playing a game with me here?

And where did all the olives go?

Processing the pain

Seriously, there are a lot of challenges in life. Each of us approaches them in varying ways that work for us. I think it just becomes interesting for us to speculate on the painter, the writer, the mathematician, the politician, the pop star ... and the act of putting that energy into their well-being is crazy-making in and of itself. I think it's more troublesome the way so many people tuck away their pain behind these spit-shined images that we see in the papers and on the streets every day.

If a writer or poet expresses pain in their work, perhaps what you're seeing is that expression in its pure raw form, and in the rest of their life, they interact with others seamlessly, have dinner parties, have lunch with friends, and attend religious and community events like the rest of us. Only they have a method of tapping into their truth in a way that releases and clarifies things for them.

I always admire the person who is able to be their truest, most honest self both in private and in public - and that's a rare person. After all, isn't emotional congruency what we truly seek?

Oh shit, I'm getting profound. Somewhere someone is thinking of prescribing me Prozac... ;-)

The key, I think is just to do what works for you - what makes you feel alive and focused and happy, whether it's writing, acting, doing people's taxes, juggling avocados or painting watercolors with your toes!

So write. Exercise. Smoke em if you got em. Enjoy that martini. Savor every bite of that amazing entree.

And don't be afraid of the dark... ;-)


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    • Gerg profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from California

      Deb - yes, I love Maria Bamford; she is hilarious. I'm kind of a Comedy Central fan! And, of course by the ice cream comment, I'm referring to

      Ron - of course! Your DOC (drink of choice) sounds cool, though I suspect both of ours would knock us on our asses!

      MTG - coming right up! Shoot - can someone bring over the ice?

    • Midtown Girl profile image

      Midtown Girl 

      9 years ago from Right where I want to be!

      Well put, Gerg.

      And I like mine extra dirty, with 4 olives! ;-)

    • profile image

      Ron W 

      9 years ago

      Is is ok if I enjoy a Sailor Jerry's Rum and Coke instead? 'eh? Whoops, forgot the lime! Enjoyable read Cuz. You're quite a writer. So...keep writing, because whatever you decide, for you, is the Write Stuff!

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      G - have another olive with that martini and rewatch that video you posted here....I thought it was stupendous! Oh and heck no, a bunch-o-mes runnin' around???? Scares me and I'm fearless :-P Oh and french vanilla with fudge on top, please. I work out just so I can eat stuff like this!! :-)

    • Gerg profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from California

      J - not that I'm promoting this or anything, but 3 oz vodka, 1 oz dry vermouth, 1/2 oz olive brine. I like it dirtier, so I put in more olive juice!

      P - I agree, but isn't it a blast to poke fun at stereotypes? ;-)

      D - acceptance is huge in anything we do; what would the world be like with a bunch of "us-es"? Have some ice cream with those french fries! ;-)

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      As always, truly enjoy reading what you pen :-) Had a nice laugh about Aristotle too! Did you find those missing olives, btw? Inquiring minds wanna know!

      The last part of your writing spoke loudly to me. I actually had a conversation a few hours ago, about how important it is to notice in others, that which brings them joy, happiness, contentment, satisfaction (choose your word here). When we "accept" that we don't have to subscribe to the same belief system, the same religion, the same lifestyle, the same political views, the same passions, etc. as others, we, ourselves, will be much happier peeps. Personally I believe in the "do no harm" rule and after that, do what makes you feel alive, vibrant, happy...whatever floats your boat.

      Not a martini gal, unless it's disguised as a lemondrop or with pomegranate/cranberry juice...although I do just LOVE those drunken olives but I'd be happy to toast you while you top yours off :-) For now, I'm off in search of some damned good french fries and ranch dressing....wishin' a Red Robin with their bottomless fries was close by :-)


    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Sometimes I think it's just that if everybody decides that art and writing and poetry and contemplation are too much fun then nobody will want to man the call centers and fill up all those cubicles or factories or whatever needs to be filled up, so it's useful to drive home the message that creative types tend to go crazy and kill themselves... but go right ahead, don't let that stop you! Write away! lol!

      I don't think it's a conspiracy or anything. I think it just organically happens. We construct these psychobabble morality tales. Creativity is great! (But DANGEROUS! Don't try this at home, kids!)

      Good to see you back. :)

    • Jackwms profile image


      9 years ago

      Good hub. I need to do more of this myself. Bad news is that I'm running low on martini mix.

    • Gerg profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from California

      Cheers! ;-)

    • profile image

      \Brenda Scully 

      9 years ago

      toppoing up my martini now..... brilliant hub glad you came back


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