I am an avid reader. I know some of you may not care, but many of my followers have asked for more information about me. So please consider my first statement a little gift from the generous and benevolent Mr. Ohh!. For those of who don’t need the intimate details of my life and would rather have a Porsche, sorry. Now, where was I? Oh yes, I like mystery and adventure novels. (Wow, even more information. Is there any end to the wealth of knowledge being dispensed so freely?) The reason I’m telling you this is that I have been noticing a disturbing pattern.
Let me explain a bit. Most of the novels I read start very peacefully. Some of you might dispute this, and you have a legal right to do so. Remember though, there are billions of novels out there. Consequently, it is easy to conclude you may not be reading the same ones I am. Also, I have no idea what your preferences are. I have no basis from which to talk. My only basis is what I read, and most of the novels I read start very peacefully. The main character is introduced and undoubtedly living a mundane life.
Sometimes their serene existence is in a tiny hovel in a poor backwater part of the world, and other times the person, or alien, is born into opulence. There are also examples of every economic class in between. But the common thread is they all have a normal (for them) life. I spend a few pages learning about their calm reality, and then something horrible or mysterious happens. In that moment, all serenity is lost. Then tragedy after tragedy befalls them for hundreds of pages until, in a great climax, the story is resolved, one way or another. If you read series fiction, this is only the calm before the storm until the next book, but the resolution is there, nonetheless.
Writing teachers call this ‘Conflict’. It is often very interesting and, in a book, very stimulating. The thing is, in reality conflict isn’t much fun at all. In fact, in thinking about my life, conflict really really sucks. Conflict takes a lot of time and effort. It also requires thinking, worrying, and sometimes wetting the bed. Friedrich Nietzsche once wrote about conflict, “That which does not kill us makes us stronger.” That’s a load of bull cookies if ever I heard one. After most conflict, I am a hot-mess ready to drown my sorrows in some serious baked goods. Joanna Calazza, the owner of the shop down the road, plans her vacations around my conflicts. She knows there will be extra cash. As far as being stronger is concerned, after consuming all those carbs I feel bloated, weak, and usually not able to move until the next conflict. My neighbor once suggested I try avocado toast instead of all those pastries. For a smart lady, she knows nothing about conflict resolution. After a stressful episode the body requires indulgence, not guacamole on a cracker.
I must admit however, my life has been relatively conflict free. If you’re one of those kooks who say Life is boring without stress, know this I am not bored! I like my life peaceful and stress-free. Although, I have to admit I’m becoming a little paranoid. If you read as much as I do, you’ll know that a bit of peace added to a half cup of serenity is a recipe for disaster. Trouble just has to be lurking around the corner. I like where I live, we all are mostly happy and the issues that come up are being fixed in hours not months. Thus, proving the other shoe will drop any minute.
With great trepidation I await what must eventually come. My children are too old to receive a Hogwarts letter. Actually, it would be from Ilvermorny, because we live in America. It would have certainly been cool if that happened. But what then? Will it be aliens, like the ones in Star Trek, mad robots or perhaps an assassin? Who knows?
You know, if it has to be something earth shattering, I personally am hoping for a zombie apocalypse. I mean, honestly, wouldn’t that be super cool? I know most people would be running for their lives in panic. As for me, I’d be standing behind a tree smiling and trying to figure out how they use their strange super-power. You know the one I mean. It’s in all the movies. The encroaching zombies stumble along at a crawl, and some athletic superman runs away from them at a full gait. The man never tires or slows, yet the zombies catch up to him every time. Now you might say I’m silly for standing around during an invasion of zombies, but my reading has long told me what’s going to happen. You see, in my life I am the main character. In every book I’ve ever read, the main character gets badly beaten until almost all is lost. Then, at the last possible moment is saved by a miracle and survives to live on in peace and harmony. Until the sequel of course.
Another possibility resides in the fact that I am a pretty wimpy guy. And there is a nuclear facility within fifty miles. That has Superhero Powers written all over it. I wonder what mine will be. Then again, I should probably be more concerned about what my nemesis’ powers will be like. I could end up in a lot of pain. Of course, there is the Gregor Samsa possibility. I might wake up tomorrow as a giant cockroach. That would be a bummer. Especially when you consider that my wife hates bugs in the house, and doesn’t allow pets of any kind. The disturbing possibilities are endless.
Wow, I have never thought what arriving at a peaceful life might truly mean. Consider that these are only a few of the potential terrors that could befall me. These come from books I’ve already read and there are so many more to be written. There are also so many more unthinkable things it could be. My son is currently learning to drive. That could cause some issues. Then the greater horror of my daughter going out on a date with a boy comes to mind. It’s all too disturbing! My mind just can’t absorb it.
I think I’ll go back to contemplating that simple zombie apocalypse again.
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