Wednesday, 2 November 2011

A life built on memories is not much of a life

Well, that's a little less enigmatic than Eric Cantona's most famous utterance..."when the seagulls follow the trawler it's because they think sardines will be thrown into the sea."

(On its own, it doesn't sound in the slightest bit enigmatic it was the context in which it was spoken - as the answer to the question "Why did you Kung Fu kick that football fan?")

Eric Cantona should write for Quirkyworks! His brain is sufficiently full of butterflies to qualify.

Back to the memory, a memory of a tiny incident which has shaped my life. Actually, the INCIDENT hasn't shaped my life but the decision I took after it surely has. Which is completely bizarre. Bizarre like Cantona.

I've always been an ardent fan of Liverpool Football Club, never more so than when I was a young girl. In 1971 they were in the FA cup final, playing Arsenal (Boo hiss!)

A young neighbour of mine, Mark, was an Arsenal fan. (Boo hiss!) I wrote a little note to him saying that Liverpool would thrash Arsenal. They lost...2-1.

I was DEVASTATED. Then the doorbell rang. It was Mark. He didn't say a word. He simply took the little note I'd written and shredded it on the doorstep.

In that moment, I decided - not consciously, but I decided in my mind - that I would never EVER tell people things that might cause me such humiliation if they didn't work out.

All these years later, I still do that. I write a screenplay, enter it it to a contest, don't tell a soul. I send work off to an agent, don't tell a soul. When I took my driving test (years ago) - I didn't tell a soul. I don't tell anybody anything...UNLESS I'm successful. Or...if I DO tell anyone, I conveniently forget all about mentioning it again...UNLESS I'm successful.

That means that when things don't work out, nobody knows. It also means that I have to deal with it on my own. That can be very lonely sometimes.

At least now I've noticed this pattern in my life...and I'm going to stop doing it. It sucks.

So thank you, young Mark. Even if you DO support Arsenal. (Boo hiss!)

Now, I'll never walk alone.