and that's why I don't eat peas

Writers live in a different world than other people.  We experience life in a different way.  We think of things in terms of characters and story lines.  But sometimes, we literally couldn’t make this stuff up.

For example…

I went on a family outing to the Atlanta History Center today.  It was probably the worst day ever to go anywhere involving outdoor tours.  I was drenched.  My linen trousers stuck to me all the way down and my skin glistened with sweat.  We had to offset our time outside with long bouts of air conditioned indoor attractions, and even scheduled in lunch at the famed Swan House Restaurant.  It was here where I found myself trapped in the ladies restroom. 

I wouldn’t have believed it if I read it in fiction, but there I was, sandwiched between the door and the toilet in the smallest stall ever!  I had to straddle the toilet to get my pants down and when I did, my knees were pressed against the door.  Imagine my horror when it came time to leave and I couldn’t open the door.  I was trapped.  Again, I had to straddle the toilet to get the door open.  And I just had to share my story with my mother…and the three other people in the restroom, who didn’t find it nearly as funny as I did, by the way.

Like I said…I couldn’t make this stuff up!

Another example…

Just the other night, I was chatting with a group of fellow writers, and we decided to play the “worst divorce story ever” game.  My ex had done some pretty awful things so I was pretty sure I would win. 

Boy was I wrong!

When multiple personalities and polygamists were on the table, my cheating ex with his stable of strippers was suddenly very pedestrian.  And all I could think of was how only a group of fiction writers could have lives that were torn straight out of a book. 

But with such horrible divorce stories on the table, we had to ask ourselves what we were doing wrong that left us open to such things.  We lived in different cities…opposite continents even. Was there something in the water?  Was it something we ate?  

We decided it was very possibly something our mother’s told us was good for us…like peas.

That was when we decided it would be best if we stopped eating peas.  It certainly can’t hurt, right? 

Until the next time…I’ll be waiting for the next unbelievable moment to pop up!

Copyright © 2000-2018, Erica Lucke Dean. All rights reserved. Any retranscription or reproduction is prohibited and illegal.
Posted on July 24, 2011 .