Case in point - Country singer Clint Black's lyrics before meeting Lisa Hartmann:
I still comb my hair the same,
Still like the same cologne...
And I still drive that pickup truck
That the same old bank still owns.
But since you left, everybody says
I'm not the guy they've known...
Lights are on, but nobody's home.
When I said I do, I meant that I will
'til the end of all time,
Be faithful and true, devoted to you,
That's what I had in mind when I said I do.
What. The. Hell. Jesus, look at yourself Clint. What happened, man? Where's your grit? Where's the heart?
Point is, good creative stuff seems to come from disharmony, discontent, and all those other disses. When people get all happy and soft, they get unbearably boring.
|Munch's "The Scream". Need I say more?|
Bloggers are particularly susceptible to the effect. I've been totally hooked on blogs that were very creative and deep. Then the writer gets into a relationship, and the creativity and depth goes right out the window. Why should I lose my reading material because suddenly their lives have meaning?
The examples are endless. Was JD Salinger an outgoing, happy sort? Hell no, he was an edgy loner in love with an underage girl, and wanted to be alone in his misery. Holden Caulfield was Salinger's
And Hemmingway? Miserable. Married and divorced four times, finally he shot himself. The general themes of his work included war, wilderness and loss. "I love sleep," he once said. "My life has a tendency to fall apart when I'm awake."
I have friends who love to have fun. Then they get married, or into a relationship, and I don't hear from them for weeks or months at a time. Shit, people. Must you lose your edge just because you have found a steady lay, or someone to be gooshy over?
We should all, each of us, preserve a little corner of our hearts and minds to being totally unhappy. Allow that bitterness to sit there in the corner and fester. It will build character and keep you sharp. It makes the happy times seem even more happy.
Gah! The sun just came out. There goes my inspiration for this piece. Laters.
Dave Morris is a part-time bitter dude who resides in the midwest, where winters are cold, gray and lifeless. He's not always unhappy, just sometimes. Especially after a country music and Jack Daniels bender.