READING NOSTALGIA BORES ME
Okay. I hate to admit it, but reading nostalgia bores me. Is there something wrong with me? I don’t mind nostalgia cartoons, or admitting I know what that thing on the left is. And it’s kinda fun being one of those who remembers what a wringer washing machine was like. But I don’t like reading nostalgia.
I mean, I’m nearly 70. I should be nostalgic right? My husband is nostalgic and becoming more so each day. He’s forever looking over photos from 50 years ago, pointing out his classmates and sports buddies…many of whom may well be dead by now…and telling me about this or that they did, with whom, where and when. And I try not to yawn but gees…
And he spends hours on Google Earth. Now I agree Google Earth is a great way to travel the world when, like us, you can’t afford to see it any other way. But he keeps going back to where we lived in the 70’s, the 80’s etc and looking at how everything’s changed, and remembering old Mrs. Dumphrey who lived in this or that house and wondering who built the new house where hers used to be. And I’m not saying that’s not interesting. It is. But it releases another nostalgic volley of stories about people, places and events that just don’t interest me anymore.
I know. That’s not very nice of me but I’m nothing if not honest. Except with him. I don’t dare tell him how I feel. So I listen patiently and nod my head, while I wonder if any new emails have come in since I checked half an hour ago.
Sadly, I’m the same way, I realized this morning, when I read nostalgic writing…even if it’s well done. My inbox this morning contained a story by a local creative writing teacher. In it, he nostalgically wrote about revisiting one of his favourite getaways this summer. The venue sounds idyllic but after 3 paragraphs of reading about the food served at each meal, I felt a yawn coming on. Am I weird to not be interested in reading a 1000-word piece about the menus and scenery and how it reminded him of when they used to visit the area when he was a kid and yadda, yadda, yadda.
Reading nostalgia bores me. Give me a story that gets my pulse racing; a book that keeps me turning pages when I should be trying to get to sleep. I don’t care if it’s fiction or memoir but make me want to keep reading, right to the finish. Don’t even give me a chance to yawn. You know why? Life’s too short and my time is running out to read all the books I want to…the ones that make my blood boil and tear at my heart strings and show me lives that remind me how lucky I am.
Like the book I’m reading now: FRACTURED NOT BROKEN. It’s the true story of Kelly Schaefer who, at 19, was left quadriplegic after the car in which she and friends were
driving was hit by a drunk driver. Kelly, who has only some use of her left arm and types with the aid of a mouth stick, has written this book with the help of her aunt, Michelle Weidenbenner, a best-selling fiction author. I invite you to read a wonderful interview with Michelle which I shared on my memoir writers’ website, MEMOIRABILIA, this past week. In the interview, Michelle states that “Stories sell. I think my best selling book will be Kelly’s book because it’s a true story, and people seem to migrate to real stories of everyday heroes.”
Exactly! I love real stories about everyday heroes. And when the story is written as well as “Fractured not Broken” is, in simple, everyday language without lots of fluff, padding and details…I’m there. Wide awake. Not stifling yawns. Not bored.
Want to put me to sleep? Send me nostalgia. Wait. Don’t! I like living in the present. I left the past behind long ago.
Night now. I’m off to bed to continue reading “Fractured not Broken”.
You can thank me later Michelle.