Thursday, April 06, 2006

Fleh!

Mutha of gawd, do I ever have writer's block. All I need is three good pages of text for my radio commentary, and yet I'm skunked. I was surrounded by thousands of books tonight, horribly frustrated by the fact that all those tomes had writers who actually got the job done - and someone liked their words enough to pay them to keep writing. Arrrrg!

Why, when I was feeling creatively bereft, did I taunt myself with stacks of books? Well, I went to a book signing at the stripmall Barnes & Noble on Rockville Pike.

Strangely, this B&N location is a hang-out for riders of Japanese motorcycles and peeps who street race Honda Accords. We call it the Fast & Furious Barnes & Noble. Tonight I saw two total doorknobs wearing leather jackets utterly reminiscent of Michael Jackson's cheesy gear in the "Thriller" video. These dudes stood outside the Starbucks entrance to B&N, lattes in hand... with their helmets still on their heads. Yes, we get it. You ride motorcycles. I desperately wanted to see one of the guys coat himself in $4 coffee, trying to get the beverage past his jumbo, oversized, primary-colored brain bucket.

But I digress...

The book signing was for Frank Warren of PostSecret. He gave a talk (which I missed) and showed some cards that have not been published on the website. By the time I arrived, there was an eager sea of folks waiting to get their books signed. I was the very last person in line when I got up to the table, having arrived very late from work. Frank didn't quite remember who I was when I got up to the table, yet he greeted me - as he greeted every person that evening - with a smile, a handshake and an introduction. What a gentleman!

When I reminded Frank who I was, and that I'd interviewed him, he smiled, recalled us having spoken at a DC Blogger Meet-up, and then complimented my writing out here. That was very generous of him. We spoke briefly about the Blogger Meet-up - he's hoping to be there next week - and then I left.

I can't tell you exactly how many people had been there, but the line to meet Frank snaked far around the second floor. Interestingly, the vast majority of fans waiting for a signature (and, often, a photo) were teenagers. Very clearly, the phenomenon of PostSecret has hit home with teens, who are so often wrapped in difficult secrets. One girl was hyperventilating as she left after shaking Frank's hand. Another was crying. Pretty wild.

Well... I've written a handful of paragraphs. That's a nice start, but it hasn't gotten me a dang bit closer to having my commentary finished.

Crap.

I'm going to bed. Maybe a decent night's sleep will improve the situation...

5 comments:

Janet M. Kincaid said...

Why don't you talk about exactly what you've just written... how you had writer's block... how you went to B&N in Rockville and observed D.C. suburbanites trying to look hip and edgy in their helmets and street rods... how you witnessed yet more of the Frank Warren phenomenon... how we all have secrets and it took a year for you to feel like a trauma in your life--which took on a secretive quality as you struggled to process it--finally broke through and now you're free...

I think you have lots you could say and this has been an excellent start. Can't wait to hear your next commentary.

Cyn said...

I was going to refer you to my blog for a news story that might inspire some spicy commentary; but upon further thought, I don't think it exactly falls in NPR territory...

Claire said...

Good luck. I'm pulling for ya.

Scholiast said...

What I really would have wanted to send off to PostSecret I can't even bring myself to write down, let alone send off... (No, I haven't done anything illegal, it just feels like it..)

Sudiegirl said...

Hey...my man works at the barnes & noble you went to...

you are absolutely right about the drag races, BTW.

Hope you got your book signed...I want to get that same book with an extra copy I can send to my sister.

Sudiegirl