You guys, I'm at the airport. I'm getting on a plane--by myself. I'm flying alllllllllll the way to the other side of the country, alone. I have novels packed in my carry-on. And I'm going to read them.
Where am I going, you ask? I'm going to NH, to see John Irving, only my favorite writer ever, speak in Portsmouth, only my favorite NH town ever. With Tress, only my....well, you get it. He's going to be talking about his newest book, In One Person. Guess what I'm reading on the plane???!!!
Its not just that I'm going to see such a great friend and be in the same room with a literary god (this is like The Beatles, 1964 for the nerd girl bookworm in me--but hopefully I will refrain from screaming and fainting when he walks out onto the stage). Part of what has me giddy is the vast hours of time stretching ahead of me today in which all i have to do is sit, read, read some more and then sit again and read more.
Not that I don't love my kid, because I do. But yesterday? During Ethan's play date? I got to listen to an hour, an HOUR, of Ethan and his friend combine the names of Star Wars characters with a variety of potty talk. Like Poop Vader. Butt Vader. Luke Fartwalker. R2-pee-poo. Poopy Fett. Jabba the Butt. Obi-Fart-Kenobi. Each one followed by peals of hysterical gaffaws and giggles more raucous than the last. And while I stood down stairs and laughed quietly to myself, I also felt my brain cells crying. I literally thought of the cells in my brain as little sad frowny faces because--wow. Being surrounded by lower elementary aged boys is not doing anything for my smarts. I am a few potty jokes away from being Elaine Beniss watching tires rotate outside the auto shop and clapping my hands in delight.
I have been trying to recharge my brain; I have cut down on my internet lint-gazing time and reduced the number of "words with friends" games I let myself play at any one time--last year I started playing WWF under the guise of it being actually good for my mental acuity. But really? It ends up feeling an awful lot like being a mouse trying to get to the end of the maze for a little bit of cheese more than an intellectual undertaking. Don't get me wrong, I'd play WWF all day if I could (I'm not above the maze and cheese deal at all), but I knew as time went on that I just wasn't getting the mental acuity boost out of it that I thought I would.
Walking away from the computer and the iphone more has been great--I've got a long way to go, but my house is cleaner, my kid is happier, I sleep better and I'm reading more. I don't just read at night now, before falling asleep (thereby forgetting almost everything I read). I've started reading more during the day, when I would have normally been on the computer. Its only 10-20 minutes here or there, but it adds up and maybe, just maybe my brain will be better for it.
Today I'm going to finish Nicole Krauss' The Great House (so freaking phenomenal--if you've never read her, do it. Start with The History of Love) and then try to get through In One Person by tomorrow night before we go see Irving speak. Then there's a whole flight home for more reading!!!!
Its so nice to get back in touch with my inner nerd.