Have you ever wanted to do an abstract painting?
I make little sketches and drawings in my writing journal. But whenever I try to make them intentionally abstract my awareness of their abstraction turns them into nothing but banal shapes and scratches. However, my ability to draw is so crude that when I TRY to do a landscape or a still-life and show it to someone they often respond to its cool abstraction. Probably a lesson in there.
How do you mean "I have impeached myself"?
I don't mean it. I'm feigning honesty by appearing to confess to some core dishonesty, but it's all a game to hide my true nature: denial.
Why are you afraid of Jerry Quarry?
Self-recognition, probably, the whiff of failed promise; or maybe it's the fear of his years of dementia, which truly terrifies me (I wonder if writers don't suffer a different sort of punchiness). Or maybe I'm just afraid of anyone with a Flintstones name.
What is the difference between happiness and blessedness?
Everything. Blessedness takes honest perspective and willful humility; happiness is cheap, easy, fleeting.
Is your heart a pinata?
No, thankfully. Because if my heart were a pinata the children would be terribly disappointed when it cracked and no candy came out, the thing just spewing coffee and bacon grease all over the birthday party.
Are you more proud than vain, or vice versa?
Sadly, I'm more vain than proud. But it's only because I'm so good-looking.
Are you tired of fighting?
I mostly fight myself and since I tend to let myself win, I don't get tired.
Who gets the risks? And who gets the benefits?
Point guards take the risks; shooting guards get the benefits. Apple took the risks; Microsoft got the benefits. John Lennon took the risks; Paul McCartney got the benefits. Modernists took the risks; postmodernists got the benefits.
What is the pivotal right?
The pivotal right is the "the pursuit of happiness," which is funny, because it's third in the list (life, liberty and ...) and yet it's the only one that acknowledges the Buddhist nature of process and journey, lovely that you're not guaranteed happiness but its pursuit, which is really all you get out of life and liberty and all the rest of it, too. You're guaranteed at-bats, not hits.
Who makes you feel inferior?
I volunteer as a reading tutor at a low-income elementary school and the teacher and principal there make me feel inferior in their matter-of-fact self-sacrifice. My wife, who is a school counselor, has the same quality. They don't even realize how heroic they are.
Which word began it all?
For more, here's a lovely, lonely, and funny blog post about a reading that Jess and I did together in Spokane.