Growing up my children never had their hair cut by anyone other than me. Now that they’ve moved out on their own they still come by for me to cut their hair. Oldest called on his way over the other day and asked if I had time to cut his hair. I replied sure and mentioned it had been a while longer between cuts and had assumed maybe he’d gotten it cut elsewhere. “No way. I’d never do that. I don’t trust anyone else with my hair.”
I thought about all the haircuts through the years I must have performed on them. Our fifteen minutes of one on one every month or so…have we used those minutes wisely? We catch up on plans, dreams, news of family, and friends. Sometimes I’ve used those haircuts to my advantage to ask questions they always evaded; you know a chance to pin them down. I’ve cut their hair in both comfortable and awkward silence, and I’ve cut their hair through fits of laughter. We’ve bonded in our own way through years of haircuts. This is the one time I am guaranteed to have them as a captive audience. (Of course, my voice does often have to compete with text messaging these days!) I wonder how often they’ve used that time as well to talk me into something they wanted or to initiate a conversation to me about something they’ve hesitated to tell or ask me.
This brings me to how people often use FaceBook and other forums for personal agendas. As a social connection many use it for blogging and business networking. Many also have personal agendas such as activism, religion, and politics. While I find most posts interesting or entertaining, some are annoying. I don’t mind if people post links as I have the option of clicking on it or not…chances are high that I will NOT click on the link. If they post a lot of rants I don’t want to read I simply block their content from my page. It makes me wonder what purpose the random rants directed at a specific unnamed person serves. I’m talking about the ones that say things like “You know what you did to me and soon everyone else will!” Is this merely a stress release? Do they want others to know their lives are filled with drama/trauma but don’t want to say who or what? Do they post messages they are afraid to send directly to the person for whom it is referred? Or is it simply the fact that they have a captive audience for their words?
As writers we capture our audience through subject and story. Sometimes we aim for a particular audience and other times we hope for any audience at all. We spin our words to capture pictures and conjure emotion. We hope to draw people in and hold their attention for a while. What kind of an audience do you hope your words attract?
Living in the Gap
May 8, 2012 – On Wings
An airplane zips through the clouds overhead, wings invisible. I know it’s there because I hear the rumble above and see the contrail it leaves behind. Butterflies, two orange and one yellow, flitter and flutter from clover to flower blossoms to budding weeds between cobblestones. Wings open and close quickly, resembling flags flapping in the wind. A tiny blue butterfly resembles a blinking light as it drill its way through the vinca vines. A huge fly, wings folded, rests upon the rocks and then soars off with wings level to his body. A black bird gracefully glides through the sky and perches in the top of a pine tree. My wings are tucked in today as I watch the many wings in flight around me today. Are your wings currently tucked in or are you soaring the earth?