Hi. I’m Mike.
In the course of my thirty-five-years-long attempt at something resembling “pulling my weight,” I have:
- cut cloth in a fabric shop (badly)
- unclogged toilets in a mall restaurant (well)
- worked for a machinist
- staffed a home center’s lumber department
- staffed an upscale retailer’s bathroom department
- attempted college three times (and graduated once)
- gotten married (now at twenty-six years and counting!)
- driven a taxi
- sold legal services (again, badly)
- managed traveling fund-raising art auctions
- bought a house
- worked for a carpenter and cabinetmaker
- attempted college again (and graduated again)
- offered an architect all the wisdom and insight a raw rookie draftsperson can muster
- sold the house
- bought another house
- became a registered architect myself
- got hired by two more architects who had no reason to know better, and
- firmly established myself in my eventually chosen profession as a force to be tolerated.
In my mind’s eye, though, where it almost counts, I am a writer. (Or an actor. Or a stand-up comic. Whatever might get me some attention, I suppose.)
Of course, you would think a person who has never actually written anything would find this a difficult conceit to maintain.
But it has been, in fact, remarkably easy to deflect the fact that all my life’s experience has hitherto seemed to have left me precious little to commit to paper. As long as the daily pursuit of creative new reasons for my boss to keep me on staff another week kept me hopping, I would tell myself, I had no energy to put into anything else.
Meanwhile, however, my wife, Pamela, who is not deluded — we are polar opposites — had been nursing an idea of her own. And when she finally let me in on it, I was on board fast.
Goodbye, second house. Goodbye, profession.
And hello, Meander.
This boat’s gonna give me something worth writing about, and the time and energy to do it.
Now let’s see how far she takes us.