When I wake up, I do not panic. I turn around and enjoy the darkness. I capture my enjoyment of it—the silence, my breathing, and tracing the bizarre shapes floating on the ceiling—in long lazy stretches. But too quickly, it slips through my fingers like water in cupped hands.
Pop! And my brain takes over. It is 1 a.m. on Friday and I don’t have a post for Sunday, which is when I update my blog.
My idea book is filled with words, phrases, whole paragraphs even, written when inspiration caught me mid-cooking, mid-vacuuming, mid-driving, mid-praying, and mid-listening-to-the-C.E.O.-at-the-company-meeting. Each spree ends with the acronym T.B.D.L. (to be developed later). Words that I imagined would bring me fame, have lain there, on hiatus, waiting to be developed later.
This small exercise book is a contradiction of who I am, for I am as organised as the T that begins my name. However, here, my words begin inside the margin and jump the lines, leaping over the light blue boundaries that would suffocate my creativity. I recognise the frenzy of inspiration and the rush of words tumbling from my mind, in my illegible handwriting.
As I scan through, in the glow of my bedside lamp, nothing I read seizes my attention. I cannot strike the balance between what I want to write and what I think my readers want to read, so I power my laptop. If I read other blogs, perhaps I will find it.
Browsing is an apt term for what I do. Channel surfing paints a truer picture. I join the millions who roam the internet foraging for content. Too much choice is a bad thing. It can leave you undernourished instead of well-fed. Skimming headlines, clicking links, scanning blocks of text, skimming headlines again, I am a victim of “content anorexia”. I eat, but I do not digest, never able to hold anything down.
After a while, I see the word diaspora. It is spelt with a capital D in the middle of a sentence, a straight line and a curve that scream my name. Something doesn’t feel right. The pieces come together. Aha, I have spelt diaspora with a small d on my blog.
My weakness shows when my strength is magnified. It is painful to watch. Perfectionism drives me to find the post on my blog. Perfectionism drives me to start a Google search. Too much choice is a bad thing. I cannot cover the 3,647,400 results, which Google search engines deliver in 0.29 seconds, but I can try.
Diaspora from the Greek, meaning scattering, dispersion…. Diaspora, often initial capital letter…. Spell check the word diaspora on our website…. the body of Jews living in countries outside Israel…. African diaspora… the slave trade and its effects…. Diaspora cultures … the dispersion of communities throughout the world. The diaspora of English into several mutually incomprehensible languages…. The Polish diaspora amounts to 40 million… How to say diaspora in Swahili…
When my alarm goes off at 5:45 a.m., I think about three things:
One, that this is the alarm before the real alarm. It is the alarm that I “snooze” while I attempt a half-sleep, punctuated by thoughts of the real alarm.
Two, that I was right. I had spelt diaspora correctly with a small d, which was suitable for my context. This small victory does not bring elation.
Three, that I do not yet have a blog post for Sunday.
My eyelids now feel as though cement bags were dropped on them. And adrenaline departs from me in waves, rousing pain in my limbs. I know much more about diaspora than I ever intended to know. In secondary school, a teacher once said that no knowledge is ever wasted. What will I do with all this information I gathered about diaspora, information that is already fading away, slipping as I am, under my sheets?
The real alarm buzzes at 6:15 a.m., and I “dismiss” it without thinking, for nature exacts her pound of flesh.
When I wake up again, I panic. Light streams through the blinds and I know I need a miracle. 7:05 a.m., in the shower. 7:13 a.m., dressed. I have never put on make-up in the train, but there is always a first time. My black bag is big enough to hold my life, so I toss the things I need and the things I think I will need inside, and because I cannot remember if I brushed my teeth, I fling in my toothbrush and toothpaste for good measure.
7:19 a.m., I begin the sprint. I see a man walking his dog, shoulders hunched up, chin half-buried inside his coat, in contrast, my coat is open, its tails flapping in the wind. And for once the cold is my friend.
7:23 a.m., I stumble into the bus. So, what if people are staring at me? When I flop into my seat, I drink in gulps of air and think, Usain Bolt ain’t got nothing on me; no, nothing, except age! Up diaspora!
© Timi Yeseibo 2013
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image designs: © Timi Yeseibo 2013
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20 thoughts on “WordPress 104… In Search of Content”
Lol……and who said the internet doesn’t have a downside?@links culminating in over syllabus information….
I get a kick out of posts like this that chronicle what you are having problems chronicling…catch my drift?.
Remarkable title too..I like!
Besides Usain Bolt, your alarm and morning rush drama is unbeatable….too funny…real alarm ko.
Lol @my real alarm, I guess it’s akin to setting your clock 10 minutes fast 🙂
Blogging and the search for content! I think it makes us better observers of life, and in turn, better writers.
Blow. My. Mind. I’m sending you an email later on about an idea I have 🙂
Catch. Your. Mind. 🙂
Always a pleasure, kitchen Butterfly!
Hmmmm! You know the best part of this post?
The drawing that served as the intro. Feel so sorry for the girl!
Well done, T. Thank you.
Lol Seun. And that girl is me! 🙂
Not quite sure the meaning of D/diaspora is sinking in. LOL. Forgive me Timi I’m reading this half asleep. Nicely written. It gave me more insight into your daily routine. I’m hung up about certain things though, how did you look make up free apart from your eyes? The image of your coat tails flapping in the wind is seared in my mind for some reason. What colour was it? Curious curious curious.
Lol Dawn, I meant to check if diaspora was spelt with a capital or small d, and ended up following one link after another, until I found myself reading, How to Say Diaspora in Swahili! Too much information became distracting & I didn’t achieve my original goal!
My coat is black, and it nearly reaches my knees. It has a long slit behind. I think I look okay without make-up. But I just managed to make it to the bus on time, breathing hard, hair all over the place thanks to the wind, and looking harassed!
Thank you. Now you know, now you know…. 🙂
As a blogger too, I can really relate with the content anorexia condition [by the way, that’s a new word I picked up here 🙂 ] I am mostly torn between writing current affairs or at my own [lazy] pace, but then traffic will wane if I have to wait until I muster up enough courage to do the writing. In all, I just allow the flow to take hold of me.
Ah Charles, I feel you… writing what we like at our pace; waning traffic; allowing the flow grab us… Blogging can be challenging, and rewarding. And one of the rewards is connecting with fellow bloggers like you! 🙂
So, this is how you plan each of post, ehn? Okay o, I don catch you 😆 On the flip side: I’m a big fan of Usain Bolt.
Ha ha, so now you know! You keep me going. If nobody read what I wrote, my motivation would be sorely tested.
Usain Bolt… yeah!
Very imaginative, had a mental picture from the beggining to the end of this post. Am not much of a writer but sometimes I have to write a proposal on something I hardly know anything about and spend long hours googling & not getting much but unlike u I can’t turn mine into a story I still have to hv the proposal ready on my boss table !
Thanks Tonbareg. I know the feeling… proposals & all 🙂
Ah Timi, you can even write something out of nothing and still make it an excellent read! More grease to your elbow! Indeed, Usain Bolt ain’t got nothing on you girl!! Keep them coming! Ama
Thanks Ama. I was so apalled by my “wasteful” use of time, that I determined something good was going to come out of it! 🙂 Thanks again for the encouragement.
I am definitely loving the effizi on this post.
Ha ha Jane, thank you 🙂