More Thursday’s Thoughts

Remember the shortest route math problem from high school? I haven’t thought about this concept for a very long time until now. It seems that every day the price is going up. Today, the gas is $4.35, up 40 cents from just two days ago when I filled my tank at $3.95. Now do we need to map out the shortest route?

Obviously for this weekend, there’s no need for the shortest route calculation since it is impossible for running errands–another snow storm is coming. Wish this is the last one of the season.

And as I was driving, I wondered what I can post and there are several ideas.

  • I am trying to improve my writing style, but can’t achieve it. I like the style of the stories, like “Heartburn”–my favorite, “The Man Who Liked Dickens”. However I am not able to reproduce their styles in my own writing. Is this because I am a non-native speaker? Well, I am thinking of writing a story “The Woman Who Likes Orwell.” So it is about a bandit who kidnaps tourists and asks for ransom money. The bandit’s leader is a woman who likes Orwell and dislikes Dickens. So she captures a writer on vacation and is happy to listen to the writer’s reading of Orwell’s work. I am still thinking about the ending–should it be a happy ending or a bloody one?
  • I thought about something happened long time ago that really puzzled me. We went to a dinner gathering at a friend’s place. He just got married and his wife is somebody we had never met before. After dinner, we sat around talking. And the newlywed talked about the bird they just bought from the pet store. Probably a canary–I can’t remember which bird now. They showed us the bird in the little cage. And the couple said (I think it is the bride who said this) that they were planning to buy a female bird to be the wife since the bird was unhappy and lonely right now. I almost laughed since the bird was unhappy because he was in a cage, not because he lacked a wife. However I couldn’t say this. Is the bird a metaphor of certain kind? I mean we’ve known the husband for a long time and he is a pretty intelligent mathematician. Why would the couple say something that’s obviously untrue since they obviously know why the bird is unhappy? It almost felt like a deliberate attempt at saying something dumb. Were they trying to see how people react to it? To test the politeness of the guests? Well, couples always amaze and puzzle me since their inner dynamics dominate their talks and behaviors to the degree that sometimes one can feel they live in their own psychological bubble.
  • Another story I am thinking of is somebody who comes up with a very good idea when driving. However she can’t stop to write it down. When she comes back home, she can’t remember the idea anymore. So she thinks and thinks, to no avail. She just can’t remember. In desperation, she drives out again to repeat the route, wishing that it will bring back the memory, but still nothing. So she does something very dramatic and destructive…
  • A story about a couple who argue about what should be cut due to the rising inflation.
  • A story about a mother and a daughter. They have a long conversation to resolve an issue and the daughter wonders if she should bring up a family secret in order to gain the upper hand.

28 thoughts on “More Thursday’s Thoughts

    1. Haha, that’s very funny. So true. We a bird is used to the cage, he will think a caged life is the best and he will look down upon those wild birds who have to make a living by themselves. LOL.


    1. So true. I really like that story of Coleridge thought about the whole poem but forgot about it after a friend’s interruption. I don’t know why I don’t like Coleridge’s poem despite his great reputation. Probably I will change my mind one day.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I like the way you write as well. Maybe you’re not a native speaker, but that’s not what matters. I often think of William Faulkner. He was from America, he was a native speaker. Yet he likes to write all these long sentences that are hard to get through. In the end, I don’t many people read his books nowadays except literature nerds.

    I don’t know why, but your idea of the woman driving the same route reminded me of the CT and NY legend of the Leatherman, who walked the same route in a circle for decades.

    Liked by 2 people

        1. Well, probably I will have the same problem. If you say it is a struggle, I will not go near it. Actually I don’t know what I really like. I kind of feel that I have no say in what I like or not. My mind is someone who is very different from me. My mind is a different person. I can tell my mind to read some important literature and like it and my mind will come back with the feedback that it is very boring.

          Liked by 1 person

        2. I know what you mean, and that is the psychological condition: who are we? There is one mind that seems to represent us and then there is that other mind that is opposite . . . and represents us as well. Of course, many psychologists have their theories and there is no agreement on what.

          Funny enough, years ago I bought a book written from my favorite author. It is really short and should be a fast read, except for some reason I could never go past Chapter 2. Nowadays, for no explicable, I am going through the book and might even finish it by next week, haha. Why am I reading it now? I don’t know.

          Liked by 1 person

        3. One’s taste changes after a while. For example, I liked Agatha Christie before, but now I just can’t pick up her books anymore or even watch a movie based on her book. And funny thing is sometimes if I listen to a piece of music for a while, my taste can change a little bit–the once unbearable can be a little more bearable. Music has such an interesting effect.

          Liked by 1 person

        4. I wholeheartedly agree with you. When I was a lot younger, I was always into more energetic, fast-paced music and hated soft rock songs and ballads. Nowadays, I find myself listening to softer music and only occasionally go for a harder sound.

          Liked by 1 person

        5. I agree. People’s tastes change after a while. Probably some people will maintain the same taste all their life, but many people change throughout their life. All my friends and I feel that we watched much more Hollywood movies while living in Asia. LOL. We can’t explain why but that’s just the general state of things.

          Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your encouragement. Yes, content. Somehow I feel that my content is too mundane and I always try to brush it up but don’t know how. It is a struggle.


  2. Haha! The bird story is very amusing. And I think all the story ideas are awesome. You have to bring each one to life. And a bloody ending would be so bloody good. Keep on writing, Haoyan! šŸ™‚

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I’ve heard multiple people think their caged pet needs a mate when what they really need is an opportunity to fly. I could never have a bird for that reason. Unless you ok et your bird fly through your home, the problem with that is they will poop everywhere. you write engaging stories you just need practice on endings.

    Liked by 2 people

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