Sharing My Skeletons

03Mar13

Skulls

I don’t attempt to hide my past.  In much of my writing, bad habits and attitudes seep in.  If I chose to not reveal an aspect of my story, it is largely due to the structure, the topic, the fact that it doesn’t “fit” without going into too much detail or backstory.  Or that I’m afraid.

Normally, I like skeletons.  Halloween is my favorite holiday.  I usually start decorating in August. Sometimes, I leave it up all year round.  My apartment is filled with Day of the Dead skulls and paper bats and fake crows with glassy eyes.  I have three CD’s of Haunted Halloween sounds: clanking chains and moaning monsters and howling animals that sound sickly and snarly.

But, like most of you, I have a few dusty, beat-up skeletons shoved into my closet, under my bed.  Some of them are fresher than others.  Most of them peppered throughout my memoir.  Since I’m not releasing my entire memoir (because you must buy the book when I get it published) I thought I’d do some cleaning and toss a few skeletons your way.  Feel free to dispose of them as you see fit.

Skeleton 1)

I tried to steal an espresso machine on Xmas Eve from a JCPenney several years ago.  I was wearing an orange, knit hat.  Needless to say, I got caught.

Skeleton 2)

I was a messed-up, misunderstood kid looking for a way out of Michigan.  I stripped in a trashy club in the not-so-glorious town of Cadillac for enough dollar bills to escape on a late-night Greyhound to Minnesota.

Skeleton 3)

I’ve struggled with drug addiction.  I’ve been a serious “As Seen on TV” drug addict that does all the stupid, desperate things drug addicts do (see skeleton number 1 and 2).  Don’t worry, she’s not home anymore.

I’m telling you this on the off-chance someone from my past wants to toss a surprise secret out into the world and up-turn my Happy Apple cart.  Usually, I like the last word.  Today, I’m getting the first three hundred.

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12 Responses to “Sharing My Skeletons”

  1. You are brave and beautiful.

  2. Excelllllennnnt.

    Abortions. I’ve had. Abortions.

    • Why thank-you. I know it’s odd to say your comment made me smile, but I like your bold-put-it-out-there attitude.

      • It wasn’t easy, actually. But fuck it. I’ve been meaning to write about those..

      • I’m glad my post inspired you. I look forward to reading what I deem “The Skeleton Series.” Congratulations on taking a giant leap of telling the truth, even if it’s hard. Everyone can take a hike if they don’t like it. Because truth, experience is what it is – good, bad, stupid, smart. We can’t be afraid to go there. That’s our job as writers. At least, that is the way I see it.

  3. 7 AndrewM

    Thanks Lennon, self deprecating humor has always been one of my favorite defense mechanisms. Can’t possibly hurt as much if I get to say it first. Kind of like Eminem in the last “battle” in 8 Mile, where he says every possible embarassing thing about himself and then asks his opponent (friend?) to say something about me that I don’t already know! Honestly facing the demons frequently makes them just past acquaintences. Love you girl!

  4. I saw Sarah Silverman on a chat show a few weeks ago. She was talking about her memoir, and recalling a moment in the book where she wets herself while on a sleepover. This was a problem she had well in to her teens. Her point was that those skeletons, which we have been so afraid of, can actually become our secret powers when we decide to use or share them.

    • That’s an insightful, lovely illustration. I like the concept of “secret powers.” I was discussing this earlier with a fellow blogger and found myself saying that it’s our job as writers to be as honest as possible about our truths no matter what they are.

      Thanks!

  5. Well, there goes your political career…


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