I don't read self-help books. I don't sneer at them; in fact I care deeply about a lot of the things they talk about -- living well, doing the right thing for myself and for others, healing my hurts, losing those stubborn pounds and getting the man of my dreams (all right, maybe I snicker at the books a bit) -- but I don't read them. I'd rather find my own answers than someone else's. Emotional plagiarism, I call it.
Which may be a mistake, because I now find myself in the embarrassing position of not knowing what I was going to say when I started. Here I am in the middle of my -- I don't know, two or three times weekly -- entry, and the idea at the top of my mind when I poured the coffee and began to type has vanished like smoke on a windy day. I am sure there are books out there, in the section of the bookstore I don't visit, that would tell me how to hang onto my memory. If only I had thought to buy one of them, I'd be able to continue. (Funny, how we treat memory and water so differently. Water retention is bad, memory retention is good. And yet water is essential to our life; and memory is often very painful. Sorry, just a little sidebar.)
Back to my vanishing memory. I don't think my topic today was self-help, per se. As far as I can recall, I was going to use self-help as a driveway to bring me up to the door of my topic ... and yet here I am several miles up the driveway, and for the life of me I can't see the house (I guess my topic is one of those stately homes).
Hoo, boy. This is awkward. So .... what do you want to talk about? Anything bugging you? My son Ed was trying to write an essay for Religion class, and the topic was Who am I? He hated it. I don't know what to say, he complained. I don't want to be the kind of guy who talks about himself. The idea of a self-help book for guys is tricky, come to think of it. Not that we don't need help; or want help; but we don't want to ask for it. We don't want to be the guy reading the self help book.
Maybe that's what I should write: a self-help book disguised as something guys read. Stock Portfolio Analysis it'll say on the cover, with maybe a graph or pie chart, and then, inside, Hello there. Are you feeling scared? Has your heart been broken? Have you lost your memory? Do you want to lose those stubborn pounds....