We Like To Tell Stories!

But what if friends have already read them?

This morning, by arrangement, I met my friend Emilie at the High Desert Market in Bisbee, probably the best place to meet people you know in that little town, once a source of copper-mining riches.

We sat an an outside table, as I had my dog Dingo with me. I attached her leash to a table leg so she wouldn’t wander off and bother people who didn’t know what a good dog she is.

Much of conversation with friends involves exchanging stories, accounts of past experiences which need to be severely edited in real time so you can provide time for your friends’ stories. Ignore this rule too often and friends will begin to consider you a bore. It’s a delicate balance, and if you are an inveterate writer, a guy who lets it all hang out, a certain situation inevitably recurs.

I started in on a story about Mexican travels. Emilie discreetly interrupted. She said “Oh, I read that story on your Facebook page!”

I’ve had this happen over and over, especially during my blogging years. Back when I lived in Missouri I played a lot of music with friends, both in informal sessions and as a member of various bands. There was a man who played in the sessions, but just now and then. He had immense talents, both as a singer and as an instrumentalist. His mother attended more regularly; she was (and probably still is) a skilled bodhran player.

At one session Ray, the musician’s mother, approached me, and said:

“I went to your blog last night and I stayed up all night reading your past posts. Man, Larry, you are a writing fool!”

This flattered me, as you might imagine, but after some consideration I realized that I would never be able to hold a normal conversation with Ray. She knew all of my stories!