Thursday, March 31, 2005

Enlightenment Blues #2: Easter

Here’s how I know I’m not enlightened yet. Right this moment, I believe the only thing that will make me happy is if someone would bring me a little tiny baby rabbit to hold in my hands. Either that or a pet kitten. Or maybe a baby goat. I can practically smell the soft fur, and even though I’ve gone down this road before, this time I am sure it will be different.

I’ve had four kittens in my life, and each time, for some bizarre reason, they have morphed from delightfully humorous cuddlemuffins into cantankerous, malodorous proprietors of cat boxes. We all know the cat box to be the scourge of the planet Earth, the most vile of sand traps, creator of stench and small pellets which wedge in your bare feet when you descend to the basement to do laundry. (Please do not send me your recommendations for high quality cat litter, state of the art magic cat boxes or training manuals in getting your cat to poop in the human toilet.) Why I think rabbits (who eat their poop the first time around and then let it sit in their cage the second time) would be any better than a kitten is beyond me at the moment. But that’s the point. Even though last week, I definitely thought Nirvana was at hand, I have since descended to the netherworld of wanting, aversion and delusion. I am not enlightened; to wit, I am what Brother Buddha would call A Hungry Ghost. Hungry for a soft kitten. Or bunny. Or miniature baby goat. And I don’t want it to grow up.

Saturday night I watched What the Bleep Do We Know? with my fiancĂ© Tom. I’ve had the movie out for a week, and I’ve watched it four and a half times. It’s a heady, groovy movie about quantum physics and enlightenment, complete with state of the arts graphics and Ramtha, a 10,000 year old sage as channeled by a blond woman named JZ Knight who resembles Zsa Zsa Gabor. The movie is all about creating your own reality, addiction to emotions and how we miss the point—getting to be alive—on a daily basis.

“Wow,” said Tom.

“I know,” I said. We were profoundly moved and forever changed from the experience.

Then we got up from the couch to do the dinner dishes. I ran the water over a dirty bowl where the tuna steaks had been marinating. While I was letting the tap water rinse the bowl, I crossed the room to get the flatware from the table. Tom came over to the sink and turned the water off, a familiar dynamic in our clean up rituals.
I felt the hairs on the back of my neck go up, like a pissed-off cat.

“Hey,” I said. “I had that on for a reason!”

“I know,” he said, in his special tone which I did not like one jot. “But we really don’t need to waste water.”

I fumed. Mr. Spotless Environik was right again, and I hated that. I also hated being bossed around in the kitchen, having my little system of bowl cleaning disrupted, and most of all, hated the fact that I was still so childish and petty to even care. What would Jesus/Buddha/Muhammad/Gandhi/Mother Teresa/Ramtha do? Surely they would not have bristled at the gentle correction of their partner’s turning off of the wasted water.

This is the problem with WW fill in the blank D. Immediately we think we need to be fill in the blank. What if Jesus was occasionally wrong?

I went upstairs and filled the bathtub with warm water, lit some candles, sat in the tub and thought about anger. Tom and I never used to fight like this. I thought of the Righteous Brothers Song “You’ve Lost that Loving Feeling,” and started to cry. I toweled myself off, put on my most comforting polarfleece, and got into bed.

Tom came up and joined me.
“I’m sorry I snapped at you,” I said.
He shrugged. “No big deal,” he said. “We’re both tense. In six weeks, we’ll be getting married for the second time. It’s kind of scary. It’s a miracle we aren’t screaming at each other night and day.”

This made me sadder and angrier. The story I like to believe is that Tom and I were married before TO THE WRONG PEOPLE! And that even though it was sad and painful to break up with those people, ALL IS WELL NOW BECAUSE WE FOUND EACH OTHER! So when Tom says something like what he said next: “There’s a lot of grief we still have, sweetie, about our exes”—I get angry again. I don't like to be told I have more grieving to do. I want to be done, finito, on to the next wedding cake.

But before I snapped for the second time that evening, I paused. I felt the snap inside. Snap! And it felt like a tiny ampule of medicine, pouring a hot Tabasco sauce-like liquid through my veins. Usually when I get this feeling, I NEED to say something out loud, to let the person who made me snap--the snapper, if you will—know that his behavior is less than acceptable. I think I will DIE if I don't assert my rights! But what if I don't?

“I don’t really need to react,” I said. “I don’t need to snap at you! I can choose instead to feel that burn of anger of keeping my mouth shut. And later on, I will forget about it and not feel as though I abandoned the Equal Rights Amendment.”

As soon as I said this, I felt liberated. I felt the sky open and a dove settle on my shoulders. Well, not really, but it was a nice feeling. Tom looked at me and smiled.
“You can snap all you want, he said and kissed me on the top of my head.

The top of my head kept spinning. What if being angry was exactly what I was supposed to be feeling? What if it were as natural for me to feel anger in this moment in my life as it was for a kitten to chase a ball of yarn?

And that’s when I first got this incredibly strong urge to get an Easter bunny.
“Can we get an Easter bunny?” I asked Tom.
“What?” he said.
“You know. Tomorrow’s Easter. People sell little tiny bunnies right about now.”
“Yeah, in Flint, Michigan,” said Tom, looking at me like I’d cracked.
“I know, I know. It’s weird. It’s completely against everything I stand for. But all of a sudden I want a little teeny Easter bunny. Or maybe a chick. Or a kitten.”
Tom looked very alarmed.


On Easter Sunday at my little renegade Congregational church in West Cummington, Stephen (shepherd poet minister) preached a sermon about Jesus’ last days. He said, “That story about Jesus riding in to Jerusalem and overturning the money changers? Let’s look at that closely.”

And he proceeded to give us a radical reading of a scene which has always perplexed me. In the scene, Jesus basically throws a first class temper tantrum, overturning the money changers’ tables and whipping them with a whip—a very mean thing to do. And one that was rife with symbolism for Jews who were about to celebrate Passover, which commemorated the end of their slavery in Egypt.

“It seems obvious to me,” suggested Stephen, “That one of the main reasons why the Jews were so angry with Jesus was this very public, violent action. What if Jesus’ crucifixion were looked at as a kind of instant karma? He loses his temper; he gets killed.”

I looked around the church, waiting to see if someone would jump down Stephen’s throat for suggesting, on Easter Sunday of all days, that Jesus Christ might have been responsible for his own death. That it wasn’t some kind of divine plan. That he didn’t die for our sins, in that equation way explained to me by my Campus Crusade for Christ friends back in my college days. Adam=First Man (who through sin) subtract God. Jesus steps in, takes Adams’ place; now Man is +God.

No one jumped the pulpit. Some people nodded.
“Because you see,” said Stephen. “Jesus was human. This is human. And humans get angry.”

And I felt the dove descend once again, the top of my head spin. Anger. Even Jesus got angry. Thank God! But anger has its consequences. And its greatest consequences are always leveled at the person who is, him or herself, angry. My anger is there. It’s wonderful! It’s a fire that wakes me up, points something out. Pay attention! But when I react to it, or act out of it—when I snap at Tom for commandeering my dishwashing program—there will be consequences. There will be burning.

We had a pancake breakfast after church. We laughed and joked with the members of the congregation. One of our fellow congregants raises the cutest Aussie puppies you’ve ever seen.

“Let’s register for one!” I said to Tom. “Cody would love a playmate!” Poor Tom smiled and restrained himself from mentioning that it is he, not I, who mostly walks our current Australian Shepherd. But, I would have said if I weren’t practicing my own form of blessed self control, Cody is no longer a cuddlemuffin.

For the entire drive down, the hill, I kept my eyes peeled for a sign for baby bunnies.

“There has to be someone selling them,” I said. “On today of all days.”
Tom looked at me again, started to open his mouth. He looked longsuffering. I could tell he was practicing what Thich Nhat Hanh calls “cooking your potatoes.” This is when, recognizing that anger is a fire, you put anger to good use: without fire, you would not be able to cook your potatoes. The goal is to concentrate that fire into boiling water rather than setting the house ablaze. Tom did admirably, and you will be glad to know we made it down the hill with no baby animals in the car.

I still want to believe my own myths. I want to believe that marriage is a mystical process of finding my soul mate and having him save me all the while saving him. But I know it doesn't quite work like that. Relationships grow and change; they have a kittenhood and a cathood of their own.

“A woman completes a man,” a friend of mine (a man) said to me today.

“No, “ I said. “You complete you. I complete me. But if I can find someone to share the joke with, I will have a more interesting time in this go-round.”

When we got back down from West Cummington, we took nine year old Cody for a long walk in the park. Then we came home and I picked up my guitar and played Bob Dylan’s “Someone’s Got A Hold Of My Heart” while Tom played the drums. And for the span of that song, looking across the music room at my intended, his eyes closed, his whole body engaged in music making, I thought, “This is Nirvana. This is heaven. This is better than holding a baby bunny.

“This is Easter.”

26 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi Nerissa!

Glad that you had a happy and blessed Easter! I wouldn't worry to much about arguing with Tom. All couples disagree every now and then. You wouldn't be humans if you didn't. When you make a committment to marry someone, you agree to love the person through good times and bad, for better or for worse.
As for the baby animal issue, I recommend a mouse, hamster, or gerbil. Most animials are cute "cuddlemuffins" as babies, and then grow up to be considerly less cute. Rodents, on the other hand, get cuter as they get older. Have you ever seen a newborn mouse? They look pretty gross- no fur, pink skin, eyes closed. But as they grow up, they slowly morph into cute, furry, endearing little creatures that inspire lots of coos, smiles, and love. You can find these adorable critters at any pet store.
I know you were into mice at one point because an earlier version of the Nields website makes a reference to "Nerissa and Katryna's Mouse Town." Just out of curiosity, what was that? Did you have actual mice, or toy mice?

Talk to you soon!

Love,
Becky

Bruce said...

Nerissa wrote:
""It seems obvious to me," suggested Stephen, "That one of the main reasons the Jews were so angry with Jesus was this very public, violent action. What if Jesus' crucifixion were looked at as kind of instant karma? He loses his temper, he gets killed.""

Cut straightaway to John Lennon singing, "Instant karma's going to get you...!" :-)

But then the refrain follows shortly after, "And we all shine on...!" :-)

I've started putting an obscure but much sought-after 18th century French theosophical writing (in English translation of course) into an online form, Martinez de Pasqually's "Treatise Concerning the Reintegration of Beings," since it's out of print.

Nerissa's online musings on religious matters, though, are far more accessible, more reader-friendly, and undoubtedly more easily digestible for a popular audience. :-)

Bruce

~ April Baggins said...

“No, “ I said. “You complete you. I complete me. But if I can find someone to share the joke with, I will have a more interesting time in this go-round.”


So true, so true :-)

Anonymous said...

I'd like to suggest something to make you happy that you can hold in your hands, It's not a cute little Bunny Rabbit, or baby Goat. It's your New Born Child you will soon be having Nerissa, for there is no greater task in life. You are too great and unique a woman not to spend the time and have a child. I've loved you since the first time I saw and heard you sing, at Bridgeton Folk Fest 2003. Your songs and thoughts are pure joy for me to listen to. Thank you soo much and good luck with your new book.
Love, MOWHAWK MAN, double clutching my way down that Pilgrim Highway.

Anonymous said...

Happy Easter!

When you ask "What would Jesus/Buddha/Muhammad/Gandhi/Mother Teresa/Ramtha do?" I wonder whether might be the seed of an interesting story there, if we turn the slashes into commas. Not one composite, but six people, hanging about in the kitchen, say, while at a party for their two mutual friends who are about to get married. It's far enough into the party that the six have loosened up a little, and aren't standing on pious pleasantries.

Of course, it's not an entirely novel situation. We've caught a glimpse of a similar scene in Jesus' younger days, where a fair bit of wine has been tossed back, and Jesus and his mom are having a muted argument over who should go get some more. (His mom, of course, ends up winning that one by some deft maneuvering of him and the waitstaff. But by party's end, a good time is had by all.)

This time, Jesus' mom isn't there, but I can picture Mother Teresa in a similar role. Mohammed's not drinking, and is getting a little uncomfortable around all the folks that are, but he wants to be polite and help keep the mood up. Buddha is more detached, observing the goings-on from a little remove and chuckling to himself at the little foibles of interaction he keeps seeing repeatedly in different people. Gandhi is quite excited (and a little awe-struck) at seeing Jesus, Mohammed, and Buddha all there, and wants to draw them out into telling him the secrets of enlightenment, though the three of them are subtly trying to get out of having to talk shop. Ramtha, on the other hand, is more than ready to hold court on the subject, in a loud Brit-sounding accent, but is a bit miffed that Gandhi, not having heard of him before, is mostly ignoring him while he tries to engage the others.

Okay, so far, that's a situation, not yet a plot. But there are probably enough hooks in there to anchor a good plot, which perhaps the couple of honor can put in motion.

So we have a bunch of distinct characters, all ultimately springing from the same author, but with their own identities, not all in sync with each other, and not always getting along as they want to. And none exercising complete control over local reality. But all having at root love and appreciation of the others. Basically, the sort of mix that can make for interesting stories, lively parties, and long-lasting happy relationships.

Much Easter joy and happiness to you and Tom,

John (he is not here; he's hiding Easter eggs in Philadelphia) M. O.

hopeful said...

Nerissa, Happy Easter to you.

I hope that you are able to see the positive impact your life is having on the people around you. You do so much good for so many... your voice, your lyrics, your music, your writing, your wisdom... on and on it goes, and you share it all with such honesty and grace.

I can not thank you enough.

Peace,

~jenn

Jeff from Charlotte said...

I was sorry to see someone write "It's your New Born Child you will soon be having Nerissa." I think such posts are inappropriate and harmful. While a blog is a personal statement, we readers have no right to go beyond what is expressed in it. Only close friends who receive permission have a right to enter that realm.

While we may believe that we know the blogger, or musician, through his or her art, we don't. I would hate to see such intrusive postings discourage Nerissa from expressing herself so wonderfully on a regular basis.

I found the focus on how to express anger to be very enlightening. I'm going to go and boil some potatoes now.

For what it's worth

Jeff from Charlotte
jpasse@email.uncc.edu

Anonymous said...

I agree. That was disturbing to read. The same poster used the disturbing and anti-semitic term "Zion masters" in an earlier comment which I found even more distressing. Please, let's be polite and civil here.

Anonymous said...

A friend and I had an interesting conversation yesterday over e-mail about why is it OK to give childless couples a hard time about having children, but it is NOT OK to tell someone who may not necessarily possess qualities that would make a good parent, “hey, maybe you should really re-consider your decision there, Susie, you only make $8 an hour at the Gap, and your husband chases every tail in town.” Why? Because it is nobody’s business, and society has deemed that is stepping over the line, inappropriate, even. By why doesn’t that hold true for the cheerfully childless? Why is it appropriate for a relative to lay their hand on my belly as a form of greeting and ask if I had any news yet? But why would it be inappropriate for me to say to someone else, “should you really be popping another one out? You have a child now that you barely pay attention to or can scarcely afford”. Or, “Mohawk Man, you seem like a real misogynist, do you really think you should be throwing those genes into the gene pool?” I should retract that statement, because I am setting the house on fire instead of boiling the water, but it seems that I have a little more work to do on my own enlightenment. With Nerissa’s inspiring words, I will work on that, because I too feel the Tabasco-sauce like fire spread through my veins and a compelling need to breath the fire and release it out of my body, rather than channeling and using it to boil the water.

Anonymous said...

Nerissa,

I must disagree with you, Cody is still a cuddlemuffin! Or at least he thinks he is, and tricked me into thinking he was.

Enlightenment, I'm sure, is a process...somedays, you feel closer to Enlightenment than others. After all, you are human. The key is to keep working at it and be patient with yourself. Hmmm...where have I heard that before.

Happy April!!
Love, Kris

Bruce said...

Mohawk Man said:
(snip)

Bruce:
And here I thought this blog was moderated! How about that! :-)

Bruce

Bruce said...

Nerissa wrote:
"Then we came home and I picked up my guitar and played Bob Dylan's "Someone's Got a Hold of My Heart". . . And for the span of that song...I thought, "This is Nirvana. This is heaven. This is better than holding a baby bunny."

Bruce:
Music is good medicine, for writers of blogs, for musicians, for music-lovers, and for what ails the whole world as well. There's nothing else quite like music. "What are we for if not for this?" :-)

Bruce

Bruce said...

Nerissa writes:
"I looked around the church, waiting to see if someone would jump down Stephen's throat for suggesting, on Easter Sunday of all days, that Jesus Christ might have been responsible for his own death. That it wasn't some kind of divine plan."

Bruce:
This thought has been nagging at me. It is counterintuitive to think that Jesus might have deliberately planned to provoke his own death. From a common sense POV, it makes more sense to think that Jesus got angry and that he then paid the price of instant karma.

The whole point of the OK-ness of anger aside, it occurred to me, and it has occurred to me, that Jesus might not have been angry, and that instead he might have really actually *wanted* to be a martyr, to provoke a martyr's death, as many martyrs do, for a purpose that exceeds our common-sense earth-centered perspective. It could be that Jesus was a religious fanatic. And it isn't that hard to imagine that the thought processes of religious fanatics aren't quite the same as the standards of common sense. Fanatics think differently than non-fanatics. I'm something of a fanatic myself.

Fanatics are surprising in their ability to channel reality in unexpected ways, coming out of left field as it were. And fanatics are different than most people in being almost single-minded in their devotion to something or other. Common sense says that fanaticism is unhealthy and excessive, out of balance. But if Jesus really was a fanatic, ISTM he would have been going against the grain of the canons of common sense.

Part of Nerissa's appeal as a writer ISTM consists of just this ability to consider things from unexpected and interesting perspectives, remarking on things and finding things remarkable where most other people take things for granted.

Certain people seem to be more gifted to generate passion and interest and concern than others. I call it Charisma, giftedness. The word "charisma" could be understood to mean "full of grace," "charis." That's where we get the word "charity" too. A New State of Grace.

Bruce

Anonymous said...

Sounds more like a father-daughter set of interactions than an engaged couple.... I hope Tom doesn't stop being a "cuddlemuffin" anytime soon, or he may go the way of the 4 cats! Even if Nerissa's taking on his last name (why??). Seriously, does Nerissa ever think about anyone other than herself? Yes, Anne LaMott may write in funny, biting ways about her own self-centeredness, but she spends equal time caring about her son, her best friend dying of cancer, the other members of her church, and the world. I rarely ever see Nerissa write in any real way about being part of the world community, about being in service to others in ways that don't involve gaining both fame and money. We mostly seem to be witnessing a lot of petulance and disappointment lately. I, for one, don't find this to be all that "inspirational" from the new life coach.

hopeful said...

Uhm, ouch.

I guess the trick is to read what she writes, without speculating about what she does not write. The rest is none of our business.

Peace,

~j

Theresa said...

I find Nerissa's blog entries to be very open and unguarded. She's been discussing her own foibles and her faith journey, exposing very personal thoughts and feelings to the internet community - strangers for the most part. While I haven't commented much (there're SO many threads to follow, any response I come up with seems inadequate), I always find her posts thought-provoking.

I hope Nerissa's openess doesn't end due to Anonymous' criticism. Maybe part of the reason that Anonymous perceives her as not "think(ing) about anyone other than herself" is that this is HER blog, so she uses it to expres HER thoughts. You should never try to judge someone's character by postings to a blog - blogs rarely give you a complete picture of the person.

Anyway, my two cents.

Theresa

Anonymous said...

I agree with hopeful and Theresa. Just because Nerissa doesn't talk about others on her blogs doesn't mean she's not concerned about them. Once, I attended a full band Nields show at the Iron Horse, where Nerissa expressed her worries about the environment, the war in Iraq, and civil rights. So, you see, she IS concerned about the world. I agree that Nerissa has the right to talk about her personal concerns and issues on her PERSONAL blog.

-Becky

Anonymous said...

Since this blog started last year, I have read every entry Nerissa and Katryna have posted. In that time, I doubt I've read 50 percent of the work of my favorite newspaper columnists. Nerissa and Katryna are giving us something each time they open their inner lives to us in this blog, in their music and in their other writing. I think we owe them more than harsh, judgmental responses. Bruce nicely articulated what Nerissa does for me -- and apparently lots of other people -- with his comment about charisma. I have gotten a lot of inspiration out of Nerissa's writing, and it troubles me to see nastiness showing up here.

Alex

Anonymous said...

I don't want to subvert any enlightenment, but bunnies are great pets. When my daughter first got a rabbit a couple of years ago, we decided to keep her in an outdoor hutch. It was sad watching her, essentially living in solitary all that time, but I couldn't see an alternative given the difficulty of house training. Then we noticed that Misty wasn't eating, and my wife brought her inside so that we could give her meds and keep a closer eye on her. All of a sudden, she became a member of the family! We discovered that we could put low boards across the doors to the kitchen and let her roam in there, where linoleum minimizes excretory issues. I try to keep my shoes off in the kitchen, so that I won't step on her by accident. And she has jumped the walls a few times into carpeted rooms (no disasters yet). But the poop, which had been my big concern before we brought her inside, really isn't a problem. It's not smelly if you don't let it build up. Heck, they eat it!

Alex

P.S. A vet who knows rabbits figured out why Misty wasn't eating. It was because her teeth had grown in a painful way. The vet solved the problem, at least for now, by filing them down. Watch those teeth!

Anonymous said...

Mary smiles. "Anne, almost three, loves animals. We don't have any, as the kids are small, and I'm a bit sensitive to animal dander. A few nights ago, as I was putting her to bed, Anne said, 'Momma, I want a kitten. I want to have a kitten for two years, and then we'll give it back.' I mentioned that (1) they grow up pretty fast and (2) you don't get to return them."
-- Mary Mark Ockerbloom

Anonymous said...

Hi, my name is Emily Rivers and I'm a writing student. I can see both sides of this issue. I like reading NN's postings, and we need to remember that the "self" she is revealing is her WRITER self--not her personal self. She has the right to reveal--or not reveal--whatever she chooses! Having said that, I can see where anon. is coming from. I (Like NN) am a huge fan of Anne LaMott as well, and the difference between them, as writers that I see is that LaMott doesn't hold anything back. We know she's an alcoholic in recovery, a single mom who struggles to raise her son, a woman not fond of her 50-year-old inner thighs, as she puts it. She gives us th "backstory" on her struggles and knows that, to write personal story well, you have to be willing to reveal a heck of a lot. NN tends to reveal generalities--she may say she has body issues, but she doesn't tell us what they are, how they play out in her life, how she works with them. So, to me, her writing lacks a certain depth and emotional nakedness. She is a "safe" writer--and that's ok! It's just a choice she's making, in my opinion.
I laugh at her writings, but I don't necessarily feel that they help clear the path for me at all, because she keeps her struggles and strategies to herself for the most part. For instance--if she had written more about WHY she's feeling the need for a baby bunny or why she wants enlightenment or how she stopped being a "big head" (as she said in some previous post!)--now THERE would be deep, enlightening writing! But as it is, her writing is clever and fun and has enough depth to keep us reading. So, maybe it's not fair for us to want more...
Then again, maybe it is.
Peace, Alice

Anonymous said...

BTW, "Peace, Alice" is a reference to Alice in Wonderland--I and my pals in my writing program use it as our signature--sorry to be confusing!
Emily R.

Anonymous said...

BTW, "Peace, Alice" is a reference to Alice in Wonderland--I and my pals in my writing program use it as our signature--reminds us to exaimne things from different perspectives. Sorry to be confusing!
Emily R.

Anonymous said...

Just for reference... to Emily R./Alice and the original poster: it's "Anne Lamott." No capital M.

Anonymous said...

Like Emily R. I have been reading these posts for some time and sometimes feeling that as personal essays, they could go further--that they take an easy way out, tie everything up neatly, and as such are disappointing. But I think the issue here isn't what kind of a writer Nerissa Nields is (or what kind of a blogger, to be fair--I haven't read her novels, which I'm sure she's labored over to a greater degree--and her song writing is strong and beautiful, no doubt!), but what kind of readers we are.

Like many, I came to read this blog because I am a fan of the Nields' music. As such, I'm happy to read whatever is here. But I am also a reader and writer, and as such, I find the posts to be stradling the gap between interesting personal essay and facile journal entry. Perhaps unfairly--but perhaps as an inherent quality of the medium--my opinion of the posts is influenced by the responses to it. Sometimes the gushing, unconditionally positive repsonse to the posts makes me feel: "Ugh, this woman gets nothing but praise--not for her writing, but for her character--no matter what self-indulgent nonsense she writes!"

But I think it's important to realise that we each come from a different place here. Some people are Nerissa Nield's dear, personal friends. Some are happy fans of the band. Others have a more critical eye. And when we with a more critical eye arrive, I find it better to bend my criticism on the post than on the responses from the other readers.

Besides, it's just a blog! If we want to judge Nerissa Nields as a writer, let's look to her novels and her song writing.

hopeful said...

I gues I view all of this as a gift.

Not the talent of writing, though, truly that is a wonderous gift, but the actual Blog itself. This. Right here. Right now.

I guess I think that there are not many people in such a public eye who would care to reveal even more of themselves to their fans, their readers... to offer even greater glimpses into their lives, their thoughts and feelings. They already pay such a high cost in privacy as it is.

To me, this blog is a gift. I appreciate being able to read it, not just because it is Nerissa, though admittedly, I am a fan, but because I find it interesting, thought provoking, and enjoyable.
If I didn't care for it, I would delete the bookmark, and continue on my merry way, looking for other blogs to appreciate... just as I have done with other bookmarks, for other blogs that have lost their appeal. I don't think it my place to criticize their personal writing style, nor their ideas and opinions. They didn't write with the intent of asking me.

I guess I feel it is not my place to judge harshly what is offered on these pages. Like any other present, I try to accept what is given happily, and with great joy. I don't ask for something else instead, nor do I complain if it isn't exactly the right size or color to suit my tastes.

So, for what it is worth, that is my opinion on the whole matter. Happy writing, happy reading, happy blogging to you all.

Peace,

~j