Fake Plastic Trees

Conversation is sexy. As a word it’s impressive. Four syllables, twelve letters, stretched over one’s tongue and teeth like warm pants. As an idea, conversation is gorgeous. I fell in love through conversation. Bobina and I talked for hours and I didn’t feel like I wasted a second with her. A few nights ago, we put the kids to down early, laid in bed, and talked. It was amazing. My life is so hectic,  sometimes Bobina and I go weeks in between discussions that have gravity.

The reason I blog and tweet is the pseudo to actual intellectualism that happens between my aquaintances of social media. I’ve “met” some terrifically interesting people over the past two years. Some have ideas identical to mine. It’s awesome to have internet pow wows about music, movies, politics, baseball, and pop culture with like minds from places ranging from California to Texas to Michigan to Florida to England and back to my home area, Georgia. I also enjoy the good natured debate with people because of what I learn.

My social anxiety disorder used to be something I never discussed. Reading the gut wrenching blogs and twitter accounts of people who are just as mixed up about their places in their own mind has allowed me to be more open with my family. I am a better husband, father, and friend as a result.

What conversation reveals is reality. You can small talk with someone and not discover their flaws or their beauty or their demons. But if you take time to conversate, you see it all.

Yesterday, while at the pool, I put the notebook and pencil down, and talked to my sister in law. We don’t see each other often because of how different our lives are, so  spending two hours with her was needed. I learned a lot. We went over our craziness, our similar tastes in music, and how we missed talking. She has a a 9 year old girl, my niece, who keeps her busy. I realized she and I hadn’t had a decent conversation since Christmas. That’s seven months ago.

It’s Monday morning. You’re perusing blogs looking for wild weekend stories or some magic performed by wicked wordsmiths. I chose to write about talking. Do me a favor. Hunt someone you care about or find interesting. Make time to have a conversation. It may start being about baseball or Harry Potter or the new guy or the weather. But if you take a few minutes to ask questions, give information and listen; you’ll have something hotter than the weather, you’ll be waved in conversation.

In the spirit of today’s blog, I want to share something with you from my life. I’ve been struggling to connect on a deeper level with two of my daughters, 15 year old Tay, and 6 year old Goose. We get along great. I’m their father. But we can always be better. On Saturday, I went on a date with the Goose. It was raining so we had to skip the pool, and we talked, played, and then saw Rio The Movie at the discount theater. We had a blast. I learned a lot about what makes her tick. We laughed. Friday of this week, I’m supposed to hang with Tay, going to play mini golf and then have dinner. Hopefully I’ll report some similar conversation and connection.

Today’s song is one of my fondest from my second favorite band, Fake Plastic Trees by Radiohead. The song is deep. It’s about being surrounded by phoniness and finding a reality, a meaning, that transforms the person into well rounded emotional individual. I think it’s perfect for this blog. This song will beat up your song.