Twice in the last month I've found myself in an uncomfortable position. It's not what you might think. I wasn't in an exercise class or a dentist's chair. My discomfort didn't have anything to do with driving the kids to school before my morning shower or even wearing a cotton gown that tied in back.
I was fully clothed. My hair combed. I sat comfortably in my own home chatting pleasantly with someone whose sole purpose at that moment was to ask me questions.
I was (gasp here) being interviewed.In all honesty, it was disconcerting. I'm used to being on the other end of the pencil. I know how to ask the questions. It's what I do. Answering them, well, there's another matter. You know how they say everyone has a story to tell? This month, I'm playing the role of everyone. It's a cameo appearance. Still, I've got to know my lines. And those lines? The assumption is as clear as words on the page: they need to be interesting.
That's the part that has me worried. Interesting is an interesting concept. What makes one interesting? Is it like being in a Hollywood movie? Does a life filled with drama make you interesting? Action and adventure are big draws at the box office. I've always been a sucker for a good love story. Then again, it's hard to ignore blood and gore.
I don't deal with a whole lot of Hollywood stuff. I'm just a regular person, living a regular life.Sure, sometimes exciting things happen at my house. Yesterday I fixed a leaky faucet. The day before a sock disappeared in the laundry. Last week our tadpoles turned into frogs.
A metamorphosis like that tadpoles one day, frogs the next has to be interesting. I can vouch it is if you are a second grader or a frog. Beyond that, I'm not sure. Some people have a real distain for slimy critters. To the average person, I may not be as interesting as a tadpole. I get that. Sometimes I feel that way myself.
But what's a gal to do when she's staring down the microphone-end of a tape recorder, except talk and hope to goodness the reporter is clever enough perceive the monotony of my life and make something up so I can at least stand toe to toe with the tadpoles?
The first interview ended in my backyard where I found myself outside my comfort zone again; this time I was on the receiving end of a camera. As I stood amidst the hostas and fully blooming irises ready for my close-up I had to grab my new reporter friend and pull her forward. She looked at me in surprise. I pointed at the grass, to the fresh pile of doggie do lying inches from her sandal.
"One of the conditions of living with a Labrador retriever," I said, hoping she wouldn't quote me.
The second interview ended with similar awkwardness. I was trying to communicate regarding my attempts to elevate words from prose to art when my son ran into the room with blood gushing from both nostrils. He thought his nose was broken; I figured my interesting factor was fractured for sure.
Looking back, I guess my life is more like a Hollywood movie than I realized. I'm not sure if the doggy do qualifies as drama or adventure, but the double nose bleed has got to be the very definition of blood and gore.
Jill Pertler is a syndicated columnist and author of "The Do-It-Yourselfer's Guide to Self-Syndication" at booklocker.com. She also offers writing and design services at marketing-by-design.home.mchsi.com . Check Slices of Life out on Facebook. To email Jill: firstname.lastname@example.org.