Saturday, October 10, 2009

Like Mary Tyler Moore

No, this is not a post about my bizarre affinity for 1970's sitcoms.

In general, whenever I find old To Do lists, I tend to think that the Old Me who wrote that list was neurotic. This is perhaps because when I'm writing a lot of To Do lists, there's something on my mind. At least, I'd like to think that these neuroses are out of the ordinary, not part of my everyday personality makeup.
Anyway, I have a few notepads where I've jotted things down for the past five years or so. They are completely jumbled. The pages get written in out of order. They make no sense. A To Do list from 2004 could be scribbled on the same page as a schedule I made in 2007. (See: neurotic.) Anyway, I decided that maybe I should rip out the used pages ONCE AND FOR ALL because I do not need To Do lists from five months, let alone five years, ago.
Anyway, I found a clump of surprisingly chronologically accurate pages with notes and To Do lists from this past winter. They are To Do lists that include cleaning the bathroom, knitting projects, steps to making dinner (such as "Chop greens while watching TV"), steps to pre-making things for a dinner party...and various indicators of the life path I would soon choose. Quitting my job and moving 3,000 miles away.
There's a PROS and CONS list about my old job. I've decided to type that up--not here!--but in a folder of notes for future writing projects. Because someday, I will want these notes for reference when I decide to write a fictionalized account of all this--when I decide to use as inspiration for a story the events of 2009, quitting my job and moving far away for a job and a new life.

Then I remembered something a friend told me. She was describing her life to someone and he said, "So you're reinventing yourself, like Mary Tyler Moore?"

I've made friends recently with a group of women who've also recently moved to Portland. I've realized that we have certain things in common, that I don't necessarily find I have in common with other people, and these characteristics we share are probably the things that would drive a woman to leave everything behind and move far away to a city with a 12% unemployment rate in a recession. We're ALL re-inventing ourselves.

So I shouldn't get ahead of myself and think this is a GREAT, unique story. It's old and it's very common. It's as old as Mary Richards! Of course, that doesn't mean it's not worth telling.

No comments: