I was visiting a few blogs I don’t read often enough tonight and saw this post about doing something that scares you every day for a month. And then I thought:
“Hey, it’s only the 2nd day of November, but I’ve done that every day of this month! How cool am I? Very. I am very cool.”
Because on November 1, I took the first step toward my participation in Movember. Which, as silly as it may sound, scares me. I know in a few weeks I’ll be self-conscious every time I meet a client, opposing counsel, mediator, judge, in-law, church member, preschool teacher, new neighbor, superior officer in my chain-of-command, or cashier because of what I can only anticipate will be a very unbecoming fixture on my face. But I’m doing it anyway, because I like Doug and Jason, and I dislike terminal illness. And while the stubbly evidence of said commitment was slight on 11/1, it was still there.
On November 2 (today), I agreed to meet someone who reached out to me through this blog for lunch. Yes, I’ve met bloggers before, but it’s always been at my request after I’ve read their blogs for a long time and at an occasion (usually while traveling) that I’ve chosen. This time, someone I didn’t know very well reached out to me. So, I walked over to Flip to dine with Martin, who comments here from time to time as the Honourable Husband (I assume his growing up in Australia causes him to throw an extra “u” into words like Canadians do).
His first question to me upon sitting was an inquiry about my brother, whom I haven’t discussed on here in well over a year. This was odd for two reasons:
1) the first time I asked to meet bloggers I knew while in their hometown, I immediately asked about a sensitive subject as well, which inspired her to write an entire post about that question. And,
2) the person I sent to visit with my brother in the post about him is the person I’m supposed to see again, for the first time since I wrote the referenced post, tomorrow. But about my own demons instead of my brother’s.
I suppose tomorrow’s conversation will be the 3rd action this month that scares me.
But you know what? I’d rather have lunch with someone with whom I can skip the small talk. It was fun. Refreshing. Real. Next time I’m in Munich, I’m totally going to invite myself to lunch with him in return.
So, November? You’re shaping up to be a month worthy of teenaged cliches. Bring on the amazingly epic stuff.
Sounds like a great meet-up! Good luck tomorrow – sounds kinda terrifying!
@SL, Indeed it was! And, indeed, it will be!
@Megan, Thanks for the inspiration. Cue Peter Cetera now.
Oh good luck tomorrow and I hope he has some good news for you. It’s hard, hard, hard and I can only imagine so much harder when it’s a sibling rather than a friend.
As for me, just normal everyday life scares me enough. So that’s, like, EVERY day. Although, I do like a good scary movie too…mostly the kind with ghosts and evil and stuff though, not the kind with blood & gore. But, y’know, a beard would be really scary too. That is what you meant, right?
@Jill, I’m not interpreting this as “do something that makes you crap your drawers with terror every day” but more like “do something that pushes you beyond your normal, fear-induced zones of comfort every day.” So, we’ll see…
appleton/green bay wisconsin area. invite yourself away iffn you get to my neck of the woods 🙂
@Mrs Hall, I’d love to come up to WI again! I went to Madison and Milwaukee about 3 years ago (and wrote about it here) in October. Really enjoyed it.
That’s very… weird! Fate at work if you believe in it. Good luck growing your man face hair.
@miss, Thanks! I don’t necessarily believe in “fate” per se but have seen that one’s thoughts and actions can make seemingly coincidental results occur around him/her without explanation. That likely makes no sense.
Dude. You’re not seriously going to try to grow a mustache and wrestle demons in the same month, are you? Anyway, your demons seem very genteel and polite. You could probably just have a nice chat with them.
@BetaDad, I like to come strong. So, yes.
The Honourable Husband (now with extra u….) is one of my oldest friends and his witty and insightful company is sorely missed in my neck of the eucalyptus woods. I am green with envy that you got to have lunch with him 🙂 As for taking on scary things for a month, you appear to have made a good start. If you run out of challenges, looking in the mirror at the emerging mo’ should qualify!!
@Arizaphale, It was great–I’m glad he reached out to me and hope he’ll read this post when he wakes up from his long flight! Thanks!
I’ve wanted to meet him, but noooo, he can’t fucking come to Orlando.
@Adam, It’s not that he can’t. He just won’t. Because he hates you.
Wow. That post I wrote way back then was really good!
I’m sorry. Were you saying something about you?
@Britt, It was good! I’d forgotten about what a response it drew, too. It made me happy to reread it last night.
great post. you’ve got me all curious about your brother now. real quick, though, re: the self consciousness you’ll likely feel as the month progresses, i’ve come up w/ the perfect solution.
i’m pre-printing cards with a pithy explanation as well as the URL where they can donte. i might even spring to laminate them.
not bad, eh?
@JCO, I wrote about the bro in April ’10…feel free to hit the link when you get a spare 2min or so. I thought of the card idea, too! Just figured it’d take too many weeks to get them back (if I went with vistaprint or some such). Guess I could go someplace in person to do it for faster turnaround time.
Also: I thought about making a button to wear all the time that explains why I look like I’m going to look! Good business opportunity there for someone.
Did we actually skip the small talk? In my family, asking about relatives who are skint, drunk or in jail actually IS most of our small talk.
I can’t believe that someone who completed two tours of duty in the Middle East and has more stripes on his arm than a Bengal tiger would be scared of meeting a hoary old blogger with a few hours to kill between planes. But you’re right—my rapier wit can be intimidating, even to hardened cases like yourself.
I asked about your brother because…well, I’ve been there. And because, as you observe, small talk is a waste of time.
You can spend your life kibbitzing about Halloween, expensive German cars or the cost of furnaces—for the record, readers, they all came up—but that’s just dancing around elephants. The only subjects worth talking about, really, are the people we love.
Does it scare us to talk about the people we love? We’re afraid of losing them, we’re afraid they’ll suffer, we’re perhaps even conscious about how our love for them reflects upon ourselves. Maybe it’s so scary, we can only talk about it with strangers, at the other end of an anonymous ethernet cord. But if we pluck up the courage, it’s so much better to talk about it with a flesh-and-blood human being. You can slay your demons easier if you get a few tips from others who are wrassling them, too.
Who could pass up an opportunity like that?
Love to you and your clan, ’til next time.
P.S. The burger was sensational, BTW. And that milkshake made me squeal like a girl.
@HH, This might be the best comment I’ve seen! In a long time, at least. Hope your flight back was uneventful and that all is well in Munich!
@HH, I just realized that you used to comment as “headbang8”!
Noooooowww it makes sense…didn’t realize how long you’d been reading, commenting, giving advice, etc. Feeling a bit foolish now…
In any event, thanks for the comments on that post from April ’10 that I just reread. I wish I’d heeded your advice, but I suppose it’s never too late.
I heart him. He’s awesome. Glad you got to have lunch together, once again disappointed that I didn’t get a milkshake to go!