Sometimes music can be the inspiration needed to keep me writing at my desk. However, I have to be careful about my musical selection because my mind wanders to the beat of certain songs. All of a sudden that song can become the front and center story smacking me right in the face.
I discovered this as I was working on my almost bear encounter and I turned on Elton John for a little background music. I started to write about the woman attempting not to frighten my children, whispering, and pointing up the road “Bear!”
I exclaim, “What!? Bear!” which of course frightens my children.
And then Sad Song comes on! Of course I take two minutes to sing it into my coffee mug. I then muse over the last time I sang this song with friends in the middle of a pub over fifteen years ago.
Now I then try to focus back on the men emerging from the woods excited over the bear.
“You can go see the grizzly right there! She is right there!”
“Ummm. No thanks.”
I clutch bear spray the bear spray can tighter, attempting to walk back to my trailer , keeping the kids calm, without running into a bear. The bear you know is being contained by park rangers but still it’s a bear close by in the bushes.
I then begin to write about the anxiety of the bear and then I Don’t Want to Go On with You Like That starts playing which reminds me of that one guy I dated and badly danced with to this song in a smelly bar after sharing our second or third grog. It is inevitable to discover years later that he was gay and that this song meant so much more to him than I could have ever imagined.
So I then go back to the bear, the thoughts running through my head, about what if we had stayed on the trail, and had run into the bear. Of course, I have to note the British couple that we run into along the way who think “It would be charming to see a grizzly bear.”It is obvious they never watched Grizzly Adams or Legends of the Fall or read what to do if you see a bear which is posted all over the God Damn national park. So then Nikita comes on and it’s not my favorite so I skip it!
Obviously, it goes straight to I Guess That’s Why They Call It the Blues which takes me back to India alone in the apartment missing my future husband who was in the final stages of finishing his engineering degree. I may have played this song, over, and over again. But don’t tell him that because I don’t want it to go to his head.
I then snap back to the bear, we make it back to the trailer, only to discover my husband snoring the afternoon away, obviously not concerned about his family. I tell him excitedly about the bear, he grumbles something illegible, and rolls over to go back to sleep.
Only in the final moments of attempting to finish this blog post This Train Don’t Stop Here Anymore magically plays and I am left with a sigh. I think about everything else and I belt it out. Oh! And there was a bear. But this is what happens when I try to write and listen to Elton John at the same time.