24 Minutes

In order to keep to my pledge to write 100 essays in 100 days, I have to write this one in 24 minutes.

This is nothing new to me – to wait until the last minute to do important things. Sometimes, I set it up that way, deciding that it’s interesting or challenging to plan a strategic planning session for a client on the way there, in the car. It will come to me, I think, although sometimes I’ve walked in the door with my easel, giant tablet of paper and my big box of markers without a plan. Just plenty of verve. Verve goes a long way in working with people – not all the way, but a long way.

So tonight, we’d just come back from a week’s vacation, started to unpack the car and sort the mail when I noticed a bird sitting on my living room couch.

“Jesus, there’s a bird in here!” I was convinced the bird had been in the house all week. There was probably a nest and baby birds. What had they been eating?

The bird flew from the living room to the kitchen and perched on top of the refrigerator. A lot of strategizing ensued – opening doors, taking screens off windows. Neither of us wanted to capture the bird or do anything more than to point, very strenuously, to the exits.

My husband was right, I know. The bird had flown in while we were bringing stuff in from the car. It hadn’t been here all week. Nothing was pecked. There was no nest.

Nonetheless, it was disconcerting.

I’m not offering the bird’s flying around in my house as an excuse for only having 24 minutes, now 14, to write this essay. We also went to a ball game where I thought for long stretches about writing an essay about girl fights and how I worked with a woman once who thought I was hot for her boss (with whom she was sleeping) and who elbowed me so hard passing in the hallway that I nearly tripped and other people gawked at us, waiting for the real fight to start. We both had long hair so it would have been a doozy. Never having been in a physical fight, I removed my delicate self from her company and remained always wary of her and attuned to the exits in every room, much like my bird guest tonight.

I now have 7 minutes to find the profound message in tonight’s essay. It has to do with flitting, maybe, or verve. Or maybe the bird perched on my couch.

I wish I had taken a picture. I’d like to look at that bird again now.

2 Comments on “24 Minutes

  1. LaTonya – you are so kind to see some sense in all of that. I feel a lot better about it. Today, I’m starting earlier, though. 🙂

  2. You write very well under pressure. And the message is here. For a casual observer, it’s flitting about, but if you slow down and pay attention you hear a woman connecting with the nuasances of living in an unpredictable life. Enjoyed.

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