This is week 153 of The Life of Riley, a weekly post detailing my activities since I ended a thirteen year career as a corporate drone. These posts are usually long, personal, and geared more for my own memory than the reader’s entertainment.
Sunday (Day 1064): He Was Probably A Loner As A Kid
I stood over the stove groggily tending a pan of sizzling Sunday bacon, while #1GF! tended to the baby. I was setting a hot plate of loose eggs and crisp bacon on the table, just as #1GF! put the baby down for her first nap.
#1GF! quietly closed the door to the baby’s room and sat down at the kitchen table while I finished washing the pan. She flipped open her lady tabloid and drifted off, contentedly eating eggs and reading. She managed to spend a solid five minutes enjoying her Sunday morning before I dragged her into a conversation about books. I mentioned that I had a couple of book ideas going at the same time, and was trying to figure out which would get written first. I explained the plot of the first book before my monologue veered into the wildly exciting areas of grammar, plot lines, and characterization.
#1GF! stopped me. “You know, when you tell me about this stuff, it sounds like homework.”
“Outlines, plotting, grammar,” she held up her hands and shook her head, “it’s like you’re back in school. I don’t know how you do it.”
I looked at her with wide eyes. “Because I love that stuff.”
She looked at me like I was incomprehensible, but strangely cute—the way a kid looks at a picture of Sea Monkeys long before realizing that all they really have is a cup of shrimp with a really good marketing team.
“Well, what is the second book about?” asked #1GF!.
“Remember the story I was working on about [Ninjas! Gun fights! Exploding barrels of awesome!]?”
“Well, I’m still trying to figure out the character’s motivation for doing something so wrong.”
“He was probably a loner as a kid.”
I rubbed my forehead. “No, I mean, to take on that kind of risk, it would have to be a very personal vendetta of some sort.”
“He’s probably just sick of his boss.”
I stopped. “…And he’d risk jail time over that?”
“Well, sure. He sounds like a good guy.”
“Hold on. Think about it. Would you risk jail time?”
“No, but I wasn’t a loner as a kid.”
I rolled my head back. “He wasn’t a loner as a kid.”
“How do you know. Have you written out his history?”
“Right, and you can’t because he doesn’t have a history. Know why?”
I rolled my eyes.