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Wednesday, April 4, 2012

For Her

Just a quick note to pay respects to a friend, A., who truly impressed me recently by demonstrating her personal commitment to her sense of self as an artist. That may seem like Oberlin College-inspired crunchy gibberish, but it's actually tremendously important. Because the only difference between successful people and unsuccessful people, is that successful people, eventually, learn from their mistakes and start listening to their gut and choose what to believe in...and what to reject. Eventually.
This friend is the poster child for making a comeback in one's own life. She's smart, funny, gorgeous...yes, I have a huge girl-crush on her. To meet her now, you'd never guess that she made some significantly bad choices in her life. Because guess what: she fought threw them, and started making positive choices. She learned from her mistakes.
I know, to some of you, I may sound like a broken record. Those are the people who have never made mistakes (yawn), or the people who are still stuck. I remember when I was stuck, a number of years ago, and I was ravenously envious of anyone who seemed even somewhat successful. I remember, for example, being deeply jealous of my doctor's receptionist since she seemed so perky and competent and clearly, she knew what the f**k she was doing with her life...right? (To be fair: I still think my doctor's receptionist is awesome, but I have no envy for what she has to put up with everyday. And I enjoy being me far too much! I have been a very good me this year...) Let's hope so...
Anyway, back to my friend: she recently wrote a memoir of some hard times in her life, how and why they happened, and how she flipped the script. She showed this memoir to a family friend...who also happens to be a very famous and talented writer. (The memoir, btw, is wonderful: funny, sexy, anti-crunchy. You're going to have to trust me on this, but since I routinely cite Nabokov and Bulgakov as sources, and not, say, the author of the 'Twatlight' series...I think you're safe to trust me.) This writer, besides being a longtime family friend was also one of her idols, a woman who inspired her to start writing in the first place. So what do you think happened?
Of course: the famous author hated it. She brutally dismissed it and my friend's story as being "unmarketable." She also dismissed my friend in a very public manner. (Klassy!)
But here's why I'm writing this: my friend just smiled, and politely said, "Okay, thanks for your insight. I still believe in my story." And she kept on believing and marketing her book. I. Love. THAT!!!
I love anyone who believes so strongly in the wisdom of their own voice that they have the courage to keep on keepin' on because THAT'S WHAT LIFE IS ABOUT! Honestly, what's the alternative? Throw your dreams in the litter box and spend all day watching cartoons and getting drunk? (Oh dear god, how good does that sound, the drinking and watching cartoons part...? Sigh.)
But seriously: There is always (ALWAYS) going to be someone who thinks your dream is retarded, to put it bluntly. Someone who gets off on saying, "Does hell go with no?" So, there will always be someone to tell you you are wrong. The question then becomes, are you committed enough to yourself to tell yourself that you're right? I hope so.
(And if you want some help with that, email me @

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