I DO DECLARE:
1. I absolutely must not have too many icons down at the bottom of the computer screen. That kind of thing just will not stand, young man.
a. What if I were to accidentally knock the cursor down to the bottom of the screen? A menagerie of worthless freeloading software would happily invade.
i. Some ridiculous program that saves all my passwords in one encrypted file would be there. It’s a work thing, it would remind me of work.
ii. Or Skype, which always seems to be open.
iii. Oh, I’m downloading some movies? Which ones? Are they all going at an acceptable speed? When can I expect them to arrive?
iv. There’s a duplicitous, infuriating combination of windows minimized down there. Surely there’s some way to close them all at once…let’s just Google it. It will only take 5 minutes.
2. I must hide from my wife while I am attempting to write.
a. I shall arrange to have a tiny rowboat hidden in a forest in the basement of an unmarked warehouse.
b. A lawn chair on the roof will do.
c. I’ll just close the door to the bedroom and try not to make any noise.
i. She found me. Now I know that the cat peed in the baby tub.
ii. The pillow must be in exactly the right form under my head. It must be:
1. It should be a variation standing the tall way, folded under itself three times.
2. The ideal position for the pillow shall be allowed to change once every thirty seconds or so.
3. The best place for me to write will still be the bedroom, but I’ll just work the distractions in. No, wait, it’s time for the baby’s naptime.
a. Also acceptable: the balcony at tree-level, rolling green branches.
b. The dark, unfinished office.
i. It smells like splinters in here. The wood feels too dry.
1. Oh well.
4. I must not think about money while I write. Money is evil.
a. In general, I must not be a bratty little boy about money that I do not have. My wealthy aunts and uncles, in real estate and medicine, have nothing to do with me.
i. I was raised better than this.
1. Stop thinking about the money.
5. There must not be music playing. It will destroy all the minute details of my surroundings.
a. Is the sound of the fan actually changing, or is it the Doppler effect?
b. Why does that book cover touch the desk every time the wind catches it? That’s calming.
i. I hate that sound. It’s driving me nuts. I’m going to throw that book out the window.
1. I’d better put something on top of that book.
6. OK, there must be music. But it can only be…
a. Calming techno
b. Thoughtful movie soundtracks
c. The Bojack Horseman cartoon show theme.
d. That wistful song which has the lyrics, “Like popsicles in summer.”
i. That song reminds me of the word Colorado for some reason.
7. I must forget about the color of the sky at grandma’s house. It’s a nuclear illusion perpetuated by vast stacks of cash. That was not my life. My life is somewhere else, and the less I try to be myself, the more completely I will take up space.
a. Grandma is not evil. She’s just the world.
8. I declare that I must not compromise.
a. Except when something is unsustainable.
10. I will not exaggerate.