Yesterday I attended a reading event. People were presented, and then went up to the podium to read their work; essays, excerpts from novels and poetry. One guy sang and played the piano.
I was there because one of my classmates was one of the people doing a reading. He read his essay, which talks about his experiences while working and studying Arabic in Morocco. I'd read just pieces of it, and was glad I had waited for the rest. The parts I already knew were even better coming from the writer himself, and I listened and enjoyed it quite thoroughly.
Of course, it's always been my luck that the thing I go somewhere specifically to see never comes soon enough. For example, at concerts, my favorite songs are not played until the very end, or close to it. I've always had to wait and sit through agonizing things to get to my goal, and though this has taught me patience and extra appreciation for what I'm waiting for, it's still agony.
Before Jeff went up and read his essay, I and everyone else had to sit through three presentations. The first was quite pleasant, short and sweet-- a bluesy/jazzy song on the piano that was really cute. Following that was a nice and long essay that began with visions of cats and other creatures popping out of the pattern of a Persian rug, then branched out into musings over extinct smells and sounds from history we've only read about. You see, I was listening, but felt boredom slightly tugging at my brain.
Tugging turned into consuming when the next reader went up to the podium. She read the prologue from her soon to be published science fiction/fantasy novel for young adults. Not only was the subject matter not interesting to me, but it's built for a completely different audience. I kept looking at the stack of papers in that reader's hands, waiting for it to dwindle down to just one sheet. It seemed like eternity, but her hands were finally empty, because as she finished with one sheet, she would place it on the podium. Everyone applauded at the end. But wait! She also had an excerpt from another science fiction/fantasy book she is publishing.
The stack wasn't as big as the first, but it was still agony to get through. I prayed for the reason I was there to be next, so I could go about my day and keep boredom from putting me in complete hibernation mode.
My prayers were answered, because Jeff was next, and just in time. His reading was great and an absolute joy, pulling me right out of misery.
There are things I just don't feel or plain don't like.
Poetry is one. I know that songs are poetry set to music, and I agree, so, I guess I like poetry when combined with music.
I also don't feel, nor like nonlinear storytelling. Seriously, if I wanted to give myself a headache and get confused I would just listen to myself.
Readings are now part of this list.
Don't get me wrong, I really did enjoy Jeff's essay, and if another friend was doing the same thing, I'd still go and watch them during their big moment where they get to shine.
I am a daydreamer however, which makes me someone very prone to having a wandering mind that is hard to hold back and keep in place without something extraordinary.
I suppose everyone is like this, but I think I'm worse off than most people. Reading has been and will always be one of my favorite things, but only when I'm the one reading. Though I still daydream while I read, I daydream about what I'm reading, which is a wonderful side-effect.