First off, let me get this on the table: I have done little else as of 2:02 PM today than surf other people’s blogs and play around with my Dashboard. And about that I feel guilty, guilty, guilty. This is problematic for me, because inappropriate guilt is entirely antithetical to my intentions for self-improvement.
It occurs to me that my guilt-riddled conscience/consciousness is directly connected with my ongoing struggle about creativity. Case in point: I’m sitting here with an increasing sense of anxiety about all of the work I believe I must do before the end of the weekend in order to return to my practice on Monday without feeling overwhelmed. And that, my friends, is about not being in-the-moment. So anxiety also plays a part in this insidious process. Then, of course, there’s my creative critic, sneering from a corner of my left brain, “What makes you think you have anything interesting to say about anything?” and “What’s the point of painting today? This intuitive painting business is just a crock!”
Now’s the time for me to channel my creative mentor, the high priestess of intuitive painting and creativity recovery. What would she tell me? Hmmm. Probably just, “It doesn’t matter what your critic says. You still have to paint/write/create.” And she would be, as always, 100%-on-the-money correct.
So let’s get on with this.
I just finished eating leftovers from the inspired pot roast dinner my husband and I brought home last night from a nearby cafe/restaurant that I’ll call Isabel’s (not its actual name). Isabel’s is located in one of the last cool old neighborhoods in our town, which is actually a historic district. It’s a major hub for small, locally-owned businesses (e.g., art galleries, eateries, local playhouses, musical venues, and the like). And Isabel’s is one of those businesses. We can walk there comfortably from our home just a few blocks away.
Isabel’s offers food that might best be described as a contemporary version of good ‘ol home-style cooking. You can get meatloaf and garlic mashed potatoes, a decent veggie burger, and everything else in between. They also offer giant killer brownies, and can serve up a mean mimosa in a glass big enough to swim in. It’s comfort food with a twist.
Being neighborhood regulars at Isabel’s, we have a casual but friendly acquaintance with most of the wait-staff there, if not by name then at least by sight and smile. They are a nice bunch, generally good-humored and hip, people I can well imagine leading interesting lives away from work. In particular, there’s a young guy whom my husband and I simply refer to as the Zen waiter. He must be in his early-to-mid-twenties, and moves with a quiet sort of grace. He sports a tiny ring on the edge of his lower lip, and has thick and somewhat unruly black hair, just shy of shoulder-length. He is handsome in a subtly bohemian and exotic sort of way. But what I find most remarkable about him are his natural composure, and his gentle yet striking presence.
He was our waiter last night and performed his usual consummate job. For that he earned a tip equal to the amount of our meal. This is something we usually do once a year or so at Isabel’s, a small expression of our appreciation for excellent service.
So here’s to the Zen waiter and to Isabel’s, and to cool old neighborhoods, and the practice of creativity and art in just being who we are at any given moment.