Posted by: pendrops | September 21, 2007

i’m glad you’re casual

“I’m glad you’re casual,” the man with a six-inch beard said as he jogged up to me.

I laughed, unsure what he meant as he slapped a bar code sticker on the bottom of my sampler plate from the Wild Oats deli. “If you were hurrying, you’d have had trouble checking out,” he smiled, setting my plate back on my tray. “Keep browsing,” he said, jogging back to his place behind the glass counter.

And I did. I continued meandering toward the checkout, stopping to study the packaging of a vegan sun cake, mulling over the various organic ingredients.

Dates, brown rice flour, soy protein, dried plums, ginger… Mmmm, I mulled, still…being…casual.

As I moseyed outside, sun cake in hand, I steeped in his unlikely word choice. And, as I nibbled my curry turkey salad at a wobbly wrought iron table, I thought about how different, how casual, I’d become in only a few days. Dude was glad about my state of unhurriedness so he could catch me before I left the store without my scanny sticker thing. But I had other reasons for being glad.

It all started after a seepy-eyed conversation I had with Jason the other night over the seeming demise of my first novel. We talked about expectations and failure, weariness and word counts, passion and publishing contracts, to-do lists and toil, my feelings of too-much-ness, my not-enough-ness.

And there were healing words about who I am regardless of things done or undone. Reassurances about callings irrevocable and gifts undeniable. Even a dare (a triple-dog dare) to envision a better way of writing…and living.

And casualness was born, while every corner of creation confirmed it’s long-overdue arrival invading every aspect of my life.

As a result, a renewed delight in writing has refreshed my mind and soul this week. Nary a word has peppered the page for productivity’s sake, but for passion.

And that precious used book that found me the other day, even it called out from browned pages:

“When I am constantly running, there is no time for being. When there is no time for being, there is no time for listening. This being is behind the telling of stories.”

And then, there I am, still soaking in Madeleine’s words, strolling through the grocery store, weightless, when deli dude runs up and unknowingly affirms my new lightness.

“I’m glad you’re casual,” he says.

I’m glad I’m casual, too.



  1. You are a superb writer. Don’t give up. I want to read more from you. But, you’re right – have some “me” time. Time to relax and think, be weightless. We all need it from time to time.

  2. “…my feelings of too-much-ness, my not-enough-ness.”

    I suppose we all have that to some degree. Your willingness to not deny the reality of those things inspires me to keep walking through them myself.

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