At this moment, I am staring at my right ankle, which looks very Goth wrapped in a spider’s web of black tape. It is easy for me to do this, because the ankle is elevated on the sofa where I write, and every so often I have to do dopey little flexing exercises and flap my toes. If I had somehow wrecked my ankle zipping down a mountainside in Switzerland – Gstaad, for example, would be the perfect venue for cool injuries -- tearing some ligaments could be quite glam. I could hobble around the lodge drinking hot buttered rum, which I’ve never actually drunk, but sounds appropriate for grown-ups in snowsuits.

But alas, I fell down stairs by my washing machine. Which is more on the pathetic than the glam side

I realize that this is trivial, on the order of an endless boo-boo; I understand the emotional and literal pain of illness that’s not trivial. But damn, this is annoying! It’s been going on for months, and if I can’t take a walk soon, I’m going to…keep sitting on this sofa flapping my toes.

Bringing me to the writing aspect of this. I really do tend to write with a lot of insane intensity, twelve hours on the couch and sixty-two words to show for it kind of thing. But staring out my window at the Los Angeles skyline through the canyon, the fact that I can’t go down there and take a break that involves walking makes it hard to break the intensity, clear my head, (literally) step back and think. I am discovering that for me, intensity requires a counterpoint, and for that, functional ankles are quite useful.

_____________ Fill in the blank. I am swearing up a storm.

AuthorAnn Stampler