Sunday, September 28, 2014
From an essay in the September 29 edition, entitled "Difference Maker." Spare, searching, riveting, deep, this essay that took my breath away.
There was a grassy lawn where the dog rolled around scratching its back, and a big table on the deck where friends sat on weekends eating grilled salmon and drinking wine and complaining about things they knew were a privilege to complain about (the cost of real estate, the noise of leaf blowers, the overratedness of the work of more successful peers). And as I lay on that bed it occurred to me, terrifyingly, that all of it might not be enough. Maybe such pleasures, while pleasurable enough, were merely trimmings on a nonexistent tree. Maybe nothing—not a baby or the lack of a baby, not a beautiful house, not rewarding work—was ever going to make us anything other than the chronically dissatisfied, perpetually second-guessers we already were.
An interview with Meghan on The New Yorker blog is essential reading for anyone contemplating a memoir or memoiristic essay. Among other things, Meghan speaks of the difference between having material and having something to say.
Yes. And absolutely.