Saturday, November 19, 2011

My true love

Darrin and I went to the library today. We go every few months, and as usual I went straight to the new books, nonfiction. Within five minutes I had picked out 4 to check out. First I grabbed Bringing Adam home. The abduction that changed America. It's about John Walsh, the guy who created America's Most Wanted, pictures of missing kids on milk cartons, and modern missing child alerts. His son was abducted from a Sears store and killed.

Another book I got was about Somalian pirates. Not long ago, an American couple was murdered by pirates and it enraged me. I hate those pirates, and reading this book is going to be tough for me, which convinces me more that I should read it. I know it will be somewhat sympathetic to the pirates, or their circumstances. A third book I picked up is about the 5 young men that did not murder the Central Park Jogger, and were wrongfully convicted. I have always been fascinated by the this female jogger, I read all the headlines as a kid and last year i read her account of recovery. I think about her almost every time I jog knowing that I am putting myself in danger but that fear should not stop me.

What's interesting about these 3 books is the comparison of different types of crime. I have actually grown more used to the crimes that make absolutely no sense, like Adam Walsh's murder. His killer was just an insane stranger with no motive. The insanity of the killer makes the insane amount of suffering seem cruelly balanced. The crimes that actually have motive, like the Somalian pirates, enrage me more. They make sense yet I am furious. Finally, I'm sure the stories of the youth arrested in Central park are going to make me question motive, crime, injustice, and corruption altogether.

Can you see why I love nonfiction? Why I majored in history? Thinking about these topics and the other books on my never-ending list to read, i realized I might have to re-evaluate my calling. I would love to be the author of one of these books. I love to research and find out details of one story, that connects me to another story. Trisha meili, the central park jogger, worked for Salomon brothers investment company. The same company also created Michael Lewis, author of Liars Poker, his personal account of wall street success. He also wrote Moneyball, the book and now-movie on baseball's new use of numbers and statistics to predict future talent. Two weeks ago when game six or seven of the World Series was rained out, I remember one of the players saying he would spend his evening going to the movie theater to watch Moneyball. My knowledge of Wall Street is definitely influenced from reading Liar's Poker, and it somewhat affects my thoughts about the current "we are the 99% movement" to shut down wall street.

That's just one example of how one nonfiction story links to a hundred other stories. I'm addicted. I should go and see about my master's degree in history. Or better yet, maybe I can dive into some kind of research and just use the degrees I already have instead of paying an institution to prolong my career and my debt both?

There is one thing that stops me or at least pops out of my subconscious, an insecurity that I am sad to admit has hindered my motivation. My desire to research and write is obstructed by a bad college experience that I need to confront. It's whirling around in my head, and I might just have to explain it in my next blog, either that or deal with it this week and come back to this topic later. Wish me luck. If I can get over this experience and move forward with my ambitions I just might find some real career fulfillment.
By the way, if you had noticed I left out the fourth book, it's 10,000 Ways to show you love someone. It's surprisingly humorous, which makes sense because love needs humor more than anything else to survive. That reminds me, Thomas Jefferson was big on the importance of humor too. He wrote about that to his grandsons and mentees. I should stop writing now, because my thoughts just keep going and going.

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