On the bus this morning, I met one of my commuter friends that I hadn’t seen in quite a while. I have a number of these people on my bus route. You can distinguish these from my commuter crushes because I have actually talked to them. In truth, I have talked to a couple of my crushes, but not many of them.
One of the things that this commuter friend and I talk about is books. Like a lot of commuters he gets through a serious number of books per year. He tends to drift between athletes’ biographies and Victorian literature, with the odd mystery thrown in (and better if that book can somehow manage to combine all three). Over the past couple of years he has pointed me toward some really good reads (Peter Robinson for one).
Today, and this is what spawned the Perfect Moment, he spent time relating that he probably should have been born in Victorian times. He pointed out that it was full of hardship and definitely not a paradise, but that he still thinks it would have been more comfortable.
When I think about my desire to be a science fiction writer, I wish I had been born in the golden age of pulp magazines. I wish I could have belonged to the Futurians and got to meet Isaac Asimov and Robert Heinlein. When I think about other writing, I wish I could have hung out in Paris in the 20’s, or maybe New York in the 50’s, trying to be a beat.
Today’s Perfect Moment had two parts. The first is that it was great to see someone so astonishingly clear about their character that they could paint themselves into an era. They felt they knew themselves well enough to accept that they just didn’t fit in exactly, and could talk about it. I can appreciate both honesty and romantic notions.
The second is that it gave me a chance to think about the era I could belong in. That one tiny nudge gave me a pleasant, sometimes subconscious, mental diversion all day. I let my mind wander over it, play with it and thresh it out. When good ideas came to fore, I could smile. When clearly unworkable ideas came to light they could be discarded with a comforting or dismissive snort.
For all the writers out there (and I guess that means all of us in the blogverse) what era or time do you belong in?