It was something the lovely Jo put her finger on a while ago that I’ve found to be startlingly true of late: happiness is a bitch for the creativity.
When you’re mired in the mud of an unhappy living situation, a crappy job or a dating life so full of woe you’re thinking about quitting the scene to volunteer at the Cats’ Protection, it’s remarkably easy to write ream after ream bemoaning your situation. You’re in demand at dinner parties where your tales of dating guys who turned out to be gay go down well with the smug nearly-marrieds, and you can be relied upon for tales of housemate despair that make other people feel better about their lives.
But then you buy a place and live in it by yourself, and you find a job that – whilst driving you up the wall on an hourly basis – is demanding and rewarding, and you have fewer things to bitch about. Thankfully, men who’re willing to take you to Strada on first dates provide enough fodder to keep your place safe on the dinner party circuit.
But then you meet someone. And that someone makes you happy on a scale that, were you to hear it from anyone else, would make you feel violently nauseous. And suddenly you don’t have tales of dates so terrible that you idling start Googling the local convents. You don’t have any complaints to make because the nauseating happiness is all-pervasive.
Bad dates with worse men were the reason I started blogging, all those years ago. They’ve been the lifeblood of this blog and its predecessor, with a few tales of crazy housemates and general things that rile thrown in for good measure.
Bad dates these days are… well, nonexistent. My first date with The Writer lasted three days, and was so bafflingly perfect that I’m still not convinced I wasn’t, unbeknownst to myself, playing a part in a covert Richard Curtis film (one day, I’ll let you in on it, when I’m more certain it actually happened). And things have gone from great to better.
So the anguish of dating has disappeared, and with it, so has the creative inspiration. Cosy dinners and incidents of missed tube stops because you’re just too engrossed in conversation don’t provoke the angst that makes for ranty writing, and I doubt it’d make for particularly engrossing reading.
Hence the quiet on this particular front. I am still here. I’m just happy.
The Elephant, Torquay
16 hours ago