Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Nurturing the muse

I have been wondering, lately, where my muse was hiding all those years when I lived in a creative desert. I think it was afraid of the TV.

I've never been one to watch TV for hours on end, but I was in the habit of having it on for "company" when I lived alone. Later, after I met my husband, we used to eat dinner in front of the venerable boob tube. I am embarrassed to say that this persisted until we had kids.

Looking back, it's really no wonder my hobbies and creative pursuits fell by the wayside. My muse had been beaten into submission by an onslaught of visual and auditory stimulation that was (for the most part) anything but stimulating.* Numbed by the programs, my poor brain couldn't come up with a creative thought. Didn't need to, when the advertisements told me what I should eat, drink, and wear.

Yes, I'm being snarky, but I really think TV had a lot to do with my time in the creative desert. Why? Because when we moved to Germany, we got rid of the TV** (in reality, it is sitting in storage in the US and we are paying ridiculous amounts of money for a giant, out-of-date paperweight we will never use again—free TV anyone?).

When we got to Germany, my muse peeped its tousled head out to look with sleepy eyes at the world around it. It saw all kinds of wonderful and began to knit those little strands of detail together to make a tapestry. One that tells a story. Several, actually.

Now, my muse seems to have a bit of ADD, but maybe that's from all of those TV shows. I'm still nurturing it. It's shy, but it gets a little bolder every day.

What's your muse like? What kinds of experiences stimulate your muse?

* some shows are very thought-provoking, but I think it is easy for us to be lulled into a sense of complacency by the vast majority of programs
** we do have a TV, but it's not connected to anything but the DVD player, which we use about once a week

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