Writer’s Block in A Fourth Turning


Writer’s Block in A Fourth Turning By Francis Marion – The Burning Platform

I have writer’s block.

It’s not for lack of things to write about in my personal life or in world events but for the past six months, I just haven’t felt like I’ve had anything new or interesting to say.

No words of wisdom, no earth-shattering revelations and no interest in rehashing topics that have been talked about dozens of times by people smarter than me.

I think part of the problem is that I’m past the point of talking and moving more towards the “I’m done talking” point.

So I focus on other things to keep myself and my mouth out of trouble.

I spent Sunday installing new brake pads on my wife’s Mercedes up at a hunting buddy’s place. He’s a heavy duty mechanic who helps me with jobs that I think are a little more complicated than I want to handle on my own.

After working with him on it for the afternoon I realized I could have done it by myself but that it would have taken me twice as long since he already knew what he was doing. He likes German cars and is familiar with them.

The job wasn’t that complicated but it was a nuisance. I probably wouldn’t need his help again but he’d likely offer it anyways. That’s friendship as I understand it so I offered him a hand replacing the rear struts in his car whenever he decided he wanted to do the job. He doesn’t need my help but I can speed the process up and he likes the company and the banter.

As you get older the constant stream of jobs like this help you realize that life is filled mostly with tasks that have to be done.

Not enough of it is spent doing things that you really want to do. The trick being (and you figure this out as you go along) that if you have to do things that aren’t always enjoyable that you should at least do them with the people you like. Mind you, that probably goes for most things.

Earlier this summer I sat in the emergency room of our local hospital on a Saturday morning waiting for the physician to come and see me. I’d awoken at 1:00 AM in a hot sweat and short of wind with a pain in my side that made me feel like I’d gone a few rounds with a prizefighter.

I was sharing the room with an old fellow, probably in his mid to late eighties who was there complaining about a lack of memory. As he related his story to the social worker on hand I quickly realized that he didn’t really have any health issues. His wife had been gone for ten years and he had no children or siblings and was living independently. He was healthy but very much alone. I could tell it was torturing him. He wanted to be moved into a senior’s facility. He wanted the company of others his age. The way the social worker was talking I could tell he probably wasn’t going to get his wish. They don’t put healthy people into assisted care homes.

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