I’ll make a prediction: Maria Sharapova is about to win her first French Open title. Even though she’s been trying and falling short for 10 years. Even though the red clay is, by far, her worst surface. Even though she says she moves “like a cow on ice” on the soft, slippery court.
Maria is known for 3 things on the tennis court: Her focus, her determination, and her scream. The girl is LOUD. Funny thing is though, she’s only loud, only a screamer, in her matches. She’s quiet on the practice court, and quiet in general. She doesn’t socialize and chat it up in the locker room. She’s not yet been sucked into the Twittersphere, saying something like this recently, I’m so boring. I eat, sleep, and workout. What would I tweet, that I’m eating? Who would care?
With little on my calendar yesterday, I had every intention of putting in some good manuscript time, but the day turned loud — or, rather, I let it turn loud — and by the time almost-dark rolled around I was dead tired and had done absolutely nothing. Unless you call multiple trips to Walgreens, talking on the phone, and pouring over the fine print in our town’s tree ordinance something. It was a disgrace.
I crawled into bed last night thinking about Maria and her 3 things, and also about her quietude. I recalled a Jonathan Franzen quote from his latest essay collection: When I’m working, I don’t want anybody else in the room, including myself.
Wow. Imagine how quiet that would be.
You know I’m dipping into the deep well if I’m linking Sharapova and Franzen (imagine how handsome, talented and tall their children would be!) but here’s the deal: I’m going to try and steer clear of these parts for the summer and see if I have it in me. Can I go quiet? Or even just quieter? Can I focus enough to forget I’m in the room?