Monday, May 20, 2013


Interesting word:  "commission".  Note that the word itself indicates working in partnership with, or to be brought into a common mission with another.

In the past month I've been commissioned twice, the latest being a charge to write a poem.  I was given a month to do it, so I'm taking my time, revising often, parsing every word.  

Typically, I don't enjoy these kinds of assignments.  I always feel like I'm in an old Mission Impossible episode where the tape recorder is running and THE VOICE says, "Your assignment, should you choose to accept it . . . ."

But listen, when did the Mission Impossible team NOT accept an assignment?  When did they ever say, "To hell with this one!  This assignment really stinks and you know . . . we've got that badminton tournament this weekend.  Let's tell THE VOICE where to stuff it!"

No.  Assignments are always accepted.  And for the writer most any assignment, any commission, is going to be met with, "Sure, I'll write that for 'ya."

So, I have a commission.  I'm now working under a tight deadline, which is even more exciting, more challenging.  You know, I don't want to self-destruct or have the assignment blow up in my face.  So I'm working diligently on the task at hand.

Which brings me to my disguise.  I get up before sunrise and masquerade as an early-morning person (even though I am not).  I slip into the character of a writer who has accepted the assignment, but who would rather be under-cover with my wife, who would prefer the James Bond life-style of wine and caviar instead of coffee and black licorice (for breakfast). 

Your assignment . . . should you choose to accept it.  Well, I've accepted.  And in two weeks I've got to get to the bottom of this commission.


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