Mental Health

Say Yes to Weird Experiences. I haven’t read a single David Sedaris… | by Chris Kernaghan | Jan, 2022

I haven’t read a single David Sedaris book, yet he’s one of my favorite writers

Raindrops on a window

As I gaze outwards from my living room window, the sun is beginning to dip behind houses opposite. Delicate rain taps against the window, and as though hypnotized, I focus on a singular droplet growing in size. The rain intensifies. Other droplets are growing in size now too, until the strain of weight is too much and gravity takes over.

“Another thing I find, when you say no, everything shuts down.”

The droplets cascade downwards, weaving their way round traces of dirt and imperceptible imperfections. Each droplet leaves a faint ephemeral trail; a brief outline of origin.

“So I would just encourage you, I don’t know, to take a chance.”

Droplets are seemingly attracted to other droplets. They merge as though the path ahead is the “correct ”one — the only one. They create extraordinary jewels of light, glints of empyreal orange and red.

“I’m going to feed my tumor to a turtle, and it’ll be fun.”

I snap out of my hypnotic state at the absurdity of someone feeding their tumor to a turtle. I haven’t read a single David Sedaris book, yet he’s one of my favorite writers. The above quotes are from MasterClass: David Sedaris Teaches Storytelling and Humor.

“That wouldn’t have happened, if I’d have said no.”

There’s an authenticity in Sedaris’s voice that has me reliving memories as I search for the times I’ve said no, rather than yes. Seemingly simple binary choices which, almost like raindrops, cascade throughout life — merging into one another, choosing the “correct” path until present-day you.

“Do something you’d normally never do, like, waterski. Like you don’t say yes if someone you don’t know, and you’re drunk, says ‘Come to my house.’ — you don’t say yes to that.” — David Sedaris on saying yes to weird experiences

Context is very much important. There are times when the only appropriate response is to say no. Shutting everything down is precisely the outcome desired. But what if saying no comes from a place of misaligned fear, rather than the need to shut everything down?


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