Some of you know me as a poet. Or as a poet wanna be. And the inspiration for my recent fiction excursion is a little embarrassing. So, it seems like something worth telling.
It’s The Office. That’s why I decided to write fiction. I watch the show and think, I can’t think of anything more worthwhile than creating these fascinating characters and these ridiculous, yet truth-full scenarios. Each time I watch an episode it is funnier than the last time I saw it.
I know it has become trendy not to have a television, but I swear Tracy and I have not had a television since before it was cool. (I stopped watching TV in high school when I first went to the house of my twin friends, Bryony and Gilia Angell, and saw all of their drawings—which they had done in addition to their films I had seen and their stories I had read. I realized I wasn’t ever going to get anything done unless I stopped watching TV.) Therefore, the shows I’ve seen over the past twenty years have been very limited.
When we watch The Office, we see it on DVDs from the library, and when I talk about The Office, I mean the American version. I can’t watch the British one, and I’m confessing this even though I understand it reveals how vulgar and crude I am. Steve Carell is Michael Scott and he makes the show that makes me strive to write. When I forget the mission I am on, (to write fiction) and fantasize about becoming a psychologist, a politician, or a lead guitarist (today’s fantasies), I remember Michael Scott and the richness he brings to my imaginative life. He makes me wonder what other extreme oddities people can and do have. Many things about him make me laugh–for instance, his malapropisms–and laughter releases endorphins. Laughter helps ground us in the here and now (as opposed to the there and then).
I’m not going to summarize any episodes (though I particularly like the one where Michael accidentally wears a women’s blazer to work and the one where he leads a workshop on diversity awareness). I’m just going to say, all you need in life is to find your Office. Once you find it you will know what this world made you for.