## Saturday, May 29, 2010

### I'm writing a novel called 'May Goes Away.' Here's the beginning.

May alphabetized the spice rack instead of doing her algebra homework.

There was no reason to do her algebra homework until the spice rack was alphabetized. If she tried now, the equations would read “x - 3 = UNALPHABETIZED SPICE RACK,” and “x + 4 = UNALPHABETIZED SPICE RACK.” That would mean that “x - 3 = UNALPHABETIZED SPICE RACK = x + 4.” And that would then mean that “x - 3 = x + 4.” And that would mean the universe was unfair, and May needed to lie down.

But there was no time to lie down! The jar of basil was set after the jar of cumin! Mustard was the last jar on the rack!

Mustard!

Who would disorganize the spice rack? No one else in the house cooked.

But apparently someone had cooked, and they’d flavored their meal with every spice on the rack. And they’d put everything back wrong. And they’d probably put the dirty dishware in the washing machine, and not the dish-washer, and they might as well light the house on fire, for all they cared.

“Now calm down,” May commanded herself, shaken by the thought of her freshly-ironed bath towels catching fire.

Maybe the spice bottles weren’t put away wrong. Maybe they were put away with another system. So they weren’t alphabetized! So what? Maybe they were put away according to how much was left in the jar!

...except mustard was beside pepper, and there was tons of mustard, but barely a teaspoon’s worth of pepper.

May tried to find a color pattern--wrong. A grain-size pattern--nope. A taste-bud pattern...maybe the bitter spices were grouped together, ranging from ‘least bitter’ to ‘most bitter’ and transitioning into ‘salty.’ That would be a sensible, intuitive pattern. That would be a lovely pattern!

But unless mint was more bitter than crushed red pepper, that wasn’t it.

It was just chaos. Dumb, meaningless chaos that was still somehow creative enough to keep May guessing. She should just re-organize them.

...but what if there was a pattern that she wasn’t seeing? What if she were destroying a better--no--the best spice rack pattern in the history of spice rack patterns?

And what if she chose to believe that and didn’t re-organize? Whether it was right or wrong, the spice rack would stay like this--a hostage of an agnostic pattern--until the end of time!

No! May used this spice rack, and she wouldn’t stand for it!

### On the other hand...

I didn't like Blogspot's layout.