Wednesday, June 10, 2009

"The color of the sky as far as i can see is coal grey"

I was a big 10,000 Maniacs fan back in the day and "Like the Weather" was big favorite. It always plays through my head on unseasonably gray days.

It is the middle of June in Southern California and our views of the sun have been limited. All of the great events which hail the coming of summer have occurred under dreary skies and damp conditions. Its taken the luster from the days, sapping the sparkle from a time which should be exciting and filled with anticipation.

One of my small pleasures is the drive to pick up my kids from school. I pass down a street with old Craftsman houses. Large trees line each side of street and stretch out to form a canopy for cars to drive under. The leaves are vivid, so green and glossy they don't seem real. But without sun, they are pallid, the branches sinister rather than joyous.

We love color here in the Southland. We've the good fortune of mild temperatures so we can grow so many things. But they are dependent on the sun. Oh, the flowers get enough to grow, but their colors are faded. The pinks and yellows have no depth, the violets and reds are cold and passionless.

Obviously it affects my mood. I'm not the only one. I was discussing it with others today. We are discombobulated. We are tired and listless. We suffer from a malaise which has no set symptoms or diagnosis. It isn't that we hate cold weather, trust me, by August I will be whining in the entirely opposite direction. We expect bad weather in the winter and enjoy wearing our winter coats and sweaters, sipping mugs of hot chocolate. But those times have passed and now it is time to be outside amongst the greenery.

We've always had something called "June Gloom" which brought in a severe marine layer to the area in the morning but burned off by noon. We don't like it, but we accept it because we know our afternoons will be sunny. This is something different. We've had it before and to be honest, I predicted we would have it again this year because of how cold our winter was.

I am going some place with this besides incessant complaining. As I get older I've noticed my moods are affected more and more by the weather. I don't know why. And when my moods are involved, my writing is thrown into upheaval. I'm motivated, but my thoughts are cloudy. It's like my mind has gone gray like the weather. Ironically, the WIP I'm working on takes place in the middle of December and the skies are gray and cloudy with constant storms. But I can't get myself into it. Over the last couple of days, I've had time to write and I can't get myself going. Blogging has been difficult because I can't seem to form sentences. Maybe just spewing my weather-themed diatribe will be enough to shake me lose. Or hopefully the sun will come out and I can feel normal again.

Does the weather affect your writing? Has it always or do you find the weather having more of an impact as you get older?

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