I have a perception problem, in that I see things as much worse than they actually are. My writing, my personal life, Spiderman 3 – whatever it is, my mind is excellent at taking in the facts, twisting them using some elaborate algorithm that I’m not even conscious of, and re-presenting those facts to me as somehow tragic. Forget glass half-empty; my mind perceives the glass to be broken. (I think I may have been right in the case of Spiderman, though.)
This certainly extends to my living conditions, which, on different days, you might hear me describe as “unbearable” or “intolerable,” especially in the summer months, my apartment being somehow better than a sauna at City Spa (which supposedly has the hottest room in the state of California, or something like that) at trapping air and transforming a smallish room into something more akin to a sweat lodge than a dwelling space.
Then something happens where I suddenly become aware of the fact that I have a perception problem. In the case of my apartment, there were two occurrences: one, a viral video shoot and then, months later, a photo shoot. Both took place at this unbearable, intolerable apartment of mine, and interestingly, none of the professionals who traipsed into and out of the place looked disgusted or offered any commentary on the place, beyond the fact that they liked it or that it was great. (Of course, friends have always told me that it’s great, but part of my perception problem includes not remembering nice things.)
Yet in looking at both the video and the photos from the shoot, I noticed that the background looks spectacularly adorable: a toile-covered couch, white coffee table that was the epitome of shabby chic, an antique bed frame, elegant shades. If I were a third party coming upon the place for the first time through this material, I’d declare it charming and adorable, and probably be incredibly envious of the fact that I didn’t live there myself.
I guess this means that when I’m tearing my hair out over the fact that I’m so incredibly sick of the characters I’ve created or just my mind, utterly convinced I need to abandon this writing thing altogether, I may be wrong, too. Who knows, maybe my book release (less than two weeks away now) will cure me of that little perception problem?
When is your perception off?