I’d go the whole wide world

originally published April 19, 2007

When I was a young boy, my momma she said to me:

There’s only one girl in the world for you

And she probably lives in Tahiti

Or maybe in the Bahamas

where the Caribbean sea is blue

Weepin’ away in the tropical night

because nobody’s told her ’bout you

I’d go the whole wide world

I’d go the whole wide world

just to find her

I’d go the whole wide world

I’d go the whole wide world

to find out where they hide her

These are the words running through my head. These lyrics, they keep running, and running. I say running not to be cute, or to utilize some obscure literary reference that implies deeper meaning. The words just seem to quite literally run through my head, as if the distance between my ears is part in parcel of a race course, and the words are the racers, traversing this space en route to wherever it is they will finish. Perhaps that place is in someone else’s head, I’m not sure.

Why am I hanging around in the rain out here

Tryin’ to think of a girl

Why are my eyes fillin’ up with these lonely tears

When there’s girls all over the world?

Or is she lying on a tropical beach somewhere

Underneat the tropical sun

Hiding away in the heat wave there

Hopin’ that I won’t be long?

There is a movie, Stranger than Fiction, which I have recently become enamored with. It is the story of Harold Crick and his wristwatch. As this is not a movie review I’ll leave the general summary and plot points for another post, but it is important to know, at least to me as I write this, that the story is complicated, told from numerous perspectives, chiefly amongst them a narrarator. This omnipotent voice is an author, writing a book.

I’ve watched this movie four times in three days now. It is becoming borderline concerning I would imagine, at least to the part of me that works as the ad-hoc shrink specializing in course self diagnosis. But no matter.

Each character in the story has little pieces of me in him or her. I didn’t write it. I’ve never met the author and am quite sure I was not the subject matter in any way shape or form, but nonetheless I see pieces of me in them, and pieces of them in me. I identify with it, with them.

I write. It is what I do. It is not how I earn a living, it is not listed on my tax return, it is not even widely perceived as my occupation. But it is what I do. It is what I have always done, and always wish to do.

I’d go the whole wide world

I’d go the whole wide world

just to find her

The first few times I noticed these words in my brain, I assumed, quite naturally, that they were referring to the simple translation – a girl. And that this song was a summary in sheeps’ clothing of my history, present and future in those regards. It brought to light memories of various girls, various stages of romance and failure, from various times in my life. It caused me to examine several of these moments with fervor, to bring the insight from these moments to bear on where I stand today, and where I walk tomorrow. It seemed logical enough.

I’d go the whole wide world

I’d go the whole wide world

to find out where they hide her

This persisted for two days. Then today, while watching this movie yet again, the 4th time, my favorite number coincidentally, I realized quite suddenly how wrong I was.

The beauty I focused on was not in fact the actual beauty that I have been chasing. There is no girl. Not in this story at least. For in fact, as it hits me now like the proverbial brick through the window, what I would go the whole wide world for is not a female form, but the form of the written word.

I write. It is what I do.

I am a writer. It is what I love.

It is a startling realization when it occurs to you all at once exactly how far you have drifted away from what you love. Over the years, as time passed, as life passed and this great love lay neglected, there was an evolution, an ice age of sort. Slow and subtle enough to avoid notice at any point during the process, but striking enough at its’ conclusion to rattle the mountain to the ground. Glaciers move ever so slowly, but ever so far.

So I ponder this course of what I do and why I do it trying to find my place on its’ path. Am I too far behind, or has fate brought me along step by disguised step to the exact point where I should be? I don’t know, but I’m inclined to believe the latter, even if that is only out of blind ambition and denial, it is what I’m inclined to believe. That works for me, so I’ll run with it. Like the lyrics, I’ll run with it, from one edge of my head to the other. The challenge is how to prevent this belief from running out the other side, never to return.

Perhaps writing might do the trick.

Yes, let’s try that.

I’d go the whole wide world

I’d go the whole wide world

just to find her

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