by Kelly Baugh
I had a fun conversation with my new neighbor today.
It started out with pleasantries:
Him: You're working hard. What are you planting?
Me: A lilac hedge. Digging up all that grass was not fun.
Him: I don't really like lilacs.
Me: Um ... well now there's six of them in between our adjoining yards.
Then it turned to careers.
Him: I'm a [content edited for privacy]. What about you?
Me: I'm a writer.
That always brings a twinkle of excitement to a new acquaintance's eye. However, when he began to probe into the details of my sales and finances I could see I quickly lost any coolness cachet that I had briefly earned.
Him: So like how much would you say you've earned over the past week from book sales?
Me [eyes darting wildly around my lilac bushes. This is too much like math. And it feels too personal. I have no idea what I earned in the last week and even if I did, would I tell you?]
Him: Just a rough estimate.
Me: [shouting first thing that pops into my head] About $7.
Him [disbelief, snorting laughter] Are you serious?
Me: That's right. I made $7.
[FYI, that's probably a generous estimate].
The conversation ended pretty quickly after that. I'm sure the content of our chat will make its way around the neighborhood. Probably all my new neighbors will be hitting me up for small business loans or help with their favorite charities.
The whole thing reminded me of a hilarious buzzfeed page I had recently read, so I will post it here for any other writer whose life doesn't quite live up to the perception.