Thursday night I kept waking up with a notion of an idea for a story to write. Every time I awoke the germ of the idea was the same and I would drift off to sleep thinking, “That’s really good – I’ve got to write that.” I have heard you should keep a pad of paper and a pen by your bedside because your brain, ever working, never sleeping, will conjure incredibly creative ideas that should be written down or they’ll be lost. Ideas unencumbered by the day’s routine tasks or sights. I was hopeful that, since I keep no notepad by the bed, I would remember the idea because it was a good one and would be funny and insightful and almost write itself.
The morning came and I awoke, headed to the kitchen, drank some water and then headed to the shower. The brilliant idea returned and I began working it over and I realized, “This is so stupid – what was I thinking? Oh yeah, I wasn’t. I was half asleep.” Such a lame idea and I should write it down? How can it be true that some pizza-fueled figment of the dream world is worth writing down? This idea probably came from someone who had just woke up in the middle of the night. I’m thinking I should forget the notepad by the bed thing. You’re not supposed to be brilliant in the middle of the night. You’re supposed to sleep.
And the brilliant idea that kept recurring as I awoke? It was an imaginary conversation between Abraham Lincoln and Shaquille O’Neal. And like Abe wouldn’t know about basketball and stuff. And they could talk, you know, the Great Emancipator and the Diesel. And even though the lingo would be so different, they would still “connect”, man.