“Hail Mary, full of grace; the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb . . .

Restroom conversation

“She told you to dumb it down. Why for heavens sake?”
“ The public does not like things complicated and complex. They like you to lay it out there in third to sixth grade language.”
“Then, that shouldn’t be too hard.”
“It is hard. You have to think about it in a complex, complicated way and then, present it as a teacher to your students.”
“Like I said, not hard for you, you are a teacher. Dumb it down is your bag, lady.”
“Maybe, but, who wants to spend the rest of their life in the third grade?”
“You’ve got a point.”
“So where do I go from here?”
“ I guess you start with the most complicated things you can think of and then, begin to dumb them down.”
“Okay, thanks, but then again, no thanks.”
Both conversationalists left the rest room and I am left pondering their tiny bits of information. I am tired of people, books and writing classes telling me what to do, how to do it. They say you have to have a beginning, middle, end, and you have to write it for the market. Damn, the market changes every time you get the book lists, so I enrolled in a writing class at Beverly Hills High School Adult School. I lovingly wrote my heart out onto the pages and a manuscript began to grow. It was truly ecstasy. I acted, felt deeply and wrote about it. The directions were to complete only a few chapters for evaluation. The evening came where we all laid our manuscripts on the desk of our writing guru. There was an air of tension in the room. The air began to feel used and stale. The participants began to squirm in their seats, rubbing their hands, wiping their faces and noses too often. The teacher thanked us all for the work and said that next Monday was a holiday and he would see us back in two weeks. I was thinking to myself, two weeks is a damn long time. I can’t stand one day, how will I get through the two weeks? Is my writing good? Will I publish, perhaps become well known?
I am not going to say that the two weeks flew by like normal two weeks always seem to do, but these were filled with hope, desire to be the greatest, anticipation of the news of my writing skills, fear of rejection and I will stop the flow right here because of fear of not being dumbed down enough. The days came and went in some sort of a fog of eagerness.
This is the night we all find out about our brilliance or lack thereof. The teacher slowly and deliberately handed out the manuscripts, looking into each ready face, giving a quarter smile. Mine he saved for last. He looked into my eyes, laid the manuscript down with a full toothy smile. My heart began to beat wildly and my breath came in gulps. He moved on towards his desk. My hand found the paper pile, I slowly stole a glance. Large, unusually large black print popped into my brain. My eyes blurred from the excitement and I could hardly see. Finally, I settled back and was able to read the oddly large script. It said, AN UNPLOTTED PSYCHOLOGICAL QUIRK, VERY THERAPEUDIC WITH NO SALABILITY. It has taken me over thirty years to fully understand his meaning. I do not think in all of these years I have perfected the theory of dumb it down enough to get out of that category. I don’t even understand it myself, but I do know that if you dumb it down far enough, people will understand and perhaps you will understand it yourself.

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