Man Weeps On A Plane

I am on a plane. I’m on Southwest, so I can’t reference my seat number like classy writers do, but I’m on the left hand side of the plane about 5 rows behind the exist row.

I am sitting next to a man. It’s crowded. I’m in the window seat and he’s the unlucky one who got the middle seat. It’s a 5 hour flight. Boston to Denver. The sun is reflecting the prettiest color of orange out my window. A thick layer of clouds beneath me and ahead on the horizon. But then, this fire orange and red—it’s thick. Above it, it’s a bit lighter, then breaking into yellow and a big expanse of blue.

I’ve been working on some ideas on my computer. Lots of work. Me: typing, typing, typing. Spreadsheets and to-do lists. Drinking my wine (thanks SWA drink coupon) and I notice my neighbor reading something. He’s reading something in a different language, so I can’t spy to see what the title is or the words on a page. But, about 10 minutes ago, I noticed something. He started wiping tears from his eyes. At first, I thought maybe he was sick or he was just tired and rubbing his eyes. But, I think he is legit crying. I think those are tears. He keeps wiping his tears. 

It looks like a book he’s reading—a kindle edition on his phone…but something is moving him to tears. And as I sit here, dying to intrude and ask him a million questions, I’m reminded that words and stories move us. They change us. He is probably in his 40s, of some sort of Asian descent (also the writing is in some sort of Asian) and he has been staring at his phone for the last 2 hours...and now he is weeping. 

He keeps wiping his tears. 

As I sit here, I wonder who wrote the story he’s reading? What part of the story is so moving to him? What part of his own story is resonating so much with him that tears stream from his face? Why is he moved to tears? I’m sure he doesn’t want to cry in the middle seat of SWA flight 6387, but he clearly can’t stop. I want to cry with him and hug him…which don’t worry…I know is inappropriate, but still. What is moving him to tears?

I am reminded that our stories matter. Your story matters. No matter how we share them…'cause we all share them in different ways. Some with your kids over meal time, some in songs and on a guitar, some with a neighbor over happy hour, some with millions on a talk show, some with your BFF in high school. It doesn’t matter how, but we need you and your story. 

If you’re writing and think that your story isn’t going to move someone to tears one day, I’d encourage you to rethink that. Or if you’re an artist and you don’t think your art is going to move people, I want to tell you to reconsider. 

I wonder if the person who wrote whatever he’s reading knew it would move a man on a plane to tears. And that by his tears, a (somewhat intrusive neighbor passenger) stranger would also be moved and reminded that words matter. Our perspectives and creativity and lives matter.

Oh gosh, I hope he’s not reading my screen. That would be awkward. Ah heck, what do I know…maybe he’s just got really bad allergies and is reading an email. Haha.

Already in the time it took to write this, the magical shade of fire orange has faded. I’m glad I stopped to study it while it was there. 

I am trying not to miss as much these days.



Missing Computer

I was missing my computer...cause it was a little bit broken...and it took several trips to the Apple store genius bar to get it back to healthy status....seriously...I'm on a first name basis with lots of the geniuses... ( surprising... I think not ;) ) One time I was there for so long I had to bust my apple out of my bag and start eating it cause my blood sugar was plummeting. Little irony for you there folks...eating an apple in THE apple store. You're welcome.

I missed my computer. Leaving it overnight at the Apple store made me kinda sad... it sort of felt like I had forgotten to pick my kid up from day care....no, not really, (parents don't get mad because I just compared my computer to a child...I promise I know the difference...) it just felt like I was missing a limb or something.

Moral of the story is... it's back! Yahooo :)

I worked a little bit on Jill's computer but I couldn't bring myself to blog on her computer. It  just didn't feel right. It was like I was cheating on my box. And everything felt wrong on her computer. Her hot corners annoy me and her toolbar is on the bottom and mine is on the side...it's just all wrong.

So now just prepare to get a plethora of blogs in the days to come because for the past two weeks I've just been stewing on things I want to talk about.

What have I been doing with no computer? Well....a whole bunch of songwriting....which has been amazing. Sometimes songs just flow out of you and recently Jill and I have been sort of nonstop writing. Been loving it.

Also, we are expanding our #jillandkatejewels efforts...which basically means we've been working on a BUNCH of new designs for our jewelry. We are also starting to do custom orders...in the next few days we will be unveiling new items...so stay tuned for that. In the meantime if you would like a custom order done...head on over to our Etsy store to see what we can make for you!





This post is for all of our fellow creators, writers (both story & song) and anyone that is looking for a little exercise in getting the creative juices flowing. Cause let's be honest...we all at times have a little bit of writer's block or writer's barricade or writer's great wall of China for peet's sake--that's what it feels like sometimes. One time we were at a song-writing workshop where a well-known songwriter was talking about his experiences, his go-to things while songwriting and he shared something that has stuck with us. At first it might sound silly but it does get the creative juices going if there seems to be a blockage of some sort.

So, if you are feeling stuck, try this exercise. All you need is:

  • a piece of paper
  • a pen or pencil
  • a timer
  • a book or a friend

Get yourself set up to write. Set the timer for 7 minutes. Find a book or ask a friend for ANY word (or if you don't have a friend around, take any random book, open it and put your finger down and whatever word your finger lands on...go with it). Then whatever word you get, write about it for 7 minutes. It doesn't have to make sense, it doesn't have to rhyme...just write about the word for 7 minutes. Write, write, write.

This sounds easy...and it might seem like a silly exercise but it's a great one! In the workshop he had us all do this and the word was "dust." After it was over, to demonstrate his point that everyone will think of something different he had some people share what they wrote. All of the different things were amazing...someone wrote about the dust on library books, someone wrote about their little league memories of dust rising over them as they slid onto home plate, someone wrote about the dust particles in the room... It was so cool. Everyone had a different take on the word "dust."

Anyway--writing is definitely a practice and this can be a good way to start practicing writing. Whatever you write be proud of it. Don't think it's stupid. Don't think it's insignificant. Don't put boundaries on your writing. Just write. Write. Write.

Cool? Cool. Now go write :)