If there is one thing that the internet has taught me, it’s that I have never had an original idea. Go ahead, Google anything- ANYTHING! If there isn’t already a website devoted to it, someone has already bought the domain name, on the off-chance that someone would like to create one. (My dad still scoffs when I insist that I came up with the idea for liposuction…. and I DID. It’s just that so did somebody else who happened to have more medical and technical knowledge than a pudgy eleven-year-old girl staring at a vacuum cleaner hose.) This should, perhaps, make me concerned as to the lack of creativity in my thinking, but instead I find it rather comforting. For one thing, it’s a HUGE relief not to be responsible for, well, that. (waving arms madly to indicate the whole world) And also, when I do have an idea that turns out to be ill-conceived or flat out wrong, well, I’m not the first one to have done so. Wasn’t it W. C. Fields who said, “There’s a sucker born every minute?” Well, there is, and we’re all on Amazon buying the same combination thigh toner/vegetable chopper.
Some people place a lot of value on uniqueness. I’m guessing that they’re the sorts that don’t like their peas and mashed potatoes to co-mingle. Me? I eat my mashed potatoes and veg out of a soup bowl–and not just because it holds more gravy, either. I’m a firm believer in alchemy– of our ideas being all smootched up together and becoming more of the sum of their respective parts. Right now, my favorite band is Vampire Weekend. My husband informs me that they are getting a lot of flack for incorporating African rhythms into their pop. Oh, HORRORS! One musician being influenced by another? Say it ain’t so! I don’t understand that attitude. Isn’t it just the greatest and most respectful compliment? To be so excited and inspired by something that you have to make it a part of your life? I’ll never understand how people could look at the vast smorgasbord of ideas, flavors and traditions available to us and limit themselves to one palate. This weekend I will be making single sized enjera for my family. I found the recipe online, of course. African bread, in a crepe pan in MINNESOTA! Is this a great world or what?