I have never been very good with secrets.
They make me feel nervous and a bit guilty which means my mind freezes and I say awkward things when the conversation strays anywhere near the topic.
I’m like one of those fainting goats that – when excited or scared – freeze, stiffen and collapse for a few seconds. Cute, but a little inconvenient.
When I was younger, it was worse.
If I was guilty – instead of freezing and falling to the ground – I would dob myself in before I could enjoy whatever it was I was keeping secret.
There I was, with a few ‘borrowed’ coins wrapped into my sweaty little hand, imagining the ice cream bounty I would get from the milk bar, when Mum wandered by.
“Hello, dear. What are you up to in there?”
“OK! IT WAS JUST FIFTY CENTS AND I STOLE IT AND I’M SORRY, OK?”
In high school, hanging out on the oval, the teacher would wander past and say, “Lovely day, ladies. Enjoying your lunch?”
“ALL RIGHT, YES, IT’S OUR CIGARETTE BUT WE DON’T EVEN LIKE IT!. I’M SORRY!”
Once I was trying to get into a nightclub when I was underage. This was back in the day when you could get through the door with a borrowed driver’s licence and a pretend persona. But you couldn’t just walk in. There were questions to answer before you could pass muster. With a borrowed personality, one had to be creative with details and information – remembering your new star sign, imagining friends you had, what you did for a job, where you lived and what car you drove. It was just like Facebook, only back then fabricating such things was against the law.
I answered the bouncer’s questions in the same way soldiers respond to their drillmasters. To my relief, I got through and walked into the dark, thumping nightclub. The next words I heard were, “Turn her on her side and let her breathe.”
Unlike the fainting goat, I got up and danced. Unlike the poem, it was like everyone was watching.
So, I have had to keep a wide berth from the blog for a bit because I have a secret. Every time I went to write something, it went like this:
“This is a lovely wine that has upfront and lifted aromas of dark berries and HEY I GOT A CONTRACT TO WRITE A BOOK … that lead onto a seamless palate … FROM HARDIE GRANT IT’LL BE OUT NEXT YEAR… with a lovely structure, line and length … I’M SORRY THERE HAS BEEN A BLOG GAP BUT I JUST WROTE 25,000 WORDS FOR THE BOOK AND THAT WAS QUITE HARD! … This wine is a wonderful match with slow roasted lamb shoulder … OF COURSE I’LL KEEP POSTING, THANKS AGAIN FOR READING!”
Like I said, I have never been very good with secrets.