How to Look at Things

Today I ended up thinking about Betty a lot. I decided she needed something – something to make her special but also to underscore her loneliness. Because Betty is very lonely, and it’s one of the things that make her compelling and relatable. She doesn’t fully belong in the world she’s been cast in. So I decided that Betty needs to have her own unobtrusive way to escape. I decided to give her a superpower of sorts, and it lies in her talent for being especially observant, for looking at things in a way that helps her truly see them. Her mental escape from a life that’s dull and oppressive are the details she notices about even the most mundane objects. The way the light falls on a glass of ice tea, the way the droplets of condensation on the glass each contain a sparkle and a patch of darkness. Betty perceives the world the way an artist would, truly paying attention, noticing things. She’s not able to translate this talent into creating anything she likes, and it frustrates her. But still, her inner world is rich with the complex visuals of experiences most people gloss over. She can find comfort in fine-tuning her observation of everything that surrounds her, and it helps her achieve a blissful state of solitude even when she’s surrounded by other people – especially those whose company she doesn’t enjoy. It’s like having a secret playroom to withdraw to.

Also, the bottlebrush trees are in full bloom and today was a legitimately warm day. I discovered a car wash in Montrose where they have swings outside for people to use while waiting for their vehicles. There was also a beautiful white cat inside.

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