Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Kvetching about Kvetching


Years ago I gave my mother a hand-painted mug that said NO KVETCHING.
My mother is no longer with us, but the mug is on our kitchen counter.

No Kvetching. What was I thinking?!?

At a recent writerly event, a marketing-type admonished the audience not to be negative in public. Chin up, life is wonderful and I’m doing wonderfully wonderful. This is what you’re to put out. Save the complaining for private conversations not taped by the FBI, and the angst, for your dark fiction. If you don’t write dark fiction, put it in your diary. But make sure the diary is one of those with a lock on it.

And here I was, with my kvetchy and angsty BLOG. Really.

What agent will want to work with that girl? Which crazy editor will ever take on a back ‘n forth with this complaining camper? And where are the readers who will invest twelve minutes or twelve dollars on a negative nagging ninny?

Confession: at the end of the day, in the deep recesses of my soul, I am a “G-d’s in his heaven, all’s right with the world” person. But that’s at the end of the day, and at the end of my stories. During the day is kvetching-time.

My ancestors were not of the "if you can't say something nice, say nothing at all" school. Rather, my grandma told me that if someone only ever says nice things, their credibility should be suspect. With this legacy, you can understand the tradition of Kvetch.
If I can’t offer authenticity in my blog, I really don’t know why anyone would read it. Wait, is anyone out there?

Go ahead, kvetch to me, honey. You’ll feel better, I will feel better, and in the end it’ll work out just as it should.

 

15 comments:

  1. Funny post,I totally agree even if I had to look for the word:)I didn't know the word:)

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  2. The things I could kvetch about don't really matter. They are just thorns in the flesh, but a good list might be: the price of gas, the neighbors who think my yard makes a fine dog toilet, my wrinkles, my erratic sleep, the drippy faucet, my teeny tiny royalty check from last year, and the dang hot weather. thorns...yep...thorns

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  3. So true. And honestly, I feel some of my most negative blog posts have generated th most supportive, heartfelt responses. So I don't really think a little kvetching now and then can ever be a bad thing.

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  4. Rather, my grandma told me that if someone only ever says nice things, their credibility should be suspect.<--This made me laugh out loud because it's probably true. ;)

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  5. I'm guessing kvetching is whining? =) And, hey, sometimes we all have to get it out of our systems, right?

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  6. We all need to kvetch every now and then, Mirka. And if it surfaces in your blog from time to time, it just shows the rest of the world what we writers already know--that the best way (for us)to work through problems is through writing. I do love the mug! = )

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  7. Some of my best writing comes from being vulnerable ... and some of it involves kvetching. Not much though ...

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  8. I like you're grandmother's thinking. =) Your blog should reflect who you are, and we do all kvetch once in awhile.

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  9. We all whine on occasions so I guess it's normal?

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    1. I should have been clearer that the issue is *public* whining/complaining.
      The ever-cheerful up-up-and-away public persona just won't stick to me... Nor do I find such very convincing, from others.

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  10. When somebody is "up" ALL the time, you begin to feel you're not being allowed any glimpses under the surface. A "bit" of kvetching is welcome because it comes across as honesty and a willingness to be real.

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  11. Oh, it's public whining. I was about to say I kvetch all the time in my freewriting book! Okay, so for me, I used to kvetch quite a bit (consciously, unconsciously) but I didn't like it. I've always preferred the image of a gaunt cowboy drinking quietly in a corner. I still kvetch, ('Yeah, I'm a bit tired ... yeah, that student's work attitude is making me frustrated ...') just not as much as before. Like you, I can't stand people who are 100% chirpy/perky/cheery 98% of the time. I just want them to breathe.

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    1. Hey, Caludine- gimme' five, sister-in-kvetch!

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  12. People who are positive one hundred percent of the time make me feel like there's something wrong with me. I like knowing you're human. You have good days and bad days just like me. It's often through the kvetching that we find common ground.

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  13. I agree with what others have said. If a person is always cheerful and acting as if everything's great, then I figure they won't be able to relate to my problems and therefore I'm unlikely to seek them out as a friend. But, in general, I think it's good to try to focus on the positives in life as much as possible.

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