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April 04, 2005: The things we say

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The email has been sitting in my box for two weeks, and prior to that it was another week or two of knowing they were expecting *something* before I sent the query off to the board to try to narrow down what, exactly, they were looking for. Write a bio about yourself, they said. But what does that mean? How long? What sort of information? One or two sentences? A full paragraph? Tell me what you want so I will then know exactly what I can spend the next few weeks dithering about until I finally can't stand it anymore and just do it.

The problem, you see, is that while I can write about anything else, and do it fairly well, I have a very hard time writing about myself. I suppose that statement comes out a little odd, considering I'm writing these words to post into a journal that's now in its sixth year of entries about me, but this sort of writing is different. I can be myself here. I can be funny (or at least try). I can be casual. I can be introspective. But most importantly, in this journal I do not have to try to be professional or formal or important. I can just be ordinary me.

Writing a bio for yourself, no matter how short, is an entirely different matter. Because what they really want is for you to write about yourself in a different way. Make the words look formal. Make *you* look formal. And a bio for a church curriculum isn't exactly the place for self-deprecating humor, no matter how much I might think such a composition would be improved with a little interjection of lightheartedness.

Today, though I finally sat down, held my breath, and hastily wrote it out. I wandered around the house trying to think of the best place to take a picture of myself (did I mention they also wanted a picture?) without having it come out like a police mug shot. In the end I sat in one of the chairs in the library and Richard snapped a shot of me in front of one of our huge shelves full of books. It wasn't until I was cropping and removing the red eye (because what would a picture of me be without the red eye - sigh) that I realized we'd posed me right in front of Richard's collection of religious texts. How appropriate.

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