Don’t Tempt the Narrative

I sat down to reconcile the bank statement this month feeling confident that all my records were up-to-date and complete.

“This is going to be e-” I said out loud, and stopped myself short.

For suddenly I felt the dark, cold, grim shadow of Narrative sweeping overhead, circling in for the kill.

It took half an hour to reconcile most of the statement.

It took three and a half hours past that to track down two small discrepancies between the bank records and the credit card processor’s reports.

Halfway through, in a fit of frustration (and mostly just in a fit), I shook my fist at the ceiling and yelled “What could possibly go wrong?!”

I probably made it worse on myself, but at least I took a stand, spat in Narrative’s eye, and dared it to Do Its Worst.

Which it did.

Lesson: Even when you’re 99% sure that your life is really happening in real life, and not between book covers, don’t tempt the Narrative. We all know what happens to Those People in movies – the ones who open the closed doors, who don’t listen to all the warnings to Don’t Go Near The Castle, who begin a war with the jaunty promise that It Will All Be Over By Christmas. Don’t be one of Those People.

The powers of Narrative are strange and mysterious… and after four hours of bank statement battle, extremely frustrating. Save yourself some drama and Tylenol and don’t tempt the Narrative.

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