Moving The Usual Around!

“Squeaks, I read about creativity and I found a way to move our writing into high gear,” Momanita explained.

“Let me take a wild guess,” I said. “You Googled again.”

My hootman Googled again. Now I was on an ottoman.

To other hootmans this sounded like squeals and whistles, but not to Momanita. She MOSTLY understood cockatiel speak. I MOSTLY understood hootman talk.

“It’s easy. We’ll move the usual around so it’s unusual. Who wants usual?”

“Moving the usual around is hard. It takes a long time to make something usual. I want usual.”

Momanita carried my usual writing nest up the usual stairs to the usual loft to the unusual overstuffed chair. She placed my writing nest on the ottoman.


“This is a good idea,” she said as she settled back into the cushions.

I fluffed my feathers. 

“Wait! Why aren’t you sitting by the desk? Why isn’t my writing nest on the printer? This is a bad idea.”

Momanita thought a clipboard would help with writing, All I saw were circles.

“I read that moving to a different place to write will stimulate creativity. So, I thought we’d try it today.”

“You talk to cockatiels! I think you’re creative enough!”

I missed perching on my writing nest roof. 

I missed seeing the lake from the desk window.

“Here we go, Squeaky Pie!” Momanita held a clipboard and pen. “I’ll use these instead of my laptop. That should stimulate my imagination.”


“Your imagination is fine!”

I don’t like change.

I usually saw clouds blow across the sky from the desk window.

“Simple changes like brushing your teeth with the other hand forces you out of the usual.”

I don’t have teeth. I don’t have hands.

I want my usual place back.

I want to see the lake and clouds.


I climbed down from my writing nest to find the Cheerios.

“I didn’t forget about your snack, Squeaks,” said Momanita.

“Finally, something usual!”

Momanita arranged Cheerios on the back of her chair in a row. 

I climbed down from my writing nest and scaled the back of the chair and crunched them to crumbs. 

Momanita tapped her pen against the clipboard. 


I crunched the Cheerios into crumbs.

“There are TWO windows by the chair?”

I didn’t see the lake, but I saw a pear tree. I stretched to see what else I could see.

“The new ideas can come any time now.” Momanita fidgeted.

“A cardinal chirped to me!” I squealed back.

He really liked the sunflower seeds in the feeder. Cardinal speak was easier to understand than hootman talk. 

Momanita drew circles on the paper.

“There’s a pair of mourning doves sunning on the roof!”

They just splashed in the backyard pond.  

“Maybe I should have stayed at the desk.”

“I can see clouds from this window, too! Let’s sit in the chair to write from now on!”

“Writing in the chair is a bad idea, Squeaks.”

Being an inspiration was exhausting!

“Look, a red-headed woodpecker! Writing in the chair is a good idea!”

“Changing the usual didn’t help me find writing ideas.”

I looked over the edge into Momanita’s lap. No notes on the clipboard.

“Changing the usual is harder than it looks,” said Momanita.

“And THAT’S what you should write about!” I squealed.

“I know!” said Momanita. “I’ll write about how it takes time to adjust to changes.”

“Wait! So that means when we sit in this unusual place often enough, we’ll adjust to it. Then the unusual will become usual? We’ll need to move again?”


Finally the new ideas arrived!

“And that change never stops,” said Momanita. “We’ll always need to move the usual around to stay interested and to become more interesting.” Momanita jotted notes.

Finally she got it!”

Being an inspiration was exhausting!

“So, when we move the usual writing spot again, could it be by a window?”

I’m not sure she got what I said because Momanita MOSTLY understood cockatiel speak and I MOSTLY understood hootman talk.

2 thoughts on “Moving The Usual Around!

  1. I was looking for MarkTwain’s essay about finding inspiration but could not find it. So here is something. 5 Boring Ways to Become More Creative (markmanson.net)

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