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The Respective Pros and Cons of Using Your Imagination

Good morning, class! Please sit down. Today I’d like to talk about the pros and cons, and some uses for, having a bold and occasionally scary imagination. Okay, I’m only an aspiring writer, so you’re not a class – actually you’re just a couple of battered cuddly toys stained with lipstick and ramen. But I can dream.

The first pro of having a great imagination is, of course, using it in situations where you might be nervous about something that’s about to happen. Just kidding, there’s no “might” about it – you’re so nervous that you think you’re either going to pass out or bite your own tongue off, both of which are unnecessary. When you walk into a room filled with people, simply redress them in your mind. Here’s an example: the old lady in the corner of the coffee shop in which I am writing this would look SO much better in a tube top and a miniskirt, finished off with some neon-green eyeshadow. Or, the acne-riddled teenager at the counter needs to get rid of his old, mangy sweats and replace them with a pinstriped suit and a tie printed with pictures of Homer Simpson. Remember, while it is rather fun to redress people – and here’s a con of having an awesome imagination – give the speech you were supposed to give or sing the song you were supposed to sing, or you’ll be left at the front of the room, everyone silently staring at you while you squint at a member of the audience and laugh to yourself.

If you would like to record anything particularly vivid that you imagined, you can use one of two methods: the first being sitting down in front of a notebook or computer and calmly typing or writing everything you remember imagining. The second, of course, is scribbling on the back of a Waterstones receipt with a dying pen as your train slows down at your stop. Under these circumstances, someone else’s briefcase is banging into your leg and one of your contact lenses has popped out, rendering you half-blind. I prefer to use the first method, but the second method has become a way of life.

One of the bigger issues of having a huge, extravagant imagination is being a writer, which is both a pro and a con. It’s a pro when you sit at your desk and write something that makes you feel like the late William Shakespeare (it’s also a pro if your name happens to be Joanne Kathleen Rowling). However, it’s also a con – when you look at your clock and see that it’s 3 a.m. and you spent the entire night jotting random words on pieces of paper and then seeing if your throwing technique has improve by trying to get it in the bin, this becomes apparent very quickly. It’s also a con when you realise that the lifestyle of a writer can be summed up in three easy words – Tesco, rain and expectations. Ew.  

Emilie Eisenberg

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