Bathtub Power

Regular listeners to National Public Radio report “driveway moments,” features so compelling that they must hear the story all the way to the end.  They arrive at home in the midst of such a story and sit in the driveway to hear the conclusion on the car radio.  

I have bathtub moments. When I get stuck in a writing project, usually a short story, I fill the tub with a hot bubble bath and settle in to relax. Often, the solution to my writing problem forms in my well-steamed mind. I climb out of the tub, wrap myself in a towel, and dribble wet footprints down the hallway in my search for paper and pencil. My bathtub moments have become something of a joke around our house.

Last week I was pleased to learn I am not the only bathtub thinker. My husband caught the story in the History Channel’s Modern Marvels feature about The Manhattan Project. Hungarian-American Leó Szilárd was a brilliant, if somewhat eccentric, physicist who helped develop U.S. nuclear weapons during World War II. His habit of stopping to take a hot bath when he was stuck on a technical problem drove his Manhattan Project co-workers crazy but, he usually returned with a solution. When I reviewed a BIOGRAPHICAL CHRONOLOGY OF SZILARD I found common ground. He was a short story writer.

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Published in: on October 2, 2008 at 1:07 pm  Comments (1)  
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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. I’ll have to try this!


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