I've lived on the lip of insanity, wanting to know reasons, knocking on a door.|
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|Tuesday, November 22nd, 2016|
|Thursday, March 14th, 2013|
Out of the night that covers me,Black as the pit from pole to pole,I thank whatever gods may beFor my unconquerable soul.In the fell clutch of circumstanceI have not winced nor cried aloud.Under the bludgeonings of chanceMy head is bloody, but unbowed.Beyond this place of wrath and tearsLooms but the Horror of the shade,And yet the menace of the yearsFinds and shall find me unafraid.It matters not how strait the gate,How charged with punishments the scroll,I am the master of my fate:I am the captain of my soul.
I have a Dream:
I am happy to join with you today in what will go down in history as the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation.Five score years ago, a great American, in whose symbolic shadow we stand today, signed the Emancipation Proclamation. This momentous decree came as a great beacon light of hope to millions of Negro slaves who had been seared in the flames of withering injustice. It came as a joyous daybreak to end the long night of their captivity.But one hundred years later, the Negro still is not free. One hundred years later, the life of the Negro is still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination. One hundred years later, the Negro lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity. One hundred years later, the Negro is still languishing in the corners of American society and finds himself an exile in his own land. So we have come here today to dramatize a shameful condition.In a sense we have come to our nation's capital to cash a check. When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir. This note was a promise that all men, yes, black men as well as white men, would be guaranteed the unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.It is obvious today that America has defaulted on this promissory note insofar as her citizens of color are concerned. Instead of honoring this sacred obligation, America has given the Negro people a bad check, a check which has come back marked "insufficient funds." But we refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt. We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of opportunity of this nation. So we have come to cash this check -- a check that will give us upon demand the riches of freedom and the security of justice. We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of now. This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. Now is the time to make real the promises of democracy. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice. Now is the time to lift our nation from the quick sands of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood. Now is the time to make justice a reality for all of God's children.
It would be fatal for the nation to overlook the urgency of the moment. This sweltering summer of the Negro's legitimate discontent will not pass until there is an invigorating autumn of freedom and equality. Nineteen sixty-three is not an end, but a beginning. Those who hope that the Negro needed to blow off steam and will now be content will have a rude awakening if the nation returns to business as usual. There will be neither rest nor tranquility in America until the Negro is granted his citizenship rights. The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright day of justice emerges.But there is something that I must say to my people who stand on the warm threshold which leads into the palace of justice. In the process of gaining our rightful place we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred.We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. We must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence. Again and again we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force. The marvelous new militancy which has engulfed the Negro community must not lead us to a distrust of all white people, for many of our white brothers, as evidenced by their presence here today, have come to realize that their destiny is tied up with our destiny. They have come to realize that their freedom is inextricably bound to our freedom. We cannot walk alone.As we walk, we must make the pledge that we shall always march ahead. We cannot turn back. There are those who are asking the devotees of civil rights, "When will you be satisfied?" We can never be satisfied as long as the Negro is the victim of the unspeakable horrors of police brutality. We can never be satisfied, as long as our bodies, heavy with the fatigue of travel, cannot gain lodging in the motels of the highways and the hotels of the cities. We cannot be satisfied as long as the Negro's basic mobility is from a smaller ghetto to a larger one. We can never be satisfied as long as our children are stripped of their selfhood and robbed of their dignity by signs stating "For Whites Only". We cannot be satisfied as long as a Negro in Mississippi cannot vote and a Negro in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote. No, no, we are not satisfied, and we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream.I am not unmindful that some of you have come here out of great trials and tribulations. Some of you have come fresh from narrow jail cells. Some of you have come from areas where your quest for freedom left you battered by the storms of persecution and staggered by the winds of police brutality. You have been the veterans of creative suffering. Continue to work with the faith that unearned suffering is redemptive.Go back to Mississippi, go back to Alabama, go back to South Carolina, go back to Georgia, go back to Louisiana, go back to the slums and ghettos of our northern cities, knowing that somehow this situation can and will be changed. Let us not wallow in the valley of despair.I say to you today, my friends, so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal."I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.I have a dream today.I have a dream that one day, down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of interposition and nullification; one day right there in Alabama, little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.I have a dream today.I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together.This is our hope. This is the faith that I go back to the South with. With this faith we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. With this faith we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith we will be able to work together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day.This will be the day when all of God's children will be able to sing with a new meaning, "My country, 'tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing. Land where my fathers died, land of the pilgrim's pride, from every mountainside, let freedom ring."And if America is to be a great nation this must become true. So let freedom ring from the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire. Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York. Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies of Pennsylvania!Let freedom ring from the snowcapped Rockies of Colorado!Let freedom ring from the curvaceous slopes of California!But not only that; let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia!Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain of Tennessee!Let freedom ring from every hill and molehill of Mississippi. From every mountainside, let freedom ring.And when this happens, when we allow freedom to ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God's children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, "Free at last! free at last! thank God Almighty, we are free at last!"
Go placidly amidst the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons. Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story.Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit. If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain or bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals; and everywhere life is full of heroism.Be yourself. Especially, do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass.Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth. Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here.And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should. Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul. With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful.Strive to be happy.
Life,Grant me the serenityTo accept the things I cannot change;The courage to change the things that I can;And the wisdom to know the difference."
|Wednesday, June 13th, 2012|
|Monday, April 30th, 2012|
|The graham cracker was invented by a weird dude.
Sleep deprivation. Does it lead to delusional thinking? Is that a reasonable hypothesis?
Or am I just crazy?
Okay, what if we flip it?
Do delusional people, people with extremist and unusual or erratic thought patterns, do they tend to be sleep deprived?
Would they be more rational, or more capable of rationality, if they got better sleep?
Is this why the military runs so many types of exercise that causes massive sleep deprivation? Does it allow people to believe in and do crazier stuff?
I find most people are crazy. Most people are sleep deprived. I wonder if there's correlation.
Sometimes I question my father's view of the world. Even though it gave me a pretty damn fine starting point and my understanding has all these holes where the hand-me-down memes didn't fit.
What is it I need?
Some sort of decompression.
I need more sleep.
But I also need to unload something deeper, with these vivid bright images and feelings burned into my brain late at night from two days of some of the most beautiful country in the world.
Million-year-old Munching Marching Giant Million, Million Ton Caterpillars doesn't even begin to cover it.
The kind waitresses at Dennys.
The penny-pinchers at BMW motorcycles. That feeling of getting squeezed.
Putting my hand into a glove and having my thumb come out the hole. Feeling the tacky duct tape slicking to my palm as we tear across the desert.
The transition into the furnace of Death Valley.
Relief from pouring half a bottle of water down my front.
Dry in 20 minutes.
The look of fine dust, like chalkboard dust, covering the rims.
The feeling of silk whipping at my face, a cross-wind letting a hot loud blast through a gap in my visor.
Riding one-handed through an alien world for miles, with the air-plunger whitenoise cars pwumphing by wth their bug eyes.
Golf courses below the sea.
Golf courses in the middle of Death Valley, right out my window. And Canadian Super-Wolf UberCoyotes and the Canadian friendlies that conversation entails.
Ben and Jerry's with coffee in the morning and the best damn Strawberry milkshake at night, beer be damned.
For some reason, everything has tasted creamier lately. Even water. Even life itself. Life is creamier the past few weeks.
So I feel constipated a bit, from processing all these changes in my life and allowing any sort of contemplation from the outside, I cannot observe myself, or even recognize myself outside of myself.
And so I feel like a sleep-deprived interrogant and what do you call a person under interrogation anyway?
There is a lamp pointed at me and my food is drugged and I am starting to believe all the things they're telling me.
So I am looking forward to this weekend. Oh yes.
And I need to clear this part of my mind that is backing up and has no outlet and I guess blogging is that outlet.
|Wednesday, March 7th, 2012|
My name is Brad. I come from an Artist, and Engineer, and a biomedical science experiment in the farmland of NY's Hudson Valley. For a living, I concentrate energy from the sun in order to maintain homeostasis. Sometimes I work for a medical manufacturing company. I am pretty well in a continual state of awe at the world around me. I like trying to better understand how things work, how people work. I take pictures and I play music. I climb big rocks and hang out in the forest. Sometimes I read books or write words.
My challenge, like me, is complex. I have been diagnosed as having: depression; teenage malaise; chronic fatigue; sleep deprivation. But of course these things are all symptoms more than diseases. I have a whole list of possibly irrelevant symptoms, but the ones that most effect my life seem to be neurological in root. Brain fog, fatigue.
I'm Brad. I try to be well-balanced. I love to learn. I'm comfortable in contradiction. I want my slice of the American Dream, in pursuit of the greater good. I have become a professional telemark advertizer and also took up the extreme sport oftelemarket-alpinism, where I sold 42 deluxe luxury beach towels in one afternoon on the north face of Lhotse, without the use of supplemental oxygen.
*Please also send me a short bio for us to use in profiling you as an All-Star Team member – where you’re from, what you do for a living, your favorite hobbies, pets and/or significant others. In this bio, include your challenge, your epic win, and the history you have with this challenge, along with the answer to these three questions:
|Tuesday, February 14th, 2012|
A house is the home of the
heart of the
soul of the gathering
grasses the land
is the home of the
groves and the
through a family
only can make it
as far as the
unload or the
bestow and the
health of a house
or the health of a
mouse or the
health of the family therein
espoused is the
same as a
moment or the
tallest of tales
can be only
enshrined in the
heat of the
town is a house
is a home.
|Sunday, February 5th, 2012|
Superbowl Sunday. Awesome that I can connect a talk by Jane McGonigal with a talk by Ze Frank and a blog post by Allie Brosh and consider the amazing results if the three were to collaborate. Sad that I don't think anyone else could relate. Fucking stupid that I have to post to livejournal when I'm so excited because Allie got 4,000 comments on a blog post, such that commenters on her post got several comments in return from other people reading the responses...because nobody else I know would care.
One week to Princeton.
|Wednesday, January 18th, 2012|
|Trying to flush it out and make it into sense
Trying to force myself to write it down and give it meaning, while getting better at living in the moment by reliving it as the recent past...
Today was tricky. Too burned out to even be anxious, just enough reserve and dexedrine to make it through the day. Feel pretty good but a little tired, now.
Stood swimming by the x-rays trying out statistics with a couple guys who don't know any statistics, and I' don't know any, and I feel like I'm going to have to run for the bathroom any second now because my feeble processed-whey and doxycycline breakfast feels about ready to revisit and we're three guys in a dark room trying to discuss how nice the paint looks, but I'm about to puke and my brain is miswired so I can't even focus on them talking about something nobody can really see even probably on a good day.
And Chris tells me about his landlord and pumping out basements and pumping up the volume and a nosy neighbor from hell with a noise chip on his shoulder and everyone is now feeling their liberties are being violated and they're all taking each other to court. Even cheery Chris, who is smiling as he tells me this. He has to miss a half day of work. Alex can't find the files we need. Chris shouted fuck at his neighbor a bunch. He tells me about Sunday afternoons and private property and I'm really only trying to remember that Kinks melody now and picturing Chris trying to pluck it out on guitar and he's a pretty attractive guy and is that weird and fuck I should be paying attention and I feel like Alex and I are still a little rough but he can be really hard to read. I wonder absently about professionalism, another space-out while someone else is talking saying something probably important and probably wrong. Better luck next time.
A needle slit, from a 26 gauge stainless steel back-cut japanese needle into a polyurethane membrane is a beautiful thing. Clean. Reminds me of the singularity.
The singularity is this one image always in my head that contradicts itself. It is rough but smooth, light but dark. It is like a tesselation, like sane dunes with ripples or snowpack at night. It is somewhat like skin but more like test membrane for needle punctures.
And Ted. We did a lot today. That was an amazing conversation. I see a lot of myself in Primary Immune Deficiency. In Ted's story of not knowing what was wrong, trying to treat symptoms, being sick for weeks and weeks. And helping people.
And my dad says "Feedback On Results"
And who am I to disagree?
A new computer, a hand-made bed (not true, really, 2X4s are like Lincoln Logs for the young adult).
There is so much going on for me to process.
|Friday, October 28th, 2011|
|Lonely, 2.0 Redux
This journal is so old, it predates Lindsay being a critical part of my life.
I don't know why I'm feeling so depressed tonight. Let's go down the list.
I took a Concerta this morning, to try to avoid coffee. They usually don't work. This one didn't. I don't have any Dex in Monroe. Which reminds me...
I'm stuck in Monroe. I guess I could be working to get a ride to Beacon, but I don't really have the heart. There are a couple girls in Beacon I think I'd get along with. I should hit them up. But first I have to make it up there. My only opportunity would be early Monday morning. Oh well. Guess that will wait two weeks. Florida.
It snowed. It will be snowing this weekend. In October, expecting a foot of heavy snow. No truck.
I'm alone. I know all my female friends are off places, primarily Albany, partying for halloween. Of my male friends, the only sensitive chill ones are Dan and Vinnie. Dan's been strange lately, and I feel like things are a little off with Vinnie, so I didn't call him earlier, and now it's too late to really do anyhting. It's all about that regret. Nothing better than a feeling of loss to get you down.
I'm reading Jeffrey Eugenides. He always knows how to pull my heartstrings.
I went through a big developmental push, both at work and in my personal life. I am now a truck owner, but rapidly ran out of the benefits of vehicle ownership; in order: Getting Places, Helping People, Buying Things, Fixing Things. I can't go anywhere, it's broken. I can't help anyone, it's broken. I have nothing left to buy and not much to buy it with, as I've been hemorrhaging money to soften the blow of depression that I was trying to ignore. And then I was trying to fix a truck. But now I'm waiting for parts, so there's nothing left to fix.
I feel stagnated. And alone. I want to have someone creative around who I feel "gets" me. I feel like I've never had anyone who was super into the type of collaborative projects I always fantasize about. I want someone who just loves to savor life at the same speed as me, because my lens is so sensitive and wide, there is so much to see, that someone who thinks like me would invariably feel the same way but be looking at completely different things.
Things with Ash are super sad. We've devolved into some sort of money machine with occasional pity or empathy mode.
I know I am productive, and have been growing, but this is not the case so much socially, despite some efforts to that end, the hudson valley hasn't been working out for my kind of come-and-go internet-coordinated social style.
I never made it to Maine, either. And I haven't had sex or a girlfriend in months. Like, it's been half a year, just tearing calendar pages.
So, keep trucking. But I'm now going to "lose" two weeks from my personal goals, pursuing lifestyle sustenance. Work, family visits. Good stuff, but I don't know that it will open up my world.
But who knows, often my greatest growths come out of no expectations.
High hopes low expectations. Envision both the best and worst case scenarios of any given situations. Give the beast a face.
|Saturday, July 16th, 2011|
|I don't want to talk about Elvis,
No! It's too mellow!
Where to from here? Where is my "out"? I don't feel the progress I was so sure of before. I feel like I finally get close to a network, to some kind of escape from the life I used to lead, and it sucks me back in. I fear that no matter how much things change, they'll stay the same, because there's a cerrtain system that works for how I feel, and it's not a very sociable system. Loner should be a four-letter word.
Where do I find my spark again, over and over, always burning out?
|Thursday, July 7th, 2011|
|Saturday, July 2nd, 2011|
|The Long Thing
The old man sat Indian style, like a bow-legged cowboy. Arthritis made him delicate, as he leaned forward slowly to remove each pick-up stick he practically floated within the carpet. All the different colors smeared together in his tired eyes, his body lurched with tremens like overloaded machinery. His transparent hands grasped at straws. But he thrilled. The sheer joy of discovery at the obstacle before him was more valuable than perfect health or comfort or even success could be to him. He knew his powerlessness before God, he know that all he could do was take every challenge, every obstacle as best he knew how. He understood his life to be an infinite number of moments, impossible moments, which would be meaningless to collect. He simply tried to be as aware as possible of their passage. The moments flowed through him, and he leaned forward once more, disturbing the pile and losing his turn for the thousandth time, to himself, giving him the opportunity to try again. Once more he dipped his hand to gauge the current. “There is no do,” he thought to himself. “There is only try.”
|Monday, May 9th, 2011|
He lost the faith of his convictions.
|Monday, April 4th, 2011|
|Letter to a dating site girl.
Remember that time...
I met you in the bar upstate, down by the old airstrip, back when crazy one-eyed Miggs was still running it? You looked so out of place, I had to figure out who this lady was with the long golden hair and a cast-off glance that sized me up like a cardboard cutout. So I sat down next to you, and you ignored me, itching to catch any flight as long as it was out of that town. You were tapping your foot and willing at the clock. I said "You just rob a bank or something?"
And I'd just done a long ferry flight with a Cessna from Mexico so I was sunburnt and dusty, and dehydrated. And two nights ago trying to relieve myself after too much tequila I had an unfortunately physical conversation with a cactus- so you rolled your eyes at me and said "You just get mauled by a bear?" and I laughed and sat down next to you and you warmed to my smile.
So I bought you a warm beer and we toasted to beers, bears and banks and after about fifteen more apiece we were in tears with laughter, drunk under the bar, mopping the floor with our shirtbacks and Miggs poking at us with a stiff broom. By the time we made it out to the airstrip and I'd fumbled a handheld out of the flight bag on the handlebar of my Sportster and I helped you up the oil drums onto the roof of the old hangar and clicked the lights on so they twinkled as we swayed and I swear to God if it didn't take us each twenty tries rolling down to the weedy grass with a thump and a cry of pain and laughter...
By the time we were holding each other upright and the night was cool and the crickets came out and I taught you to guess the temperature by their chirping...
By the time we were able to stop the world spinning on the damn corrugated tin hangar roof and properly appreciate the twinkle of blue taxi lights off into the yonder and the sky opened full of pinholes into heaven...
We'd already hatched out scheme. I'd told you about the super-intelligent bears in Yellowstone and Yosemite, that were teaching each other tricks to open dumpsters and could remember the model and color of a car because the last one had food in it, that were super-huge and never had to hibernate because they ate people's trash all winter.
And you'd told me about your friend who worked at a bank, and told you about how people think of bank robbery as a long-gone thing from an American golden-era, but bank robberies happen all the time still. And your friend said they usually get caught but there were bandits that hit banks across Virginia in the 90's and were never found.
And so we talked about Pavlov, and circus bears, and we figured we could probably pull it off...
Remember that time we trained grown bears to rob banks by rewarding them with beer?
|Friday, March 11th, 2011|
The day before yesterday was Wednesday,
the traditional middle of a traditional week.
You rode your motorcycle in the dark.
You had an accident.
You were trying to muster yourself into something corrigible.
In that way you were likening yourself to breakfast.
You didn't eat breakfast.
You planned to ride.
You were on the couch that is so comfortable it always manages to hurt your back.
It was a hard time motivating. You were sentimentally attached to that couch.
You eventually got going, assembled your belongings, your accoutrement.
You went outside and warmed the machine, smoking a cigarette.
You were out of your gourd and your housemate came up to you.
She offered back your headphones but you didn't have a listening device.
You asked her not to take things without asking when she could have easily asked.
You gladly accepted that she get your iPod so you could listen to the beginning of Whipping Post.
But you were impatient. You tried to quell the fear wallowing up inside.
You meant welling but you didn't feel quite sure enough of yourself.
Not as sure of your welling as the Tsunami that would rip through a large chunk of coastal Japan yesterday.
You breathed purposefully and tried to reconnect with the real world.
You failed, and you got onto the motorcycle anyway, thinking how good and strong the cigarette made you, that you'll have to quit soon or else you'll get addicted. It's probably okay, you only ever mix that pleasure with the least pleasant, most difficult forced-runs on the motorcycle, runs which seem to come with ever-increasing frequency, practically an onslaught since you got back from traveling. But it still probably balances, the good and the bad, so you won't get addicted. It's dumb logic like that that failed your best friend back in highschool, you remember. You were too square to get to him. You wanted to relate to everyone so you took to defacing your identity into some sort of amorphous blob that could relate to anyone. Fuck it, you were pretty alone already anyhow.
But he ended up smoking cigarettes anyway, and now because a motorcycle adventurer recommended it to you and nothing else works you do too. But only when riding. And twice recreationally.
And now there's a wall of traffic, and you curse cars, and the train schedule, and your own lack of motivation, and all the tiny factors that fuel the lump welling up in your throat. So you squeeze your right knee against the bike as if it were a horse, and you click down a ear and power the u-turn with an almost imperceptible slip of the front tire, and try another route.
The highway, all of it, is blocked by an accident, and now the music is too loud in your ears and you are totally insulated in gauze and armor from the rest of the world. So you wait in line like everyone else, and stare at the policemen. You siphon your way through serpentine passages, roads much too full and intermittently swarmed by stinging emergency vehicles. You are sucked along by the masses, which you yearn to be free of.
Finally you make it to the interstate. The Hamilton Fish bridge. You race across it, but your fear at feeling this way, at feeling so detached, worse than you have in a long, long time, allows you to crave familiarity. You take the old route back, the slow one. Traffic be damned, your heart pounds against the glow of your electric vest. You think of playing music. Of making it with your own hands. You picture your instrument coddled at your destination in smooth nylon. It is what keeps you going in a relatively safe and sane manner.
You are still too detached, even alone, twisting along route 94 in the gathering dusk.
You race the engine hoping your already taxed heard can somehow still reach your disconnected brain. Powering through. Each light you are stopped at, you are cursing. You feel the desperate urge to flee, flee, flee!
You take George Clooney's escape route, and you picture horses blown up by lightning, the smell of the flesh. You smell the burnt upholstery of a car and still-smoldering tires and hoses.
Clove road, so familiar to you, feels like an alien monster. You turn off onto Otterkill, thinking like a Dutchman, and you pull into the hiker's lot. You momentarily ponder calling for help. There's nobody who really could. You are suffering, you realize with dismay. You have the intent to be reassured by the Viaduct, its looming presence and age, its fixed routine and purpose, will give you comfort.
It only looks small, uncared-for, dingy, unkempt, and antiquated. You photograph it anyway, realizing you've lit a second cigarette, even in the wind which took you five tries with the Bic, and you've never photographed with a cigarette before, and your brain has a really agonizing time getting your fingers to work the controls and oh god your hands are shaking an awful lot. The worst is over, you tell yourself. It gets easier now. You rode through the city and all its signs and lights and angry traffic. Now this is the night, in the country. Your country, your road, your machine, your schedule. You have control.
You capture the last of the dying light with your shaking hands and cigarette mouth and bleary eyes and unsteady balance. You might be a moonwalker as you stumble on soft crackling rough-shod ground, back down the hill to the bike. The wind has frozen your hands and stopping didn't cleary you up or thaw you out as you had hoped. You realize the temperature is dropping rapidly, and you are alone in the dark. You snub the cigarette against the bike and fight into your helmet, your gloves, start the bike and plug-in, crank up the electric heat.
You are woozy. You are disconnected. You are alone. Slowly. Ok, quickly, desperately, tearingly you spin round the loose parking lot. But then, you ease out. Easy. Slow. Watch your speed. Everything must be deliberate. The racing cars, a few feet from your death, evoke no emotional impact whatsoever. Do it all by the book. Spacing, pacing, positioning. Funny, you are so different from what they teach you, that routines are the last thing to fall back on in high stress. You retreat to a different part of the brain. Everything must be thought, no intuited.
You find a slow-moving car to follow, thank god. You bless the big taillights, the shiny bumper. It gets you to 208, down to Museum Village road and the flashing light. You turn. You ease your way home, a little faster now, desperate for it to be over with. It's not even your home. Hasn't been for a decade.
You pull up the long hill, laying back onto the throttle, then up the drive. Park, and you wish you could feel relief, maybe you even do a little, but mostly you just feel unwell. You don't really know what is wrong but you think it's something inside yourself.
And today is Friday. You have two parties to go to. You have to get back on the bike. You have to do it again.
|Monday, March 7th, 2011|
|Thirty-One entries ago,
I hit 1,000 on Livejournal.
But I'm going to sleep instead of writing about that. Let's just say it was a really nice day. Who can ask for more?
|Friday, February 18th, 2011|
I was very pleased to get a pep email from Aaron in my slightly-grayer-that-usual hour. And now that I'm rather healthy and jolly feeling (if insomniatic) it was fantastic to be able to flip through Ashley's modified (mutilated and recreated) copy of Emerson's Nature and talk with her about it. Reminded me, of Thoreau when he's tolerable:
"The universe is wider than our views of it.
Yet we should oftener look over the tafferel of our craft, like curious passengers, and not make the voyage like stupid sailors picking oakum. The other side of the globe is but the home of our correspondent.
The surface of the earth is soft and impressible by the feet of men; and so with the paths which the mind travels. How worn and dusty, then, must be the highways of the world, how deep the ruts of tradition and conformity! I did not wish to take a cabin passage, but rather to go before the mast and on the deck of the world, for there I could best see the moonlight amid the mountains. I do not wish to go below now."
And so, with that, some work, some life, seeking purity in health by living an examined life, and then back to Maine.
|Tuesday, February 8th, 2011|
A long time ago, I made a promise to keep it honest on Livejournal. Basically, it's my emo-outlet, and my public safe place. Now with three other similar things, I find this is still the one to fit that mood. But I'm feeling a need to be positive here, as opposed to cryptic, artistic, or defiant.
It is a beautiful day out and I think traveling, without planning, is finally getting to me. But on reflection I cannot help but be enormously thankful for all my experiences. And this was infinitely more successful than my Las Vegas experience. Still, I can't ignore this big knot of anxiety that has welled up in me these last two days. But again, on reflection, this situation is awfully similar to Las Vegas, so it's fair of me to feel that trepidation. The fear of being alone. And it's a specific type of alone, where I am in an environment I need to shut out.
In the woods, I can be alone and at peace. I absorb the world around me. I might go through intense emotional experiences, but there is always a certain control in the elegant simplicity of my lifestyle and environment. Maybe I can treat the city the same way?
This trip has clearly been a growth experience. Go with the flow, try to avoid defining everything. Stop qualifying the future. That's a big one. Living in awareness of the moment. I guess that's a big part of it too, is feeling like I'm not using my time wisely. What will I have to take away from this experience?
I have, it is true, mostly memories of doing stuff. But that is ok. I also have a lot of experiences pitching CBT, the Primer, Science, to people unfamiliar with the subjects, to people I respect or admire. I have practice living an unplanned lifestyle, and better understand the pitfalls therein. Man, Tally really did trip me up, though. And I sure did feel weird (unwell) yesterday.
On to the next adventure!
|Friday, February 4th, 2011|
|Trying to find the words...
Stapling clouds to walls or reabsorbing stale-stabbing urine.
I'm starting to feel that hole itching into me, again. It's something deeper than a mere energy issue. I guess it's got to be the fear. Pavlov's rainbow. Gravity's dog. To retrain myself to be better, but not superior. Just to fulfill dreams and marry goals.
Just thinking about a feeling... It's honestly astonishing what it's like to be in civilization without interaction. The rapid decay of the mind, the cloying stench of something wrong. Oh, and it's cold! My feet haven't been warm all day, a bastion of infection and their inevitable sorrows.
So I press on to squeeze every last dime out of the bank account. Money is only as tight as a stuck noose, or a hot guitar string.
Tomorrow. Tomorrow I book a flight. Tomorrow I call Peggy. Flip that order. I think I'm as ready as I'll ever be. I think I am, I think I am, I think I am...
Sad. I felt so uplifted by Karla. But despite her ravishing successes, it appears they come at high cost.
I strive to be as reasonable and rational as possible. I don't want any drama, despite the drama wanting me. I accept it as a necessary part of learning to be close with others. If others can feel the same, then I want them in my life. I don't want a dull or emotionless life. I just want a little understanding. I don't know what you're thinking! Assumption, makes asses of us all.
Doing pretty good. Scared of the future? Business. Programming. CBT.
The things I need? I suppose I need to get back into an "education" mindset. How?
Strengthen my knowledge of diet and sleep. What more could a growing boy need?
Look into CBT workshops, and develop a better datalog system. Smartphone? Might be a powerful tool. CBT app? FAT and 1-10 scales and all?
Music, Climbing. Add to these? Yoga? Big Brother?
And of course, a social life. A nice, happy, challenging one.
Workaholicism be damned!