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Another day lost to the rambling nonsense from the roaming mind of an overworked college student. I spent my day walking the zig zag paths that cross campus, admiring the flow of people oblivious to my presence. That's the way it always is, just as I see no one who does not cross my line of vision, and then they are as quickly forgotten as not. It bothers me sometimes, all the lives I see unfolding before me while knowing nothing more than the fact that they are there. All the faces look the same. Ears to cell phones, headbands and pony tails, high heels, trench coats, mirrored sunglasses. Too much eyeliner. The superficial things that strike me as I run between classes. Wow, he's taller than the tree he's standing by. Damn, her head barely reaches my elbow. Nice shoes.

Class ended early two times out of six today, and late the rest. Thankfully the second early (and final) dismissal was a notably long one, as I finished the day at 2:30 instead of 5. That was promising.

I wandered over to the caf to get some food, had to go all the way to South Quad since it was past normal hours. I waited patiently, hidden behind my sunglasses, then handed the chef-of-the-afternoon my order. He started a conversation, I followed along for a bit. I think my shirt's neckline was the object of his gaze, and perhaps the cause of interest in the first place. I tried hard not to look down, because I knew it couldn't be that bad. Being the stick that I am there's not much to show anyway.

My food was done faster than ever, and I drank my red Mountain Dew while reading Children of Dune, lost in bliss for two hours. It was the first time I'd touched a book of leisure in months. It was fascinating. I could barely tear myself away long enough to clear the table and head back to my dorm.

As I was rummaging through my hard drive (as I tend to do when bored), I came across an essay I had written for a long-forgotten humanities class back in high school. The purpose of it eludes me, as it does not seem like a traditional assignment, but here it is nonetheless. It matched the day's pensive mood:

At the age of fifteen, I was committed to a mental hospital in hopes of controlling several life-threatening disorders. The entire point of my treatment was to reevaluate the coping mechanisms I had been using in the past in order to deal with stress, worry, and other generally over-common teenage emotions. I had gotten so used to ruthlessly striving for perfection that anything less seemed to be complete and utter failure.

One day, I asked myself a simple question – why did I need to have such high standards for myself? My expectations for other people were relatively normal. I didn’t expect every person I met to have a 4.0 and be almost six feet tall while only weighing ninety pounds. I didn’t think everyone should punish himself or herself for eating more than fifty calories a day. Why just me?

I thought about what my childhood was like, thinking that perhaps the answer lay buried in half-forgotten memories I was unable to recall without a great deal of concentration. My earliest memories are of birthday parties, babysitter’s houses, and relatives sleeping on couches. I can remember my brother as a little toddler, waddling around on short, stubby legs and holding onto the coffee table to keep from falling. I remember playing Cabbage Patch dolls with my older neighbor, and trading their clothes until we forgot what belonged to who. I remember playing with GI Joes, hanging out of two-story windows just because my friend told me to, and picking my cat up from the Humane Society. I remember my grandpa dying in a car accident and moving twice and going to Disney World. There was nothing unnatural about my childhood, so I decided to look elsewhere.

What about communication with my family? Well, there really wasn’t any. I refused to talk to them for months while I was in the hospital. I only wrote letters to friends, wrote in my journal, and thought about how much of a failure I was at living. I tried to do homework until my lowered brain function wouldn’t allow it. Was I doing this to myself in order to tell them something? Was I trying to say, "look at me, I have feelings and I have needs," or was I trying to say something along the lines of "see, look what you made me do"? Did I need to be perfect in order to prove to them that I worth their time? I knew they loved me. I knew they cared. I knew they appreciated and admired my scholastic accomplishments. I also knew they were incredibly busy people who had tremendously important jobs and could never come home in time to cook dinner for a daughter starving for attention.

But was that really why I was sick? I didn’t want to place the blame on anyone other than myself, since it was due to my own decisions and actions that I had ended up where I was. Did I need to prove to myself that I was worth taking care of? By almost dying, was I trying to see how far I could neglect my basic human needs in order to see if I was really alive in the first place?

All these questions spinning through a mind barely capable of maintaining a heart rate; I spent my days in a wheelchair fearing a heart attack, thinking about why I couldn’t just give in and eat something. My pulse rate was dangerously slow; by blood pressure dropped to an average of fifty over sixty. I was bedridden, kept on IVs, and threatened to be fed through a tube if I did not start eating on my own within twenty-four hours. My body continued to waste away while I did nothing but think. I went to hospitals in three different states, saw dozens of doctors, but none of it was really happening to me. I didn’t speak, I didn’t react; I simply didn’t care.

Then I realized what I was doing. Why did I need to punish myself like this? Because I could. Because I had the control to make myself do whatever my mind wanted. I finally had complete power over what I did and what I didn’t do. So I thought to myself, why am I still here? I proved I can do it, and now it’s time to prove I can undo it just as well.

I spent five months of my life trying to find the answer to that question. Today, I am alive and healthy. I am one of the few people who can say I survived the disease that kills more victims than any other mental disorder. I am recovered, and I am happy. I can’t say the same for my fellow patients I went through therapy with. Not a single one of them made it. All are still deep within the clutches of depression, their eating disorder, and the misery they have come to call life.

Why was I chosen to survive? This is the question I will spend the rest of my life trying to answer.

The bottom has fallen out.

Yesterday, I determined that our former roommate did, in fact, fuck us and take off to Ottawa. No rent was paid, and there are a good number of electronic devices that haven't been seen since he left.

After discovering this, I also determined that my bank account balance is now over a thousand dollars, negative. I discovered this trying to buy bus tickets to get to work, which caused me to be late getting there, for obvious reasons.

After getting to work, I was laid off, ostensibly for being late. I suspect politics, but I usually suspect such things where people are involved.

...

Things with Jessica have been relatively stable, but I suppose this is a non-statement if you consider what 'stable' is relative to.

I had planned to take a weekend vacation next week, get in a car and go somewhere I've never been before -- but it does not look like this is in the cards, considering these most dire financial straits.

I think Jes might strangle me to death, if I don't get out soon. It's been at least nine months that I haven't left Toronto, and I don't think I've spent so long in one place, ever.

I've tried to write several witty sentences describing how I feel, but my traitor fingers keep tying the same message, over and over -- I need to get away. I need to get away. I need to get away.

...

I need to get away.
Grandmother's emergency

After my second class on Tuesday, my wife called to tell me that my 97-year old grandmother had fallen down and broken her hip. I have been feeling somewhat diffusely apprehensive these days, as though expecting some imminent trouble. In such a mood, even bad news can be a kind of relief.

She apparently fell out of bed and broke her right hip. She is now alone at the hospital, heavily sedated, and will be having surgery tomorrow to insert pins to hold the bone together. There is going to be a lot of pain, and it is unlikely she will be able to walk again. The doctor expects her to decline pretty quickly after the surgery. My mother is going from New York up to Providence tomorrow, and my wife has gone back to New York tonight so that she can accompany her - my mother only had surgery a couple of weeks ago and is in somewhat fragile shape herself. They will probably come back on the weekend, by which time I will be able to get away.

My grandmother's state of mind made the doctor ask whether she has dementia. This has been an argument for a few years - the doctors themselves disagree, and recently my mother and I noticed certain things that made us think she was actually fairly lucid, but perhaps playing for sympathy. Well, how can you really decide these things?

Since my mother and my uncle can't get along, I am in charge of relaying information between them. They will perhaps be alternating visits to Rhode Island. My uncle, who must be close to 80, doesn't sound good on the phone. He took advantage of my phone call to ask me to be the executor of his estate, replacing his brother. It appears I am now the only one he trusts. It is a great pity all around, but I told him I would do my best to carry out his intentions.

I'm not sure where these events are leading, exactly, although my sense of apprehension remains. Dr. Johnson says that in a journal you must try above all to record your mood, as you never know later on what will be important to you.


I think of my grandmother and try to sum up what she means to me. She was extremely loving and nurturing all the time I was growing up, and seemed always to have a totally personal and idiosyncratic devotion to me. I have always been entirely sure of her affection; I have never doubted it for a second, and I never remember having argued with her about anything. I know, to be sure, of her extreme self-centeredness and hypochondria, but somehow those things have rarely touched me. Mainly I think of her tireless love and patience for me.

I was about sixty years younger than my grandparents, and was lucky to have them with me well into adulthood.


last day-log entry: March 25, 2002 | next: April 18, 2002

Today, I am one year old.

It's been quite a year since I was born. Even the last six months have been astounding. I've learned so much, and had so much fun doing it.

For instance, I can crawl now! Mobility is amazing, after so long seeing things and being unable to reach them. I can even open doors if they aren't latched, and climb stairs. I can pull myself to standing against anything vertical, and reach the tops of most tables. There's so much to explore.

And then there's people! When I was born, I had no idea that people were so marvellous! My Dad and Mom are the most magical people in the world. They play peekaboo, they feed me, they bathe me, and they take me places. And then there's the rest of my family, and all my friends at my nursery.

But it's not just people I know who enchant me. Everywhere I go there are grownups smiling at me. I wish I could hug them all and slobber on their cheeks (it's how I kiss).

It's not all bananas and raisins, though. For instance, sometimes my parents put tights on under my trousers to keep my legs warm. That's all very well, until you take your shoes off. Now, the way the universe should work is that once the shoes are off the socks are ready to follow (they make great toys and strange hats). But tights don't come off when you pull on the feet. This scares me, and I usually cry.

But who can cry for long, in a world full of wonders? I could list them all day, but Mom and Dad are taking me to the zoo. So let me just close with a few personal words, typed myself (Mom helped me with some of this daylog).

iufddfjkklxkj mAPOE38UOWIENGIOASKGFKdsoij saiokrio

Love, and BIG HUGS to everyone,

The EasterBunny

Oh, and watch out for grass. I've just found out about it since the weather has warmed up. Scary stuff. Can't face crawling on it; it feels too funny against my hands.

So, like, I had this big, entertaining story to tell you all about how a boy, a girl, and a game of cat and mouse all combined to teach me a lesson in just how much people are not my personal playthings.

I spent hours crafting it, ignoring the fact that I could have been gaming. I read and re-read, edited and re-edited it to make sure it said exactly what I wanted it to say.

But before I sumbit it, I decide to take a smoke break, which I do, and return to check my e-mail.

Where I find this little gem from one of my customers, submitted from our web-based support form.:

Hi I am at a computer away from my home.
and I do not know how to access my email from here.

Please email me back to let me know.

She filled in her own e-mail address on the form. The irony, the groaning absurdity and utter cluelessness of this request had me laughing and crying and laughing for about 20 minutes. My first impulse, once I stopped gasping for breath between great whooping brays of laughter, was to node it. So I am, and screw the little morality tale I worked so hard to write.

I don't really think anyone has a problem with the absurd, or noding of same, around here.

You just have to do it well.

Or in a daylog.

:-)

Happy Birthday, Easter Bunny

I don't like people, especially my own family members, treating my life and the decisions I make for myself with such disdain. I am a simple man. I live by simple means, have simple desires and do simple things. I am a simple man in a complex world.

I know what I am not. I am not a leader. I am not a follower. I am not a great man. I am not going to write the Great American Novel. I am not going to change the world in any significant way. Nor do I want to.

I called my brother tonight to see if he might need an extra hand at his framing shop. A friend of mine wants to be a framer and I figured that Jim may need or could use some help at the business he owns. I was not looking for a handout or anything like that. I don't contact my family much. Somehow I must get it through their thick skulls that I am an independent person and that to not hear from me is good news. If I am calling for personal reasons other than a plainly-stated "just catching up", then I am doing so in desperate need of assistance and I have exhausted every other means that I know. My family I turn to as a last resort. It's not that I don't love them; I do. I just would rather not bother them with... my simplicity.

I know that Mom, Dad, brothers and sister had high hopes for me, that they recognized a sort of awareness within me that they lack, that I could use whatever it is that makes me "me" to an exploitative advantage. I know that they feel a certain amount of disappointment when I report, "Still the same on this end. No change here. Still enjoying my simple life." They wanted more for me. Luckily they weren't so arrogant to think that they could heap it upon me, but I can definitely sense the let-down they feel whenever I am around them, like I have somehow cheated them of carrying on a family legacy that isn't really mine.

They're my family, but I have no blood ties to them. I love them dearly, but it is a love borne out of respect and appreciation for their care when I was a child. I am an adult now, more alone in this world than ever before. I am beholden to no one and I like it that way.

Someone just last week asked me, "What do you want to be when you grow up?" It was a rhetorical question; I'm twenty-eight years of age now. Doubtless I will change slightly in my future years, but I am, for the most part, "grown up."

I didn't miss a beat when they asked me that absurd question, though. "I'm doing it now," I answered. "I am my own master and I answer to no one. I do what I want, when I want, how I want and no one can stop me short of the law. I don't break any rules, so I fall beneath the radar of any busy-body authority figures. I mind my own business and do whatever I am moved to do with no impediment whatsoever. What more could I want?"

The person who asked me the question stared at me, mouth agape, as she realized the utter, simple truth of my answer. "Remind me never to ask you that again. Makes me jealous."

I'm not rich. I don't have any aspirations to be rich. I personally believe that the more money a person has, the more headaches they inherit. Keeping track if this bill, that payment, such-and-such account, taxes, accountants, banks, mortgages, investments, stocks, bonds... the whole mess is best left to people who want that kind of complication. I prefer cash, on the table and the knowledge that I've earned it honestly. Beyond that... thpppppt!

Anyway, when I called my brother, he immediately started giving me the third degree about why I haven't poked around my family's neck of the woods lately, as though I am obliged to. I suppose, in a sense, I am, but not unnecessarily. Like I said, I live a simple life and nothing much changes about me. If something changes, for better or for worse, then I'll let them know. Until or unless that happens, why bother calling at regular intervals to apprise them of... nothing new? Waste of time, if you ask me. If I don't call, take it for granted that I'm okay. I mentioned that the trip would put an undue strain on my car right now, that it's not behaving properly. He urged me to buy a new one.

"With what?" I asked. "I have no credit and no money with which to pay for a new car. And I certainly don't have the income to make the required regular payments. I'm living within my means. Buying a new car would outstrip that."

His reply was curt and clipped. "Brother, if you want some good advice on how to change that, give me a call. I can tell you all kinds of things you can do to get a new car and a better job."

"I know them all, Jim," I answered. "I'm just not ready to do that. It's not my bag... yet." I do try to keep my options open in life, y'know?

"Yeah, well, call me if you ever do. Sorry I can't help you with your friend. I hired a girl last month and she's working out really well and I don't have the resources to take on someone new."

"That's okay, bro. No biggie. Just thought I'd ask."

"Well... I have to get back to work. Don't be a stranger." And he hung up.

It really pissed me off. He had, essentially, made it clear that he doesn't approve of my lifestyle, that I am somehow incapable of living my life at adequate standards and should be doing more. Who is he to judge, brother or not?

I am content with myself for the first time in years. I am free to do as I please. Why would I want to complicate my life further than is necessary? I have no wife, no kids to look after or take care of. All I have to provide for is myself. I am relatively well-liked by those around me, I have the nobility and respect of my peers, which is something I have strived for all my life. Why fix what ain't broke?

Keep it simple. I came into this world with nothing. By that same token, I intend to walk out of it with nothing. I mean, what good is a large sum of money gonna do me when I'm dead who-knows-how-many years from now? Nothing. In with nothing; out with nothing. If I have nothing amassed, then I have nothing to lose. And none of it is really mine anyway. When I'm gone, it'll all fall to someone else's hands. It's just temporary crap, when you get right down to it. I spend my time making my mind, body and spirit better and stronger. I learn deeply about the things that interest me. I grow and develop. Money is a tool, but I will not allow myself to become a slave to it.

After more than 28 years of living you'd think that someone in my family would get that, that they would understand that about me. I am not interested in leaving a legacy behind me that can dissipate. My actions in this world will be my adorning in the next, not my fortunes.

Bah! It sucks to be judged by other people. It hurts when it's your own brother who is doing the judging, even if he is your half-brother. I guess I'm just feeling alone now, more than ever.

Yesterday was a bad day. It started out as all my days start out right now; out of bed at 9:25 or 9:30, dress, kiss, cycle to work. THe same motions every morning to unlock my bike from the railings outside my apartment; the same traffic lights; the same stairs in the office. The same hellos and the same fucking work, every day for the last few months.

I came home for lunch and I felt fine, but when I got home again at nearly 7pm something had happened me. I sat on the chair without taking off my coat and stared at the ground. I talked to Lindsay, responded to her questions, but there was an important part of me that had gone walkabout. I couldn't think properly, couldn't find the will to do anything, and couldn't explain.

Well, I tried to explain. I talked about the fact that I've got a lot to do at the moment and I feel drained and under stress. But that doesn't really explain it, it's just what triggered it. I went out again to leave back a DVD and get out Once Were Warriors for Lindsay to watch for an assignment, and when I got back I made food. I ate most of mine; she wasn't very hungry so she only ate some. Then she went to watch her film and I spent most of the next hour and a half playing blitz chess on the Net and surfing. I was supposed to write. Part of me wanted to write, but I've been trying to write for the last couple of days and nothing has been coming. Something is wrong. So I just distracted myself until Lindsay came back downstairs.

I lay on the bed on my side. I felt unable to say or do anything. She asked if I was alright, and I just nodded. SHe asked me if I was sure and I nodded again, because I couldn't explain. I felt like there was no energy inside me; as if someone had switched me off at the neck like Data from Star Trek. She finished up on the computer and lay behind me. She got ready for bed. She tried talking to me, hugging me, and eventually just gave up and lay on her back. After a long while I got up to brush my teeth, came back, turned out the light, and lay down with her.

The next couple of hours were pretty strange. I started to feel an incredible frustration and sadness, and I couldn't do anything or say anything about it. I jiggled my feet and tried to lie still. Lindsay would hold me for a while, and try to talk to me, and I wouldn't respond. She got frustrated sometimes, because she didn't know what was going on with me. I was trying to deal with an endless, disturbing flood of images - me, cut by knives, beaten up, burned, torn apart, drowned, falling, exploding, horribly disfigured, riddled by disease, dying. Sometimes it was other people doing it to me, and sometimes I was doing it to myself, driven mad by my own feelings of frustration.

I tried to explain what was going on, but I think I made it worse, because she misunderstood what I was trying to say. "You want to kill yourself?" she asked, and I laughed, and said that of course I didn't want to kill myself; but she was offended and angry, she thought I was laughing at her, and she started to cry. I knew she'd just misunderstood, but I couldn't talk any more. She has OCD and has often described to me how she sometimes has unwanted images of graphic violence pass through her mind, so I thought she'd immediately understand, but I probably needed to say more; the problem was that it was a huge effort to talk, when really all I wanted to do was fade into my own mind and disappear.

I lay there for a long while, and eventually she put her arms around me again and told me she loved me. I guess I must have fallen asleep soon after that, but she told me this morning she lay awake for a long time.

I still feel that way this morning. I'm able to function, but I just have no desire to speak or do anything other than what I absolutely have to do. I don't want to interact with anyone or come up with any ideas. Some kind of dynamo inside me has temporarily shut down. Even in writing this, I don't think I've managed to explain anything important, for instance why I get like this sometimes. I just want Lindsay to read it so she knows what was going on with me last night.

Anyone who thinks this is a Teen Angst Bullshit Daylog is completely missing the point.

And still I'm wondering, "why me?"

Consciousness. What is it? It is the perception of events interpreted around us, combined with the workings of our mind. We see things, we hear things, we touch and taste things. But even a blind man can see the darkness inside his head. Even a deaf man can hear things inside his mind. What is the purpose of what we see and hear? The question is not, “what happens when we lose conscious thought” it is, “how and why can conscious thought exist?” The argument is not simply confined to conscious thought, it extends to several separate arguments that all end at the same conclusion; Philosophy is a tool used to justify our existence, and does not provide answers to anything, just excuses.

Why do we exist? How did we get here? The most important thing to think about here is, how did the world get here before us? The Big Bang? What was before the Big Bang? How it is possible for anything to exist? And what the fuck is time? Time is relative to the speed in which your brain operates, this is why smaller animals with faster heartbeats have such good reaction time. A year to us could be a month to a mouse. Our interpretation of time, therefore, is of no importance to “when” existence began; existence has no beginning, it did not suddenly appear and it will not suddenly end. Please bare in mind that I have just made a hypothesis related to time and the universe, which to some extent contradicts my arguments about the pointlessness of Philosophy.

Religion to me is a coping reflex to the fear of death. Maybe not the fear, but it gives justification for us being here in the first place. Sure, we go to heaven. Why? Why would we be accepted in to such a place? Why would we go to hell for succumbing to human instinct? We have the instincts of killers, we spread and destroy. To some extent we can justify killing if it is done indiscriminately, because deep down we really don’t care.

This makes me wonder why people worry about death. They say to themselves, “what if I go to hell? What if I stand before god for judgement? What if, what if, what if?” What if when you die there are no repercussions, and all the things you have done in life fade away with the consciousness that died with your body? We may as well live a life full of happiness, because it makes dying and living seem a whole less pointless. The only problem with that would be what makes us happy. Some people like to kill and indulge in acts that disturb others. There will never be a world peace because people are so different. If only we were really created in god’s image, this would never have happened. Furthermore, it is not a good thing to think the way you live your life affects you in death, because no matter how much blind faith you have, you can’t really find out until you die. BUT, then again there is the Tibetan act of concious dying practiced by several Buddhist monks, which supposedly allows the soul to leave the body… but I can’t tell you how that feels because like I said I don’t know.

What are we made of? Energised particles. Useless lumps of protons, and electrons, and atoms. We are the opposite to emptiness, nothing more. And we shouldn’t think about atoms as being the smallest things… what are atoms made of? How is it possible for atoms to exist?

The whole point is that there is no point. By trying to explain how existence is possible, I have succumbed to what humans have been doing ever since they realised they could think and feel. Live however you want because everybody dies the same! No matter what happens to the body, you die when you stop breathing. Oh, and the human body is a purely an ingenious collection of systems that allow our brain to operate and control the body. The brain, we must protect the brain! I wonder about death, I wonder so much my head aches occasionally! I wonder if I should forget about trying to discover the secrets of the universe, because apparently I’ve got another 60 years or so just to do that. Pfft.

There is no right time to admit pointlessness, and if I want to do it now, then good for me. I feel pathetic, but that’s ok because sometimes I am. In all my contradictions I still think that I'm clever and witty, but I'm not really and I still really don't want to know.

A difficult day, not because of the things that happened, but because of the things that didn't. I have not heared from any employment agent. I have applied for several positions. I know that I have been rejected for two previous applications.

I have seen all that there is too see in the Tate modern. My third trip there was today.

The way that the world works is that you are allowed to have time but not money, or money but not time. Right now I have time, and want to get back into a busy life where I don't have time ot think about myself, and can fill the few remaining hours with consumerism and websurfing.

I am not letting the surface crack, I am polite and friendly. Well mostly. It is not getting me down. I am not giving up, or even slowing down. Not yet.

It's like there are two of me.

Last night a suicidal thought passed through my head, the first in some years. Surprised more than anything else, I closed my book and sat back inside my head to think this over.

Now one half of me is cooly planning to fill the bathtub and get a knife from the kitchen to slit wrists with, weighing the messy aspects of this gainst the possible evils of taking pills - if I'm discovered and saved, I could have liver damage, or brain damage, which would be far worse than scars - while the other me is thinking that obviously thoughts of discovery are symptomatic of an incomplete commitment to despair.

Therefore something can still be done. While one of me is considering which blade would be least painful and whether to wear clothes into the tub or not, the other one is analysing the situation in therapeutic terms. It's not a sunny day, I have no chocolate... What can we do here to give ourselves a small respite from this sort of thinking, enough to pick up the phone to ask for help?

One of me has just turned the music off - we don't need distractions at this time, thankyouverymuch. The other of me is calmly running through a list of friends in our head, trying to think who best to call.

The third of me is writing the other two up.

I don't often gripe about work. May I gripe about work for just a second? Thanks.

Request submitted this morning, signed by the employee's supervisor and her departmental director (edited for clarity and brevity):
The mouse I was using tended to pick up hairballs which caused it to behave erratically, thereby slowing down my productivity. Also, I was forced to clean it once a week. So without consulting you, I bought a forty dollar optical mouse at Costco and expect your department to reimburse me for it.

Now I'm no computer whiz, but from her description of the issue that prompted her purchase, and the fact that everyone else in the company seems to be doing fine with regular-type mice, I suspect the problem MAY NOT BE her mouse but rather that her mouse pad is covered in filth. I mean..."hairballs"? What the hell is up with that?? I was tempted to interoffice her a sponge.

Phone call I received this afternoon:
Something's wrong with the network. It's taking forever to open multiple emails from company VIPs with seven-megabyte Powerpoint presentations attached to them, and I'm dialed in to the network on a laptop with a 56k modem. Why is that?

Um...because you're trying to download really big files over a 56k connection? Through Outlook, which we have time and time again asked people not to use for the transferring of large files?

But this is, after all, what they pay me to do. I furthermore believe that one of my duties as a human being on planet Earth is to make things better for other folks where I possibly can, or at least not worse. I responded to both inquiries in a courteous and helpful manner. I did not set myself on fire and jump out the window.

At the same time and hundreds of miles away, Igloowhite is driving down the highway with the windows down and the music turned up, the sun in his eyes and the wind in his hair. I see him in my mind's eye for just a moment, and then the phone rings again and I return to my life, which is already in progress.

God, I miss E2.

Maybe it's bad form for a newbie to daylog -- and if it is, I guess I'll find out -- but my conscience won't let me node without research and I haven't been focused enough to do research for weeks. But I feel like I'm neglecting a friend, so I'm here, writing a letter...to a database.

Dear E2...

I put in an offer on a house this morning. A fixer-upper. I'd be a second-backup-offer (if that, even!), which isn't ideal, but I didn't understand enough about what I was doing to get an offer in sooner, and my partner and I only just got financing last night, and I hadn't yet figured out how safe I'd be making an offer with contingencies. I'm not, however, learning enough about USA real estate laws to node them. I feel like a chump waiting to get fleeced as I'm trying to play this game and learn how to play at the same time. I think that says something fairly accurate about me, and my unwillingness to look foolish -- and to some small extent, it says something about my itch to write.

...I miss you...

There's something about E2 that makes me want to delve deep into any subject that comes my way, but I don't have time to become an expert on the Seattle housing market, real estate, renovation, and craftsman houses all at once. This damn project has gotten me used to writing on a regular basis, and used to researching what I write...and now when I don't, I itch.

...Not least of all because when I'm with you...

I do know that the high ceilings and heavy, simple, angular moldings I love in my current house are pure Crafts. I know that for the most part, it's harder to find a real Victorian in Seattle than it is in San Francisco, and that I shouldn't be disappointed, because Victorians are harder to maintain than Craftsmen. And that if I *really* want bric-a-brac in Seattle, I should go for a Queen Anne house (though not necessarily in the Queen Anne Neighborhood, mind you).

...I actually feel like sometimes I know what I'm talking about...

But I'm far from an expert, and those things are, in my mind, far from concrete. If someone wants to have a conversation with me about architecture, I'm lost before it begins.

...even when maybe I don't.
I saw Clem Snide last night at The High Dive in Champaign, IL. For the encore, they played the Lynyrd Skynyrd song, "Simple Kind of Man". It was pretty boring at first and then they broke into this Neil Young/Crazy Horse shit. Rather impressive.

Today, I gave this presentation on a movie from 1950 called Broken Arrow. No it isn't the movie with John Travolta and Christian Slater. It stars Jimmy Stewart and is about the story of an Apache peace treaty in 1870. For 1950, I would have to say it was rather progressive, but at the same time, it had the same stereotypes that white america always has about Native Americans.

Today I turn 18.

I can now (legally):

    Register for the draft
    Buy spray paint
    Buy porn
    Buy lighters
    Buy cigarettes
    Vote!
    Buy Mature rated CD's
    Buy white out (surprisingly, many places won't let you do this till 18 in Hurst, God knows why)
    other neat things.


I was awakened by my mother and 32 screaming twelve year olds (she teaches a sixth grade class). She called me at 8:30 AM - the time of my birth. Rule of thumb to parents reading this - DON'T EVER CALL COLLEGE STUDENTS BEFORE NOON. Not meaning to sound ungrateful, but we need our sleep - and, naturally, I don't go to bed till 2 or later. And shouldn't you get to sleep till noon on your birthday? Yeah, I thought so. No nifty gifts or anything, just a year older. Further updates as my 18edness continues.
Geez, did I sound like THAT much of an asshole for my 18th bday daylog to be in negative vote land? Christ... Oh yeah, I forgot Lotto Tickets on the "can now buy" list
Thinking About Philip K. Dick... a daylog theme #1 d. Taylor Singletary PkD Journal #1

I’ve read only a handful of Philip K. Dick’s works in the past: some short stories, Valis. I knew that potentially within he had an ability to transcend the messy words that he was to deal with. The Man in the High Castle further reinforced that notion. I can see many ways, as writers, that Dick and I are a like.

We look for an abstract form that we are striving for. Plot structure is not inherently a sequence of events in causality. Often, the real happenstance can only occur in the reader’s head, subjective to every head in question. It then becomes a question of what exactly do you want to export in a novel and have made available to the reader for import? One must surely first recognize that the communication will never be complete, representing a full intention. The author must recognize that there will be static in between the dialog, that a philosophical idea may not be interpretable by the reader (depending on what particular circuit-level they operate on while reading the book). I am most impressed with Dick’s ability as a writer to convey what he really wants to convey. He minimizes the static.

His ability to conceptualize and characterize is quite shining as well, and it goes beyond the typical constructions that both the average reader and the writer (archetype, not PkD in particular) would be familiar with. The characters in the Man in the High Castle are many-layered onions. Mr. Robert Childan is a white man. He is under Japanese rule—has been for the last several decades. His mind is warped, weak. Where nationality, civility, and human interaction is concerned he is a tangled mess. He doesn’t know what traditions to follow, except an ashamed sort of honor-game with the Japanese. In fact, he becomes so much like his vision of the Japanese code of ethics, that when he doesn’t follow them he feels the imagined guilt of his ideal/feared stereotype. His very own authenticity is a strange loop then, backing into itself for eternity. A very fascinating character construction indeed, and Philip K. Dick handles it perfectly, subtly altering his speech patterns, creating a whole type of man that does not/would not exist in this particular version of reality.

This certainly was a timely book for me to read with its embodiment of the many-realities theory, having been deeply digging through Robert Anton Wilson’s fictive and non-fictive works. Philip K. Dick once said of Robert Anton Wilson: “Wilson managed to reverse every mental polarity in me, as if I had been pulled through infinity. I was astonished and delighted.” The weight of these words, knowing the autobiographical details of Dick that I do, is incredible and speaks very highly of Robert Wilson’s work. I am sure that Wilson’s theories aided Dick in coming to some understanding of his exegesis-experience.

It’s all very real. Just look for the malfunctions.

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