Archive for June, 2003
It’s been a day of false starts. I started writing an eJournal entry after I read a personal piece written by a 9-11 widow. it wandered through my day on 9-11-01. I then attempted to write another chapter of the mythical book. Both of them were pure crap. I think I’ve made turds with less crap content.
I think the most likely reason is that I’ve gotten too little sleep. I spent last night building out the last inch of the Internet at my Dad’s house, deploying a router, and a wireless hub acting as a bridge. Earlier in the week I rewired the entertainment center. So far this week I’ve been a wire happy person; you name it I can wire it up.
I’ve built ethernet cables, designed wiring schematics, and installed software networking solutions.
I also hacked out a few letters, unpacked a box or two and got some organizing done.
Its been a lot of fricking grudge work.
My brain is fried. I have just about an hour till I leave work then I should be in bed soon after that.
I’ve had this floating around in my pile of papers for a while, but I’m gonna put it here..
Things I want from a College
- GLB Studies (Look in Soc Department/Women Studies too)
- Strong Philosophy Department – esp. Technology Philosophy
- Strong Journalism School
- Diverse Science Program
- Active Student Body
- Primarily Residential Campus
- Ability to take classes over a wide area of fields. (No blocks)
- Theatre Department???
- Organizational Theory???
- Not a Party School
- "Inspirational campus"
- Rich Theatrical Arts in the area
- Value of intellectualism over careerism
- Art Department Open
- Damn far away from home
I unpacked my kitchen stuff just now. I’ve still got the packing paper and the boxes on the floor right beside me. One of my cats (probably George) was hounding me wanting to get into a box. So I finally took one box and placed it on its side for the cats to play with.
Currently they’re fighting Cat War MMCCCXXXIX over the box. (thats 2,339 for the Roman Numerically Disinclined) What probably got it started is one of my cats got in there, then Squeaky, a larger cat who has lived here longer, decided that he wanted to box. Somehow in my absence Squeaky got the box. The little ones then started attacking the box and trying to get Squeaky to get out of it. Its been sort of comical these three cats placing all this effort in getting into the box and keeping it. Its almost as ludicrous as the Florida fiasco, but that counted for something.
I’ve been searching schools very idly deciding which major I want to go after. I’m quite decided that its not going to be theatre. But I’m also frustrated with having to consider committing to another major. I know at this point I enjoy philosophy and writing, but do I want to box myself off in that field, what is to prevent me from coming up against the same problem in the future? How do I know four years down the road I’m going to look at things and say, "you know this doesn’t fit me." Then I’d be stuck at the same point I was in this past February.
I would say the one saving grace of philosophy is that you only have to specialize for so long. The professors I know have wandered from various different research projects and different things, so in that respect you’re not always doing the same thing.
You know I find it amazing that anyone can hop into these nice neat boxes of what they do. They identify with phrases like: "I’m a computer scientist." "I’m an actor." "I’m a baseball player." "I’m an accountant."
I think some of the reason people tend to do this is because they want to be able to rank themselves against others in their field, they want to be the best, or very good in their field. Its much more difficult to say "I’m the best person," than to say "I’m the best accountant" (Even that though might be hard to say, who wants to be the best accountant?)
I’ve always struggled trying to be placed in a box; I’m at the point now that very happily get out of all boxes and try to exist in none of them. Lots of people find this foreign and strange. They’re all box happy finding this the way to go, and look at box phobic people like me as lost.
Perhaps this is why I find Cat War MMCCCXXXIX so strange. Why would any of them want to be in the box?
I just ran through a very vivid scenario with a mythical boyfriend in my head. He was complaining about my clothing style or lack thereof. It was short and ended with my hugging him closely and saying something to the effect “Ohhhh hunny you know I…..”
I don’t know whats interesting to say or elaboration several things come to my mind. but the most prominent are:
- That embrace is a really deep sharing of personal space. I want to let someone in; in so many ways. (pun intended) I want to be with someone who understands me and takes a shared interest in my life and I can take a shared interest in his life.
- Jenni comes so close to filling this but in the same instant it is so far.
- I remember a discussion with her where I was thinking through what used to tie me to Dayton. One of them was her. I no longer feel a need to be there and protect her as she has protected me.
Its strange. When I think of Jenni and I’m describing her to a counselor for the first time, I always use the phrase “She’s the reason I’m still here.” I did and I still do believe that. I cannot see getting through my pre-teens through early 20s without her. I have no way to possibly reconstruct the story of those years without her.
Its oddly comforting and disturbing when I’ve told her this, its no big deal, as if any friend would do it for another.
If Jenni was a gay man we’d be happily in love, and we are to some extent, just not romantically in love. Our love is different and deep the kind that doesn’t’ need flowers, or an anniversary card, or any kitschy memento to signify.
But Jenni also isn’t what I on the surface look for; Shes not a skinny twinky, her house admittedly is always under cleaning, and she is an excellent procrastinator. Her educational ambitions are too scattered to codify down into a college program, and she hasn’t desired to pursue that.
She doesn’t fit in any box but her own; Even in motherhood she denies attempts to be boxed.
Perhaps its fitting I gave her away at her wedding, but maybe I need to stop standing at the altar and start looking for my own groom, for my own love.
I think I should take to stabbing myself with a fork, it would be more productive.
I keep telling myself I’m over Shawn; I’ve moved on; That in the past. Shit like that. I just keep saying it over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over again. But I still torture myself by viewing his website and looking at the pictures and everything.
I finally said fuck it, and configured my router to block all URL’s with his domain name in it. All it takes is a simple configuration to undo, but at least I’ve gotta put some effort into it now, no random URL browsing.
I spent a good hour tonight trying to convince Andy to drive down here and spend the night and cuddle. He’s sweet, but he rightly said no. Philo, I wish I had his control over the evil second brain.
Its time to start dating again. Period.
I’m in one of those mid sleep wake-up periods. I got up and there is bedding everywhere, pillows on the floor, my heads at the other end of the bed and strange arrangements of stuff. It looked liked the bed and I were having a fight, and the bedding won, or maybe I won, because the bedding stuff is everywhere. But then again I was the one to wake up.
Irregardless, I’m going back to sleep, because its sleepy time again after a glass of milk.
I was reading The Advocate today, the June 24th issue. (Yea for advance magazine schedules.)
In the article about Billy Bean, an ex-pro baseball player, there’s a passage that caught my attention. “Remember the first time you heard the word ‘faggot’? Practically every gay man alive today grew up in a culture that equated gayness with weakness. In the past 30 years people like Bean have helped change that.” (Note its not in the online edition)
Its a glacial change, I think. I still see those attitudes and I came out in 1998/1999. (No I didn’t party like its 1999.)
But, I’m having trouble coming up with where this weakness idea came from. It takes scrotal balls of steel (or vaginal lips of steel for our lesbian brethren) to come out. Given the horror stories I’ve heard from friends who’ve come out its amazing anyone comes out at all.
Back to the quote. Who the fuck came up with this idea that gay men are weak? I mean the emotional and mental strength that gay men exhibit are extraordinary. While all their straight cohorts are exploring their sexuality and going after sex and strutting their sexuality, most gay teens are suppressing all their sexual urges and attempting to simulate a straight face. (and no not to play poker with)
Before I came out the me everyone saw was a mask, a facade that I put on for everyone else, only for brief periods was I actually me. Actors know acting is exhausting, but they choose to act, closeted gay people are forced to act as someone they’re not. Keeping this mental divide going is exhausting work, and takes away from what you’re supposed to be doing in high school, learning hanging out with friends, and finding yourself. How many straight kids have to pretend to be something else?
I was really involved in computers when I was younger. The thing about that is it was natural to ignore yourself. There is no way to program code gay or straight. But If I’m writing a romance story, I can’t be honest if I’m closeted, but I can be honest with computer code.
if you don’t believe its hare to act like someone you’re not take a month and pretend to that you’re gay. Do you feel scared to tell that guy he’s cute? Do you make the fag joke so people don’t suspect you? Do you lust over a guy, but are scared to ask him out because you don’t want your ass to be kicked? Oh and there’s no getting out of it when you have problems you can’t just say “Oh, I’m straight.” you might as well just shoot part of yourself. Only when you get home or are with a close friend do you get to take the mask off and be your straight self, and don’t forget to be scared that someone will find you out.
So no, I don’t think gay men are weak; They one up the Steel Magnolias, perhaps they’re Depleted Uranium Daises, hardened and solid inside, but fluffy and gay on the outside.
I was left agreeing with while simultaneously disagreeing with both sides. Both sides were left in a feedback loop of ratchetting up the violence one step at a time. “They blew up this restaurant, so we will retaliate by arresting their followers.” Then, “They arrested our followers, so we’re going to blow up their ship.” “They attempted to blow up our ship, so we’re going to kill their leader.” It goes on and on. A never ending circle. Each side throwing another punch to try to convince the other one to stop. Both sides are convinced that their cause is the just one, and the true one.
One of the major players in the current world scene is described by a scholar as someone who “… believes that his mission is sacred, and he wants only to see clear results.” (Source) Left alone this equally applies to many of the world leaders. I will leave you to decide which one this applies to.
Moral Clarity while important should never be definitive. When someone considers their position to be the absolutely moral position and are definitively clear on this position, they have by definition lost the possibility of considering that they are wrong, and therefore are unable to fully analyze the situation.
We are in a time of international moral crisis. “The hottest places in hell are reserved for those who in a period of moral crisis maintain their neutrality.” (Dante and/or JFK) I’m not quite sure this is valid. I would revise it to state the hottest places in hell are reserved for those who in a period of moral crisis don’t understand both their position and the enemy’s position intimately.
Robbie just quite work about 15 minutes ago. Hes got a better job. He graduated from college Saturday. A lot of people from my Upper School Class graduated from college recently. (Assuming they were good boys and girls and were on the four year plan.)
I feel live I’ve gone nowhere. I’ve not gotten any of my personal tasks done. My website has stagnated (just moved it to a new domain, thats all.)
I’ve blamed some of it on my new work schedule. (I’ve filled the paper to redo it back to overnights.) Some of this can relate back to moving. Moving wastes a lot of time getting back to where you were, and I’ve wasted more than the average person over the past two years. (I’ve had six addresses in two years, its a wonder the post office can find me.)
I know I’m a production addict. When I have the highest content production rate, I’m thrillingly content, but I can only keep that up for so long until I collapse into unproductive exhaustion. I’m not quite a switch, but perhaps a 3-way bulb, the brightest setting is the shortest because it uses all the filaments the bulb has.
So I gotta get going again. Start moving forward. (Like you can actually move backwards in life – you can’t you just repeat yourself. We perceive time as linear despite our dances to the contrary.
I gotta keep reminding myself I’m not on a path that looks like the others around me, so I’ve gotta figure this out on my own, and hopefully I don’t blow too many more filaments.
I finally got most of the rest of the unpacking that needed to be done, done.
I kept running into various things I’ve written through the years:
- A parody of a play that I was working on at Horizon Theatre Company.
- My kidnapping comedy, that has been in progress for far too long
- I was thinking about my journal in fourth grade where I was really creative, but often spent recess sitting at the table across the hall from the office writing, I enjoyed writing it.
- A lyric rewrite of the song Lady Bug and The Centipede.
- Listen, a play that I wrote and directed my sophomore year of high school
- I’ve kept a journal on and off for quite a while
- My many websites I’ve put together during the years
I know thats a short list, but i just haven’t felt like wracking my brain. I think the point is that I’ve always been a writer underlying, just had other things obscuring it. The parody was just because these things had come to my head and needed to get out. The kidnapping comedy was just started because it popped in. The lyric rewrite was because I thought the song was stupid. Listen was a play I wrote to make a point, and I still don’t think I’ve made that point. The websites, was my tech geeking around.
Its a theme that I finally see. Directing a play is writing in reverse. (Whereas writing is taking ideas and converting them into words, directing is taking words converting it into actions and thus ideas.) I don’t know why it took me so long to figure this out.
The English program at my school was horrible at supporting writers, it was excellent at supporting literary analysts. I think everyone needs to learn to write and to do that well they need to write about something that they know about. You cannot learn to write while you’re attempting to figure out what the hell the book is about. A lot of people can do this, but you’re attempting to teach two skills at the same time. Someone like me who is poor at one, automatically thinks they’re poor at both, not able to clearly and implicitly separate the two out.
I don’t know its strange for me to embrace the fact that “I’m a writer.” It seems too simple, to solid, to clear. If its simple it probably won’t be right.
An additional piece, over the years I’ve found myself associating with writers of one kind or another. In college I fell into a group with Dana and other people. Jenni has always seen herself as a writer, Kevin is a writer, he just expresses it through film.
So why do I feel so insecure and scared about this path now? Right now the immediate future looks pretty crabby. I’ve now got my spreadsheet set up to tell my my negative net worth and its not pretty.
I think the most terrifying thing about this is that I need to work through my procrastination, and self motivate more than anything else, and those are not my strong points, and that terrifies me that I won’t ever complete anything.
When I answered the question “What do you want to be when you grow up?” I never thought I’d be terrified at the answer, but I also thought I had control over the answer.