28 October 2007


Let's hear it for the mix tape. Of course given that I don't have a tape player, at least not one that is capable of recording anything, I merely borrow the expression for any compilation regardless of technology. This time it is mp3's in the form of an itunes playlist. The issue at hand is that I want to burn it onto cd but it is too long. MUCH too long. Well, I can burn it as data but it is still just a few songs too heavy for even that.

So how on earth do I weed out the superfluous? I'm glad you asked; by listening to the playlist over and over. The problem with that is that at approximately eleven hours worth of music, it will take a while to get through it enough times to narrow it down to a mere 720 MB. I suppose it will be great when we all have DVD players in our cars--what a soundtrack that will be!

Oh well, in the mean time I am working on the perfect mix tape and it isn't nearly finished. A definite standout will always be this one by the Tragically Hip. Go google them or whatever you do and give it a listen. You won't be disappointed.



23 October 2007

common disaster...

Let me preface this post by finally stating that for a few weeks now I've been seeing a young lady here in town. I'm sure you could've figured that out with your keen intellect, but I might as well spell it out because it is an important detail for this entry. Oh and things are going very well, thank you for asking. Tomorrow is her birthday and I had a heck of a time thinking of something to get her, which of course is not what she wants but everyone says not to pay attention to that.

Ok so I woke up pretty early today, all things considered, and I'm enjoying some of my typical fare, Duncan Sheik, Cousteau and now Cowboy Junkies. I suppose it begs the question why I like music that borders on the depressed and lovelorn when my current situation is anything but. What can I say; I'm just a sensitive guy I guess. Whatever I may feel with my tactile senses my internal senses are focused on the pain just beneath the surface of the casual affairs of the world we live in.

So I am laying here thinking (too much perhaps) and I wandered into a rabbit trail. I suppose it is inspired by one of the songs I listened to almost an hour ago. The lyric goes "How will I know that its you; how will I know that it's right?" The song is written to a fictional lover outside of time and space in the realm of the metaphysical, presupposing that his lover is out there but not known to him. Such a song can't help stir your thoughts just a little. How indeed?

Well, you can weigh your own feelings and you can speculate as to the others. You may even discuss these things at great length, but language always falls short in communicating them absolutely anyway. I had to do some quick research to write this entry for you. I apologize if it borders on academic, but I was stuck on something I read a few years ago and I wanted to get it right.

This comes from a book on ethics by a guy named Ramsey who I believe is either very old now, or very dead. He first makes a case for "disinterested-love" which is a phrase he coins because he believes for love to be pure it must not be interested in any form of gain stemming from selfishness. I'll skip that part and go right to where he is quoting and analyzing Kierkegaard;

if you wish to assure yourself that love is disinterested, you must remove every possibility of requital... If love persists notwithstanding hostility, then it is in truth disinterested... in a love relationship between persons who have a personal or natural affinity for one another, there is always a hope and a prospect of requital, at least of a reciprocated love; and generally speaking, this is what happens in due time. But precisely this hope, this prospect of requital in the not far distant future produces such an effect that one cannot definitely see what is love and what is enlightened selfishness." - Paul Ramsey regurgitating Kierkegaard

Then I got to thinking. Have I ever had a natural affinity toward someone with the hope of requital that was not returned--at least not returned in the way I had hoped? Well, the short answer is yes. Many times, but one in particular though I will not name her here except as Ammonia (a name I joke to my coworkers I will name my first daughter if I have one).

So the test I came up with in my mind, to determine if a love that does seek requital really lives up to the standard of disinterested love (assuming I disagree with Ramsey and the genius of Kierkegaard) is what would I do if this person were to reemerge and confess a secret longing for me, either in the past or continuing into the present. Would I say thank you, that is flattering but no thanks? Would I go further and admit my own feelings but insist that I no longer feel that way and I wish her the best? Or would I recklessly extinguish this new flame and hope to light an old one that never really burned to begin with?

All great questions and I won't answer them now, just something to mull over I suppose. I mean at some point you have to take your head back out of the clouds, dust out the cobwebs, return to reality and just be glad you don't have to make that choice!

OK I lied. I am pretty sure I'd admit I had a crush but that it is over and it was based on a fantasy that doesn't exist. The person I knew isn't the person she would now be, nor am I the person I was then. Even the friendship I had with this person wouldn't stand much of a chance of lasting given the time and distance that have helped shape who we are now. Sorry to make it sound so simple, I really wanted it to sound more like the plot for a film that would just grip you until the bitter end but for some reason it fell apart in act two, didn't it? Well, that's life folks!



17 October 2007


Today I wake with heaviness. I don't know if it is the lack of sleep, the lack of food (in my belly, not in general), or just a general lack of direction but I feel heavy, almost sick today. I made a big breakfast, nearly enough to feed another but all for myself this time. I nearly ate it all too and that makes me feel better physically, but nothing more.

I picked up Prozac Nation again today and started where I left off. I found it in my small suitcase yesterday so I know it's been since late August since I last read it because that is when I went camping with the family and thought there might be some downtime. Of course there was plenty of that but I occupied it superficially chatting it up with people I barely relate to anymore.

Yes I wanted to tell her... I am crying because whatever my gifts, the pieces of good buried inside and under so much that I feel is bad, is wrong, is twisted, are less clear than the ability to hit a ball with a bat and break the scoreboard or do a triple pirouette in the air on the ice. My gifts are for life itself, for an unfortunately astute understanding of all the cruelty and pain in the world. My gifts are unspecific, I am an artist manqué, someone full of crazy ideas and grandiloquent needs and even a little happiness, but with no particular way to express it. (Elizabeth Wurtzel, Prozac Nation)

I think that sums up why I am drawn to into this sad little tale. I think it is in part a journey of self-discovery for me. I never thought of myself as depressed and from what I can tell I probably am not, but I've been around it so much on all sides that I feel a strange kinship with it. I think it is probably that I am sensitive to the things most people pass over without noticing. It isn't about rich or poor, black of white, masculine or feminine. I see pain in all shapes and sizes. I suppose my familiarity with the subject has caused me to become too numb though. I realized the other day that I haven't had a good cry in nearly 20 years. Unlike Wurtzel who cries sometimes for seemingly no reason, I have buried the pain deep and no loss, no grief, no failure, no rejection has ever hurt enough to bring it to the surface.

I suppose I am to blame for this handicap. I could allow myself to feel things more deeply but I am afraid to. I am comfortable with melancholy. I am comfortable witnessing pain. I am at ease being empathetic for others, but it all barely scratches the surface. I wonder if it shows and I suppose it does. How could it not?

Yet today I am heavy. I am weighed down with a loss unknown. I think it is that I have discovered the loss is a part of myself I haven't allowed to exist in a long time. I have felt this before. It is like a gnawing ache that wants you to realize you are missing your self. You've been eating and breathing, sleeping and working but not really living--Busy with the nonsense of life but not experiencing it.

To be continued...



12 October 2007

inspiring generations of wanderers...

Here's your weekend update folks. I am almost finished with the marathon stretch of overtime and, well, regular time. Everyone at work has been bugging me about whether or not I am going to stay. Another one asked me to stay. I figure the score is now 30-2. Maybe even more of a blowout. It seems that even the people I thought didn't get along with me are coming around and hoping I don't leave.

Of course if I do stay I need to get them to promise me my schedule will change. This working two or three nights and then having one or two nights off and doing it again and again and again never having the same nights off is getting lame. I also don't even get full time hours, so something has to give. I have a solution though. My supervisor seems interested in cutting back hours and said I could have her schedule but she might want it back someday. Sounds good to me. I don't want it forever. I'm not sure I really want HER schedule anyway. She works M-F after all and I'm more interested in W-Su probably.

So I have come to a decision to see if I can recant my resignation, get W-Su as my new set schedule, and stay--for now. Why, you might be thinking, would I want to do that? Well I met someone the day after I handed my boss my resignation and so far so good. At some point she'll find this little blog (if she hasn't already) and introduce herself, but for now she's the brunette with naturally curly hair. I'm still the one holding a blue blanket and sucking my thumb, but that is an entirely different issue!

So today I get to find time to squeeze in a cat-nap and start another four night stretch (after just doing five). At some point I think I have to give up this shift-work business but for now I have come to realize that I cannot afford to (especially if I'm not going to be a traveling tech).

Anyone seen any good movies? Fall is here but certainly not to stay. I need to get out and get some fall foliage pictures. Any suggestions? Happy Oktoberfest and as always,