Archive for June, 2002

fried clams

Thursday, June 27th, 2002

Nutshell update.  Since I seem to post about once every full-moon, I’ll try to cram it all into this session of typing. 

Went to the beach last week.  It poured all day.  That was kinda OK because all I really wanted to do was wander around real beach-people, in the vague vicinity of real beach-memories.  I didn’t really want to make anything new.  How old of me. 

I went with Irene, our first time together since last summer.  We do work together, but encountering people at work is like dashing past a fellow combatant in the trenches.  The subtleties of human emotion can be safely tossed aside, maybe to be picked-up and re-examined again at a later time.  Maybe not. 

On this trip I got to thoroughly expound on all my analyses of life –from when we, each of us, chose courageously before birth to dive into this experience of human life, then through all of the tumult and trauma that ensued, and right up until the present, which is a product of those events combined with our responses to them.  And the purple-grey sky, and the steel-blue water, and the cold vacant beach all played backdrop to my presentation.  Powerpoint could not have done it better. 

There was the outrageously expensive seafood, served in one of Hampton Beach’s charmingly trashy establishements.  We were cold and drenched, and it was the only place without its air-conditioning blasting.  In fact, it had garage doors all around the dining/drinking/pool-playing area, all wide open to admit the crowds and the glories of summer –only there weren’t any that day. 

All in all, it was a pleasant day.  It was as if everything we encountered during our rainy beach day was clinging to a wishful optimism, though disappointed.  That was so nice, for a little while, not to be the only one.

I did come home with a small revelation.  I have always been stuck at a point where I am able to apprehend all the facts, and can see all of the consequences but cannot answer the question, “What are you going to do about it?”  Irene’s experiences with life thus far have led her to formulate the same question in a slightly different way; what do you want? 

I am no less stuck here, but this question presents to me the root of what restrains me.  I can gnaw at my anchor’s chain, lose all my teeth and spend all my days so engaged, knowing there will be no danger of severing it and therefore never any need to confront any of the subsequent navigational risks of living life free. 

What do you want?

Well, I want to keep misidentifying the problem so that I don’t have to actually decide what I want.  I want to avoid weighing anchor, because this is not a burden forged by me.  In fact, this particular burden was not foisted upon me by a mere stranger, seeking with nothing more than callous disregard to offload an unwanted encumbrance.  Strangers are not supposed to love me, necessarily, and so I could address his calloussness as just that, tossing him and his baggage overboard unrepentantly. 

But it was not a stranger who did this to me, it was the first person to love me in this life.  The person who knew me first and best maliciously tied me down in this sewagey back water because she was too afraid to leave it herself, and too afraid to admit that she did not have to stay there.  If she could make me stay stuck, she could then pretend that her misery was inevitable, that no other choice was possible.  With me stuck by her side, she could pretend that vessels like herself were never meant to travel beyond the putrid swamp in sun and wind and sea, to the wide world beyond.  With me stuck by her side she didn’t have to be alone. 

I don’t know why she stayed stuck all her life, but I know why I stay stuck.  If I come unstuck, I will have to rewrite my foundations and revise my concept of love itself, for the one who did this to me was truly my first love.  She is the one who introduced me to the concept of love, who taught me caring generosity, who sang to me as I lay giggling in her lap. 

It is easier, and somehow more fitting, to be safely preoccupied gnawing on the chain that restrains me than to take all of these facts, and feel them. 

Besides, I don’t know east from west anymore.  What ever would I do outside my rotten pool? 

whispers in the night

Monday, June 24th, 2002

    Burgwinkle (1:45:49 AM): hi
    Burgwinkle (1:46:16 AM): the eagle has landed
    BooBoo602(1:48:16 AM): OH GOD
    BooBoo602(1:48:25 AM): I MEAN GOOD
    Burgwinkle (1:49:07 AM): i was getting worried
    BooBoo602(1:49:12 AM): BUISY
    Burgwinkle (1:49:18 AM): k

    Burgwinkle (1:58:54 AM): hi sorry.  sound is off.  he’s asleep (I think)
    BooBoo602(2:05:18 AM): BOBBY SLEEPING?
    Burgwinkle (2:05:28 AM): eyes shut
    Burgwinkle (2:05:37 AM): I think
    Burgwinkle (2:05:45 AM): I dare not look to closely
    BooBoo602(2:06:22 AM): WANT ME TO COME LOOK?
    BooBoo602(2:07:31 AM): YOU GONNA COME WORK?
    BooBoo602(2:07:48 AM): AAND I WILL GO SPEND THE NIGHT WITH HIM?
    Burgwinkle (2:08:14 AM): Many nights I sit here surfing senslessly, dozing off and knowing I should get in bed, but don’t until its light out..
    Burgwinkle (2:08:47 AM): tonight I have all I can do to stay out of bed
    Burgwinkle (2:08:53 AM): and its early
    BooBoo602(2:08:53 AM): LOL
    BooBoo602(2:15:42 AM): CAN I MAKE HIM OPEN HIS EYES?
    Burgwinkle (2:16:05 AM): he is beautiful.
    BooBoo602(2:16:25 AM): WHERES A WEB CAM WHEN YOU NEED IT?
    Burgwinkle (2:17:21 AM): I would shut it off,
    BooBoo602(2:17:38 AM): <POUT>
    Burgwinkle (2:19:12 AM): it would be like trying to film a miracle
    Burgwinkle (2:19:26 AM): …very tacky.
    BooBoo602(2:19:51 AM): AWE….SO SENTIMENTIL( my spelling still sucks)
    Burgwinkle (2:20:50 AM): i don’t think i know how to spell it either
    Burgwinkle (2:21:12 AM): and this space bar is too goddamn noisy.
    BooBoo602(2:21:18 AM): do you even know what it means?….lol
    Burgwinkle (2:21:53 AM): it means the look of his face in candle light
    Burgwinkle (2:22:02 AM): while he sleeps
    BooBoo602(2:22:26 AM): sniff…sniff
    BooBoo602(2:22:36 AM): aawe
    Burgwinkle (2:23:19 AM): i’m getting sore trying not to move
    BooBoo602(2:23:28 AM): lol
    BooBoo602(2:23:37 AM): why trying not to move?
    BooBoo602(2:23:47 AM): trying to be quiet?
    Burgwinkle (2:23:54 AM): trying to be quiet
    BooBoo602(2:24:06 AM): oh
    Burgwinkle (2:24:40 AM): …his foot is about a foot from the base of my chair.
    Burgwinkle (2:25:14 AM): and it is nowhere near his other foot
    Burgwinkle (2:25:21 AM): (!)
    BooBoo602(2:25:26 AM): reach out and touch it?
    Burgwinkle (2:25:42 AM): or /!\
    BooBoo602(2:26:12 AM): roflmao
    Burgwinkle (2:26:26 AM): _/!\_
    BooBoo602(2:26:54 AM): where do you come up with these things?
    Burgwinkle (2:27:18 AM): i buy them at walmart
    BooBoo602(2:27:50 AM): LOL
    Burgwinkle (2:28:44 AM): seriously, it is amazing what an overstimulated mind will do, in the dark, at a keyboard
    Burgwinkle (2:29:09 AM): …with the love of my life asleep in MY BED!
    BooBoo602(2:29:13 AM): YOU ARE RIGHT
    BooBoo602(2:29:38 AM): GO CRAWL IN WITH HIM
    Burgwinkle (2:30:50 AM): I am Gus Grissom, and bobby is my moon.

    Burgwinkle (2:41:13 AM): his s/o just called
    BooBoo602(2:42:46 AM): oh
    BooBoo602(2:42:53 AM): and?
    Burgwinkle (2:43:43 AM): we decided not to answer because the id was unavailable
    BooBoo602(2:43:59 AM): oh
    BooBoo602(2:44:05 AM): he awke now?
    Burgwinkle (2:44:17 AM): but, that’s because it was the mass relay oper calling (darlene is deaf)
    BooBoo602(2:44:32 AM): oh
    Burgwinkle (2:44:36 AM): yup. 
    BooBoo602(2:45:00 AM): is he reading?
    Burgwinkle (2:45:11 AM): she knows where he is…
    BooBoo602(2:45:33 AM): or is she guessing?
    Burgwinkle (2:45:42 AM): he is talkin g to the relay oper now, to her.
    BooBoo602(2:45:51 AM): oh
    BooBoo602(2:46:13 AM): so he signs also huh
    Burgwinkle (2:48:18 AM): he does it ALL, baby
    BooBoo602(2:49:40 AM): OOOOOHHHHH
    Burgwinkle (2:56:30 AM): hell hath no scorn..
    BooBoo602(2:56:47 AM): …..?
    Burgwinkle (2:57:22 AM): or is it hell hath no wrath like a woman’s scorn
    BooBoo602(2:57:30 AM): OHHHHHH
    Burgwinkle (2:58:06 AM): Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.  THATs it
    BooBoo602(3:01:00 AM): YA…OK
    Burgwinkle (3:13:06 AM): this is now type by touch, the lights are all off, the candle out, and the monitor dummed way down.
    Burgwinkle (3:13:28 AM): dimmed
    BooBoo602(3:13:49 AM): SO NOT TO DIATURB SLEEPING BEAUTY?
    Burgwinkle (3:19:14 AM): In ancient religious practice, in the days when the Sun was worshipped, and when the regularity of its passage through the heavens and whether or not it would rise in the morning was a matter of worry, virgins like me (Hah!) would sit awake all night and keep vigil, because they believed if no one stayed awake, then the dawn would not come…
    BooBoo602(3:21:00 AM): AND….
    Burgwinkle (3:22:31 AM): …they worried that the Sun might forget them, or that some other misfortune might steal it from them, leaving them forever to suffer in the dark and the cold –a long night of winter…
    Burgwinkle (3:23:14 AM): never to become summer again.
    BooBoo602(3:23:32 AM): WHERE DO YOOU LEARN THIS STUFF?
    Burgwinkle (3:28:14 AM): I worry.  This precious one I watch vigil over may be stolen from me.  The night brings many troubles to the mind, and ressurects many demons from their daytime graves, where daylight entombs them. 
    BooBoo602(3:28:59 AM): SRE OYU GETTING MUSHY ON ME?
    BooBoo602(3:31:39 AM): BRB
    Burgwinkle (3:35:51 AM): It is a fight to keep the light still alive, though dimly it may flicker, and when the black and grasping night encroaches, from both sides. from the front and the back, and even from above and below, that is when the keepers of the vigil become the heroes of the night.
    Burgwinkle (3:41:13 AM): mushymushymushy
    BooBoo602(3:48:29 AM): OH HOW NICCE
    BooBoo602(3:48:37 AM): I KNEW OYU HAD A HEART
    Burgwinkle (4:02:02 AM): heart on
    BooBoo602(4:02:33 AM): you are a sick pup

malicious intent

Sunday, June 23rd, 2002
Key2Audio is the first step in a dreadful double perversion of Fair Use. The first perversion is the idea that by making a copy of music for yourself, you are depriving the copyright holder of the ability to obtain revenue from selling you additional copies of the same music. The second, linked, perversion is that by destroying your ability to exercise fair use, the record company extends its copyright power beyond the content (the music) to the delivery medium (the CD).
– from MacOPINION, by Matthew Ruben

Please read MacOPINION, by Matthew Ruben: Celine Dion Killed My iMac!, regardless of whether you own an Apple or not.  If you buy stuff, this article is important to you.  Period. 

blakecam

Sunday, June 23rd, 2002

In my comatose lethargioussness (a new word coined by me) I only recently noticed a link to my site from blakecam.com, which may have been up for weeks or even months.  Usually I scour my access logs every couple days or so for evidence of others who have been inspired to type a line or two of code just for me.  I really like that. 

Not only do I like when people do that, but it introduces me to new sites, and there are a number of nice sites to be seen at blakecam.com.

See them.

say

Wednesday, June 19th, 2002

I have nothing to say.

noblame

Tuesday, June 18th, 2002

Life is cruel.  It is folly to blame any individual for any of it.  As Howard Jones says, “No one is to blame.”  But, you know, it’s like sugar, that desire to place blame.  It’s subtly addictive.  What else should our hearts want to do with the crushing burden of tragedy but seek a place to set it down, and leave it?  However, that place must necessarily be the heart of another person, the blamed one. 

So you see, the songs title is not a lament, as in, “aww, it’s really unforntunate that No One is to Blame.”  Rather, I hear in it a command –or at least a reminder– to stop blaming, to do what we can to cure the tragedies where we find them, but to restrain our retributive urges.  Frenzied blame-placing is how tragedy begets tragedy.  First, before you lock-up any priests, or execute any teenage murderers, or bomb any countries, first just stand still and take no action other than to feel what hurts, plumb the depths of your compassion, and cry. 

There is a great deal more to do besides finding out who’s fault everything is.  The work of repairing what is wrong is more important than placing blame, but it is also a lot more difficult to do. 

And besides, whether or not you find someplace to put the blame, it really doesn’t matter.  No one is to blame. 

blogold

Sunday, June 16th, 2002

joe. (another true story)

going…

Friday, June 14th, 2002

What would I be if I weren’t a bitchy, pain-in-the-ass, grumbling, frowning, miserable prick?  Would I be the Pope?  …the Queen of the Netherlands?  …a jowly, cigar-chewing sportswriter in New Jersey?  Nah.  No offense to any in that unlikely trinity, but I would be none of them.  Would I still be bald?  Yeah.  Would I still be a little overweight, and a little out of shape?  Oh, yeah.  Would my breakfast continue to be a pot of coffee, my lunch a pizza, and my dinner a pint of ice cream?  Probably. 

If I weren’t a bitchy prick, I wouldn’t hide as much as I do now.  I would get out of bed before noon.  I wouldn’t wait until dark to walk to the store.  I’d feel more scared, but I’d be less afraid.  I’d sing in the shower. 

I’d cry.  Maybe no more than I do now, but there’d be a flow to it, and with a destination, too.  That flow would rinse-out the mildewed sponge that has held the body of my tears for decades.  It wouldn’t stink anymore, and I’d throw that ratty sponge away. 

If I wasn’t a bitchy prick, I’d see that I am kinda cute, a little bit.  And I’d see that the monsters would be monsters no more –they’d all turn back into regular people, they way I used to see them, the way they have always been.  They’d once again become potential friends, and I would once again become one, too. 

That’s a pretty cheery view, like it’s a clear and sunny blue-sky day, and I’m driving on an empty highway through green mountains and over shining crystal-clear rivers, on my way to somewhere, going some place. 

Everything is so beautiful, so beautiful.  Everything.  If I weren’t a bitchy prick, I don’t know how I’d manage.  I don’t know how I would manage at all. 

helicopters, coming

Wednesday, June 12th, 2002

I hate everything.  I love you. 

I love everything.  I hate me. 

Does this or that matter; the memory of Christmas trees, of training wheels, of sibling rivalries?  Did I dress-up for Mass, once upon a life?  Did I cry in terror from the roller coaster? –heaving galeful sobs, loud and wet and unrestrained, as if I believed I deserved relief?  Or is that a former incarnation bleeding into this?  Have I already lived and died?  Maybe I have just not lived.  Maybe I won’t have to die. 

If I try and bare my soul here, what will you see?  What if it is a completely other thing –an alien within me that, for whatever reason, I don’t want to see?  What then?  Will you tell me that I am nuts?  If I write merely to expell what is inside –is that bad?  Or should I write primarily to compel and to illuminate?  (As if I could.)

Welcome to expellatory writing.  You’d be surprized, it’s not nearly as rancid and rabid as most of the times when I try to actually say something.  I think it’s the process of trying to actually say something that makes me bitter.  As long as I try not to speak, or scream, or wail, or send up flares for help from a world that I imagine exists somewhere outside of me, waiting to send rescue helicopters and valiant frogmen for me; a world outside of me that is not a disaster, that has not abandoned me, that does not let little boys like me send up flares unheeded…  As long as I try not to speak, or to “say something,” there’s a chance what’s really inside might actually come out. 

And that’s the danger, too. 

What became of me?  “Make something of yourself,” said the betrayers, and so I set about doing nothing of the sort.  I wanted them to see the rift between us, so I defied them, hoping they would come to investigate my defiance, and then would see –and remove– the barrier between us which they had inadvertantly placed, and which I sorely lamented.  At first I couldn’t move it –that wall between my beloved betrayers and me.  I tried, I tried, I tried, I tried, I tried, ItriedItriedItried.  Now, in my adulthood, I suppose I could move it, if I tried.  But I have been camped up against it for so long that removing it at this late stage would mean losing my home. 

People come to me with their tenderest aches, the ones they can’t –they’re not allowed to or they’re too afraid to– show to anyone in their life.  So they go outside of their tribe, beyond the people in their life –their own beloved betrayers– and they look for a harmless, broken-hearted one like themselves.  They look for a little child hiding inside of every person they meet, a child who believes still in rescue helicopters, that fly from a world of beloveds who do not betray.  They look for one like me, and they find me. 

I want to be like the character in the fiction which I imagine writing someday; he screams a loud release, with utter unselfconsciousness, every time he comes, which in my character’s case would be every morning right about dawn while he is in the shower, just when all his neighbors are beginning to stir.  His scream, most days, would be the first loud sound of the day, startling even the raucously chattering birds of dawn.  He is, however, afraid to sing in the shower, for fear that someone in his building, or that a stranger passing by outside, might hear him and recoil.  His self-esteem is prohibitively fragile.  But for some things, for some things, he is able to completely suspend any self-judgement whatsoever; he has the capacity in brief and fleeting moments to be thoroughly and entirely whatever he wants to be.  For whatever reason, those brief and fleeting moments occur for him in the shower at 4:45 AM every day, when he jerks off. 

I have not made much of myself, nor have I become any of the many better things I could have become.  I have provided the compassion others sought, and I have shared the lonliness of others like myself who were absolutely isolated in plain sight.  But I have never screamed in the shower, nor have I cried out in untethered ecstasy from anyplace, either sacred or profane. 

If I could, for just an instant, let go of it all completely, all the inhibitions and doubts, all the tentativeness and reluctance, all the crippledness and the fear, then I know I could fly, and all the rest would be a cinch.  If I could fly I could stop waiting for the rescue helicopters to come and save me –they were never real anyway. 

educated morons

Friday, June 7th, 2002

CVS Pharmacy Sucks!  And so does Tufts Health Plan, by the way.

More later.

3:51 AM

Thursday, June 6th, 2002

Me.  I look at my name on the cancelled checks returned to me, and I wonder who that is –me.  I see me as though from afar, as if everything I know of as me is a memory –a remembrance of flesh once animated; a fond recognition of a distant life, in which pulse and scent were too familiar to be noticed, from a perspective where I have neither.  I imagine fondly remembering pain, and breath, and hunger, and all the host of physical, temporal preoccupations that came with having a body.  I picture –or rather, percieve evanescently– the latter-me wondering quizically how the embodied-me could have failed to exploit all the fascinations raised by the curiosity of being both physical and spiritual at once.  How did I go through that with eyes, but unaware?  With a warm throbbing heart and exquisite nerves, but unfeeling?  With needs, both ferocious and delicate, with desires both fleeting and unending, and with appetites both excruciatingly insatiable and sumptuously fed, and with me all the while unforgivably unconscious? 

It is too late.  Light is beginning to overtake this spot in the northern hemisphere, creeping up over this place on earth from the East-northeast.  Every summer night, the sun sleeps briefly, lightly, just beyond the northern woods, never fully surrendering its influence over the sky, never completely abandoning us.  In the summer, at these latitudes where I have lived this life, the northern sky stays a faintly luminous deep, deep blue.  It is the warmth of every Summer night. 

grave of the fireflies

Tuesday, June 4th, 2002

At 1:45 AM somebody knocked on the door.  They kept knocking.  Sometime after 3:00 AM they knocked their last.  I don’t like it when people come to visit, unannounced, at 2 in the morning.  I especially don’t like it when they –presumably a friend, though I don’t think I can tell the difference between a real friend and a smiling enemy– continues knocking for over an hour.  Is it just deliberate torture?  ..from a friend?  Or is it some former-friend, a malcontent who has maintained some simmering grievance toward me and has chosen the angsty and insane part of night, the wee hours, to address it? 

In my apartment it is nearly impossible to escape from an unwelcome knock at my door.  I have a studio, and no part of the apartment (except for the closet in the bathroom) is more than ten feet from one or the other door, and he used both doors last night.  And as it happens, my dishwasher was running when he arrived.  My dishwasher is noisy.  From outside my apartment in the hall, it sounds like I am taking a shower and having a tantrum at the same time.  It’s not repetitious noise either, it really makes it sound like someone is moving around in here.  Have you ever hated your dishwahser for telling the truth? 

I am most certainly nuts.  It would have been so much simpler to have just opened the door and said, ‘go away.’  But would he (or she) –no reason to be chauvinist about my paranoia– have gone?  Once his (or her) intent to torture me was clear, it was not much of a leap then to envision all sorts of violent intents festering outside my door, hovering just above the shadow that I could see through the space under the door. 

Let me clarify a bit; this knocking was gentle, at times even timid.  This was not the door-rapping that accompanies an emergency or crisis, at least not the kind that involve fire or police.  And any friend who knows that I might sit rigid unto sore stiffness for two hours also knows that I need more than an anonymous knock in the night before I open the door.  A friend in need would make some announcement from outside the door like, ‘Hey Joe, it’s Jack.  You know, Jack, the ripper.  I gotta use your phone.’ 

Or maybe it’s only the smiling enemies who choose to speak when knocking at my door at midnight, their polished words and pleasant tones a balm to my fevered angst.  And maybe I prefer them; they don’t want a friend, they are not seeking a quote-unquote relationship.  Whatever they want, they do not want me to be real.  No matter what bizarre imagined danger a smiling enemy might represent, it is never worse to me than the threat posed by a friend.  It is by friendship that we get real.  I will not survive the transition from me to real. 

He (or she) took a break around two-thirty; the shadow moved away from the door.  I took the opportunity to stealthily reposition myself in front of my monitor.  No turning lights on or off, no closing blinds, and no standing upright even –the knocker may be watching from outside, and the shadow may return at any moment.  And it did. 

I had been planning to watch Grave of the Fireflies.  So I did.  I crawled across the floor to my chair, turned off the sound and started playing the DVD.  English subtitles.  An occasional knock at the door.  No music.  There is at least a novel’s worth of irony in the image of me watching an anime movie about the homelessness, starvation, and deaths of a young Japanese boy and his little sister, orphaned at the end of World War II, all the while ignoring someone who obviously knows me –and for all I know needed me, or maybe needed just a place to stay last night– standing at my door less than ten feet away, alone in the hall outside my apartment. 

A true crisis never happens outside of our own hearts. 

The movie was a diversion from my imaginings of murder and mayhem lurking outside my door.  It also diverted my attention away from the insane behavior in which I had already invested an hour, and subsequently three hours.  And with the addition of this post now, four hours.  If the insanity ever ends, I won’t be happy.  It is my life. 

By the way, get that movie if you haven’t seen it.  And watch it twice, once without making a sound.