Category Archives: Ennui

Stop the train and let me off!

Every day of my life as long as I can remember, I have pictured myself as a hundred other things besides a man; a superman, a sea turtle, a bird, an ape, a demigod, a snail, a plastic bag, a volcano.

I fantasize that God or some other space alien will lift me up and unify me with the energy of the cosmos, or else smash me into an unrecognizable paste with their giant fist-from-the-sky. Either way, I wouldn’t have to deal with the minutiae.

I wish that I had never learned what wishing was. No I don’t. Yes I do.

But an immortal man would have no more chance of understanding the world or himself than a stillborn baby. So here’s to equality.

I asked an old man once, while helping him fill out an online application, what I should put down for his skills and whatnot. He replied with clear pronunciation, “Well sir, I am what you would call, ‘a lazy man.'” Even though I hated him, I wish everyone would be as honest as him, and by that I mean I wish everyone would say exactly what he did.

People suck. Mostly the white ones. There’s not enough hatred against whites, if you ask me. But its not as if anybody will do anything about it. The winning teams were decided long ago.

The difference between luck and chance is the letters that are used, and thus, their placement in the dictionary.

The difference between success and banality is the same distance between a supermarket and a natural history museum.

You’re born, you live, you die. Like the frothing effervescent sea foam of a pounding rushing wave, which exists but an instant, only to be replaced later by a near facsimile. It’s silly to want to do anything else but that, or even complain about the circumstances in-between. It makes for very predictable literature, or a very boring board game.

There’s a reason there that the heavy waves of the ocean are considered revitalizing and new to the fragile human spirit. Doesn’t anybody else wonder and worry about the fact that a body can trouble themselves over the supernatural (sometimes egregious) effects of a rainstorm one day, and smile at the uplifting stupor of a full rainbow the next?

A lot of people have no regard for ‘tomorrow’. They seem foolish because a storm could wipe out their home the same day they lose their job. Those people who have great consideration for ‘tomorrow’ wisely organize their piles into geometric stacks that will one day be the forgotten detritus of a long-extinct smoking cinder.

Everywhere are roots sticking out of the ground, and throngs of immobile people, and fences, and ‘No Trespassing’ signs, and public transportation, and little spiky balls of vegetable matter stuck in your footwear. But the reality is you can’t escape your own skull, the contents of which conspire against you far more than any other real or imagined forces of the universe.

I used to laugh at people with ridiculous phobias, as I am not afraid of clowns, or needles, or spiders, or dentists, or dogs, or what other relatively harmless things my friends are. That is, until I realized that I am afraid of perhaps that most fantastic and intangible construction of human evolution: falling in love.

I don’t believe I could take the time to get to know somebody as well as I know myself. I don’t know myself all that well.

Some people take drugs to stop them from thinking so much. Others take drugs so that they’ll think even harder. Society is a drug that does both simultaneously.

I can feel my thoughts and opinions and beliefs and wishes and aspirations and dreams sloshing around in my brain. I feel their weight. As though tilting my head back and forth would let them ooze warmly from my inner ear canal with a loud ‘POP’ and puddle into a pillow cover which I would then throw away and forget about.

When I try to force myself to think, I get sleepy. When I try to stop myself thinking, I get a headache. Either way I need to lie down.

If I ever do get depressed, it seems to be during those transcendental moments of beauty that defy all attempts at description. I involuntarily enter a trance-state as if in some drunken mind-frame, but wholly different from any drug. Thoughts overtake me, in what should be a happy or religious experience, but somehow induced from another place, like spoken in tongues, or finding something you thought you threw away long ago, or suddenly realizing you’re at the place you were supposed to be, but you don’t feel at all the way you anticipated. Disoriented, thinking of your position to the world all wrong once confronted by its image, then inexplicably angry at nobody. What an odd coincidence.

I’m grateful for plenty of things, but perpetually devoid of any ideas on how to express it appropriately.

If I ran away from ‘it all’ and changed my name or stole somebody’s, sure, the scenery might be better, but there would still be all the bullshit. It smells the same everywhere.

My most foolish fantasy has never been contemplating suicide. That is, I never think about it seriously enough to be considered ‘contemplation.’ Certainly not more than the average person, I suppose. Just as every heterosexual has the stray homosexual thought, but with such infrequency and frivolity that one can’t seriously self-identify as gay, let alone act upon it. So when somebody steps in front of oncoming traffic to end their life, it astounds me that they would want to reduce all the petty problems in their life into one massive immediate one. Though, to their credit, if they are killed they can’t be said to have any problems at all. But I always think, ‘if they aren’t killed, just seriously injured, they’ve increased their share of problems to work with tenfold.’ No. My most foolish fantasy is that I imagine stepping into oncoming traffic, surviving, and being somebody else’s problem. Maybe somebody attractive.

But I’m not depressed or tortured. That would be just another excuse to disrupt a disturbing train of thought, and I think its best to see the train to its destination, no matter how annoying. The trains are never on time, always end up at the wrong place with the wrong passengers aboard, with squealing wheels sparking against steel at an uncontrollable rate of speed, the driver having jumped off long ago. So far, there’s been no crash, but that’s almost worse.

No artist is tortured any more than any other thinking individual. Torture is what religion and the CIA perpetrate upon dissidents, or what some fetishists do for loads of money. But I repeat myself.

I don’t know what’s more upsetting, that the universe doesn’t care what I do, or that I don’t.

Not that I really have any problems or complaints, mind you. Just the typical ones that we all have, from the starving third-world villager to the multi-billionaire CEO. Wait. Scratch that.

It troubles me very deeply and very often that I am just like everybody else on the planet, and nobody is just like me.

The Rain Show

2010-02-27

If the heavy rain and dense fog has you stuck indoors in the San Francisco/Bay Area, or anywhere in time and space for that matter, kick back and gently drift to the lulling sounds of pounding rain, moist musical selections, DJ C-Foo’s readings of SPAM haiku, and the comforting knowledge that you are warm and dry and somebody else isn’t.

PLAYLIST
Vangelis – Tears In Rain – Blade Runner Soundtrack
Tom Waits – Make It Rain – Real Gone
Sonic Youth – Rain On Tin – Murray Street
Bob Dylan – A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall
Elvis Presley – Kentucky Rain
Led Zeppelin – The Rain Song – Houses Of The Holy
Credence Clearwater Revival – who’ll stop the rain – Bad Moon Rising
Jack Guthrie – the clouds rain trouble down – As Good As It Gets
Little Charlie & the Nightcats – Rain – Captured Live
Charles Mingus – stormy weather – Mysterious Blues
Sun Ra – the rainmaker – fate in a pleasant mood/when the sun comes
The Average White Band – stop the rain – AWB
The Dramatics – In the Rain
The Temptations – I Wish it Would Rain
Cosmic and Optimus Rhyme – realrain – Relative
Dinah Washington – Come Rain or Shine
Madeleine Peyroux – California Rain – Half the Perfect World
Nancy Holloway – Sand and Rain – Dusty Fingers Vol. 10
Incognito – black rain – No Time Like the Future
K-os – the rain – atlantis
Gnarles Barkley – Storm Coming – St. Elsewhere
Astrud Gilberto – The Gentle Rain (RJD2 Remix) – Verve Remixed, Vol. 3
Jill Scott & Will Smith – The Rain
Nuttin But Stringz – Thunder – Struggle – the Subway to the Charts
Gentleman June Gardner – It’s Gonna Rain – new orleans funk
Annette Hanshaw – I Get the Blues When It Rains – Volume 6 1929

Stranger in a Strange Land 2010-02-27: Rain Show by The Stranger on Mixcloud

~The Stranger
thestranger@earthling.net

For the internet

Sometimes things disturb me greatly, to the very core of my bone marrow’s being, (which is where your being be), and the sick snot of reality lightly grazes my soul and causes an involuntary electric shudder along the stiffening tinker-toy discs of my galvanic spine. For the sheer fear of accepting their allowance into a coincidental existence with myself, I have not shared certain events with the fragile minds and ears of others. This, dear friends, is what the internet is for.
1. An overlarged woman in her decaying years walks along the road, pulling along behind her violently a leashed little Dachsund®: a tiny phallic dog unfortunately endowed with an equally comical erect phallus, now pointed straight forward and dragging, nay, digging deeply into the coarse sidewalk before him. Was I mistaken? Or did I see a dark streak of dickblood slicken along the pavement behind? Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps.
2. While at work, a woman impatiently demands that I check the bathroom (where I had hoped to only check my own reflection for its continued awesomeness), for her teenaged son taking longer than usual. I hesitate, wondering if this is part of my job description in the interest of customer service, and lamenting my decision to opt for this, the closer bathroom. I agree, and soon discover that she has neglected to mention three important facts. One; that her son is mentally retarded. Two; that he was going number threes. And three; that he will not only respond, but in fact will present himself to any person who calls his name.
3. A man so obese as to warrant the purchase of a muumuu waits for the light to change, leaning laboriously against a straining crooked cane, impishly small and ill-suited to its utility. Today: Wednesday, I’m told, he has chosen perhaps his most spectacular muumuu. Electricity-acid traffic-cone photon orange. His corpulence reflects upon the ground beneath him as he tugs sloppily at the frozen convenience store drink through a double-wide straw. His waiting is in vain, he could surely move along the street with traffic, indistinguishable from construction vehicles and smallish cement mixers.
4. And finally, surely most disturbing of all, the fifth of six bathroom sinks is adorned with a sign that reads: “Out of Order, Sorry for the Inconvenience: Please See Our Information Desk on the Third Floor for Assistance.” Somewhere in the Westfield Mall, there is hired help, most likely hourly, one of whose main functions is to assist visitors easily confused and frightened by the anxiety-inducing broken sink two floors down near the food court.

Why I would make a terrible boyfriend

Why I would make a terrible boyfriend

Women, whether they are reasonable or psychotic, often require lots of attention, gratification, validation, medication, and reassurance. They are vulnerable, emotional physical beings, but their refusal to easy access to her insecurity issues, perhaps compensating to look invunerable, makes comfort frustrating and difficult. Women are quick to criticize and I’m afraid that I’m not nearly reliable and/or thoughtful enough to come close to the minimum requirements for such maintenance and upkeep. As dear old mother always told me, ‘all women are nuts, some of them are just honest about it.’ Well, that may be true, but nuts is still nuts.

They can go from dazed and confused, zoned-out and staring at nothing to bipolar, depressed and afraid of social interactions to party lush, quick to start up a conversation with a total stranger faster than Joe Walsh’s Mazeroti. Which leads me to my next issue: They’re inconsistent. She can act like the entire universe hangs on decisions I make, but then treats my decisions as utterly worthless. She seems to want to jump into my arms and never let go, but sometimes retorts with a terse ‘don’t touch me!’ She shows up in my room wearing sexy lingerie, and then wants me to make all the moves from thereon out. She treats me like the social king of the order, the alpha male, and then the most inept and awkward man on the planet. She’s childish, but yells at me for being childish, ridicules my opinions and then gets defensive of her own even if nobody is attacking them. She causes more headaches than I’ve had in a long time, and I always have a constant headache, so that’s saying something.
She has to be right most of the time. While I do find arrogance and self-assurance more than just a little attractive, it’s clear to me that this trait is at odds with her otherwise general insecurity issues, and does not stem from a place of confident brazenness, but rather some other neurosis. And to be perfectly fair, I’m the kind of person that has to be right most of the time, and she doesn’t seem to be capable of letting me win some of the time.

Where I like to take my time and prepare for an elaborate and continual sex act, she seems quite impatient, not to say quick. I like a little romantic element, and can continue far after she seems to be interested. Her inconsistency is prevalent here as well, for while she clearly unabashedly delights in physical ecstasy wrought upon her body, post-coital her overly talkative and analytical banter resumes.

She has a boyfriend. I’ve been through all this before, and we all know where it leads; no emotional gratification, only a little physical gratification, and a whole lot of guilt. And I already have some guilt issues already associated with that.
She’s not ready for a serious commitment. The fact that she’s been cheating on her boyfriend with me is evidence of that, as well as the fact that the most solid admission of our feelings for each other we seem to be able to babble is ‘I don’t know.’

And I’m much too selfish and lazy to deal with any of that.

I got nothin’

I’ve still got about 50% and 24 minutes of this video to render out, so here I am. (Aside: They want to take the internet out of open lab 720 next quarter. This is stupid because while many people only use it for myspace.com, other people need it for research and to kill those excruciating render times. I understand that less people on myspace equals more computers to work at, but to what avail if a valuable research tool is removed? Plus, they’re going to ban myspace on top of that. Good, it’s for fools and impotents. But what’s the point if there’s no internet anyways?)

Things are starting to come together for me. I always seem the least depressed after a particularly bad bout with it. Last night was one of those. I thought, “what am I supposed to be doing after I graduate? What if I don’t succeed? Worse still, what if I do succeed, but at something that makes me miserable?” Which led me to the inevitable question of: “What am I supposed to be doing with my life that won’t make me miserable?” And then I realized that nothing fulfills me, or rather, there isn’t much that doesn’t make me miserable, so I got depressed. I also realized that I’ve never felt the soothing divine presence of God, that I’ve been faking a spirituality only to fool myself, and that I have no idea what sort of woman I want to be with. Every time I find one I like there’s something that goes terribly awry. I swear to Peter Tosh it’s like Woody Allen is writing for me sometimes.

11 minutes left.

Pre-portfolio wasn’t last Tuesday, it’s today at five. That’s why I’m here working and not out shooting. (Incidentally, it’s also why I was so angry with myself. That and getting hung up on a girl that I shouldn’t). So I have pieces to show that I’ve worked on all week, (when I could find a computer), and much of it still sucks. Jeff just volunteered to help me with Color Correction, though, which is mostly because he gets paid for his tutor hours. Honestly, if I had unlimited time, money, talent, and resources, I’d reshoot over half of this shit. But I don’t, and I have to make do with what I have. Though I will be shooting a couple more things here in the coming weeks. I also have next quarter to refine a lot of it. I guess I’m not too worried. But knowing that my work is shit, and knowing that at five-o-clock I’m going to be told that my stuff is shit, is like a twisted Cassandra’s complex wherein I have no power between now and then to change my future. Other shiny, happy students who eat, breathe, and shit video with their future in engineering or news editing are frolicking down there, DVDs in tow, to get the praise they deserve. I guess if they get torn apart it will shatter the preconceived notions, I don’t know. I’m not thinking of anyone in particular. My point it that the bright side of all of this is that since I’ve prepared for the worst, I’m not in store for much disappointment.

Six minutes left.

I need to pass every class between now and graduation. I don’t have the loans or the funds to continue. In fact, I’m overextended as far as I possibly could be. (But I did buy Journey tickets.) Then what? Who knows. Everyone is telling me that I should move closer to them, all over the country, and that I could do some nondescript job near them. My mother, God bless her, told me not to listen to any of them, that I can do whatever I want and she’d still love me. As long as I got a job. That doesn’t help at all. Then there’s the military, there’s the psychotic fugues, and of course suicide.

About a minute… Less than a minute.

I’ll figure this out. If it kills me.

I am so fucked!!!

That’s right, three exclamation points warranted type fucked!!! I am so failing like two classes out of my five which may be the end of my already tenuous tenure at the school hanging by the thread of my 3.0 (once upon a time ago a 3.8). It’s all because of hours. One would expect to stop smoking pot and become MORE motivated. Jesus, I hate going to school. I need to move to another town, and I plan on doing it, its just that for Dog’s sakes I’m so close to graduating, why can’t I just keep my shit together for like four more months? EVEN if I pass the Editing class, and even if I re-take Chemistry next semester online (which is only five weeks and not so bad), even if I can overcome the bullshit impeding my Film II and Senior Project and VFX classes, and pass those, it means that I’ll have to take six classes next quarter (plus Portfolio), and that’s NOT including the online Chemistry, and I have to graduate next semester because my loans will run out if I don’t, neither my parents nor I can get new ones, and I don’t even have a (legal) job! I feel that that run-on sentence was necessary.

I have my backup plans. I can just go wherever the wind takes me, file for poverty status so that I don’t have to pay back my student loans, travel the rails as a hobo and die happily staring up at the stars created just for me one night. Or, I can join the Air Force, and then I can maybe get enough money to come back to school, though ideally, I wanted to join the Marines, and IDEALLY, I wanted to join with a degree already so that I can go straight from boot camp into officer training. Or; I can fake my death and change my name, (which I do know how to do, strangely), and go to another college under that assumed name, worst case scenario; they catch me and throw me in jail for not paying my debts, but at least then I’ll have shelter and three square meals a day. Working at a shit job for a while really isn’t an option, because without a degree any job I get will only be enough to survive on, not enough to save anything up and go back to school. So it’s either military or hobo, I guess. Darling, I don’t know why I go to extremes.

So here’s the plan, short-term. I’m going to continue to show up to my supposedly failed class, do the assignments, and hope to God that he has enough compassion to pass me. I’m going to finish the assignments for those other classes in these remaining four weeks. I am going to, and I hate to say it, dare I say it, don’t tell anyone, apply for my old job back at Peppi’s, because nobody, not even the shittiest jobs in Pittsburgh, will fucking hire me.

I wish that abstracts were personified, because then I’d know how to deal with them. I really wanted to beat the shit out of my ‘stupor at not being to get a job.’ I really wanted to punch ‘aimless directionlessness life’ right in the goddamned face. And I really wanted to kick ‘pain from shitting out chicken wings the next day’ right in his crotch.

And I swear to God, if I don’t figure out what I want from life soon I’m going to start busting some skulls of random (but wise-looking) people on the street trying to get the answers.

Wax off.

I have to add this much…

I was feeling pretty shitty. I don’t like feeling shitty when I don’t know why, because usually, and I mean 99% of the time, and all of them in the past, I know what’s wrong with me and I can go fix it. But lately…

Anyways, I went back and read some old posts, and not only did this take the time that I should have been in class, thereby nullifying that argument in my head, it also put a lot of things in perspective. Talk about dialectic, I might as well be schizophrenic. I urge anyone reading this to go and do the same. (With your own posts, silly, not mine. That is, unless you REALLY want to read or re-read all the terribly witty and classy things I have had to say over the past few years.)

And to think of what started my Livejournaling. Hm.

Life. So it goes.