Driving home. A strange feeling. Pressure inside my chest. A sensation of immanent unescapable death. This feeling remained no matter what I thought of: Sex, warm summer days lounging, reading. I kept thinking of these things and should have felt better, but the feeling remained. A terrible car wreck where your cherished CD keeps playing while you try to put the pieces back together.
Feeling of immanent death. Like everything is caving in on itsself. No escape. This feeling while you sit in your comfortable car, listening to relaxed voices on the radio and navigate traffic. Your mind knows everything is ok, but this feeling continues. Its so wrong, a landmine in a peaceful forest. A room on earth suddenly running out of air. Its like that.
Where did it come from? What caused it to appear? I get home and get lost in a book and then it fades away. I can still see its shadow in the back of my mind, its only a shadow. I am outside it now, analyzing it. I can live this way until it engulfs my existance again.
Only things better than this can come tomorrow. Whats that song?
And when you wake up it's a new mornin'
The sun is shinin' it's a new morning....
Ah, it finally feels like the web is untangling. All the confusing wires criss-crossed are starting to separate from each other. They are lining up like a little army. My own little army of untangleness.
The temperature increases by a few degrees and just like that your mind clears into nothingness again. You have finally reached the state of man and bull together. One ceases separating himself from other things. Other things and himself become one. His mind becomes as clear as a warm summer breeze. Decisions are made without hesitation and with the world around him. Nothing stops his mind from flowing.
So anyway, yea. I'm feeling good again. Everything seems so clear. Nothing is muddled. I clean my desk, I clean my office. Its all good. I need to clean this site. Somehow 1 month turned into 4 months, not very organized is it? And where are all the pretty pictures? And what follows goes without saying.
The monk awoke after another eternity. With pure clarity he took a deep breath in and out.
He walked outside his small forest hut and became absorbed in straightening his rock garden which had become a tangled mess. The action of rock straightening; once he began this task his entire being became absorbed inside it. His already faded consciousness faded even further. He became his hands and the rocks he moved.
At the end of the day he became conscious again. He looked at the straightened rocks with some sense of familiarity and comfort.
The crickets were chriping loudly, it was night somehow. The monk entered his hut and returned to the void with a faint smile on his face.
There were 3 men. An old man, a young man and a middle aged man. For hours they sat around the blue burning flame and discussed anything that crossed their minds.
Rain, cold, war. All external events were totally forgotten by these 3 men and the important internal events were all that was discussed. Like summer rain over parched earth this cured these 3 men of their various afflictions. And the next day, it was all forgotten and life continued as usual. As life, it follows that life is life and it followed feeling the weight of nothing
So I was doing worse and now I'm doing better. Such a long trying week, but the weekend has been badass. I've been able to reconnect with reality a little, the place that exists outside the confines of my mind. Flowing thought, clarity. My mana is back at 100%.
Parties, rock concerts, sushi, driving through empty streets late at night. People and things. All very good. I need to remember to do this type of thing more often and not get so stuck on one flavor of reality.
This here heals my hurts. Thats why I do it.
I feel emotionally and physically drained. So many projects happening at once. So many different sides to appease at the same time. A giant cluster-fuck juggling act and guess who the juggler is?
It feels like I'm right on the edge. Like if even one small mishap occured my great orchestra would just fall apart at the seams and I would run away from it all. Every day new things get fucked up, another layer of shit gets peeled back and at the end of the day its washed clean through hard work and diligence.
These monster projects keep inching forward and new obstacles to their success appear daily. My sleep is disturbed with nightmare scenarios that either actually happen or happen worse. I have to exert great effort in order to not go insane. Sometimes I let myself go insane a little because sometimes thats the only way I can get by.
Right now is the top of the hill. Everything is lined up, for the next two weeks its all going to be execution. Deadlines will pass, things will be put in place. Projects will be completed one way or another.
As time passes success or at least change is closer. No matter how complicated it gets there are only two options I have: To run away or to fight it. No matter what the circumstances these are my choices. I'm not ready to run yet.
Its no story. The monk is your mental state. Its how you feel and now you think you know why.
Your lying to yourself. You made a decision that effects other people in a possibly negative way and you cannot accept this. You tell yourself little lies or little stories that justify it to yourself for just a short moment and then push it out of your mind altogether by distracting your self. But when your driving home, or sitting at home or have a few moments to think; it creeps up again. There is no denying it you made a decision and you live with this decision by acting like you never made it. Your lying to yourself.
This is why you feel that way. This is why the monk wakes up on the floor, this is the thing he can't realize is so important. Until you accept the decision yourself and then transmit it to others will the pain stay with you. There is no going back at this point, you will eventually face the reprecussions over the events of time; this is the only time you will have to admit it to yourself and others. If you just wait they will find out and then you will make an excuse(lie) that takes pressure off of you. Why live that way?
The ship is dissolving, use the escape pod to get to the mothership. When the wild animals break free from their cages get away from them as fast as possible and hide in the pirate bar past the wall with a keyhole in it.
No, the ship is dissolving because of something you did, so go ahead and dissolve along with it.
The monk awoke on the forest floor. It was dark outside other than the deep blue moon.
In the distance he could hear voices. He sensed that they were important somehow, but couldn't connect them to himself. They were just autonomous objects other than himself that were making noise.
It felt like eons since he had last awoken, so there must be some special significance to this moment. But he couldn't connect. He was just a stand-alone object, not attached to anything and hardly aware of even his own existence. He was just a figment of imagination, a concept born of a collection of random particles. An empty shell with no direction, purpose or needs.
With a belly full of nothingness he sensed that the way he was living was wrong. That he was just throwing away his existence. He had awoken for some great purpose, but was unable to see the purpose. Mindlessly he dragged himself off into his comfortable dwelling and fell asleep.
Several days later he awoke and cried to himself. He had realized his purpose finally, but was unable to do anything about it. Many nights ago the answer was just some voices in the distance. How could he have not seen this at that time?
Pangs of regret and self-pity cycled through his mind, seemingly neverending. After this, the monk lay down and uneasily lost consciousness again.
So I have finally discovered the ancient thing called records and record players. I've been working with electronically made and mixed music for so long, its wierd to have to do so many things with your hands to make the music work. But it feels good, feels like I have more control over it, the sliders and knobs I can move with great precision which was impossible with a mouse. I can dial things in exactly how they need to be.
The sound is cleaner also, with digital music theres some strange sound underneath every song which goes away with analog. Its nice.
You get so used to the city with all its cars, concrete, artificial lights and climate control then you go take a hike in the woods for 5 days. It feels about like this.
A few more on the way in the mail. Good stuff.
Relaxed. Today was good. After taking yesterday off I was able to recharge. I tend to keep going at things until they are done, but with my job it never all gets done. Its easy to burn out, like a snake eating its own tail all the time.
It was cool outside today. Driving home from work even in heavy traffic with my windows down. Even in the midst of this chaos I could find peace. Just cool air is all it takes after being cooped up under dry heat for so long. I'm glad I have found a way to enjoy mundane things like that.
Ah, I feel like writing. This is a substory of my Rehash Unfinished story. There isn't really a good transition between the two so this is just a substory. Kind of like how it was in real life.
You find yourself on a train from Tokyo going 300 miles per hour headed towards a place named Sasebo. The various things you see outside your window pass faster than anything you have ever seen before. Small farming villages, larger cities, desolate forests and plains. The sun slowly begins to set during your 6 hour train ride. You left Tokyo around 10 in the morning.
A waitress with a cart passes occasionally, selling something. You can't understand her words and the items on the cart are typical bright and colory boxes with no indication of what actually waits inside. You consider ordering something, you hear the words people around you say and consider mimicing them and see what you end up with. You think better of it and continue staring out at the random things you pass, like a long enthralling car ride.
After such a long journey the english text on the screen indicates you are at your final destination. Sasebo. You depart the train and find yourself at a rather rustic looking platform. Black tar coats the ground, the sun is begining to set. It is such a surreal experience. You drag your luggage into a smallish waiting room. It seems meek as the rustic platform was. You look out a large window and see several naval ships in the harbor. You would spend more time staring at them but the sun is setting. Time is fading.
You move to the nearest phone terminal. You place a few coins in and hear a voice in the language you do not understand. After that a dial tone. You unfold your directions from your pocket and dial. "moshi, moshi" the voice on the other side. You panic and begin to sputter broken Japanese. She replies with various words, you reach for your dictionary and attempt to say something meaningful. Soon you give up and just state your name a few times along with the name of the company that allowed you to meet this person. Soon she understands and speaks in broken english, she is hard to understand. Something about a train station on the top level, "Sen Ryu Gataki". You think you understand and leave the phone.
On top of the station is a strange old train, not like the one you were just riding with its modern comforts. This one has what appears to be a gas engine, a bus fitted with train wheels on the track. The ticket dispenser is totally incomprehensible to you. Its all in kanji, not a word of english, katakana or even hiragana. You reach for your kanji dictionary and attempt to disipher it. The train leaves. You must have been there for an hour, the sun sinks low. A man pops out of a door close to the tracks and approaches you, he speaks in broken english. You can't understand him but just say "sen ryu gataki". With a smooth motion and some japanese words he pushes the button, and pays for your ticket. You offer him money but he declines and points to a car that has just arrived.
You enter the car. And sit, soon it begins moving. Through very rural terrain, arround cliffs, through rickety tunnels. You can't see much, its as if the path for this train was carved out of a mountain. Young people in school uniforms pile off the train at various places. You perk your ears for the words sen ryu gataki as there is no English writing anywhere. The small stations you pass have small signs standing freely on the ground, from your position you cannot even see them except in a blur as they pass. Your hands begin to sweat as you wonder how you will find your destination. You struggle to pick out the names of the stations the conductor says but they become lost in a garble other sentances. After an endless time the train stops and the conductor steps out, you step out as well and wonder around the platform along with one or two other people. All around you are walls and trees and a tunnel leading to somewhere. It doesn't quite seem like a station.
You realize that you are at the end of the line and with a nervous gulp approach the conductor. You utter "sumimasen" which you think means "excuse me" and then say "sen ryu gataki" a few times. He scratches his head and points opposite the direction you have been traveling. In broken english you understand him to say that he will let you know when you get to the station. The diesel engine starts back up and only you and the conductor enter the car. After what seems like an eternity the conductor turns and says something in Japanese to you. You figure this is your stop and hop off the train.
You find yourself alone in a train depot about the size of a bathroom stall. There is no sign for this station, its just a small platform. You wonder out and find your self next to a rural salon, vending machine and a stretch of empty roadway with a sign in front of it. You get a drink from the vending machine and wait for your host to arrive. You take it for granted that you are at the correct station, your tired of wondering around and this place seems quiet and peaceful.
You gaze idly at your surroundings. Everything is a dull yellow color, the sun is hidden behind a strange cloud. Its a little humid outside but not hot, fresh mountain air. A few people behind blinds in the salon appear to be closing shop. Your in some kind of isolated resort town you gather. You see a small sign with a little animated guy smiling and fishing next to a map of some fishing spots. You open your dictionary and after a few moments you are able to decipher the words "vacation", "happy" and "fishing". Good enough, you tuck your dictionary away.
There aren't many people around, every 10 minutes or so a car passes. Everyone seems not very rushed in stark contrast to Tokyo and even Sasebo. Soon the sun dissapears and the only light is that of a vending machine and the cars. You begin to get concerned. That broken english conversation you had with your host may have not worked out too well. Your mind may have just made you think that she understood you and that you understood her. With a deep sigh you move to a phone and realize in a panic that you left her number back in Sasebo. You are completely isolated now. Its dark.
You don't know what to do. Your mind somehow becomes detached, you give up the idea of relying on her to get you through this. A sense of independence fills your soul and you wonder down the dark street driven only by instinct. You see a small tent on the other side of the road and smell food. You are hungry, but feel afraid to approach him in such a dark desolated area. You have no idea how they treat foreigners out here in the boonies.
You wonder back to the train station and sit inside. Only a single naked incandescant bulb lights the single white bench of the station which is smaller than your miniscule hotel room in Tokyo. The paint reminds you of failed woodworking projects you had when you were younger. Looking out into the darkness you can barely make out the opposite bank, it is a wall of grass, some part of the mountain. A mild wind whips the long grass soothingly. Out here, all alone, it feels like a camping trip. It feels good outside despite being utterly alone. You lay down on the bench and attempt to sleep.
Suddenly, you hear a loud gas engine. You hear the screeching of brakes. Its the small train again! Except it is going the direction opposite of Sasebo. Its almost 10PM, you figure that not many more trains will pass, if any. You lay back down with a sigh and sleep for a while.
You hear a loud gas engine again. Its the train! and now its going the correct direction on the single rail! You jump up and wait behind the yellow line as it approaches. When it stops you jump on board. It is illuminated with a dull blue florecent light. You are the only passenger. Soon the gentle rocking and loud air conditioner lull you to sleep and almost instantly you awaken to see the lights of Sasebo outside your car. You are happy to be back in the city where there are at least people.
After leaving the train you check the time, it is around 11PM. The large modern station is empty. Immediately you rush to the phone you spoke on earlier and with a rush of extacy discover her number on top of it. You smile as you remember reading somewhere that Japanese people tend to leave things where they find them. You think of someone about to take the paper, but then they realize that someone may need it. It might just be some cultural nuance that you don't quite understand, but it makes you feel good. You consider calling her, but think it too late. Farmers need their sleep.
Some young people run about the station as if it were a playground while you lug your bags across the floor. They begin to get heavy. You decide to leave them in a locker. It makes you nervous to leave your bag, inside are your cloths and dictionary. But you can't handle the weight anymore. Your feet feel like dull coals and you can hardly lift your arms. You decide to find a hotel, it seems your only option. Free of the luggage you walk out onto the streets and begin wondering around.
You walk for what seems like hours until you find yourself in a small grassy area. Tall buildings all around, some that look like hotels. A large circular sidewalk surrounding the grass. On the concrete area several tents are setup with people inside on benches; making food, drinking and carrying on loudly. Like some sort of strange outdoor party. It seems like they are each grouped into their own tent. Some tents seem happier that others, some contain old men talking calmly to one another, and others are loud and boisterous with incessant laughter.
You walk up the steps to the first hotel you see. It looks dark inside, but you walk in anyway. You look for some sort of front desk but are unable to find any. Soon you see some mailboxes and realize this is an apartment and leave.
Walking down a busy street you walk into several more buildings that are actually hotels. You boldy walk inside and up to the desks. Normally you would be too timid to do such a thing, but the situation does not give you another outlet. You swallow your fear, each time uttering the words "Eigo wa". You are asking if they speak english as you are too tired to attempt Japanese. Some look at you strangly and begin speaking Japanese, when this happens you use your hands to indicate "room" somehow, but you just get strange looks. Other times you get a response in english, like "no sorry" or "full" or an X sign made with two crossed arms. Its strange, but you begin to imagine that they are turning you away because you are American, in this naval town you figure many of the hotels have seen some rough American sailors and fancy you as one. You begin to wonder if you will end up sleeping on a bench somewhere.
After endless walking you see another hotel. You can now recognize the "hoteru" katakana on the buildings, it becomes familiar to you. You walk into the hotel not expecting much. An old man is behind the counter. You say "Eigo wa" again. The man says "hai" with some enthusiasm. You think you might have a chance here. You say "Eigo wa, i desu ka?". The polite way of saying what you said before, you ask if its ok to speak English; in the back of your mind your asking if its ok to be American here. He smiles and turns to someone seated next to him, they talk for a while, you figure they are trying to decide if they should let you stay or if you will wreck the place. You hear the pitch of their voices raise and lower several times as if they are almost arguing. Soon he turns to you and hands you a key without saying anything else like some strange Zen master. He says a few things in Japanese and motions to the elevators with an open palm.
He gets up and leads you to your room. He hands you a flyer and attempts to describe something about breakfast. With a smile and a bow he backs out of the room and shuts the door. The tension of not being able to communicate with your hotel provider evaporates as you take in the aura of the room. Old brown carpet, no window, just a plank of wood that slides back and forth only slightly larger than your hand. Old small creaky bed. Single dim incandescant light. Small TV that looks like its from the 80s. Brown wooden door with chipped paint. A strange musty smell. Quite a rustic environment, but the bed is comfortable and the room has a certain warmth to it. Not like that of a chain hotel, more like as if you were sleeping in someones private house.
After taking a relaxing bath, you spend an hour translating the breakfast paphlet he gave you. You get the gist of it: "free breakfast tomorrow morning on such and such floor somewhere". You realize you are hungry but too physically and mentally exhausted to make an expidition outside into the unknown. You sink into the squeaky but comfortable bed.
Its comfortable to have your own space in a strange city filled with words and people you can't understand completely. Compared with the prospect of sleeping on a bench somewhere, you feel as if you are in heaven. You take a moment and contemplate the events that lead to this point in your life as you stare at the single bulb on the ceiling.
It all started with the notion that you were wasting your life away after college as the months passed. Watching TV, playing video games all day; every day. You became disgusted with yourself. You knew you could get a job and work for the rest of your life, but something about that didn't sit right. So you just kept sitting around. The feeling of disgust kept you in your room for many more nights, feelings of inadaquacy flowed through you as if even if you tried something it would never work, like poison in your veins. Somehow you were able to find a few beers on weekends to get you out of your funk. One drunken evening, bored, you found tickets and a website. Thats all it took. When you sobered up you regretted what you did, somehow you didn't think that you could go through with it. But inside you a strength welled up from nowhere and you pushed beyond your fears and found yourself in Japan. The instant you stepped foot outside of what was familiar all the acid inside your veins went away and you felt truely free. A surge of energy and life that you had never felt before appeared and is still with you even to this very point, in your comfortable hotel room surrounded by an unknown void.
The sounds of a city late at night enter your ears with another cool breeze.
With a smile you close your eyes as you think of these things. Ankles and arms still pulsing from the stress you fall into the absolute abyss of uninterrupted sleep.
Ahhhh, drank wayyy too much last night. Like 5 bottles of sake in about 4 hours. I burned out wayyy too fast.
With beer you know to stop when you get full, but sake is decieving. In the future I must be more careful with my sake
drinking. When the nice waitress asks if you want another one, think about it before blindly ordering.
I haven't had an alcohol related puking incident in several years, this one came as a shock. Lying in bed waiting for sleep to come and then the room spins while your eyes are closed and you realize its game over. All that expensive sushi gone to waste before traveling where its supposed to go.
Yes, carefully controlling sake intake is very important.
That feeling. Where you are unstoppable. After sake. It feels good.
The clouds. The Rain. The ocean between silence and noise. This now. Good.
Fire breathing from the depths of nothingness. This is human existence. This silence. Of nothing. Pure.
In my sake. I can taste. Nothingness and everything all at once.
I can taste death and rebirth at the same time, hell and peace at the same time. Rebirth and death.
Nothingness, can you become encapsulated in the sounds between the nothing?
These are my koans, follow them please.
The answer is: Don't think about stuff too much, just go out and do stuff and feel good.
After enough beer the connection returns to me again. Tainted, but it exists non-the-less. Better than no connection at all.
The music reverberates off the walls as if it has a life of its own. Emotions, memories; these are the great things it evokes. The essence of the feeling pouring from my soul into nothingness. Dead music off dead walls in an empty room filled with fake light. But the emotions behind it exist now, even if they aren't real.
What was missing just a few hours ago is present now, in full force with no hesitation.
I know this is just fake. Brought forth by beer. The shackles are still there, but they are invisible for just this brief moment and I will enjoy every instant of it.
I can't feel the connection anymore. No matter how loud I turn the music up or how strongly I connect my visions to my words. No matter how loud I sing, I just can't feel it tonight.
This time, this moment, I should be most connected of all. I have no external forces dragging my soul. However, completely free I feel nothing. Emptyness.
Empty music bouncing off walls mechanically with no emotion in a dark room emersed in fake light.
When my soul is weighted down by external hardship I become connected to my emotions again somehow. But when the shackles hit the floor and my soul becomes free it puts them right back on. This self imposed weight breaks my connection with my emotions.
Despite this fact I will continue searching. I know I can find a way to take my shackles off.
Its strange. Learning to connect emotions to the words you write, the music you play or the songs you sing. Not just following method or structure, allowing for mistakes. Grasping the strong feeling in your stomach and holding onto it as you carry out the action.
Not focusing on timing, on finger position, on tone, on pitch, on harmony, on grammar, on flow, on structure, on continuity. Just holding that feeling and going with it. This is a new experience for me. It feels good.
The deep yellow of the sun glows through white wooden blinds onto the sand colored surface. A dull orange washes the walls. Freedom as the final day ends.
You feel yourself fill with great anticipation of a great adventure. An adventure where you could loose yourself for a while. You look forward to it.
Suddenly, your plans are broken. Another path instantly appears, a path that is the role you chose to play in life. It is not a path of adventure, but a path of responsibility.
Running down this path, driven by duty you see a familiar place. But it is dark, no lights. You enter and feel your way along the walls to your station. With no energy, nothing can be done. Waiting, in the dark, countless hours pass. Suddenly, light returns. An eternity later you complete your obligations.
The road of freedom and adventure has been taken from you.
Take a moment and find peace in the midst of chaos. Despite the situation making you forget the feeling of the tips of your fingers. Despite this great distraction you can still find peace somehow.
You are here now, you are not there. Your body is there, your mind is here. The situation is distant despite being in the midst of it.
Now move freely, feel free. There is nothing holding you there.
Winter comes and brings its curse. Sluggishness, coldness. Moving through your body like a thick snake. Everything slows down. Beautiful days that are too cold to enjoy. Mind sluggish like
waist deep in water.
Till you come back into yourself somehow and find the you you call you for just a brief moment.
Till you come.
This is the pain.
Forgetting all the time you have as the coldness numbs your skull. You can't remember the things that exist outside yourself somehow. They live only as vague ideas and memories, too faint to hold on to. Everything becomes inverse and you lose yourself in the worst way. Absorbed into something that is utterly empty. The cold.
Ah, the great party weekend is coming fast. So many things to do. Trying to take all the things I want to do and compact them into a single weekend, I feel this great energy brewing within me.
I just need to decide what I want to do most of all and the direct this energy towards that.
Faced with so many choices its hard to decide. Its hard to weigh one thing against another.
I could go solo and wonder around various places, exploring. Like a drifter with no ego. An empty shell again, breathing in the night air and watching people as if I wasn't one of them.
Or I could be with people. I could return to the realm of the living for a while. Humanity filling my soul with warm food.
There is no right or wrong way. Just different ways with different essences.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The monk arose from his futon. It was just the beginning of morning. Birds were chirping outside and the first rusty traces of the sun crept across the dark wooden floor.
One breath in and warm air slowly oozed from his mouth. He could feel the warmth on his nose. It felt as if the heat emerged from some void. His small room spread out before him filling his entire consciousness. There was nothing else.
I started off tonight with a feeling of not wanting to do anything. But it ended up as me doing everything.
I had forgotten what it feels like to have a woman close. Her breasts pressed against my back, the smell of her perfume penetrating my senses. Her brown/green eyes dive deep into my soul and at the same time present an open window which you can sexually walk through. Deep emotions run as you and her become one somehow and you lose yourself in the moment of action.
Some feeling invigorates my soul as I penetrate her. It rushes through my mind as my penis breaks the boundary that separates me from other people.
A single water drops into the smooth lake at night. Like that. Just like that. That moment, that instant. I have become so attached to the meaning of it, but at the same time loose myself in it. Can you understand? Like that. The feeling of invigoration, the feeling of life, the feeling of staying up too late with a belly full of beer.
Old man meditating underneath a waterfall for eons slowly opens his eyes. He can see again, finally, after an eternity of peaceful nothingness. No attachment, break away and fall smoothly into bliss.
We drift deeper into the sound.......life goes on....
I feel it again, calling. Calling me.
In the turmoil of existence. Staying up late at night worrying about things, waking up in the middle of the night with terror. In the middle of all this I feel at peace.
Past, memories. Even a few hours ago. Even a few minutes ago. Even the last second. Even the moment contained in typing my last character. My last reflection of fingers off the keyboard, continuing in a pattern, following the thoughts of the instant.
3 BEERS, this is the answer. Dependence on a substance, unfortunate, but necessary for some unseen reason. Slowly getting back in touch. Suppose I am an alchoholic? What then?
Somehow, I only find myself now. I know later this will just fade and the walls will go back up. But for now they are down and I will enjoy it.
I don't want to quote Heidegger but: "Nisen was walking along the edge of a mountain that countless others had fallen off of. Suddenly, satan grabben him with a metallic clang. In an instant he tried to break free, but was unable to. Suddenly, he realized it was just a fence preventing him from falling. Nisen continued on the dark night.
It was deep into the night. The great castle was surrounded by 10,000 bloodthirsty warriors who were waiting for the first glimmer of sunrise to strike. The 200 men of the castle who hadn't deserted their master yet were resolved to die glorious deaths defending that which they swore to protect. Being their last night ever many of the men didn't hesitate to break open great casks of beer normally reserved for visiting royalty and ate to their hearts content. In a very drunken state these men began to dance, sing and smile amongst their breathern. They were celebrating the eve of the day in which they would enter into the void.
They never took their armor off, even while drunk, these 200 men were true warriors even in a time of fundamental turmoil.
It was as if these men forgot the need to sleep, they continued partying throughout the night.
The general of the castle sat alone high in his keep. He looked down at his men, but when he saw them smiling, forgetting their inevitable deaths he had to look away. He felt a pang in his heart that it was his fault for getting into this situation, as if just him being there caused all this. But he could not let those feelings get to him, he had to find some way to get out of this terrible situation. He stared at the sleeping enemy army intent on finding some way.
Dawn was approaching fast, the sky lightened just a little, only the sober ones noticed. The general opened his eyes and realized his fate, he had fallen asleep. Without hesitation he bolted down to the front gate and ordered his men to surround it.
All of them sobered up instantly, with death pressing in so close they had no other thought but to achieve death.
Instantly, the morning sun flashed over the castle. Outside the gates a terrible roar and then the enemy flooded in.
Men were being cut down one after another, the defenders fought with a desparation that only someone resolved to die could muster. Within a few moments 200 defenders had fallen to 150, and 10,000 attackers had fallen to 7,500. However, a few moments later only 10 royal guards and the general himself remained.
The 10 guards fought viciously, once one attacker fell they immediatly struck the next, like a chain, until small mistakes led each to their deaths one by one.
Now only the general remained. With a bright fire in his eyes he swept his sword hacking many enemy heads off. "Come on!!" he taunted. He fought with utter conviction his only hope was to achieve a glorious death in this battle. Many more enemies fell at his hand. However, his arms and legs began to feel weak, he grew tired and collapsed, the enemy did not kill him but captured him.
An instant later the general was tied up in the middle of his field. His head placed on a block. The axe came down. He died.
The dead general didn't notice, but the sun had set.
If enough time has passed, is it possible to plagerize yourself?
So I have returned from the ether yet again. Surrounded by the intoxication of beer and the steady beat of trance.
I met my new neighbors, they moved in recently. Well, maybe met isn't the right words. Just said hello when getting the mail. Some guy and his daughter, makes me want to keep my sound levels under control. But I figure they can't hear it anyway and if they could they would let me know.
I haven't been drunk in 3 weeks. I was nice to see what sobriety feels like, its ok. I felt more in control of myself and everything seemed clearer. But at the same time there was some undescribable pressure inside me. Like a knife inside one of my organs preventing me from reaching total comfort. Not being able to drink and relax on weekends is a crime, it kills my soul. It kills the thing I call me. This death allows me to transcend into something else for a little while until it is over and the true me can return.
I am here now again, and that is all that matters.
I feel very tired, but at the same time something pushes me to stay awake. Is this calmness?
Has it been so long since I've felt at peace that I have forgotten what it feels like and instead mistaken it for something else.
This is the feeling that summer brings as it slowly ends and turns to fall. Finally, I have understood the great power that vulnerability brings.
Before, always seeking to be invulnerable. Defending against everything took too much effort. A great weight has been lifted from my shoulders. Invulnerablility is only an illusion, a mental state that needs artifical fuel to remain present. Natural fuel sustains vulnerability, it is a natural state.
We can keep it slow for a while, and then kick it back into high gear. Bring your mind to a state where it barely exists and then launch it back into fullness. As it comes back something pulls at your soul, it compells you into greatness. You realize there is more than there was before.
So now start again. Paint on a wall that doesn't exist anymore.
Time to throw multicolored paint on the wall again.
The music always sounds better with an audience. But the situation is detached from reality. Surrounded by invisible walls and limits my mind makes so solid and consuming.
The music is dense and reflective, part of the illusionary wall; as is silence.
Beat off a bit; skipping a bit, as in these words. Their format makes the content difficult to understand.
Time to throw musical paint on the invisible wall.
What do you use for self-realization?
The present moment. Life exists as memories of the past and visions of the near and far future. The combination of these things is the present moment. My experience this very instant eternally frozen and endlessly changing is my self-realization.
Is that what makes death acceptable at any given instant?
Yes, this does.....
What is this?
Staring blankly at a dark blue wall, framed by dark wood and a warm white glow. Syrup and chips, white tissue; Stuck in time | Food for the void.
Problems at home effecting work. Somehow unable to walk the thin line that is placed before me.
Slipping off the edge.
Mistakes at work lead to self-pity and hatred. Creep back into the distant cave. Unable to come out. New vision placed before me, makes me happy when on the outside looking in. Unable to step inside. Unable to say hello properly.
Friendly communication skills faltering. Old hermit that lives alone in a cave, drawing pictures on the walls unable to translate them into words.
Unable to participate with words.
No happy ending.
Witnessing more than I can compute. Directly connected. Images and sounds rise and fall spontaneously from my consciousness.
The situation is sitting. You have become addicted to the lights and sounds contained within a computer. Mildly drunk. At peace. The interface between you and your computer has gone beyond what you can see and what you can hear. The computer talks to you directly without any external interference.
Pictures, memories and sounds become the same. You cannot tell if you are producing your own mental state or if it is coming from the computer. The borderline of your ego that seperates you from other things does not appear to be present. You have lost yourself.
What does it mean? What does it lead to? Where is the problem and where is the solution?
Where did the thing called me go?
I am detached now. I and me does not matter. Just this experience now.
The situation is 16 hour day + 8 hour day. In 2 days. Matt is taking on-call for me so I'm free now. Its Friday, I have shit to do; the problem is that I'm fucking tired.
My body has just begun to rebuild itsself with a beer. In the one hand we have friends I haven't seen for months I could join. In the other hand we have close friends. In the last hand we have drunken solitude.
I want to see my long lost buddies, but I'm almost too tired to move despite the refreshing beer. What will happen?
Ah, things are so slow now. Sober, idly passing the hours away. I need to find something more productive to do while on-call.
I want to go out so bad and get some fresh air and explore. But I'm stuck here. Technically I could go out and do stuff, but I would hate the feeling of getting called with some major emergency and not being near my computer. I need to get a true wireless NIC and then I can take my laptop and roam around in relative safety. That will be my mission now.
I want some beer. But I can't drink. Well, technically I could, but I have already had one bad experience of being drunk and dealing with emergencies. The impact of the emergency sobers you up a little. But I found that I just couldn't figure out the problem with any effeciency. Beer is about forgetting and relaxing; not working. No cure for that I'll just have to stay sober.
Thats about it. Feels like my weekend is going down the shitter. What happened to when I could happily shut myself in for weeks at a time playing on-line games? I've gotten addicted to real life a little bit.
Ah, I feel so relaxed. Belly full of beer, listening to some trance. Lost within someone else's comforting memories.
Its good shit, it really is. Here and now. It feels good.
I don't feel like complaining or making little stories out of events in the past. I love my job and I love this life now.
A feeling of togetherness within myself.
Ah, so I see this place has turned into a short story display. For some reason its easier to express myself in short stories rather than
literal words. Well, I take that back. Its more satisfying to express myself by short stories loosely based on reality than literal words concretely based on reality. But it doesn't really matter, it will come out one way or another.
For some reason the beer I just drank had the taste of sake. Strange.
For some reason the music I'm listening to resonates with me in a deep way.
Harmonic resonance with my soul.
Shit, I just threw the wrong song into the mix, harmonic dissonance. Ah, theres another song, right back into resonance again without missing a beat, well maybe missing a few beats. Yes, definately sake.
So anyway. In my sake, beat mix. Yes, in my sake beat mix.
Fuck it, lets take it old school with some original 9'PM then gradually to the new 9'PM, then to the backbeat shit that only has bits of 9'PM but makes everything make sense. (ATB 9'PM) at night.
Dissonance, resonance; its all the same. It can all make you fly. Just find the context aye?
Oh yea, I am drinking sake aren't I. Shit, I skipped another beat.
You have been driving away from the city, away from civiliation for eternity. The sun seems to hang in the sky while your mind drifts away from modern life. After 3 hours of driving the sun begins to set. Everything is washed in a crimson orange.
You wanted to make it to your destination before nightfall. An isolated lake. Suddenly, your trip is over. You walk from your car and gaze at the lake at sunset. You find a few familiar faces and have good times.
The sun sets, you journey away from the lake to some desolate shorefront. The cool breeze from the lake draws you to sleep. With no gear you fall asleep in your car.
Suddenly you are awakened by a loud engine, people talking loudly. You are in the sticks miles away from anything. Your mind becomes encased in fear. You imagine that you are trespasser on his land. You open your eyes wide in the darkness, but can't move. Then you hear the high pitched sound of a little girl. This puts you at ease somewhat. You check your watch, it is just past 1AM. Something seems wrong.
You try to just ignore it and go back to sleep, the fresh air feels so good. But you find yourself waking up randomly. You hear a booming angry country accent mentioning something about getting knives. You are close to them, too close. You freeze again in fear.
You can hear him trying to get his daughter to sleep, you can only imagine that he wants to do this so he can deal with you, the trespasser. You can only imagine the kinds of guns and knives one out here would have. You grit your teeth.
You hear a door close and the sharp immenent voices turn into muffled tones. You grab for for your keys without making a sound, action breaking through the grip of terror you slide into your seat and turn on your car and drive over the unpaved roads as fast as possible.
You get lost and feel as if the roads do not lead anywhere. That at any moment the white rocks could turn into grass and trees. You begin to get despirate. Just taking turns randomly, instinctivly, like an animal.
You see a street light in front of you. You sigh with relief as your car enters onto a small paved road. You know where you are now, you are away from harm. You are safe now.
After another 3 hours you find yourself surrounded by the big city lights again, dodging drunks at 4AM on Sunday morning surrounded by people and artifically warm air. You are no closer to death here than you were back there.
Fear is just an illusion.
You find yourself on an airplane headed for Japan. You hate flying, but the ride has become very smooth, as if you are on rails. You feel somewhat at ease, but still have a faint sense of fear.
Suddenly the plane shakes a little. Your eyes open wide and you almost swallow your tongue; your heart races, your breathing intensifies. You realize this and sigh in an attempt to control your breathing. Before you can take another breath the plane drops. You can feel it in your stomach, falling. You are gripped in the feeling of absolute terror. You grip your seat as tight as your body will allow. You bar your teeth and begin drooling on yourself. Everything seems surreal. You look out the window and just see white.
Aviators describe a feeling of virtigo when doing manuvers, but you can feel every inch of what is going on. You feel the plane become inverted, your seatbelt is the only thing holding you in. And then, in a moment of clarity you can see the plane as if it were right in front of you. It goes from inverted to on its side to leveled out again. But you still feel as if you are falling. You look out the window and see the ocean coming up fast. This is the height that you would think there is a runway underneath you. Your mind suddenly goes at complete ease. You feel peaceful. You are just about to make a landing, there is nothing to worry about.
There is a sharp force that almost rips you from your seat. You look outside and see water slowly rising. Your feet become wet. You leap from your seat and look around, seeing the bright light of day you head for it. Suddenly your body is frozen in ice. You can still move, but it is painful.
You find yourself on the surface of the ocean, alone. You can see a vague outline of land in the distance, you swim for it. As you swim your senses dull out and eventually everything becomes black.
You awake with a start and instinctivly ghasp. You slowly sit up and find yourself on a beach.
Everything becomes a blur and moves too fast to keep up with. You find yourself in a Japanese city, lost. Unable to communicate. Your worst fear becomes that you never passed through customs, you never got your passport stamped. You are an illegal alien. This fear consumes you as you wonder about speaking Japanese catch phrases you learned when you studied it. Nothing is working, you are absolutly lost with no one and no where to turn to.
Fear takes over your body as you collapse on a busy walkway. Everything goes dark one last time.
I feel happy today!
Ok, all this bullshit is all nice and shit. But fucking A.
Thinking (pretending) its your day off and getting drunk then having a massive catatrostophie happen and trying to sober up and get it fixed. Then have your boss call you, everything sounds ok, but your mind isn't ok.
Fuck too much stress, saying fuck you to it. Fuck this job, even if I have to start over again I dont care. I am only alive for a set period of time and then it is over. I dont care if I have to live out of a box for a year in hell. This is the way it goes. My body is responding this way and I cant stop it this time.
I'm not giving up though. I dont want this to sound like I'm giving up. I will follow it as far as it goes. But now it will have to work with me instead of against me. I will not follow it past the point that it stops working with me. When it hits that instant that my mind goes blank and does not carry on in some fashion I will give up and move to something else.
My life is more important than this bullshit.
Ah, this marathon is starting to not feel so good. Instead of leading the pack and breaking through im stuck in the back struggling with no progress.
Sustained stress is not a good thing, the body needs time to relax and not worry about anything. Imagined stress is the same as stress that is caused by actual things. It doesn't matter.
Only 4 days left and then I will have some time to rest. I'll just keep struggling behind the crowd producing my own stress until it leaves. I still have control.
Empty head. Clarity distorted by a sheen of blurry nothingness. Moves, interacts, breathes but not fully aware somehow. Just keep walking.
Ah, my new role is getting more comfortable now. Its an all day mental marathon. I have traded physical activity for mental activity. It brings back a lot of good memories from my programing days and in fact I can apply some of those methodologies to the problems I face every day. Its very satisfying.
Well, work is all good at the expense of home life. I've been working later hours trying to get things done. Its satisfying but it wears me out more than I think. I almost passed out in the car while driving home yesterday, my brain was burnt. Work is like a drug, it feels good, but its side effects are not so good. I have the freedom to manage myself and I need to learn to not push it so hard every day. I need to ease up a little bit and focus some more on my home life. Its hard, but I need to do this to be a more well rounded person. I hope to get into the dating scene again soon, I just need to make time for it.
And now for some freewriting:
She lays beside you, stroking your eyebrow. You stare blankly at the ceiling. After blowing your load your mind has gone to a peaceful blank place.
She rolls onto her stomach and begins playing with your hair. You don't mind, you feel very much at ease. Everything is quiet, just the sound of her stroking your hair.
She says your angry. You calmly look over at her furrowed expression, she is genuinely worried. Somehow she must sense anger on you, but you don't feel angry. You feel at peace.
Somehow it makes sense though, you can't explain it, but it seems to fit. It doesn't make sense to you that you are angry, but her thinking you are angry explains a lot about the way she acts towards you.
You stare blankly at the ceiling again and state calmly that you are not angry. Her furrowed expression remains the same as before.
She jumps off the bed and puts her clothes back on. She must feel like some cheap whore. Every few days she comes over and fucks you. At first she put on an act, she playfully spoke with you, she bent to your every desire. You call her every few days and speak meaningless chit chat for a few hours. It felt good and easy, no strong emotions.
Two weeks later she ends the donation of her body to you, you get pissed and tell her to fuck off. Now your expression is furrowed.
Ah, so I have returned back to the realm of the living. I have 2 days to call my own. It feels good, no weekend on call, no weekend projects. Just myself and a nice friend named beer.
My little experiments require no conscious activity. They are just some ideas I store that come out on their own will while I do everyday things.
Nothing much else going on. Tonight my goal is to get drunk and forget about my day-to-day life for a while.
---------------------------------------------------------------- The monk awoke and found himself in the midst of a great journey deep within a forest; he had left a small town weeks ago and according to guides he should be within a days walk of the next town.
His mind drifted back to the last city. Strong memories entered his mind. Memories of comfortable whorehouses, good food, happy people....happiness. Here in this forest his mind had become blank, void of emotions. Just one step after another, after another, after another. Sometimes he got flashes of emotion, but they seemed empty somehow. Not fulfilling at all. He was at peace in the deep forest, but he wanted more than peace.
Want......an emotion he had trained himself to suppress. He was slipping out in the forest. Out there he should be able to find the best blankness of all. He should be able to find the fulfilling void. He should be able to hear the sound of one hand clapping with no-one around. The sound of the great temple bell. He should be able to taste the tea drawn by the depths of the mind. He should be able to kill buddah. But no. His mind was clouded.
With these thoughts the monk crested the next hill and below him saw the lights of the city at night. After so many nights walking the eternal green forest his mind went to nothing. He stared blankly at the glowing yellow lights which pierced the darkness and breathed deeply the sensual smells of the city. The monk returned to the fulfilling void.
Today has been strange. Despite a 9 hour work day my time spent working seems like no more than a few minutes. My time at home has expanded endlessly.
I feel like I understand myself again. A book, memories have stripped me down to my core again. This feeling. Not the fake front of insanity I use to survive, this is real again.
Over the past few hours I have made several important realizations about the way I live my life. I restrain my life to a few meager activities when I really want more. I do this because of fear. I cut everything out of my life that makes me afraid and then I don't have to be afraid of anything anymore because I have narrowed the definition of everything.
Fear. The feeling of total annihilation. I run from it as fast and as hard as I can. Fear caused by a feeling left over from the past. It doesn't matter where it came from. Its a feeling that prevents action.
Fear of emotions, fear of people, fear of interacting with the world outside my head. My pulse races, my throat dries up and then everything gets hazy. My mind jumps helplessly from one thing to the next in some attempt to escape the immediate situation. Am I going to die? I can't control my body. The feeling of impending doom fills my body. The entire world is caving in, the pressure of it crushes my soul. I freeze. I can't move, I can't speak. I stare blankly at some inanimate object in an attempt to escape this reality my mind has created. I remove myself from the situation to become normal again. This is my trap.
In order to become more in tune with my impulses I need to overcome this fear. But I am afraid. If I follow my impulses who will I turn into? If I release control over myself when will it stop? Will it ever stop? Will I open the doorway to something even worse than a limited existence?
I feel uneasy. I am already on my way to something just by making these realizations. If I can reach a certain point with myself perhaps I can conduct some small experiments for better or for worse. A short journey into the unknown void. This is not bad and this is not good. This is just an experience.
This is what 3 weeks of sobriety has done to me. Everything feels surreal, viceral and uncharted. There are no buffers or filters surrounding me now.
So this is the home stretch. My last 2 days for level 1 on-call. Its bittersweet. This
is probably the last time in my life I'll have something so intense. I can get out
of this dead tired mode. But I will miss the feeling of dragging myself up from the
depths of sleep and utter fatigue consistently. Summoning internal strength in order
to overcome the physical limitations of my body for a goal. In 2 days the situation will
no longer routinely require such energy from me. It will be a much more relaxing environment.
Ah, thats all well and good but I better get to sleep. There is a high likelyhood that my pager will go off at anytime from now until morning and I will need to overcome exhaustion in order to present myself as a mentally competant technician to someone.
The hand upturned opens into nothingness. Shiny white, reflecting light. Blue pebbles in the dark watery void.
You find yourself in a strange place. In a relaxing location but unable to relax. In the comfort of your own home surrounded by comfortable things. But still trapped somehow. Trapped
by convenience. Trapped by familiarity. Trapped by habit.
These electronic things you call peace and comfort. You somehow feel the fakeness of it. An endless treadmill of nothing feigning as meaningful content. You wish you could go back to the place where all this nothingness seemed so full of life and energy.
You can look outside and see meaning instantly. It seems logical to just abandon this fakeness and enter into the real. But you have an excuse, a sense of duty towards other more real electronic things that people depend on for their survival in a hospital. This duty is not broken if you were to run outside.
Despite this you remain trapped inside it. There is still a part of you that believes you can find something profound here. Thus you remain.
Ah, belly full of beer, sake and sushi. Spent quality time with a few friends. A nice getaway from normal life for just a few hours.
But, as I sit here I have the feeling that something is missing. Like there should be something else going on, but its not. Its a terrible feeling. For some reason I don't have access to the cause; I don't even know why I have this feeling. Its just there, and I have to bear it. I don't have a choice.
Maybe its just me sobering up. I haven't had anything to drink in the past hour or so. I bought beer at the store on the way home from sushi, but I haven't touched it.
I have all these ideas in my head. Yes, Im going to DJ, yes I'm going to drink until the sun comes up. Ideas floating around. Memories of being with friends for a while. I wish I was back there with them again. I'm lonely, thats the feeling. I'm tired of pretending to be some kind of hardass that doesn't need people. I do need people. And I can't be lazy about it anymore, I have to get out there and hook up.
I'm still confused, but I at least know that I need to get a girlfriend soon. That is the feeling I have. I just need to get laid. I need some intimate female companionship.
But I can't do anything about it now, its too late. I'm just going to go to sleep.
Ah, so I've returned from the ether. Drunk on a Friday, I should still be at work now
but guess what? I took today and yesterday off. Because I'm badass. Haha.
Just got back from blowing about $500 in Bossier City, LA. Horseshoe casino. That little trip had some good and bad points. Good room, I got the VIP suite which was very nice, kinda pricey. But had a jacuzzi, comfortable couch, bed that felt like clouds and a nice view of the city.
Blew $300 gambling. At one point I was $200 up from a few lucky slot machines, but it was about 4PM, I didn't have shit else to do, so I just kept gambling till it was all gone. The free drinks probably made me spend it all. After you win $200 in one pull and got a few beers in ya, you feel like a gambling champion, invincible. So you just keep goin. It was fun though.
The buffet kicked ass. I was expecting some dried out shit from the heat lamps, but this was gormet. Some badass lasagna with spicy meatball, cheese ravioli, rolls, mu gu gai pan and some cake. I almost died from the good food. It was sweet.
So I got promoted at work. I got lucky. It was between me and 2 others. We are all on the same level of badassness I think. I won by a hair. My new position kicks ass. More responsibility, more stress. But less repitition and more complexity. It suits me perfectly.
Well, thats about it, I suppose. Im gonna freestyle a bit.
The monk found himself conscious again after an unknown eternity living in nothingness. He was under a roaring waterfall. The heavy water pounded off his back as he sat crosslegged with hands forming a circle in his lap. Staring off into nothingness one split second ago. He slowly arose from the depths of the waterfall into the warm sunshine.
Something was wrong, he could feel it in his stomach. He felt no desire for anything, he didn't want to eat or sleep or work or move. He trudged through the faint forest path with an expressionless face. Soon he found himself on a large dusty road. He spontaneously stopped and sat down in the blistering sun.
Hours passed. With a blank expression he stared at the road as travelers passed. His mind was clouded with no desires. Thoughts passed through him with no attached emotion. He longed for feelings again. He could imagine emotions he experienced in the past. A pained expression emerged on his face.
A random traveler stopped right in front of him. The monk squinted up into the sun to see a dark face. The traveler introduced himself as a psychic, able to read minds. He said that he could give the monk what he wanted. The psychic snapped his fingers, the monk could no longer hear. The psychic's mouth moved but no words registered. The psychic clapped his hands and the monk could hear again.
The psychic said that he just told the monk the answer to unlocking his emotions. All the monk had to do was have some tinge of desire to know the answer and then he would know it. Desireless this was an impossibility.
Months passed, the seasons changed. It was now the middle of winter. Snow covered the ground as well as the monk. With cold eyes he stared blankly at the white ground, unmoving.
Some snow had made the branch of a tall pine tree heavy. Suddenly, the snow slipped off the branch onto the ground and shattered the silence of winter.
The monk's mind flashed. In an instant the answer the psychic told him became apparent. The answer: "Never were emotions". The monk slipped back into the void.
Ah, so Im back again. Drunk. All the bullshit from yesterday washes away with just a few
bottles and today starts to not matter so much.
For some reason, this feeling now makes everything ok. Does that make me an alcoholic, reliant on beer for happiness? It seems I cant find it sober anymore since I lost the ability to meditate some weeks ago. I can't accept this as a final answer to my rut. This is just temporary. But does that matter? Life itsself is temoporary. We are constantly dying, but just can't feel it.
Life is temporary, but I forget that easily. Things were much easier after I killed my ego one night in meditation. And then it is back. And now it is gone again due to beer. I am no longer undead, I am a false undead in this drunken state and tomorrow morning I will be very much alive again.
This might be the wrong way. But I'm not afraid. I will take this path for now, until vomit hides the shit stained porcilen.
I haven't meditated in over one month now. My inner personality has begun to change.
Now I think a lot about things. I get stuck on things. The habitual cycle of one thought leading to another thought for eternity has come back. Its hard to find peace now.
For some reason I lack the energy to meditate properly. I'm not sure where this comes from, it seemed to materialize out of no-where. Maybe too many hours worked, maybe too many weeks on call. Maybe not enough sleep. Maybe not enough contact with friends. Maybe its the massive sake-sushi adventures I take each weekened. Maybe they are too much? Am I exchanging a few hours of bliss on the weekends for a week of pain? I'm not sure.
This weekend I want to just have some quiet time at home instead of going out and getting trashed, but at the same time something draws me outside of my home, its a difficult impulse to resist. Its my animal side wanting to go out and get laid. I'm not sure if resisting this impulse will make me happier in the long run.
I'm not going to make any plans yet. I resolve myself to the action of the moment.
Wow, these hours here are the most free time I have had all week. Monday was normal,
Tues, Wed, Thurs and Fri were 8:30AM - 10PM shifts to get the new tower completed. Today was just 10AM - 3PM to get the finishing touches in place and get a debriefing. 500 new computers, fully operational, major systems operational or have contingency plan in place.
All is good. A fulfilling 67 hour work week is behind me And now its time for a 36 hour break before a week of on-call starts.
I don't really feel like doing much, maybe one club in the early evening or just lounge at home all day and night drinking beer, releasing tension, remembering that I can exist outside work again.
I'm just going to sit here and ooze. If things happen to me I'll let them happen, but for this period of time I will not take much action. I will just let time pass. This is how I will recharge.
After so many months (1 month) I'm back from the ether (reality) to talk to myself (other people) with words.
Yea. So today has been strange. At work I got the least amount of things done that I have ever. I got stuck on some big things and let all the little things pile up. It feels like I got my ass kicked, but good also for some reason. I got past what I needed to get past today so next week I can go nuts again. In other words I had lost my gumption, but now I feel it has returned.
But enough about work. It will always be there as a tall obstacle for me to tackle each and every day. So what else?
Called my parents again after a few months of no contact. They sound like they are doing well. I'm going to visit them tomorrow to get away from the concrete jungle for a while. I might even spend the night and avoid a night of drunkenly roaming the streets of deep elum in search of sushi and good beer.
And thats about it. I am constantly in the process of getting my shit together for some unseen goal in the future.
My god. Work is starting to get very intense. New floors are being built, departments
are moving around like building blocks. The executive team is getting more technology
hungry. Massive problems arise out of no where. Running around putting out fires all day,
no time to get the other things done. Basically, I've been very busy these last few weeks
Last week I capped off two 60 hour weeks in a row, this week its just a 50 hour week. But I was up there until 2AM last night working on some proprietary bullshit made by some company of assholes in Ireland that don't know how to put computers together properly. I shouldn't have even gone home at 2 because there were a few more things to do. But my body and mind just gave up. I ended up just throwing a bandaid on it instead of a perm fix, but hopefully it will get them through the weekend and the on-call guy won't have too much trouble.
Well, I'm breaking my 2 week streak of no beer right now. Mid afternoon, fucking cold outside, listening to techno. Trying to get my mind off work for a little while.
This morning I woke up and planned out next week, I have about 30 open work orders now I arranged priority on, so thats all set. But of course things will continually be coming up, disrupting my plans. Higher priority things keep jumping into my plans and keep me behind. But I don't have a choice. All I can do is just keep working hard on the highest priority until it is complete or something with higher priority jumps in front of it. Its not just me, our entire department is like this. Its a bad time for us. But I know we will see through it eventually. I guess a good way of looking at it is that we have damn good job security. Maybe the best in all of IT.
I just said I was trying to get my mind off work didn't I? Guess it didn't work too well. More beer is the answer hopefully....well, guess I'm about to find out.
Ah, what a shitty feeling. Im wasting my time drinking and listening to music, but I
should be outside exploring. But its too damn cold, I just want to stay inside, so maybe
next week right. God I hate this.
I should be outside right now. But I can't, and it sucks. So yea. Me vs. Me. Me wins and it feels bad.
Ah, so I have taken the day off. My first day off other than holiday in about 1 year. Just
spending the day tieing up things at home, napping and relaxing. Its good.
This site is starting to feel like a huge, complex, unorganized cluster fuck. It used to feel all neat and tidy, but not anymore. I should clean it up, but I'm too lazy. So Ill just sit back as I throw in another tangle to the web.
And 1 hour later everything changes. You thought things would be one way, but they changed.
You decided to tread the hard way instead of the easy way. The easy way started getting boring.
Instantly things became more complicated. Your life is in your own hands again. It feels pure and raw. You have opened yourself up to a lot of hurt but you know the reward is much greater. You can feel the breath moving in and out of your nose again. The warmth of the blood coursing through your veins.
It is such a good temporary feeling now that you have chosen this path. It could perhaps end with great negative consequences, but you forget about that as you tread the path.
The feeling of the rough soil against you beaten shoes, it feels good. You have awoken again , finally.
The stomach full of beer and food goes nowhere at 6PM on a Saturday night even though
it might want to. The clock keeps ticking. This time next week now will not exist.
Me will not exist. Only it.
These moments are the most frustrating. So many possible directions to take, directions of varying difficulty. But of course I take the path that is the easiest, this path also produces the least reward. Its an easy pointless path. There are hard paths with rewards that make things much better, but I just release control and give in to the easy path. The path of sitting on my ass at home even though there are so many things to do, I know first hand. I have taken the hard path before and savored its unique rewards.
Where did that feeling go. The one that pushes me over the edge off my chair into the abyss of the world outside of myself. Where did it go. I want to summon it somehow but it is dead or asleep.
So I just remain here, without drive, without motivation, without hunger, this is all there is. Just these empty unfulfilling activities inside my mind by myself.
I realize this, yet there is nothing I can do. Without the feeling inside me, driving me, there is nothing other than this.
But thats not how it works right. I can't just type a few things out and expect them to do anything. I can't just meditate on myself and think this will cure me and fix all my problems. Even if I uncover some seceret part of myself through all these words it won't do anything. For any good to come I just have to loose myself and take action. These words are the antithesis to that. These words just keep me inside myself. They are just another pointless path for me to take. This is the path of least resistance that I continue to tread. So be it!
Ah, christmas night is always so depressing. You spend some good quality time with loved
ones, some long car trips that give you time to think and then you come home alone
and attempt to return to your normal routine after all that.
All that, or maybe its just depressing that you only had one beer and are too lazy to search for an open store to buy more; your not sure.
Or maybe that you just finished a badass anime series that you depended on for comfort for so many weeks and now you have to go out and find something else to fulfill this need.
Or maybe you are just tired after drinking too much caffene.
Or maybe, Or maybe, or maybe. There is no answer, there is nothing etched in concrete that will solve this problem for you. You are blindly searching for an answer to unhappiness. You try so many things to create a concrete solution; but those times will still exist where there is empty nothingless. You are just a stand alone particle floating around in the ether. These words you type are the only solidity you can bring to the ether. This is all you have for now. So you better keep typing or you will become hopelessly lost again.
Even if it is for just one more day until you return to something real, this is all you have for now. This second, right now, you are here and nothing can change that. Yet anything can change that. This moment, right now, is so fallable, the slightest touch could send you out of it. This single state of mind where you exist and do not exist at the same time while leaving some unimportant imprint on everything around you is so temporary. It is so mortal, it will die in one instant and never return again the exact same way.
This is life and there is no answer.
Fuckin drunk on a weeknight. Friday. Ah, got half this day off. After terminal burnout, now
recharge time, Im fucking wasted.
Angeles and Demons circle in the sky. Those who cannot percieve their call will never know happiness. I am calling, calling now, spirits rise and falling. I am just trying to stay myself for just a little bit longer.
But then it goes away again. I have lost myself inside this thing we call intoxication. Words are so cold, the meaning inside all of this is lost inside of you I am sure. No one can understand this the same way I do. So it is just me of course.
Calling, calling now. In the depths of longing. Calling, calling now.
CAlling, CAlling. Can you hear the sharpness in her voice after the eternal dullness. The spirits are calling. They will keep calling, Can you hear them?
Ah, so the marathon is finally over. I have two days I can call my own. 350 paid hours
over the past two weeks it says on my paycheck is about what it feels like. 100 paid hours
, hell I'll take it.
I have found a breaking point. After 12 hours the sword you wield becomes heavy and hard to swing. At 15 hours the sword falls to the ground and you are left with no weapon to fight with. You may continue fighting, but it feels so pointless so just go home and immediately go to sleep and wake up again with the sword.
I feel quite satisfied from my little marathon. At first so many things were piled up so hard to get everything done. Then I made my plan before I left each night, a simple list of things to do the next day. Then action, action, action, action. My blade was so sharp as it cut through everything. Now, at ease just left with a small pile, a small fireplace at home sipping on beer, reflecting on everything I've accomplished.
Ah, this feeling, it only comes on the night the endless week on-call ends with beer and satisfaction. I could have given up, but I kept pushing until everything was done, and now I am at peace.
Wow, its been eons. I am buried in work. Work this, work that, work sleep, work eat.
Work. Theres a lot more coming in than going out or being completed correctly.
If you don't complete it correctly the first time it will continue coming back until it is done right. It will haunt you until you bury it properly. The preparations for burial involve great hardship, great physicial and emotional hardship. Sometimes you aren't even sure if it is time for burial. But then it is buried, just like that. Despite every attempt to control and manage everything it comes as it will and you will have to deal with it at that time if you do not make an attempt to bury it on your own terms.
Either you take control or it takes control. Either way doesn't matter despite emotional reactions to that concept. Unless you have full control time will pass like a giant puzzle with confused pieces. An abstract painting, the random path water takes around obstacles.
You better find a way to make it all manageable. You better interpret the abstract painting in concrete terms. You better create a plan for all the pieces to fall into place because if you leave it to the randomness of water they will continue scattering for all eternity.
Ah, so its 2:48AM now. Tonight was fucking special. It was fucking nice.
I figured it was time to go do something so I headed down to deep elum in search of a place called "deep sushi". I got there after driving around and being lost and wondering around the streets randomly for a while. But it was empty I figured it closed so I continued wondering on.
One bar, very friendly, can't remember the name. But there were about 10 people in there, I kindly drank my drink, tipped the bartender and left.
Another bar, very different. Walked upstars. Some kind of photoshoot going on with a partially nude chick. I watched for a while. The headed downstairs and had a drink. This place had some fucking badass house playing. I was there for a while, listening, watching. And it was good. A near empty place. But again I deposited a kindly tip and left.
This was nice. Wondering. Nice people. Nice atmosphere. So far away from work. Total peace. I continued wondering.
Wanting to mark this mental state with something I wondered into the first tatoo shop I saw. The drawings were ok. I saw a skull I wanted. But no one paid any attention to me. I realized this was some sort of rap/gangsta place. I left.
Not a few doors down I wondered into another tatoo shop. The front guy greeted me. I could tell this was where I wanted my tatoo. We chatted some small-talk for a while. I looked around and eventually found this bad-ass skull tatoo. We negotiated on price for a while. I could tell he was high-balling me so I stood my ground and was able to talk him down $50,
I provided my license and signed a few consent forms. The tatoo artist began cleaning his needles. After what seemed like eternity he said. "Ok come on over". I sat in the chair and was raised, another chair was provided for my legs to rest on. He put on an outline of the tatoo. I looked at it in the mirror and said go ahead.
He checked my arm a few times with the needle and asked to make sure I could bear the pain. In my semi-drunken state the needles felt good. I said go ahead.
After another eternity it was done, I looked at it in the mirror. It was absolute perfection. A work of art on my upper left arm, where no one can see it unless I choose to let them. Perfect. My own secret. When at work I can focus on this, something so free of everything else, just a whim. It is my peace, anytime I want.
I walked out, intent on finding another random bar and taking in its essence. Alas, it was already after 2PM. Beer was to no longer be found. It was over, everything. I wondered to my car.
So now I am here at home. If I take a deep breath I can smell the alchohol that he used to clean it so many times. It is a religious experience. I have been introduced into the world of tatoos. I hope to get a buddah on my right upper arm at some time in the future to balance out the skull.
Its 3:22AM now. I hope to stay awake long enough to remove the bandage.
Ah, so the vacation is nearly over. Its funny how a few days makes all the difference.
Last night I had some groundbreaking meditation. Where you transcend everything for a few moments. This feeling has followed me around today. Everything is much clearer, everything makes sense no matter what it is. The feeling that everything I see and do is concrete and fulfilling surrounds me even in the most trivial motions. The feeling of the keys on the keyboard against my fingers, moving so fast and precise. The taste of good beer. The slight chill in the room. The warmth of my jacket. Every note of music. The chaotic pace of my breathing as I concentrate. The beating of my own heart like an endless metronome. Its all good.
I am having a nice vacation despite being in the last 48 or so hours of it. No urge to go out and eat sushi, or try to pick up women. Content alone in my own house drinking beer and enjoying technological entertainment.
I am ready for work again. The counter has reset inside me, I am ready to start all over again. Everything is planned out. I have stepped back and seen the big picture. How everything goes together like a beautiful puzzle. Its waiting for me to put the pieces back together. For me to find the pieces I couldn't see before and make them fit.
I can see now. I depend on work. It gives me something to respond to. A reason to go out and enjoy life. It creates a sense of unbalance in my life which requires me to do things to bring the balance back. Like a yin-yang. Without this everything becomes the same. Just day after day of me as a boring hermit. I need the chaos that work brings to awaken the type of person I want to be.
Ah, but after all that, there is some good. When other people say things like this
it just makes me think I'm being too hard on myself. At least I was able to satisfy someone, I am
not a total failure.
I can feel the essence of my body coming back into itsself. After so many weeks without a vacation. Maybe its just beer on a Tuesday Night, but I feel damn good. I am not reflecting on the past. I am not at work. I am just living here now. My mind is free.
Man, this is a really rough time for me. I have my 6 day weekend now but the day before this
didn't go the way I wanted.
I planned my entire day out. The last day before 6 day weekend. I had several mid to long term projects I needed to tie up, otherwise my teammates would need to bear their workload until my return. Each project had a certain number of requirements before it could be completed the most important of which was time. I managed to weave everything together, doing multiple tasks in certain areas depending on my location in the hospital. Carrying extra equipment around in case certain opportunities presented themselves. It was so beautiful, the perfect plan.
8:30AM, I was just about to put the plan into action, bam. Hit hard with calls. Corporate in their infinite wisdom decided to push out an update to one of our heavily used systems the most important result of which is that everyone's username changed along with fucking up most of their passwords, we didn't even know about it. On top of that our security coordinator did not have the correct software to admin the accounts. So basically we were stuck with a shitload of people who can't access a system that is vital to the proper operation of the hospital and no way to get them access. Long story short, 3 hours down the drain. I couldn't put the plan into action because more immediate concerns kept popping up in front of me.
12:30PM, lunch time, 0% of plan put into action. At this point I was fucking hungry and tired from having to explain to people why they will not be able to perform their important jobs for a little while. I'm going to Red Hot and Blue and getting me a big ass home cooked style bacon cheeseburger with barbeque sauce. The burger was great, it kicked so much ass I can't fucking explain it. So I get back with a full stomach, feeling good and realize I'm stuck on phone support for the rest of the day, I will not be able to put the plan into action until after 5PM.
4PM, a break in the storm. One of the people from one project I am working on calls, and is ready to finish it up. So I get someone to cover me and go out to get this thing done. I figure I can at least get this one thing complete today if nothing else. So lets get it done.
6PM, ah the project is about 90% done, great. But there is this one piece missing. All I have to do is get a 17" monitor connected to a PC. No problem. The target location is a 10min walk from the department. No problem. Run to the storeroom get it, take the 10min walk. Fuck. The computer is DVI only and I have a VGA only monitor. No problem. Just get a DVI to VGA converter. 10min walk. Get VGA to DVI converter. 10min walk. Fuck. I forgot to bring a VGA cable. 10min walk. 10min walk. 10min walk. Fuck
7PM, I'm at my desk. Fuck it. Its too far to walk this late. I start to burn out. I can't think straight. I decide to abandon this project until later and get to work on other things that might not take as long. At least I can get something done today.
8PM, project #2, simple PC swap. I had imaged the PC earlier and it was ready to go. Get to the old computer and it has some wierd software on it that seems vital, but I can't find the software on any of our servers. It must have been from a CD. Fuck.
At this point I just say fuck it and go home. I didn't really get anything important done that day. Just a big waste of time. But in the morning it seemed so clear. When I had my plan laid out, all ready to go. And then stuff happened and it all went to shit. I still believe the plan was perfect. I can still feel that feeling where everything is working like a well oiled machine, like I'm firing on all cylinders. But then the reality of the situation hits me. The day is over, there is nothing I can do. I was defeated and I can only avenge myself on Monday. Until then I am trapped on vacation.
In contrast to my last entry I have been defeated. I got FUCKING HARDCORE ACTION
and it kicked my ass.
Multiple consecutive 11 hour days this week. Draining my soul. And at the end I still wasn't able to get everything done. No, the 11 hour days were just enough to get by. Impossible situations I find myself in, I can't find vital pieces of the puzzle or the pieces are missing all together and no matter how much effort I dump into it I cannot achieve that precious feeling of victory, a distorted masterpiece. I can see where I went wrong and what was needed but thats the closest to perfection it gets. A horrible feeling.
To top it off. After Friday, the last 11 hour day, finally after so much meaningless physical and mental exertion I can rest. I go to sleep. Its a dream that lasts too long one that seems so real. I am relaxing somewhere and all of a sudden it becomes apparent that I am on call. I felt trapped, I got paged so many times but didn't have any means of helping the people that rely on me. I carried the responsibility of everything, but had no ability to carry it properly. It dropped and shattered into one thousand pieces and it was all my fault. I wondered aimlessly with these memories even into potentially enjoyable situations still carrying this weight and it never went away. That feeling of failing someone stayed with me for eternity. Until I woke up into nothingness.
I've had this wierd feeling in my stomach for a week. It is a dull pain that prevents me from getting completely comfortable. I don't know what caused it or what to do with it. Not much choice though. Not a good situation.
Well, at least next week I only have to work on Monday. That gives me a 6 day weekend. Jesus, I haven't even had a 3 day weekend in 1 and a half years.I will hopefully relax and get myself back together.
Its strange how one bad week can fuck things up so badly.
Holy fucking shit, today I had the most hardcore day ever!!
Constant action. Every fucking 10min I would get paged with another priority one even while working on another pri one. Our entire department was like this. I had lunch at fucking 2:30pm and that was only because someone was smart enough to order pizza for everyone, and I was answering phones while eating at that.
My day lasted 5 fucking minutes. It feels like I just got into work and then left. So many things were accomplished today.
Ah, I feel so accomplished. Like I defeated an army by myself. Like I climbed an impossible mountain and when the fog cleared I was on top. I am so glad that I can experience this feeling.
Ah, what a good weekend. A cool bar with its own brewery, travel, work buddies. But its now
the middle of the week. A little late to reflect on the past.
I feel happy now. Belly full of good fried chicken TV dinner, surrounded by myself, listening to cool music. Playing games with and getting played in return by some girl. Yea, thats what its all about.
Tell me there is much more to life than that and I won't believe you.
Is it strange for you to be in your study alone, listening to music, drinking beer with the
strange feeling that you have met another person and that person is yourself. That after
loosing yourself at some point in the past you have found yourself again, and finding
this person brings a great feeling of happiness?
Or maybe that you never knew yourself and now you have finally found yourself. That the you you percieved was just a shadow covered in vines and now the vines have dissapeared, you can see your shadow as clearly as the moon on any given night.
That you get a fucking 4000 dollar paycheck for working a 99 hour week in addition to being on- call and realize that you spend way more time at work that you do at home.
You suddenly realize that your social life has been fucked to hell by work. Fuck that shit, its time to get back into the action. Silently, slowly, at ease.
Ah so I just got off on-call. Fuckin coming out of hyperspace, back to normal space. Trying to
slow myself down again. Its hard. Its such a big shift. I suppose its something like
playing a character in a play for a week; getting into character, mimicing their feelings and activities, desires and motivations, living your life with guidelines that are someone elses. and then trying to remember who you are.
Work is kicking my ass. We loose another group member on Thursday. That takes us down to 7 and it seems like the demands of the hospital keep increasing. I spend my days swiftly moving from one task to another constantly trying to figure out what deserves my attention and what can wait. Its tiring and mentally challenging but its still better than nothing or even next to nothing. Its a fufilling something to do that pays the bills.
My director hooked me up with some free seats to the truck race on friday at Texas Motor Speedway. The cool thing is that you can bring your own cooler and beer. Can't wait to sit up there in the stands and drink some beer on a cool evening. It will be fun. Kinda wish I had someone to share it with, but that takes energy that I do not have at this point in my life.
Well I guess I took my mental shit for the day. It feels better now.
I hate that feeling. I've been angry all day, it just followed me around. Bitter, pessimistic. For no apparent reason. Like dirt stuck to my shoe.
And now its calm. I'm relaxed. But I have the feeling of wanting to capture the peace, its not enough for it to be there these few fleeting moments and then have it gone again. I want to keep it with me always, but I know it will easily be washed away by whatever trials confront me tomorrow.
I could meditate, but that will take the feeling away too. I don't want to feel neutral. I'm greedy. Neutral isn't good enough.
I want, I want, I want. There is no answer in that. So where is the answer? .......
Maybe the answer is in neutral after all. No wanting, no recieving. Just nothing and nothing else.
Ah man. I've been a little sick for the past few days. Change of weather and all that, not too bad though. Fever making it somewhat hard to think clearly, perception of existance changing slightly. Strange dreams filled with fear and confusion that extend into the waking hours. Work taking on a dreamlike quality. Standard stuff.
Last weekend my beloved car died on me. The positive battery terminal corroded off. Got Tommy to bring me a new battery and terminal. Easy repair, but a lot of heartache. My backup car's battery was dead, I need to store it better, need to hook it up to a trickle charger.
Parents blew me off this weekend. I wanted to visit them, but they have a minister coming in they need to take care of. I understand, their religion means a lot to them, but still I would like to take a long trip before going on call.
I need to find somewhere to drive to and hang out for a while, tired of spending weekends at home.
Thats about all.
Ah last night kicked ass. I got really bored and decided to drive around for a while.
At Park and Preston I ran into this Sushi bar and stopped to have some sushi and beer.
Ended up spending about $50 for suchi for one, but it was very goood. Had me some
yellow tail, red snapper, tuna, salmon and halibut along with a liter of Asahi beer.
Very very good.
After that I drove around deep elum for a while. At first I wanted to go to a bar to try to pick up some women and maybe have another drink, but after driving around for a while looking for parking it was 12PM and I started getting really tired, so I Just headed home. Maybe next week.
This is the first time in years that I have been able to go out and enjoy myself. I didn't go out because there was any need to, I just wanted to. I attribute this at least partially to my no beer thing, usually I would be drunk off my ass on a Saturday night, not able to go anywhere. But sober, it is easy and feels good to get out.
Ah, pics of the house. Nice right?
Almost bought beer today, but got lazy and passed right by it. If beer decides to enter my life I will enjoy it, but I will not seek beer out, I will not force myself to buy beer.
So things at work are about to change in a big way. Corporate restructuring, these words are often a nice way of saying "your fired". But not in my case. It means I will become a corporate employee with a bigger paycheck and salary instead of hourly wages. The big boys decided to take all IT staff to their level instead of leaving them at the facility level. This means I can either stay at the hospital as a corporate employee serving only our hospital or I can move to the division level and do phone support for all hospitals in the Dallas area.
Its a tough choice to make, there are a lot of factors to consider. Division headquarters is in Las Colinas, this would make my commute about twice what it is now. But at division I will get to play will all sorts of new tools and resources that aren't available at the facility. If I stay at the hospital I will be full time field support, not chained to a desk, familiar environment, but not as much of a pay raise. This all won't be happening for a few months so I have a bunch of time to think about it. Should work out ok either way.