fredag, februar 02, 2007


A Seoul cafe called Poem. That's sweet. I wish I'd gone up there.

I miss reading Chekov but I think he's a terrible writer for a winter, particularly on a weekend when we'll have a day or two when an air temperature of zero will be a reason to celebrate. But I'm sleepy from this week and that has me thinking of Chekhov who was, really, a fantastic writer.

But we've all got our biases in this world and I'm fascinated by ordinary things and the impact of a moment. I'm fascinated by watching people.

And in Chekhov's work there's a sense of habit--people who will relentlessly make the same mistakes or suffer the same hardships, but that's no reason to disregard them. They have qualities worth redemption. They have stories worth telling.

And true enough, the same things that are really worth appreciating are happening too. We ought not disregard that either. (I believe I've returned to Auden here.)

Many of us aren't too good at dealing with ourselves, and I'm probably in that lot, but we must deal with one another, and that's something too many of us willfully run from.

Though we sometimes must learn the same lessons, which questions whether we learned them in the first place and perhaps suggests we never can, we go on. That has its tolerable limits, true, but most often there's a glimmer of hope that we'll get it right this time. It's worth rooting for, dammit.

The Stress Shell

Back in the paleolithic era I worked in an office, and I remember my friend Betsy and I discussing how stressed out we were. I suggested that I never got sick because the germs were repelled by the nerve field around me. And Betsy suggested that our limbs might fall off if it weren't for the magnetic-like force of our anxiety holding us together.

I was thinking about that and Scooby-Doo this past week.

The stress shell around me reminded me of this electric abomindable snowman creature from an episode of Scooby-Doo. I don't recall how they explained away the electric field around the costume, and I think they actually used this plot device on two or three episodes, but it must have made an impression on me.

For when I hit these periods I feel as if the atoms are quivering (abominably?) against me.

(Sidenote: I still do not understand how in a chaotic universe two atoms don't actually bump against one another in a way that just once causes an atom to break open and start off an atomic chain of fire. I'm not making a god argument here. I'm just saying I don't understand shit about basic science. Electricity, really, baffles me. I don't understand what it is, man.)

In these times, my brow is often furrowed. My eyes feel hot. And I suffer numbness in hands or feet. I start Googling symptoms and diagnose myself with diabetes, liver failure, Raynaud's Disease, schizophrenia, Parkinson's, sciatica, MS, massive Vitamin B12 and thiamine deficiency, dementia, spinal tumors, and TMJ. I develop facial ticks.

I read things aloud, and as if to an audience, to reassure myself some sense of intellectual fire still flickers in my head.

There is a Light That Never Goes Out

Maybe I got it wrong, but I think plenty is still kicking up there. I'm happy about that.

And after a brief but really nice talk with Hulles at Frost earlier and spending a bit of time with Erin and Jim as they waited for the offer to come in on their place in downtown Saint Paul--Congrats on the sale!! Woo!!!--I feel things are returning to a reasonable perspective. I really got loads accomplished this week; I just wish I hadn't forced myself to do it all at once!

The tension in my hands has abated. I feel my feet coming back. And there's no longer a thin, tense fizzing in my head (that pressure of silence).

It's the weekend, friends. While I don't want to enslave myself to that Loverboy philosophy of working for the weekend, I will take this one happily.

By the way: Bears.
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