Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Code switching short circuit

I went outside and bought fabric today. I am trying to move forward with my alter ego, Pixie Morningdust, a fantastical creature with they/them pronouns. We are actually the same person right now, but Pixie is a little bit less ashamed and embarrassed. Chris Harne is also an alright guy who I love and respect. They both paint their nails, and both are too lazy for routine personal maintenance. If anything, I'd give Pixie the better odds at shaving and remembering to take a shower. I don't know what Chris is much good for, but he is at least a kind person, and a "big ideas" sort of dude. He can build stuff and make long term plans, but has never quite mastered daily short term tasks.

I went to two fabric stores, and met excellent people at both. Our hearts were so warmed by Sheldon at the big fabric and sewing machine store. They didn't make us feel at all peculiar. Neither did those at the first little store. We love those who tread lightly on our emotions.

We are a green blanket with flecks of gold. It is a warm dry cloud that we breathe. We are all long sleeves next to a campfire.


Wednesday, February 13, 2019

How to meet people and conceal being a bird.

I took my bicycle out for a ride yesterday and that helped a lot. I don't know many people in Austin yet - hardly any - but I still wouldn't even think about being anywhere else. That is a brand new feeling. There is not anywhere else I would rather be. I find that fact incredible, and I hope it stays that way for awhile.

I am doing nothing all day. I can't make myself do anything. My room looks like a squat. Shitty little dirty folding mattress on the floor. A box of food shit; a box of clothing shit. I wake up late, walk down the street to get breakfast tacos, then lazy around until it seems like an acceptable time to drink wine.

Since I'm a little bit lonely here and don't know anybody, I turned to the apps Tinder and Bumble. The user interface is completely addictive. It's designed to suck you in, and it works. What doesn't seem to work as well is getting any sort of response. I've changed my bio several times, and I think I've written a couple real masterpieces. That doesn't change the fact that I am peculiar and difficult to decipher. I did meet up with one girl though.

I got a Tinder message late at night and responded. It was quickly noticed that we lived 0.3mi apart, so she suggested that it would be funny to start walking and meet in the middle. She probably didn't want to hear all about how I make bird noises at people. Upon reflection, I probably brought that up too soon. In my defense, my bio stated simply at the time "Silly hippie. New in town. Easy to talk to." So really she should have guessed that I was some type of bird.

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Room with a bonsai.

I'm renting a room. It gets lots of sunlight. I'm in the front of the house, and I have my own entry door. I'm paying $599 with all utilities. I can ride a bicycle downtown in 10 minutes. Cool.

What the company renting this place does is get an old house, slap on some paint and appliances, and build out new walls dividing it into a thousand bedrooms. I think there are ten rooms for rent in this place. That's a lot. There's two fridges and two bathrooms. Four rooms are still empty, and I'm guessing when they get rented it's going to feel pretty high traffic around here.

When I got here to pick up the keys, the cloud of bacon was pretty thick. Same as yesterday. Dude here is cooking a lot of bacon, and I suspect that might be all he eats. I opened my door to introduce myself, and he just stood there with big headphones on, continuing to mess with bacon. He's like a bodybuilder or something. Who knows. Also, I guess nobody thought it was a priority to get a shower curtain. That gives me pause.

Here's how I'm looking at this: I have the best room in the house, and my own entry door. I'm looking at this as my own private studio apartment. There's wifi and electricity, and I have access to a bathroom and shower. Good enough. If something better comes along, cool, but for now I can work with this.

I opened up the front door and some windows. I got the ceiling fan going, and now that the bacon fog is out I'm feeling pretty good. I even put my little bonsai tree in the window. Open for business, baby, open for business!

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Brightness and darkness and shrugging

I'm sitting in the library in Austin, utilizing the wifi / table / outlet combo to facilitate easier filling out of a rental application. Official documents of any type stress me out. Looking for a residence stresses me out. I am forging ahead, and paying the $50 fee for a background and credit check. I am hoping that my 2009 credit issues are explainable and that ten years ago is long enough to get a month-to-month situation in a house with individually leased rooms. Logically, it seems like I should be okay. I make money; they want money. I'm not a felon.

I found a room, and I filled out the digital paperwork. I want it. I want that room real bad. Partly, I just want to be done looking so I can focus on my next task, which is therapy and a doctor. Also, the room looks great. Lots of light, a private entrance, adequate size, stellar location. Another couple was checking out rooms in the same house, and I was seriously afraid they might show interest in the same room. They didn't, and I was relieved that I wouldn't need to fight them.

Easing my stress considerably is the fact that I love this city and everybody seems friendly and relaxed. It goes a long way. In a way, it makes all the difference. Austin has everything going for it. Let me get a place to live, and I believe I can make shit happen. This is a new chapter that I'm excited to write. I'm fighting for it. I don't know the future, but I am excited about the direction I am headed.

Holy fucking shit life is weird and then we die. The best we can do is get involved in some shit in the meantime and try to make our stay as pleasant and free of suffering as possible. Existence feels abstract and overwhelming and I vacillate between helpless panic and laughing out loud. I'm not even complaining. This is how it is, and there is no use ruminating about that which you cannot control. It is super fucking obvious why people drink. I completely understand why people kill themselves. Of course I won't be doing that, and I hope it isn't reckless just to admit that I get it. I'm probably going to be around at least twice this long. Holy fucking shit, I'm not even deleting this paragraph.

I am not struggling. Not by a long shot. I am often wondering how the fuck everybody is either pretending that everything is normal, or is somehow actually fooled into thinking it is so. This shit blows me right away. We are wild lobotomized animals, and I feel forced to also pretend that everything is completely normal, because the alternative would absolutely get me into hot water. I keep my head low and drink wine. Maybe it'll get better with age.

Monday, February 4, 2019

Living in Austin.

Phew. Sure wish I was updating this shit more often. I'm barely even keeping track of what I'm up to in a notebook these days. Mostly I want to keep track of this shit for myself to look back on when I'm old and bored and wondering what the hell I was doing throughout my life - seeing that I can't remember whether certain shit happened last week or a year ago most of the time. I don't know what's up with that. My mental timeline is way off, and I mostly just say everything happened "about ten years ago." I remember tons of detail about events, but have no real clue when they happened. I guess that's fine, 'cause it's gotta be. No other choice. This is what I've got.

I'm in Austin now. I got here on Friday. I'm trying to rent a room somewhere, which feels like an absolutely monumental task. I checked out a place Friday afternoon. It smelled funny, and it's a room in a shared house with individual month-to-month leases for each room. Seems like kind of a high-risk random roommate situation.

I checked out another place that blew my mind. I met with the roommates in this sorta co-op-ish situation with an absolutely giant and beautiful room. I thought the interview went well. Apparently not well enough, because I got an email saying that they didn't think I'd be a good fit. That felt kinda bad. I'm a fucking weirdo. I want people to like me, though. I'm pretty mentally invested in being well liked. I have to let some of that shit go, 'cause as it turns out I'm not for everybody. I think I'm cool. I think they didn't really get who I am or what I'm about. And I'm a fucking weirdo. Damnit. I feel fucking insane, and I really can't control that.

So I'm here in Austin. I have been mostly very happy to be here. I love Austin, and that's why I'm here. Trying to make a go of it and stay here for awhile. But I'm feeling anxiety about the unknown, and not doing a very good job at reducing alcohol consumption. Fuckit. I'll sort all my shit out in good time. Austin is a good spot to feel like a crazy person. Feels forgiving for that kind of thing.

I at least got a shower today. I needed one. I went to Barton Springs - a natural pool - and they didn't even charge me to enter. She just looked at me and said "you're good." Cool. Hot shower. Washed the stale beer out of my hair. That's another story I guess.

Friday, January 18, 2019

Spending forever in the clouds.

I was reading back through these recent nonsense posts, and we sound like a person who is going insane. That is only partially accurate. The real story is far more interesting. I am actually going insane while blossoming into a beautiful flower. I'm only kidding. I'm only partially kidding. Life is great.

I looked back deeper into these online writings, which have been going on more or less since 2006, and what I learned is that I haven't changed as much as I thought in the past twelve years. The fundamentals are about the same. The only difference is that I've simply gotten older and I've had more practice with my brand of self sufficiency. I understand stoicism better, and I'm less fearful across the board.

I've learned that less is better, and less than that might be better still. Many complications are optional if you are willing to write your own rule book or define your own normal. I'm not suggesting that everybody should imitate my nonsense, but at least I'm not stuck anywhere, or beating myself up too bad, or struggling to gain material assets, or fighting to fit in.

I'm lucky. I doubt I could do any of that stuff even if I wanted to, so it's an asset to me that I can't. Yes, that makes my beliefs suspiciously convenient. And if I felt like it, I could actually wave my lifestyle around like a flag of genius. What I do looks cool when you are up north facing a depressing winter. My superpower is that I'm willing to live with a film of grease and do most of my pooping at a Winn Dixie. I consider this trade fair if it fosters a better kind of crazy.

The truth is I am forever in the clouds. The truth is I am practically the luckiest person alive, and I feel guilty when I forget that.

Further Reading:

Music and sunshine and bicycles are the only real stuff. Those are the ingredients. Portions and purity don't matter much, and you can add other ingredients, but if you omit one of those three, you get scurvy.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Help me tie my shoes, and I will build you a house.

Living in a minivan. Life is on pause. This is all I can handle right now. This is not an exaggeration. This is all I can handle right now.

I am thinking obsessively about quilting. I have been excited about sewing for awhile now, but didn't land on any avenue within that vast wide world of fabric and thread. Now I've discovered "modern quilting" and "improv piecing" - keywords which ignite fire in my brain. I want to begin, but I have impediments in my path, both physical and self-imposed.

Making a quilt in a van isn't easy no matter what. I feel huge resistance when I perceive any lack of efficiency. This is true of everything I ever do; putting a sock on my foot entails debate. I want to recognize this handicap, and get past it. My brain tells me not to even begin something until it is possible to have an efficient flow. In reality - logically - I know there is great strength in beginning something new even if you aren't ready. You can't have momentum if you don't begin. Especially with an artistic endeavor, any forward momentum, no matter how minuscule, is vastly preferable to wheels spinning in my mind with no resistance.

My brain will always cook up reasons to postpone any action, but this "lack of efficiency" is a major one. I don't have a home, a sewing studio, Adderall... and each of those hurdles comes with a series of smaller hurdles. I feel like I need a miracle to be able to jump up and over this. A breeze is a hurricane.

Here is how I think I need to do this: Shower > Find any acceptable room in Austin TX > Find doctor, therapy, Adderall > reassemble sewing studio > adapt and normalize.

I don't feel ready to feel any cold temperatures while living in a van. It will take a little bit of time to look at places and move in somewhere. In the meantime, I will be living in a van, and cold will make that hard. I will feel lonely. It will be hard. Even though I know this, it won't feel how I expect. Failure is possible, and I am very much in need of a win. I need to maximize my likelihood of success. I desperately need help.

Let me tell you how this feels: Sometimes I see somebody changing a flat tire on their bicycle. They are fumbling around, probably using a screwdriver as a tire lever, and success doesn't look at all like a given. So I offer to help. I can assist with advice, tools, or just do the whole job. I can fix a flat with my eyes closed and underwater. It's nothing. The things I fumble with in life are so simple to the average person that it wouldn't even occur to anybody that I might need assistance. Without privilege and a strong safety net of friends and family, I would probably be actually homeless. I am fumbling trying to fix this simple little flat tire, and I desperately need help, and I am surrounded by bicycle mechanics whizzing past, but nobody will stop because nobody can see that I am quietly going fucking crazy here.

The things I am good at - and there definitely are some! - do not help me with the fundamental details of daily living. I have a lot to offer another person, and I do not need much in return. That's how I see it. Help me tie my shoes, and I will build you a house.

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

My pocket was close to the earth.

I put my hand inside the left pocket on my 3XL zip-up hoodie and felt a crumpled up receipt. I took it out only to discover that it was not a receipt, but rather a strip of bacon. Eddie was like "dude, I'm glad to see that you roll around with bacon in your pocket."

Saturday, January 12, 2019

Maybe it's the crystals and the kratom.

"There Is Nothing Wrong With You"

I read this in my notebook this morning. I wrote it there last night. What an excellent statement to embrace! We spend so much time and effort measuring ourselves against some nebulous idea of what we should be. The way we wish we were. I spend so much energy identifying as a person with ADHD and confusion about gender and sexuality. Realistically though, we can drop all of that baggage, and it doesn't change a single thing. I am good enough right now. You are good enough right now. Fighting with ourselves, and being disappointed with ourselves is not productive. Let's improve our lives because we want to, not because we feel ashamed about aspects of who we are.

[I am attempting to articulate this message to myself, and anybody else who it might resonate with. I recognize that it probably sounds trite. Oh well. That's what I've got right now.]

I want to be happy. I want to feel proud of myself. Those are my goals. I haven't been giving myself enough credit. I've done some cool stuff. I'm not afraid of hardly anything. I ride bicycles. This is one of those times I feel like I've got it all sorted out. Maybe it's the crystals and the kratom. Also I'm on a tropical island with chickens everywhere, and the baby chickens are really cute.

I'm not excessively careful about van camping. I park in the same place and blow weed smoke right out the roof vent. I have about the most low-key rig on the island, so that's a plus. I don't want to run into trouble, but I'm also not wasting any energy sneaking around like a nervous ninja.

I don't have a point here, I'm just trying to write an update, and this is how it's turning out.

I have errands and ideas and some work to do. I've been a little worried with myself that I'm not able to get any of it done. Then I decided that I'm not going to do a damn thing I don't feel like doing right now. The only difference is worrying about it or not. Now I'm not. There is nothing wrong with that.

I laid back on my thin tri-fold mattress, and focused on my breathing. I didn't focus on my breathing, but I was aware of the practice, and I made an attempt at clearing my mind. I released thoughts into the sky like you might release a dove or a pigeon. I could hear crickets, and the soft sweeping of palm fronds on the roof of my van. What more could you want. What more could you want!

Thursday, January 3, 2019

I'm back in Key West. Got here on Christmas Eve.

I'm in Key West. I don't know what the hell is going on in the universe or with my life, but I am living in a minivan in Key West, and there are a lot worse places to be utterly confused and overwhelmed by life. At least it is sunny and I can wear shorts and sandals all the time.

I'm not really keeping up with any of my metrics for life improvement, but I'm not about to beat myself up about it either. I'm alive, and for right now that's going to have to be good enough.

Actually, a few things are good. I just made some real good money from selling books. I have enough money to pretty easily get a place to live in Austin, which as of now, I intend to do. My friend Luna down here is renting a place with a shower, so I've gotten to use a shower a couple times, and will probably take more showers. I got some fabric to make an experimental quilt. Ten fat quarters from the only fabric store on the island. Cool.

All I really want to do is make some quilts. I have equipment along with me, but a minivan isn't a great workspace. I don't know what I'm going to do about that. Hopefully something.

I have never felt less capable. I almost can't get myself to do anything at all. It is depressing as hell. I am getting alright at accepting reality and breathing. Being on a tropical island is definitely a help. Key West is such a total cartoon it can go a long way to mask minor personal madness.

I'm writing in a notebook again. I feel pretty open to write a lot here, but a notebook is private, so you can really scrawl whatever sort of shit, so I'm glad I got a new notebook going.

I feel like I have enormous potential. I don't feel like I am reaching any sort of potential. But I'm just going to hide out down here for awhile. I can ride a bicycle a little bit, get some coffee, feel hot and dirty, and generally just horse around for a month or whatever.

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Three books autographed by Richard Nixon.

Pennsylvania is experiencing the cold and gray time of year. Soon I will head south to Key West. For now, I am handling a case of the seasonal blergh until I can force myself to be ready to get out of here.

My intention was to buckle down about the business of buying and selling books. The more I do now, the stronger my safety net later. With this in mind, I made a telephone call. I asked some lady at the library if the book sale area was open again. She sounded like she was getting a call from an asshole with four heads. I repeated my inquiry slowly and clearly - how is this a difficult question!?

"Is the friends of the library book sale area open again?"

Maybe I spoke too quickly. I certainly wasn't mumbling, and I was definitely speaking English.

"... It hasn't been open in awhile, I am asking if it is open again?"

The library has been under renovation for almost a year. Surely she knows that.

"Are there books for sale there?"

She sounded confused and slightly fearful. Like I was asking if it was a good time to kick in some doors and rob the place.

"I want to buy books."

I literally said this slowly and calmly. It's hard to be much clearer than that.

I hate phones, but I can't take responsibility for any confusion on this call. What is it about me? In person, I might understand - some hipster looking jackass with a mohawk and neon glasses might catch somebody in bumblefuck off guard. Conceivably. Fuckit. I'm doing my best.

As it turned out, the book sale area was not open, but it would be open for a sale in two days. Getting this information was like tapping a maple tree for syrup. Two days passed, and now it is today. I arrived right when the library opened, and within five minutes I knew it was good. There was nobody else who appeared to be a book dealer, and I got a few hits right away. I worked steadily for four hours and did what I call due diligence. When the going is good, it pays to be thorough. When the books seem lousy and picked over, it is easy to become discouraged. That did not happen today.

I saw a boring hardcover book by Richard Nixon. No barcode, so checking potential value would require typing in the ISBN. Books by or about presidents almost never hold any value. But there was a slipcase, which adds interest, and I didn't feel rushed. I slipped the book out of its case, and opened it to locate the ISBN. Ha! Richard Nixon autographed this copy. That went right in my bag. Then I found another one - signed by Richard Nixon as well. Later, I found a third. Three different books, two in immaculate condition in their slipcase.

The gray sky and cold air felt like bullshit as I left. But three books autographed by a dead president took off the edge.

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

A way I can tell what is real.

I raised one hand up, and placed my palm on the headliner of my Toyota Sienna. I drove west with the best of intentions as the setting sun reached maximum beauty. I don't know which colors were where, but I could sense pinks and yellows and greens. I held my hand to the roof for a few seconds, and then I held my palm to my chest. I saw something beautiful and I knew that it was real.

It was dark. I was headed east in the Sienna again, toward cold temperatures and against better judgement. A radio station in Nashville was being kind with the music. (Aux In is broken, and might never get fixed.) A story was shared with advice which rang true. I held the moment gently against the ceiling. I acknowledge that this moment is happening. I raised up my hand because it was real.

I was in the shower a minute ago. I was rinsing the stink off another wasted day, and wondering what is about to happen. "Are we in this?" I asked, before knowing what that even means. "We are in this," I said, and I felt glad because I knew it was true. I raised up my arm to bookmark the moment; palm facing up for the truth. We are making a run for it. This moment is hopeful and real.

Monday, December 10, 2018

Positivity and Optimism, I Exclaim!

Hi! Aim low, and you will not be disappointed. What I haven't been saying is that I view myself as an optimist. Even in difficult circumstances, I am hopeful. I will never give up. I have a bright ball of colorful light inside of me, and I only want to let it break through and lift people up. I believe it is possible. With a little bit of persistence, I can make adjustments to my recipe and shine.

I do aim low! I am not disappointed! I've heard this phrase before. It seems like a phrase intended to pull people away from lofty goals - to protect us from the disappointment of failure by not trying in the first place. I have a different interpretation. I have had my best times living in a van. My aim is not to be rich or fancy. In that sense I am aiming low. If you don't want to become rich, then I have great news!

I made a list of my goals. None of them seem to be a major challenge. None of them seem to be aiming high in a traditional western sense. Even if I never do another thing in my life, I am still not disappointed. Why? Logic. Disappointment is not productive. Disappointment is like drowning because you are wearing a heavy coat. To some degree, disappointment is unavoidable - it is a reflex or innate response that we are born with, or learn very young. To some degree, as thinking adult humans, it is also a decision. If I die today, I did a lot better than some. I am prepared to go. But! It probably won't happen. So the rest of my life is a bonus!

We all have battles (I assume), so I don't want to boohoo as a privileged white-skinned beard-growing human in America. I have never been hungry for long. I have all of the advantages in the world.

I want to continue to aim low. None of my goals are so lofty that I cannot grasp them and feel like a success. I have been working on two lists: The first is a list of goals. The second is a list of daily actions to be rewarded, with the aim of establishing habits which will lead directly or indirectly to attaining my goals. Maybe this will work, or maybe I will die first, and that would be fine anyway. But lethargy and boredom are a terrible way to go, so lets get started!

Goals

1) Sewing. I want to build skills and confidence. I want this to parlay into a way to make money. If I am still on this path in five or ten years, I would like to lease a small space with five industrial sewing machines and have a few people working with me to make bags and camping gear. I want this to translate to $2500 per month of income on average, and I want to feel excited about it.

2) Exercise. Fortunately, I already do this sometimes. 100 miles per week on a bicycle makes me a better person. I already know that, yet sometimes I stop riding altogether. Let's ride! I would like to introduce some weights and yoga to the routine.

3) Learn to prepare 10 simple plant-based meals. I don't want to be a vegan chef. What I want is a varied list of quick and portable foods that I am confident assembling so I am able to reduce my lust for cheeseburgers. I already have brain stuff going on, and I have identified a poor diet as a probable causal factor.

4) Crochet. Keep at it. Doesn't matter where it goes.

5) Condiment Packet Gallery. It is a cool thing I made. I would like to update it in any manner, which requires me to think about it in a way which does not make me feel overwhelmed. It makes me feel very overwhelmed, but I made progress before, and it is possible again. I'd like to appear on TV and get interviewed about it. I was invited on Jimmy Kimmel a long time ago, and I declined because I was driving around feeling weird as hell.

6) Tackle alcohol for good. Realistically this is a recurring issue. I'd like it to recur less often, in a less extreme manner, or maybe never again. Any progress is great. A pat on my back almost no matter what.

7) Save $375,000 in a brokerage account, invested in index funds. People think they need millions to retire. If I had this amount, work would be on an optional-when-desired basis for life. Jobs are a pain when you need them to survive. I would rather have part time jobs to build skills or satiate curiosity and meet people.

8) Become comfortable making phone calls and approaching strangers. I'm not horrible at talking to strangers. I might almost be relatively good at it, depends on the circumstance. But I am afraid of making phone calls, which is a significant setback. You can't get as much done if you don't dial a number and ask somebody questions. You know what it is? I am super afraid that there will be a poor connection, and this makes me feel highly anxious. I am also afraid that I confuse people and they become suspicious of me or dismissive. I often make a big deal out of nothing. Here is such a case.

Daily Actions to be Rewarded* 

1) Do any action that Will or Could lead to earned income. Literally anything.

2) Consume fewer than 3 alcoholic drinks

3) Drink 64oz of water, and no soda or sugar drink

4) Eat an apple

5) Crochet any amount

6) Walk for at least 10 minutes, or ride a bicycle any amount

7) Clean or organize one thing

8) Write something

9) Make a phone call


Wish me luck. I am currently experiencing motivation because I've been sober for a few days, and I've watched a shitload of TED Talks. It is a potent combination. I recognize that we are all still just floating through space. If you have advice or input please contact me. Lord knows I am not particularly adept at life skills, and the obvious often escapes my attention.

*The reward can be insignificant - as simple as a nod of approval to myself, or a star on a chart if I make a chart with these as columns, which I might or might not do. 

Saturday, December 8, 2018

Brain Battles of 2018 Summarized.

I read in a biography of William M. Gaines about his experience trying on glasses for the first time as a kid. He didn't know that there were leaves at the tops of trees. He thought that tall trees had fuzz at the top. He was amazed at his new clarity of vision. He didn't know what normal vision could be like.

I quit paying for health insurance last year. Or maybe it was the year before, I have no internal meter for dates or elapsed time. Seriously. In any case, I reasoned that if I could get ADHD meds from India for cheaper, then fuck the United States, double middle fingers. I despise convoluted paperwork and systems designed to take your money and still screw you in the end. So I stopped taking Adderall.

The India meds, specifically Modafinil, seemed promising at first. Over time my opinion changed. I found that as the Modafinil wore off, I was released into an anxious state where minor tasks felt more overwhelming than ever before. I adapted to the Modafinil to a point where it wasn't helping me get any more done, but the anxiety would still occur, and I was drinking much more on those days to numb the discomfort. Taking an extra half pill would help with getting things accomplished, but I am wary of increasing the dosage of chemicals I jam into my skull.

In early 2018, I was traveling back from California and I stopped for the night at a cold and dirty truck stop in New Mexico. I was lonely and uncomfortable, just as I had been for weeks. It was snowing in Joshua Tree. I was not mentally equipped to take care of myself during this time. I drank two or three bottles of wine and I woke up abruptly at 2am bawling my eyes out. Fuck. We have to deal with this again. ["we" as in "me and all of my aspects." I am usually an "us"]

I quit everything. For about three days my emotions felt short circuited. I would feel overwhelmed and weep spontaneously. Or I would burst out laughing and crying at the same time, which wasn't actually unpleasant, except that I would prefer to avoid those outbursts in public. I needed time to settle down and normalize. After a few days I got better, and after a week I had a sense of normality. I'm not sure if I can call the outcome "normality" -- perhaps more accurately, I felt a comfortable abstraction of what I believe to be the typical reality experienced by the majority of humans. This is good. I am at my best in a functional absurdity.

I made it back to Austin and replaced substances with bicycles. I was rejuvenated with a new hope. I am no longer naive enough to believe that my battle is won. As mental warriors, our battles are most likely to continue. I accept this, and am grateful for a reprieve so I can take stock of myself and prepare for the next challenge.

I left Austin after two or three weeks. This was toward the end of March. I felt strong and healed enough to head back to Kennett Square. My next mission would be to remodel my tiny house and begin a path toward mastery of sewing machines. I would make punk rock quilts, and learn to construct different types of handbags, bicycle bags, and camping gear.

What I forgot is that I have ADHD. As such, confidence and keen interest do not translate to progress. Lack of progress often does translate into frustration. A further result might be hopelessness and depression. I know I am not lazy per se - but that is exactly how this condition presents, including to those of us affected. We judge ourselves on a false perception of normal. Even when we recognize that our standard of self-measurement is flawed, we are still left with the depressing task of survival in a society designed by and for boring normals - bean counters, paper-pushers, et al. My path has been one of resistance, but to what end, employing what physics, I have not a clue.

I bought an incredible Juki TL-2010q sewing machine, and I couldn't bring myself to open the box for weeks. Progress is a battle. The fight is confounding for us. Victory appears to be easy: those around us take it for granted every day. Meanwhile, we can't tie our shoes, and we shit in our pants when we try. Not literally, of course, but the reality inspires the same self-confidence.

Kennett Square was ice cold when I returned. I got depressed. I entered again into the bad kind of abstract reality. Still I tried to soldier on and force any kind of victory I could muster. I tried to drive to the grocery store and I had to pull off the road because I started crying too hard to drive.

I paid in advance to join the annual 3 Speed Tour in Minnesota, so I would be forced to participate in something. I knew that if I paid well in advance, I would go. I love bicycles, 3 Speeds in particular, and I reasoned that a little adventure might give me a healthy new perspective. When the time came, I headed west. I slept in my van for two nights. On the second night, I was in the parking lot of a grocery store where I knew I wanted to stay over. I went inside to get food, and saw that liquor was also an option. I watched myself in slow motion as I purchased a fifth of vodka. I continued to observe myself as I poured dribbles and then drinks into a styrofoam cup with bad soda. It was awesome. I felt a bit aloof at times, but the 3 Speed Tour was a great experience, and I met people who I like very much. Happily, the 3 Speed Tour includes way more drinking than I would have ever assumed.

Time passed. Wellbeing teased me all summer, often visible, yet evading my grasp.

I was hanging out with Shelly last week. When it comes to getting basic tasks done, Shelly is my opposite. She seems to hum along confidently with a constant and steady aplomb. Shelly has had a profound influence on my life, as I have on hers, I would humbly hope I may claim. We went for a short walk in the woods while we talked and joked and caught up. On the way back, we stopped for small coffees. Then Shelly stood up abruptly and said "Come on, dude, let's get you signed up for health insurance." And so we did. Minor mental stumbling blocks were gently set aside. Beginning in January, I will have access to Adderall and perhaps talk therapy if I can figure out where to be geographically situated for a useful period of time.

I have two ten-packs of Modafinil left. I have a lot of loose ends to tie up before I go south for the winter. I had been paralyzed for weeks, unable to conquer the most basic of tasks. I couldn't move the ball forward even an inch. Knowing that help is on the horizon, I took a Modafinil pill. I was reminded of the story that I had read many years ago about William M. Gaines trying on spectacles for the first time. The effect of introducing a stimulant to my central nervous system is no less profound. The trees have leaves at the top, not fuzz. The battle will continue, but for the first time in almost a year, I mastered tasks, and then felt like I'd won the day.

Thursday, December 6, 2018

I am a botfly.

I am a botfly. We are a parasitic swarm. We multiply. When I was born I might have been anything I wanted. I believe now that choice is an illusion. Every thought and action only serves to perpetuate the status quo.

When I was growing up I believed myself to be a human. Only through the use of drugs and alcohol have I become self aware. For all the good it did, I have thought a lot about this. My life is essentially valueless, and it is not in my nature to change that. Being that I formerly believed myself human, this first felt like an enormous downgrade of status. I have recovered from my initial depression, and my mission now is acceptance. I accept that our life is to seek a host and propagate. I relinquish all claim to lofty human fantasies of control.

I have known the truth about myself for years. My post-human reality still feels unsettling, but I will no longer try to escape it with mental gymnastics. We are going to take over the earth. This conclusion is a simple matter of science. I am not in charge. Ecosystems will be irreparably altered. I no longer take responsibility for that. It is not in my nature to notice or care. Pain and remorse are a selfish reflex. Emotions are a genetically selected trait to keep our species on course.

I still appreciate humor. What is more ironic than a bumper sticker with a slogan declaring care for Mother Earth? If the exhaust from our vehicles would wipe us out tomorrow, it would be a happy hastening of the inevitable. It is a mistake to think in terms of time, but almost impossible to shut off the instinct. Don't become confused and believe we can stop this. We are gone. We are paste. Shrug now if you agree.

I am a botfly. Maybe you are still a human. Personal examination might reveal a different truth, but just as likely not. Truth does not require our awareness. My first reaction was horror and disappointment. Now I have simply fallen in line. A more comfortable path might be to think less. To this end, I am listening to more of the radio, and watching more of the TV. I drive cars to buy meat, and I am careful to treat money as more than just a concept. You can do that to. Becoming one of us is reasonably comfortable and numb. It is the easiest thing to do.

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

I hope we will always be close.

Hello Journal. (Hi future chrisharne),

I am back visiting reality today. I might stick around for awhile, it's always hard to tell. I hope I make more time to write to you. I miss you. You have been a major help to me, and I am grateful for the record which you provide. But I know that others read you as well sometimes. I want to be an open and honest person - especially when sharing is hard. I tell myself that the difficult entries hold the most value.

I am not concerned for my own privacy, but I am bound by honor to protect the privacy of others. When I began to share my secrets with you, Journal, I knew that this would become a problem. When you were a notebook, there were no ethical decisions to navigate.

I am not a real writer. I am not ready to be one yet. I am a human who has been writing to a journal since the first day they could construct a sentence. There have been lapses over the years. I go away sometimes. That doesn't mean I don't love you. I'm not sure where I've been, and I don't know when I will see you again. It feels wonderful to talk to you again. I hope we will always be close.

Monday, October 22, 2018

Then what

Our mind.
Theirs or ours.
Mine and theirs.
Mine vs. it.

Saturday, October 20, 2018

No better clue.

We shouldn't watch television anymore. The nature of reality is obscured on there. I am designing a squat box to be assembled in a remote area. Any spot. By "squat box" I am describing a structure to be lived in. But also feel free to flatten your screens. And by "flatten" I mean "hit with a hammer." Actually, "kill your TV" stickers have been around since at least the early 90's. It's a damn sight more salient now of a statement.

The houses I'm designing can be built with junk out of a dumpster. A short cutoff rectangular honeycomb of 2x4s; easily procured. These walls can be pre-assembled, and stacked in a minivan for transport. You can live in these walls forever, sans screens. [i desperately need help/this is not a test]

I will make one variation for the desert, and one version for the mountains. I am personally constructing the desert model, but the plans will be basically the same for colder climates. The main difference is with windows and insulation.

The dimensions are 16 feet by 16 feet. If that isn't enough, then your brain is an oyster, and your skull is full of disgusting stuff which somebody braver might presently crack out and eat.

You have to communicate with me if we are going to stick together

Comment with "1" if you are currently satisfied. If you are in touch with what you believe to be reality, type "1" in the comments.

Comment with "2" if you suspect that you are also on the reverse side of the curtain. If the absurdity is making you feel uncomfortable more than half of the time, type "2" in the comments.

If you feel inclined to comment with "3" then feel free to do so. I have no better clue than anybody.

Monday, October 15, 2018

The Way We All Are. (Speaking personally)

She palmed the window insistently. She banged her hand on the glass of the passenger side of my old green van. I was in the passenger seat, Shelly was driving, and all of Mini Band and friends were inhabiting the van. My old band, my old van, years ago.

She had a short gold dress and impractical heels. She needed to get in, and there was no appropriate space. I opened the door, and offered her my hand. I helped her up, and she positioned herself atop my lap, or more so toward my right thigh, leaning in. Safe. I am the safest person on earth.

Some man was chasing her and threatening to hurt her. Our new friend was a skinny lady of color thanking Mini Band for aiding her quick escape. Let me ask. Is it important that she was black? We were all white kids in that long green van. U.S.A. folks still feel compelled in our writing to mention race. It still does matter. It still is a different painted portrait, and my brush is only so precise. Concise. I love you.

We didn't need to go far. We altered our course toward her safe haven.

I think about this lady who we met. As a human mind I am pure and pouring with empathy; saturated in privilege and bleach. If I have learned anything it is that I know less as I get older. Approaching 36 gladly I am left to wonder as always before if it is mushrooms after mushrooms that have opened my mind. I doubt so. However I believe it was with assistance that I have been able to embrace science and the vastness of the universe, and the desert's own view of the stars.

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Establish new healthy routines.

Establish new healthy routines. Get divorce finalized on Tuesday. Hang out with my ex, and get that paperwork stuff done. Hang out afterward maybe, or maybe just give her some weed. Reduce drinking. Going to Georgia at the end of the month. Taking Megabus and turning 36 down there. Still riding bicycles and making money ok.