Saturday, December 29, 2007

Just Thoughts

I feel like talking about a few random things--inconsequential things that have been on my mind for one reason or another.

1. for the past month or so, I haven't been sleeping very well. I wake up constantly. This somehow has the effect of feeling like I'm sleeping for countless hours, because when I happen to check the time between stints of sleep I find only a few minutes have past, but I was certain that it had been a couple of hours... This gives me a rush of joy that translates into something along the lines of 'oh boy! it's still only 2AM, that means I have SEVERAL hours left to sleep!' The fact is that I feel worse in the morning because I didn't get any good rest, just a lot of sleeping.
Now, on to the next item, which is somewhat related to the first.

2. For the past couple of weeks I have awakened to the image of a caped hunchback wearing a tan hat ( the kind the high rollers in Vegas wear... a trilby?) Honestly it has scared the crap out of me a couple of times now. The is a hat hanging on the doorway of a closet, which I hung a curtain over( = black cape). It usually occurs to me that I should change the angle or the location of the hat, or fix the curtain so that it doesn't look crooked in an arm beneath it. But during my hours of consciousness it just seems so asinine to do, it's kind of like degrading myself. giving myself a tour of the room to look for monsters so that I can sleep better at night. I think I should just clean my room and "happen" to straighten those things up in the process. that's a bite-sized solution to sidestepping my pride so as to settle my nerves when I wake up in the dead of night.

3. I need to clean my room. I've been pretty good about keeping it clean up until.... oh about the same time I decided not to trim my beard anymore (note to self: investigate possible correlation between these two "coincidental" points of time.) Anyway, I need to clean my room, It's not really bad. it's just that I've decided that I need a dresser, and I've been meaning to go pick one up. I don't see a point in doing all of my laundry unless I have somewhere to put it, so I've been doing single loads every couple of days to get by until I get around to putting "RC Willey" on my (figurative) calender.

4. I have investigated the correlation between the fact that my face is as unkempt as my room. I feel that it may be subconscious pessimism. I don't really get out much, don't really have a desire to impress anyone. I could clean my room for myself, but I wouldn't change my mind about myself when I observed that "wow, he keeps his place picked up very well." because I would, in essence, become a visitor to my own little world. And we have all been in the shoes of the guest who is all too aware that the host went out of his way to make things look nice, operating on the idea that he's keeping up appearances by having a clean house.. but really he's not fooling anyone but himself. And since I like to consider myself a pretty sharp kid, I don't want to insult my intelligence by trying to pull a quick one on me. that explains the crap on my floor. as for the muskrat on my face... I think I've come to the conclusion that it's an outward manifestation of the fact that I'm taking some time to be myself. I've been operating on the mentality of considering the outcome of every behavior before I decide how I will proceed. I consider the effect on everyone around me and that affects my choices. I'm trying this new thing were I do what I think is best, and then observe the effects. no a priori judgments. The effects so far have been either pointless or negative, but I'm determined to get to a point where I make my choices based on the effect they have on me, and still have it be the right choice. This will probably lose me a couple of friends, at least in the short term, but in the end I hope to better myself (as a person who operates on true consideration, and not only the consideration of what is socially acceptable or not.) and thereby become the friend I really (truly) WANT to be, and not just a manifestation of my interpretation of what a friend SHOULD be. In growing out my beard, I may very well be saying "I don't care if you think it's awful, I wont shave it until I think it is."

5. Number 5: The Paradox. This is where I convey the introspective results of my current mentality on "being myself"... in case you are wondering, that last paragraph was me taking a deeper look at a result of my mentality. Now I'm going to take a deeper look at the mentality itself.

I'm selfish.

wow, that was easy. I have realized lately that I am the single most inconsiderate person I know, hence my goal to change. but even in my new approach I have a distinct ping of disregard for others, this is what the pros call a "catch 22". I used to think of myself as one of the most caring people in the world. I scared myself (and continue to do so, sometimes) with how much I care. So now as I recognize the inconsistency in my behavior-this extreme juxtaposition- I have to wonder if I'm not just the most selfish person who is in denial. or, maybe the other way around. What makes me look at this so hard is the fact that I'm willing to go the long way around on this, and that it seems like a good idea to me. If I were truly inclined to consider others, I don't think I would have the heart to put that trait on the shelf and plow through with a callus disregard for my friends.

I'm really confusing myself. Here I thought I was going to learn something about myself and share it with you but really I'm just chasing my tail. I give up.

Monday, December 24, 2007

I've been riding a wave of negativity

for the past couple of weeks, I've been feeling really negative about things. Mostly I've been stressing over things that are out of my hands, things that I can't control. It's been wearing me down.

my devout readers probably already know that I wear my stress in my back. If I get stressed my back tightens up and and my whole body sits differently. If I'm in a stressful situation the first thing I notice about myself (okay, maybe I breathe differently first) is that my neck starts hurting and my lower back burns. Then I get really irritable.

but this time it was that stress that gradually sets in, the residue of not taking time out, time off or just plain take my time. It's the pernicious little bugger that eventually gets me in a slump of depression. It's a pattern of which I am aware, but only too late when I'm in the back half of the cycle.
one thing. things are different this time around.

I have been expecting to slip into the slump for a couple of days and I have been pretty resolved that I would do the whole autopilot coping thing that I do, kinda like an astronaut sleep, stare at a computer, read, maybe work out.

what happened tonight (which was supposed to be TDC on the compression stroke) instead of a spark, ensuing combustion of my motivation, and sequential exhaust stroke, what I got was more along the lines of a two stroke engine.

All of the sudden I wasn't feeling down, I was actually hit with a pang of joy (strange sensation = strange wording) and I suddenly was able to let go of that stress without the bout of depression. I know things aren't great, but I can be okay with that because I have this faith that I have it pretty good in all.
I decided not to wallow in my misery and misfortune and look for something to be happy about. I know it's possible, it's just a matter of effort, which I am fully willing to invest.

thanks for reading. I know this isn't my most articulate or entertaining posts.. I'm shucking the tawdry approach for sincerity I really just feel good right now and I don't want to rack my brain trying to be verbose.

Have a Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 5, 2007


As a child I wet the bed. Great, now the world knows.

I was just laying in bed with my cell phone some where between the sheets with me when I suddenly had a flashback of being strangled in my sleep. This isn't why I started wetting the bed, but rather a side effect of that. I never knew why I wet the bed, I guess I was just a really heavy sleeper. But I grew out of it...eventually.

I used to wake up every morning with a dreadful feeling... being stuck to my bed with wet sheets and blankets. I honestly went to bed every night resolved to awaken dry and triumphant. but somewhere in between dusk and dawn, I lost track of that.

My parents tried to beat it out of me. I got spanked every morning that I wet the bed. When I was about 6, My mom (being the JC penny catalog bargain-shopper that she was) bought a revolutionary contraption that would cure me of my narcohydrodisposition (enuresis), It was called The Buzzer.

The buzzer came in a kit with about 6 cotton sleeves and Velcro shoulder pads. The sleeves were sewn to the front side of my dainties(mostly consisting of Mickey Mouse, a previous attempt to weigh on my good conscience with the instructions "don't wet mickey!") and the moisture sensitive "switch" was tucked therein. this moisture sensor was at the end of an two foot long wire that was to be strung under my sleeper shirt and velcro'd on my shoulder just beneath my ear. when, during the night the sensor was tripped, my slumber was cut to a sudden halt by the unnerving sound of a cicada on my shoulder. If you have never had the displeasure of living in cicada-infested countryside, the sound is not unlike a Buzzer. So similar in fact, that I often got the two confused, especially with the groggy state I found myself in every time it happened . The theory is this, when my incontinence reared its ugly face, I would be awakened to "take care of business". I have never been convinced that this product was actually tested on the narco/hydro variety. Because it was always too late. If my dainties had become sufficiently moistened to activate The Buzzer, then the damage had already been done. New sheets, new blanket, new underwear were all in order.

My parents were convinced that I never arose to "take care of business" when my buzzer went off. The reason being that I was very light footed and never made a sound, I also mastered the art of closing the bathroom door silently, since it was adjacent to my parents bedroom. They too, were awakened by the buzzer, and must have listened to see if I went to the bathroom. But, for fear of their wrath, I was quiet as a mouse when I went. The art of closing the door silently is attained in this way. First, make sure your door doesn't scrape the jamb, this means that it is aligned with the frame all around, and the hinges are screwed in tight. (Obviously I didn't maintain the door, but benefited from it's being the only hollow core door in the house((this is before the kitchen was given a door and padlocked.)) although I did know how to open and close every door in the house silently, it just consisted of applying pressure to the doorknob in various ways and holding the glass pane still so it wouldn't rattle.. but lets get back to the bathroom door.) when opening, hold door knob firmly and press in slightly to take the pressure off of the strike plate, twist knob entirely and pull door open (keep toes clear). Step 2: Close Door - Face door, Holding doorknob in right hand, twist to retract the latch. Apply pressure to the middle part of the door with left hand. Now, with right hand, pull just a small amount harder than your left hand is pressing. the result is a smooth and slow swing of the door. once you have door in closed position slowly release doorknob to allow latch to catch, with practice on any given door, you will be able to do this with complete silence. Step 3 take care of business.

Now, for some reason my parents kept the bedding in a high shelf in the hallway. Sometimes my "accidents" were small enough, or rather I was small enough, that I was able to return to bed and go to sleep on the opposite end as the wetted area and finish "taking care of business" in the morning (after my spanking). But often my incidents were of a magnitude that it required me to brave climbing the shelves in the dark and retrieving fresh linens. I wont go into detail of all that was involved with changing wet sheets in the dark. Suffice it to say that the plastic sheet that enveloped my mattress kept the liquid out quite well.

My parents thought (due to my cat like stealth) that I never got out of bed, but merely pulled the sensor from its sleeve and continued in my dysfunctional sleep pattern (I have already explained that this wasn't the case). And their logic told them that at some point I changed my underwear to trick them that I had not wet the bed. (my logic persuaded me to change into new underwear to be able to sleep). They began keeping tabs on my underwear, literally. My dad took a sharpie marker and put numbers on the labels of my Mickey Mouse undies. They would check to see which pair I was wearing before I retired. "number 7, Okay, goodnight!" my dad would then brush his beard down so as not to poke my nose and give me a goodnight kiss. I would pump up my fists for the nightly "grip test" in which my dad would allow me to test my handshake grip against his. After that, it was off to bed!
And in the morning I would be wearing Undies #5 and my dad would tan my hide.

God, why didn't you just give me a speech impediment?

Anyway, as to the memory of nearly being strangled. that was due to the cord of The Buzzer. it would often come unfastened from it's velcro perch, and, since I toss around in my sleep, become wrapped around my throat and nestled beneath my body. This happened several times each month and the trick was to wake up, not panic and figure out the pattern of my tossing and turning and retrace these motions in order to get out of the tangle. I doubt they are on the market anymore, in fact I bet you could get yourself in big trouble if the right people found out your kid was using one... which would probably be in the aftermath of your child's death.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

All I want for christmas

Until this year I have been on the fence about the commercialization of Christmas. I would rather not spend the money, but it's been worth it to me to make people happy. This year I am about as broke as I have ever been --okay not true, but I have a foggy new path I'm taking and money has been a huge stress factor for me lately. I have been looking for quality in things that don't cost money. And it really hit me that people overlook those things this time of year more than any other, when they should really matter.

I have been thinking, watching people. I wonder if commercialism isn't just an effect of a bigger problem. Our society's answer to not being comfortable with "family time". It's a lame attempt to show love. Even our relationships can be maintained with money. People neglect each other year round and expect to make up for it at the end by buying the next hot item from Apple or Dell, or Playskool, Mattel (BTW, please don't buy your kids anything from Mattel.) I really wish I could say that I'm not one of those who neglects the people in my life, But I'll admit it. I'm not as comfortable with being emotional as I am with dumping a paycheck into "Santa's Magical Bag". I kind of want to escape Christmas this year, Not just to avoid the expense, but to appreciate the people in my life.

I can't help it. I really want to run away. I can admit that I am not a good friend, I get sick of people really fast. I get sick of places really fast. It's not healthy or high functioning. I've ruined a lot of great opportunities by running. But the urge comes more than I've ever told anyone. It's strongest in the spring. but it comes strong every time the seasons change. and it's always present in my mind. This year I have subdued the urge to blow a paycheck on camping gear and another on gas and just head out for good. The urge is stronger now than it has been all year. even after all the measures I've taken to stay. I've made it really stupid for me to go but it still sounds good to me.

This is what happens.
I'll hear a song, any song about leaving, walking away, drinking or bad weather. (this time, Elton John - Rocket Man) and it depresses me almost like a switch.
From there I can't help myself. I think about it constantly until I do something drastic. Or until my nature to fulfill commitments outweighs my need for a change in scenery, and it blows over. This is usually what happens, but it's a constant cycle.

All I want for Christmas is to be content. Sorry, I don't want to please anyone else this year. Not right now, anyway.