Friday, November 18, 2016

Fire up the mixtape. I don't have the mixtape? I'll just YouTube the songs I can remember. Hope the ads don't spoil the mood.

There's got to be an app that makes writing visible in real-time. I mean, an electronic app for electronic writing. It's already that way in a notebook; scratching out words, adding ideas in the margins, treading multiple paths before backtracking and settling on one.

The Delete Key erases every other possibility. Other paths, really, because those possibilities were actualized for a moment or two. Then deleted, electrons scattered, no trace that I can find again. Not that notebooks are much better. The ones I have sit on my bookshelves, a tiny time machine transporting the person who wrote them further and further away from me.

No late nights. Now I write on work breaks. Flounder for fifteen minutes and then refill my water bottle. Eventually descend into the abstract in the hopes that the meaning will emerge from the brambles later.

My surroundings are too concrete. Too many blank walls. Half-walls. I can see over the top, even climb over them if I have to. So far it hasn't been necessary.

Lost sight of the audience. Only echoes left to argue with, in vain, in vain.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Last night I dreamed I had to perform some complex calculations. I sat at my computer, then sighed. "This thing only knows what I know," I said.

I think I'll have to look into soundproofing the game room. Not proofing, but buffering. Foam on the walls and such. Stop the echoes.

Spatial reasoning.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

To paraphrase Solaris, "That kind of courage would be a sign of cowardice."

It isn't the writing that's difficult; it's the thinking. Going about the day with a running monologue, that "top-level" voice that is kind of my own and kind of not, I guess I should say that voice is what I think I sound like, but suspect I don't. Hearing your own voice on a tape recorder kind of thing.

A writer is the proper cluster of habits, not all of them good for anything else.

Sitting. Schedule. Freedom from distraction. Immersion therapy.

Annual Reviews at work. Why do I dread them so? I hate feeling like I have to justify myself. Can't anyone see the hundreds of hours of effort? Then emerge, shake off, step back. Perhaps nobody knows what they're even looking for and they're hoping these self-evaluations will reveal it. Suppose this is just a measure of how much effort one can put into an otherwise pointless task? Time for a review, dig a hole then fill it back up GO!

Luckily for me, I'm an exceptional employee, above-average, elite, just like everyone else.

Brian Y. sent me an article from Slashdot, I think, about why incompetent people still think they're exceptional. I haven't read it yet. Maybe I'm afraid I'll learn that I'm incompetent. More incompetent, I guess.

I'm pretty good at some stuff. Not very good at all the rest. Not yet anyway.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

We made breakfast burritos at work for Ben's birthday. I was in charge of the potatoes. I cheated, of course, and bought hash browns. Cooked them on the skillet we have in the break room, and once they're crispy I throw them in the pan with the rest of the eggs and chorizo and break them up with the spatula. Then you got soft potato and crispy bits too.

Ben was happy, and I was full. It was good.

Last night I dreamed Lauren and I were watching "Solaris", the 2002 film. The character Kelvin had a short white beard that he did not have in the film in the waking world. I reached through the television and patted his beard. "I guess this movie was made 15 years ago," I said. Lauren flipped around and watched the tv upside down and laughed.

I looked up the film today and saw that my dream-self was off by a year. Pretty close, but still wrong.

Solaris speaks of mirrors. Borges writes of mirrors. I dream of mirrors. What do you see when you look in the mirror? A man? A human? A mirror, I said.

I just see a mirror.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Paying my rent to Leonard Cohen, in dollars and lint.

He speaks of the Tower of Song, the God of Song. I feel his obsession through the plinking piano and tick of the drums. Steady, steady, a river forever flowing to the ocean.

I think it's time to stop working overtime. 8 hours a day, leave at 2:30, pick up the nephews, do my walking and finish in time to visit my mom. That would be good.

On the plus side, I've become much better at Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare multiplayer. Team Deathmatch is all I really play. I was doing pretty poorly before, and it turns out my sensitivity was set way too high. Now I even come in first place a few times a day.

Sleeping and dreaming have become separate things. As if I save all my dreaming for the weekends. Might be for the best. The lingering feelings and impossible puzzles can take up a lot of my processing power. Where I can feel my brain working but I'm not sure what it's working on. Like a noisy upstairs neighbor.

I need the mental equivalent of a broom to knock against the ceiling.