Surprise! An update!

So.  I’ve been off the blogging grid for a while for two reasons.

The real reason is that I have recently moved to Chicago for school and, as such, have been busy with packing, and saying goodbye to all of the Minnesotans that I’m going to miss, looking for a place to live, unpacking, and getting settled in my new apartment.  The mostly pretend reason is that wordpress is super cool and they decided that because my blog is obviously spam, they ought to shut it down for a little while to teach me a lesson.

I phrased my disbelief like this:

“you seem to be under the impression that my personal blog is spam of some sort.

it isn’t, as i am sure you will be able to tell by looking at it.  i have no idea what gave you that impression, but i would appreciate it if you would reactivate my blog so i can use it again.”

They expressed their most sincere apologies like this:

“Hi,

Your site was flagged by our automated anti-spam controls. I have reviewed your site and have removed the suspension notice.

We are very sorry for that happening and the inconvenience it caused you.”

And now I have my blog again.  Hooray!

So now I am sitting in a coffeeshop and trying to catch up on…everything.  I need to subscribe to fewer blogs.  I am activating various accounts that will hopefully find work for me and applying to work at chains (because that way you can apply at four different locations at ONCE, which is killing multiple birds with singular stones in the best way possible.)  I’m trying to get all of my various accounts in order for school and trying to figure out how in the hell I am going to be able to afford tuition and living expenses.  It looks a little bit impossible from where I am sitting.  I am also trying to find out where I can buy a bike for cheap and…you don’t need a copy of my to-do list, but let’s suffice it to say that I have more than enough silly little tasks to keep me busy before school starts on Thursday.

Thursday is soon.

In less stressed out news, I am registered for classes and I have an apartment.  The apartment is amazing.  It’s in a neighborhood full of children (and two really yappy dogs, but that is the only bad thing I’ve noticed.)  We only have to pay for electricity AND we have free laundry.  Also, our property manager is a super nice guy and is already doing and offering us a lot of favors, which is awesome and makes the house feel a bit more like a home.  There was a brief snag, wherein one of the roommates decided that she wasn’t cut out for Shimer, after all, and left, but we have replaced her with relative ease and we’re feeling good about that.  Hoo-rah.

I can already tell that my life is going to be a lot different here, but hopefully in a good way.  It’ll be a new experience to live in an apartment with two girls I don’t know yet, and I’m looking forward to that.  I’m going to overwhelm myself with classes (I’m trying to convince them to let me take Latin on top of my full course load because I REALLY love Latin), and get a job or two to pay for next semester’s tuition (hopefully…why is school so expensive?), and bike my ass off all the time and apply for scholarships left and right in the hope that maybe some of the money that I make at my jobs will be able to go to other feeble desires like food and rent and concerts and Baileys.

Come visit me.  I got the big room and the floor space is begging for visitors.

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Sincerity ≠ Truth

Fair warning…this blog entry is me thinking on paper(ish, because it’s on the internet so it’s not really paper, is it?), so it is probably written more for me than it is for you.  If it interests you, great…but it is far from cohesive and it doesn’t resolve.

Night is the worst time to have a deep conversation with someone if you want to keep a secret.

We walked down the sidewalk, and occasionally slapped bugs off our arms and faces.  He forced words out of his mouth, overly conscious of the order and content of every sentence and thought that he arranged and offered to the conversation.

The night sky, devoid of stars and accented mildly by the lamp posts glowing above us, observed passively.

I mostly listened.  Every once in a while I opened my mouth to say a few words, but torrents of them gushed out instead.  Ideas exploded into sentences that careened recklessly into the blackened sky, exposing things that hadn’t been secrets until moments prior, because how can something be a secret if it has never been thought before?

Raw and exposed, hurt and joy greeted us and explained themselves with the utmost sincerity, only to contradict themselves with equal sincerity minutes later.

Because sincerity ≠ truth.

Even with the exception of those who fool themselves or are brainwashed into believing that something is true when it is not, I would argue that sometimes the things that we say with the most sincerity are the least true.

Or this quirk could be unique to me.  Allow me to explain…

I am fond of saying that I always tell the truth, but I lie all the time.

Bear with me, I know the above sounds obtuse at its best and arrogant at its worst, but I think it’s true.  Furthermore, I think I have finally figured out a way to express the juxtaposition of truth and untruth more clearly and that is by replacing the idea of truth with sincerity and the idea of lies with truth.  Behold!  The same statement, revised:

I am sincere in everything that I say, but I have a very hard time telling the Truth.

It is possible (read likely) that I find this an issue because I have a fixation with truth as an absolute term, even when I am applying it to life and self in a finite sense.  In other words, Truth, if it is true, should always be true.

A person is either guilty or not guilty.  There may be mitigating circumstances that should be investigated regarding the individual’s intent and subsequent punishment (or lack thereof), but an action was either taken or it wasn’t.  The problem is that many things can be true at once and often those  truths seem to contradict one another, when in reality they simply coexist in a state of qausi-peace.

It drives me crazy because I feel the sincerity of both (or all) my truths as they tumble outward in speech or rattle around inside as thoughts.  I think their discord.

It is through subsequent application of logic or thought-quilting (trying to put all thoughts in the order in which they make the most sense as a whole…I told you, this entry is more for me than you and metaphors help me think) that I realize that the ineffable joy that I felt in the spring of 2008 when I walked alone in the dark does not match or make sense at all alongside the surging depression that was painfully present at the exact same time.  The reasons I invent for both of those, now that they are gone are frivolous and almost definitely wrong, which makes it all the more difficult to reconcile how two opposites can be concurrently true.

The above is probably a bad example because it has to do with emotions and even I can admit that emotions are rarely, if ever, absolutes, but it was the easiest to explain without having to launch into several conflicting stories and simply assuring the reader (who might just be myself, at this point) that despite their seeming opposition, they actually coexist quite peacefully when they are not forced under the bright lights of my confused examinations.

The principle remains, though.

I can deeply feel the resonating of truth in every word that I say about myself, my ideas, my life (because things pertaining to me are the only things over which I could dream to have the authority of truth), but they often conflict and it weirds me out.

I am sincere in everything that I say, but I have a very hard time telling the Truth.

I always tell the truth, but I lie all the time.

And because I have already told you that this blog is for me, not you, I’m not even going to bother checking it for errors and cohesion.  Heya!

Old Writings

Yesterday I spent a lot of time looking through things that I wrote once upon a time (ie quite a while ago).  I would like to share a few of them with you.

Exhibit A:  An exaggerated and generalized application letter, written out of frustration, of course.

To Whom It May Concern

I am writing to tell you that despite what other application essays may suggest, I am the person most deserving of your award.

There are dreams and goals that I would like to achieve and without your help they become that much more difficult to actualize.

I have passions and loves that drive me to achieve and sometimes drive me into the ground, but I care so much about them that I relish my time in the dirt because I know my passion is what put me there.

My life has been touched my grief and tragedy and although some people have it worse, there are those that

(the rest of the paper is ripped up)

Exhibit B:  A bit of poetry I wrote about writer’s block.

Fuck.
The words don’t move.
Sentences
Images
Letters
Spacing
All of it looks
Feels and
Sounds
Contrived
What happened to
  words that fell into
one another like a child
into arms that it trusts?
What happened to the ideas
that spouted out of nowhere
into full bloom like
fast-forwarded roses.
My words stutter
My ideas shy away
My stories trip over their
own     shoelaces
And my poetry gives up
before it gives itself a real
chance at life.
Where is that clarity and sense
of purpose that once crowded
my mind?
The aspirations, ideas and plans
that drove me to try and succeed.
THIS IS DISGUSTING

Exhibit C:  A short descriptive.

Clocks ticked and calendars turned relentlessly.  The depth in his eyes disappeared, shallowing as he had to come to grips with what everyone around him called “reality”.  He was told to appreciate what he had and found himself being forced to regulate his being, his essence, with standards that the world had already set for him.  A sense of apathy began to seep through his skin, a result of fear and peers’ standards and other things this boy did not quite understand.

Exhibit D:  A short philosophical musing entitled “On Existence” that I think I wrote in early middle school.

No one can exist if they deny themselves.  Only by forging a unique personality is a person born.  Physical birth is nothing.  It means nothing.  The vast majority of humanity does not exist because they have not created themselves.  People are continually killing themselves and those around them by “forcing” everyone to conform to their (being society) own standards and values.  People do not exist if they do not believe in how they’re living.  If a person has to think about an action before they go through with it it is not theirs and, therefore, is another proof of their inexistence.

Exhibit E:  A rather emo poem.

Misery is lonely rejection.
When there is no one to share
The subtle sting of being turned down,
Turned back, turned away.
Each refusal burns that much more violently
When there is no one to whom
I can turn to
With a commiserating smile.

Exhibit F:  A post-Africa rant.

I sound exactly the same as all the rest of them.  Everyone else who has already been to Africa put their words in my mouth and I spit them out in defiance but I must have picked them up, dusted them off and swallowed them again so I would have some way to respond to questions other than “I don’t know” or “It’s so complicated.”  Instead, now, I laud the intelligence, emotional fortitude and cuteness of the people I met.  I tell silly stories about people shouting “muzngu” as we walk by and how kids pet our hands and arms or touch our hair because they want to know if it feels any different than their own.

It feels like copping out, selling out, however you want to put it.  In trying to finally express my trip to people who need or want to hear about it I have lapsed into cliches that feel every bit as dishonest as they sound.  If only I could help people understand the DEPTH, the MAGNITUDE of my trip to Africa.  But instead I let other people’s hollow, disgusting words fill the air around us and masquerade jovially as my own thoughts and ideas.

Alright, that’s enough comedy for one day.