Archive for May, 1997

letter followup

If you read my last message to my friend, ambulance you might have noticed several concepts from the honors program in the discussions that we have been having. This bother me for a long time and to some extent it still does. I feel as though I am accepting these ideas without properly internalizing them and I am wary of constructing a false platform to build my life on. For now though, I am trying to see these ideas in the world around me, and I am meeting with some success. For now I will use them, but try to be mindful.

-Will

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letter to a friend turned journal

This is a letter that I wrote to a friend of mine tonight, it ended up being a journal of sorts, so here it is.


L,

Hello, it has been about a week since I last talked to you and you come to mind occasionally. When thinking about you (when thinking in general in fact,) I usually look at the largest picture that I can. It is not really something that I try to do, it is simply how I operate. I am comparing our interaction now and comparing it to how we interacted before, and how those interactions affect me. I feel that I am reacting differently than before.

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repercussions

Work has been bothering me as of late. I had hoped to work through the summer and make enough to buy my youngest brother a computer. Between the fact that I am not being paid what they said when they interviewed me and that my foreman doesn’t often let us get a 40 hour week in; it just seems that there is no way for me to reach my goal and there is very little that I can do about it. I have though about getting another job or changing the one that I have. I like the one that I have though, it offers me an opportunity to work with nice people and learn new things. I guess that so long as there are avenues that I have not explored and that I see as possibilities then I do not have much room to complain. I keep thinking about it and when I do my frustration shows itself. Ah well…

I’m just trying to figure out if I should try to save for the computer or if I should just use my money for little expenses now and save for some cash for school. The latter is most certainly the easier of the choices and it is not a bad thing, but Brett is the smartest and the most dedicated of the Holcomb boys and I have hope for what he could do with good equipment. He used to create “Doom” levels a few years ago and they were really good. I just wish that he had a few more possibilities than I did (old man me). Really, it is as much that he has so much potential, but always seems to get pushed out if the way.

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the life o' will

I’m going to tell a story that will eventually have something to do with anything, that time is a little way off, but I hope that it will come. I often have difficulty completing long projects; I find other things that interest me more and I let them fall by the wayside, but I hope that this one will be different.

-Will

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To begin at the beginning… I think that I first heard of her when my worst enemy turned best friend (see Autobiography), CJB, hitherto referred to as “Cam,” went out with a girl and had a falling out with her. Falling out would be putting it lightly; as I recall, they went out for a single date, after which, he was rejected. Subsequent time found young Cam hearing the rumor of this young girls supposed homosexuality and using this rumor to do a good bit of damage. This was of little consequence to me other than I was bothered to be part of a destruction similar to the one that I myself underwent only perhaps four years earlier. I did not know the young lady in question and I was myself just emerging from my self imposed exile and did not have the confidence to rock the boat.

Later, my senior year at Tennessee High School in Mrs. Dickerson’s AP Biology II class I found myself seated in front of her; one Lindsay Nicole Sproles. I found that she did not have horns, a goatee, nor did she appear to be at first glance an incarnation of Satan. Time passed and we came to do a variety of things together. With her, I attempted to destroy the embryos of mice (unsuccessfully, the mice, part of a final project on FAS (fetal alcohol syndrome) consumed their young immediately after birth, so we never found out if we were successful,) created a good portion of the THS yearbook, and I discovered extensively for the first time my love of playing the fool (literally.)

It came to be the end of the year and prom time came rolling around. That is a story in itself, but, in short, my friend, Jonathan Steven Bearett, was involved in a relationship that I felt was unhealthy for him in that his girlfriend wasn’t letting him be friend with “unacceptable” people, one of whom was myself.

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My running partner is here and I am off to tackle South Holston Dam (this is a stupid thing to do for those who wonder, but you are only young once right?) I’ll have to write some more, wish me luck. Bye!

-Will

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         "Real love says, 'You're having problems. I care, and I'll listen,
       		but I won't and can't do it for you.'
	  Real friendship says, 'I think so highly of you that I'll let you
		figure out how to do it for yourself. I know you can.'"
				-Melody Beattie "Codependent No More"
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check

I want to check part of my last statement. It does bother me some to work. Today I was really able to get into it and I felt that I did a good job even though all that I did was caulk around pipes.

Most of the time if I feel like I did a good job then it does not really matter what exactly I did. Most of the time.

I have doubts about the importance of anything that I do, rx I realize the reprocussions to an extent, clinic and that in a manner I am changing the world, pills but I think “what does it matter?” I am not sure that any future is any better than any other, but that needs more thought. But it does bother me that working takes up so much of my time.

I am reminded of that touchstone that talks about accepting choices for one thing meaning not being able to do other things.

I like to write and to read and to be outside and to be with my friends; and working takes up so much of my time and worse than that it takes my concentration and my energy. When I get home I have things that I would like to do, but I feel to drained to do them. I have been going to bed at 11:00 or earlier, but I am still tired. It is a difficult dilemma.

-Will

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stuff, don't 'cha know

I have been thinking about the zen of work. I have all of this time when my brain just sits there. It gets anxious and I have to let it do something. I have thought about the reprocussions of my work and I am not so sure that I am doing anyone a favor. I can see that my work helps others and I do not have a problem grasping that, but I also see the system that I am propogating and the work that it might be better for me to be doing. I don’t think that either one should be ignored.

What is bothering me is not myself, I am learning so many things. The experiences that I am having are valuable enough for me, as well as the challenges that I get to face. What bothers me is the people that I work with. The lives that they live, and the lives that they must live in order for the world to work, tear me up inside. I cannot see why they do it; I cannot see how they stand it.

They, who never consider the zen of work, are the ones that make me rebel from this. I keep thinking of who these men are. I like them, they are good people, and yet they have not chosen to be here.

When I look at the type of job that I am doing these are not people who ever choose to be here. I am with them and they accept that they are in some ways less than everybody else. It is not the pay or how they talk or even their motivations that bother me, it is that no-one chooses to do this. If you work the hard labor it is because you had too. There are so many values to be found in this work, and yet no-one seems to see it.

I feel like I am beating my head against the church door again. Facing problems that are too big for me even to grasp, let alone tackle.

-Will

P.S. I am going to write about sleep, I just keep having other things to write about when I sit down, or I can’t make it make sense. Soon.

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more typing

Hello, abortion I am working on taking the loading out of my writing and making it more analytical. This is something that I am trying to do rather unsucessfully, sale but I guess I start somewhere. The following is such an attempt, cialis it is choppy, but a beginning.

Nuh Mah Stay Will J.

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5-14-97

Theory:

Within a primary society, divisions can be made to seperate it into subcultures. These subcultures affect each other by direct influence, but the members of each society tend to remain confined to the culture that they are socialized to. They remain a part of their subculture for a variety of reasons, primary among these is a general trend for a society to encapsulate itself and form a sustaining system with a general distaste for that which is different from itself. Also, economic and education differences tend to divide the subcultures.

Basis:

I am working with classic “rednecks.” These men all share general trends so far as interests, hygeine, education, life expectations, emotional maturity, and many other defining characteristics. Within the general mold there is a great variety of form, but it is not extremely marked. I am still learning the specifics, but the homogenity is remarkable. People talk about sex and cars and body odors, it is very different from the background that I have hwhere such talk is “base” while here talk of books or emotions is “stuck up” or “pussy;” I take this as an example of how different groups become sustaining unto themselves and alienate other groups.

Also, the acccepted domains of discourse and communication differ from the ones that I am accoustomed to. The style of communication is narrative form rather than discussion. Men will tell their stories and others listen, I have as of yet to see a debate or discussion. Considering possible explanations for this the fact that we are in a more rigid power structure with foreman and varying experience levels of workers might discourage discussion which tends to blur authority lines. Also, the education level is fairly low for the group as a whole, though I have noticed indications of high intelligence in some of them, the average schooling level is around ninth grade.

Ramifications:

Seeing just how much people are different in the core of their values and also how much homogenity form within groups, it has given me a new perspective on my own thought and just how easily someone could take my place and write these exact same things. I am still considering the ramifications of this. The individual in me does not particularly like the idea that I have yet agin found another way to remove his freewill, but he is getting quieter as time passes. For now I am content to learn and suspend action until I feel like I have a clue. There are many other things for me to occupy myself with in the meantime.

This has also brought me back to the concept of judgement of others. I have been considering the value of stereotypes which, as a wise man once said (;), “can provide a great deal of valuable information.” I am trying to value both the cost and the importance of this information which is no easy task. One of the fundamental questions that must be answered before the question can be considered is “What is the purpose of interpersonal relationships?” which is eventuaully tied into the meaning of existences and soon moves into the current domain of the unknown. I can certainly see the possibilities for group manipulation, but such things seem to be ringing rather hollow as of late. Certainly attachment to stereotypes would be a negative concept from where I stand, but to have malleable ones would allow me to better interact with others in a way that makes them comfortable, and so long as I am truthful with myself about my needs then I see that this as a positive usage.

Addendum:

I realize that my relationship to my job has definite effects on how I see it and how I interact with it. It is a very complex system to consider given my subjectivity as an observer, but a valuable experience.

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Year In Review **Warning**

**Be careful, this ended up having very little to do with the last year in the usual narrative sense. It is still pertinent, but a little messy, read with caution. =) **

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Where to begin…

It seems as though as my life passes away it runs underneath a giant roller about a week behind me. It is crushed and for the most part wiped from the field of memory. I do not have true memories of my good times or bad times, just stories that I have written in my mind that seem to be true. The stories are empty; there is no real pleasure or pain in them. Such is the last year. There are a few chunks that were not completely destroyed, but they have no meaning.

I remember when I first got here that I was excited and frightened. Over my final year in high school I had begun to climb out of the dark morass that was my experience of the world and I thought that I could hold it off here. Back home I had people who have come to rely on me, but I cannot recall how I ever became involved with them. I felt like if I could break through the surface and begin to develop some relationships with people, then I could hold my own. The problem is always in the breaking through. I do not like to impose on people and I don’t trust my ability to see whether or not I am enough to push the boundaries of a relationship deeper. I feel almost like a turtle sometimes; I can come out and bask in the sun if I want to, but I am not willing to do so if I don’t feel welcome. I just cut the feelings off and don’t feel them. I hate doing it, but I hate using people as well, or at the least causing pain through my selfishness.

I have been cleaning out my e-mail here at the end and I can still see many things there. I have everything. Its like in my room, I am the ultimate packrat, I don’t exactly dislike throwing things away, but I will not do so without a really good reason. I am not talking about important things, I am talking about food containers and trash. I like to hold onto little things that remind me of the past.

Yes, I do realize that I am off topic, I’m going back now. It all seems like it is chunks in a pot. Things three weeks ago feel as old as things last year. It is nearly impossible for me to saw that this person was here for this and this person was here for that. It all feels like Will, there is no feeling of progression or flow. I do not feel static though, unless my permanence is in weakness, I do not feel like I am a strong person or that I have any values that I stand by. I just do whatever I feel like at the time, and even more than that I can’t think of anything that ‘rouses strong enough feelings in me to warrant working for.

Topic, what topic… For a while I felt like I could dedicate myself to the becoming a better person, serving God, striving for a more complete personality, integrated whole, enlightenment, whatever… I don’t see why anymore. I don’t feel like I am getting anywhere at the moment and I can’t recall any things that have really changed in the core of Will that exists under all of the moods and attitudes and ideas and lies. I do not understand why I want to get to know this guy? This I have been fighting for a while; if I could get a life of pleasure and satisfaction of some sort at the price of my depth, would I take it? I don’t have any good reason why not; I don’t feel like the decision makes the least it of difference to anyone but myself and I must say that I don’t find the life that I have all that enjoyable anyway. It seems like all the satisfaction that I find now is stolen in brief moments of delusion and deception. When I look at the world with my “real” eyes it just hurts my heart. I think that I want to be whole or at least not realize that I am not, that is the only end that I desire, screw the journey.

I dealt this year more and more with separation. First it was more on the outside with simply talking to people and gradually it moved inward. I would get a little further in and then that wouldn’t be enough anymore. I found that I was covering over large quantities of pain (surprise, surprise) because I did not want to burden other people with it and risk becoming unattractive. I like to laugh and I like to see other people laugh and smile, but eventually I hated seeing the happiness on other’s faces. I wanted to scream out that I hated it all, but I still can’t figure out what exactly it is. I feel like I always exist on the outsides of groups. In the ranks of friends there are friends and there are people who you cherish. I feel like I am always out a little bit from the center, the second degree of separation as it likes to be called. I have some people who I feel like I can talk to, but much of the time it feels like talking about love to a ten year old. Sure you know what the word love means, but the idea is so less than it is over here. I try to find the words at those times to convey my darkest heart, but if they exist I cannot find them. I can’t look at a caring face when I am trying to do this. “Yes I understand; I know the feeling””If you even think about this feeling it washes over you and fills you choking you. If you feel this feeling then you cannot look at me with those caring eyes; if you feel this feeling then you should be throwing up.” It feels so cheap. Just for a moment I would like to swap and know if it is the same, because I cannot think of any other way to know.

I think that I will be wrapping this up now. If I clench my teeth any longer, then I think that they are going to break. 96-97 wasn’t horrible or awful; I would do it much the same if given the choice, there are much jollier things that I have to write about like sex and religion and responsibility, but my hearts not in it right now, so I think I will leave them for another day.

-Will

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	 "I do not know myself, and God forbid that I should."
			- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
	 "Man is but a reed, the weakest thing in nature,
	   but he is a thinking reed."
			- Blaise Pascal
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