Ok, this is a set of letters, two to be exact. The first is a reply to Wayne to a letter that I sent to L that I sent to him to ask his opinion on how I was doing. The commented letter inside of his letter was originally sent to L. If there is any confusion in reading all of this you can ask and I can probably straighten it out. -Will
From: TTU::TWD "WAYNE DOUGLAS" 23-JUL-1998 11:22:33.65
Subj: RE: you have any comments on this letter?
First of all, I am very happy that you are sharing all this with me. It is very self efficating. I think i used that right… And on top of that you are seriously valuing my opinion. thanks =)
I did pretty good last night, didn’t I? =) I think that it was an enjoyable evening for all. I haven’t ever really tried to orchestrate anything that big or complex before, but I think that it went pretty well. I was lucky though, you all are cool and it would have been hard to mess things up. =)
And I didn’t think too much. =) I think…
P.S. You can be hard to read at times. I think that you could hide stuff if you really wanted. I still wanna know who Big Poppa is, you have piqued my curiosity. =) Are you worried that I’ll think you’re weird or something if you tell me? C’mon, I sit in crowded dance clubs and talk to myself in the company of others, I can nearly guarantee that you’d have to be really really weird for me to think that you were goofy or something.
You are one of the coolest and most interesting people that I know, I don’t think that because of anything that you have told me, I think that because of who you are; giving me weird information about things won’t change my opinion, that’s just what you think, who you are is something that shines through separate from all of that.
You’ll have to excuse me, I have had trouble in the past because most people are very reluctant to share things about themselves because they’re afraid that if they share then I’ll think less of them and it frustrates me because I want them to know that I care about them because of who they are and not the image that they propagate. I just didn’t want you to be afraid of me, really when you get right down to it I’m a nice guy, I get confused sometimes and do stupid things, but I am almost never intentionally hurtful.
Oh yeah, I wanted to know some things that are immoral. You used the word last night and I haven’t used it in a long time. Was that girls dancing immoral? Why?
Hmmm… Well, I see no problems in the letter. Don’t really see anything lacking either. really there are no points that stick out severly. I think you have gotten more comfortable with her; i notice your speech patterns are much more laid back (i think that is a good thing, even if you are doing it purposefully and still are very nervous; probably cyclic anyway). The level of honesty is good. I admire that in you. I am not sure everyone would handle it well; there is alot of room for projection/string pulling, but I think L is very capable of that level and deserves no less.
I have a thought that is pretty much separate from the letter. It seems from my past/current relationships that validation becomes a bit of a shovel. It begins digging and digging the earth from beneath the two parties (because both are digging in response to the other). The result is, the two end up falling… falling together down in a hole (a nice hole, but more difficult to get out of the more you dig). I think this is “falling in love”. I’m not sure what I would put a more balanced (yet still romantic, if i can ever achieve such a thing =)) love in that phrase. I think i have associated “falling in love” as more falling into a validation game. It is just symbiotically filling each other’s undeveloped needs. more to come on this topic…. it has been deemed so by the mentor Gods and their sluggish yet steady messenger; Connideus.
There is, to give you some context, another letter in between these two where I accidentally sent the first half of this next letter. That is the meaning of the first paragraph. -Will
From: TTU::WJH3957 “W.J. Holcomb — Mr. Happy =)” 24-JUL-1998 12:06
Subj: second attempt at falling in love =)
Ok, here is attempt number two at replying to your response. I’m leaving the original stuff in there just for reference, so if you want to skip what you’ve already read just skip to the asterixes. =)
First of all, I am very happy that you are sharing all this with me. It is very self efficating. I think i used that right… And on top of that you are seriously valuing my opinion. thanks =)
Honestly, I have no idea. I know self-effacing which is to destroy oneself and I know self-efficacy which is you concept of your capacity to enact change, but I do not know self-efficating. I reckon that its ok. =)
I think you have gotten more comfortable with her; i notice your speech patterns are much more laid back (i think that is a good thing, even if you are doing it purposefully and still are very nervous; probably cyclic anyway).
It is not an illusion; I am alot more comfortable with her than I was perhaps two days ago, and a hell of alot more comfortable than I was when I first started talking to her. I have been impressed myself with my composure and my maintenance of my self. I was in a very similar situation with her at the end of last year and I could not keep myself together. I was scared most of the time and it affected my behavior a great deal. Now I am doing much better, not only am I more centered in myself, but I have adapted my masks for hiding my nervousness and they work alot better than they used to.
Physicality is something that has always given me alot of trouble, especially friendly nonchalant physicality like say leaning on someone or tickling; you know the fun little exercises that go on in the course of normal interaction. I was doing really well with that last night. It still made me very nervous, but when the time was right for the element of physicality to be added I did not flinch.
Ohhh yeah! You gotta hear this story. Ok, we got to the club at about 10:30 – 11:00, the place was really empty and there were only a few people gathered around the bar. They had the music playing like it normally is though and dance club music is something that just consumes me. We sat for a while because none of them wanted to go out on the dance floor while there wasn’t anyone else out there. I wanted to dance though. So every so often I would get up from the table and go out and walk around the dance floor and kinda dance a bit, though not really, you know just kinda groovin’. =) Anyhow, one of the times that I got up and went out there this girl comes down from the bar and asks me if I wanted to dance.
This is a neat side note, as soon as she asked me the first thought in my mind was, “there is really only one choice, to dance with her. If I don’t then it will hurt her feelings and it took alot of courage for her to come down here and ask me to dance. The right thing for me to do is to dance with her.” Its weird because it didn’t matter if I wanted to dance or not, it was like the decision was already made.
Anyhow, we start dancing and it was wild. She was all over me and I was doing my best to keep up with her and be a willing participant. I have watched people before who have been dirty dancing and I always wondered what it was like, well for me I would rank it in about the top ten for erotic experiences, and for raw sensuality it comes in maybe top five. I can only imagine what that would be like with a girl who I was really interested in. It was just wild; the music was going and we were all over the place. I would really like to do it again with someone that I knew. I think the fact that we were the only two people out in the middle of a big ol’ dance floor and the music was really going was an important part of it. For a couple of minutes there I just lost myself in the music and the touching; I think that it all happened so fast that I forgot to get afraid. =)
Come to think of it I think the fact that I didn’t know her probably helped some. For me to be with someone else like that who I knew I would have to be really comfortable with them.
So, anyway after I was through dancing I went back to the table and we all sat around for a while, then we went outside for a while and we talked some about different things. I really liked how conversations went with this group; they weren’t perfect, but they flowed really well and they were interesting. So, after a while we went back inside around 12:00 – 12:30 and sat in there for a bit.
Eventually these three girls and a guy came in and went out and started dancing.
**************** Begin attempt number two =) ******************
Everyone who was with me had been saying that they didn’t want to dance while there wasn’t anyone else out there, so now that there was I got everybody moving and we started dancing. (I would swear that I already wrote what I am about to write again, but I can’t find it in the message, so maybe I dreamed writing it or something; I dunno.)
Anyhow, on the topic of physicality, when the other people got out in the dance floor and I was trying to get everyone else to come out I did some very bold moves that ended up working very well. I think that a careful observer can do a pretty good job of seeing what the sticking points of a groups inertia are and then removing those points and enacting change. Anyhow, I went around and yanked everyone’s stools out from under them and got them moving, and after I did this L and Erin retreated to the bar in mock disdain (I know that I have written this before because I remember writing mock disdain, ah well.) Anyway, L left in such haste that she abandoned her purse, and I retrieved it. A classic game of keep away ensued, and it was not too long ago that I would not have had the courage to attempt such an endeavor.
There is a certain trusting in other people when you do social interaction and I can feel the reliance going on when I am doing something like joking with people or playing keep away. I mentioned this reliance when you and I and S and T were in the car going to the lake and you were joking with S. I said that the moves that you were making were bolder than what I would attempt because I did not have the faith in my relationships that you did. I reckon that I’m getting more faithful. =)
It’s the same kind of stuff that goes on in flirting, but it can be done in a purely Platonic setting. I am acutely aware of my reliance on other people when I am interacting with them; do you sense what I am describing?
Another thing that I did was at one point was go up to L as we were playing keep away and put my arms around her and lean in close to her ear and tell her that she knew that she wanted to come dance. It wasn’t any big thing really, except that I am really unaccustomed to that level of physical contact. My family is, as I said, very non-touchy, so this is stuff that I am uncertain about.
I think that to a large degree the amount that I think about stuff makes things alot harder. I know that is certainly true in the sense that I can blow things out of proportion, but that is not what I am talking about. From what I have seen, the things that I do have a greater cognitive impact on me than they do on alot of people. Like with talking to L or the physicality, alot of people wouldn’t even know to be afraid, but it seems that I am so aware of all the things that I am doing. I don’t know if this is a good thing or a bad thing. It seems to get in the way of the enjoyment of my life, but at the same time it makes it easier to look at things and see what exactly they are and how I can deal with them. Am I still making sense?
We danced for a while and then I drove Erin back to her place and let V off and then took L back to her place. We were all seriously tired. Usually in social matrices my mind gets worn out long before my body does, but my body was exhausted.
I talked to L some on the way back; she was about ready to fall asleep too. She has a boy that she has been going out with at school who goes to UTC, but who comes up to Knoxville every weekend, and she really likes him. She is not sure about their relationship though; she is interested in continuing it, but he seems to be kinda wishy-washy. It’s really hard for me to get a feel for people and what they are thinking without talking to them some, or at least having some first hand information. Going on second hand information leaves all these holes where the teller can insert themselves and cloud the person being told about.
Boy, I’m one for tangents today. Back to a more interesting issue, I, yet again, think that it would be really cool to go out with L romantically. Over and over I beat my head against this wall and over and over it seems to do me no good. I have twice now approached her about a relationship and have twice been rejected. I just don’t get it. I understand fine my end of it, I get along well with her as a friend, probably just about as well as I have gotten along with any other girl, and the capacity for friendship is something that I am looking for in a romantic relationship; what I don’t understand is why these feelings are not reciprocated. She seems to like being around me and I think that she values me as a friend, and from what she describes I am at least as interesting as the other guys that she went out with, but she doesn’t consider me to be a candidate.
Ah well, I did this exact same thing at the end of last year, but to my credit I am handling it alot better now. I have the damndest scarcity needs about my relationships and it keeps me messed up alot of the time. Going out with D and then with J has helped to cure me of them a good deal and also my relationship with you and with a couple of other people that have helped me to see that I am actually capable of being part of a relationship and that people do like to be around me. So, right now I am not exactly to the point where I can just drop it ad let it go, but I can feel inside that I am alot closer. Right now, the fact that L is not interested in me romantically does not mean that I am an unattractive person or that I am doing something wrong, and I can get that statement about half way down into my stomach before it encounters some resistance and I feel kinda nauseous. (Kinesthetics is neat.) =)
One of the things that really thing is helping is that I consider L to be a possibility once we go back to school, and if that didn’t work I have more confidence that I could find somebody.
That was another point, I really dislike the fact that I want to be in a relationship. I can see where it is driving me to make unclear need-based decisions and I would like to just stop, but I think that I’m too afraid. The idea of being to the point where I am complete in and of myself is an attractive one and I think that if I were to extrapolate along the lines that I have been traveling then I would get there, but I am not yet.
The level of honesty is good. I admire that in you. I am not sure everyone would handle it well; there is alot of room for projection/string pulling, but I think L is very capable of that level and deserves no less.
Radical honesty was not one of the things that came to mind as I was writing. t really didn’t flash any warning signs for me, about al that I could do is pull up a fear of intimacy, but I don’t think that I’ll do that with her. I wasn’t giving her anything but positive strokes, and I haven’t had any situation where someone reacted especially negatively to that. I’ve had one or two where it made the person uncomfortable, but I’ve never got a really negative reaction. Are we talking about the same thing? What part of the letter are you saying left room for string pulling? It may well be that I am not seeing past my intent.
I have a thought that is pretty much separate from the letter. It seems from my past/current relationships that validation becomes a bit of a shovel. It begins digging and digging the earth from beneath the two parties (because both are digging in response to the other). The result is, the two end up falling… falling together down in a hole (a nice hole, but more difficult to get out of the more you dig). I think this is “falling in love”.
I would tend to agree. One of the major aspects of a relationship and one of the things that has given me the most difficulty is there are lots and lots of positive strokes traded until both parties are virtually glowing. From what I have read this is also backed up with lots of hormonal changes as well with the release of oxatocin and endorphins.
It is essentially dishonest because very very rarely are you going to find a person who is perfect, and in the beginning people operate around the imperfections and pretend that they are not there. I think that there comes a point though when the digging becomes tiring and you stop and start to look at the person that you have been digging with in a way that you haven’t looked at them in all this time that you have been digging. (And goddammit, I can see that I am feeding alot of this of of crap that I have gotten from listening to A, and I can’t tell how much of it is her and how much is me, so beware that.) And I think that alot of relationships do not have the stability at this point to handle the incorporation of this other person’s flaws.
I’m not sure what I would put a more balanced (yet still romantic, if i can ever achieve such a thing =)) love in that phrase.
I think that more balanced comes if you manage to survive a few rocky places and your concept of the other person is more complex.
I know what it is, A gave us this nice model and it is cohesive ad it seems to hold up pretty well to observation, and most importantly it allows me to put a solid handle on relationships, which is a subject that I do not understand and have little complex experience in. So, I use this model and even think out of this model not really having tested it out with observation. I dislike doing that because I’m spreading around untested ideas as though they were my own. I could just stop and not talk about relationships. I don’t want to do that though, I like thinking about relationships.
I think I have associated “falling in love” as more falling into a validation game. It is just symbiotically filling each other’s undeveloped needs.
I think that alot of this is that, though I would not say that as such it is completely false, just kinda. There are certain aspects of the validation games that feel true to me though maybe that’s just because they also feel good/enjoyable to me.
I really want to do it, I’ll tell you that much. Most people really seem to like it and I am not going to knock it for any reason until I’ve tried it.
More to come on this topic…. it has been deemed so by the mentor Gods and their sluggish yet steady messenger; Connideus.
I like that; very creative writing.
P.S. On the subject of what you should write about, I would like to hear more about S and what’s going on there. If you have time I’d also really like to hear your thoughts on “reading” skills for telling how other people think and what’s going on with them.