Wednesday, August 24, 2005


--Last night, I read a few essays out of a novel-writing book. For inspiration, I suppose. I have been wanting to get back into the writing mode, but i haven't cared enough about "Taylor House" or any of the short story ideas enough to really put pen to paper (or digit to keyboard, for that matter). So I read an essay about foreshadowing. Instilling smaller scenes with meaning, that relate to the climax of the story. I considered what I've done thusfar, and I think I've done the opposite. Instilled too much meaning to minor scenes that won't have a lasting effect, while not really emphasizing what matters most. There is an analogy somewhere in there relating to the rest of my life, but i'm too lazy to find it and fish it out for you.

--Last night I dreamed about violence. Particularly, "V for Vendetta"-style domestic terrorism. But non-specific. Opaque dreaming. And I was not the victim. Rather, I dreamed that I was somehow familiar with the perpetrators of such crimes. I knew them, and they me. And I was distressed because I couldn't do anything to stop it. I was frustrated, as I tried to keep my loved ones out of the way of the torrent.

There were other dreams, but that's the one I remember.

--Today it occured to me in a significant way that I'm on the verge of 25. And that I'm not a writer in any real and tangible sense. This burned a hole in my chest. I'm worried that I will end up with a life I swore I'd never have. One of dreams and ambitions folded and put in attic boxes like too-small Christmas sweaters.

--The sight of scantily-clad women on television made me turn away in disgust. Not because I have finally reached the maturity of the spiritually sound, for I am no saint. But my disgust was that of someone gorged on sweets who longs for real food and is given cotton candy. I'm repulsed by the bait of fantasy. I long for real relationship. With a dissatisfied sigh, I switched off the TV and did laundry for twenty minutes.

--My unplayed guitar glares hatebeams at me through its cheap vinyl case. I feel guilty every time I walk past it.

--I get jealous when I read other blogs where they share stories of going out with this person or that person and the zany adventures they had. Even the dull stories are better than none. I need a group. I don't have a group. I miss that.

--I went into my boss's office today and basically apologized for being a slacker lately. He hadn't noticed, he said, but he appreciated my candor. I told him I've been in a slump lately, and haven't really had much fire for doing anything. He asked why, and I told him it may have to do with the fact that, though I have a better job than I could have ever asked for, it wasn't what I had dreamed I would be doing after college. He was an English major at UT in his college days, so he understood completely. We have a good relationship.

But while I was finishing up this TMI-laden explanation, I felt myself start to get...emotional. A little teary-eyed, even. He didn't notice that, thankfully. The only explanation I can think of for my physiological response is that it's the first time I've really honestly laid that out verbally to anyone. That I've heard myself wonder aloud whether I should just pack up the old ambitions, and be content with my life as is, without any other professional aspirations.

--For the first time since I started teaching, I'm not really excited about preparing for the next lesson. Not to say I'm not excited at all. Teaching Sunday School is my favorite part of my life right now. Everything else pretty much pales in comparison. But I'm at a loss for what to say. Part of this probably has to do with the underwhelming response to my efforts to boost return visits from people who've visited in the past. I've made phone calls, sent emails, mailed personal notes, and gotten almost no response. I feel like I'm failing a little bit, in this regard. I know, I know, not my fault, do my best, God's in control, etc. etc. But I still feel inadequate in some small way.

--Those dreaded five words have crept back into my mind, as of late: "You see, there's this girl..." No, Dave, don't be a fool! Fight it! Fight it with all your might! But what can I say? I enjoy her company. She's nice. She laughs at my jokes. Unfortunately, I have reservations. Reservations that would shame me to explain, because they are so petty. But there they be. "Hesitation, table for one." (Bad joke, I know.)

--I really am happy for you. You know that right? I mean, forget about all the drama from before. I'm happy for you now. Best wishes. But I'm also jealous of you. Not of "you", but of your good fortune. So I hope you'll forgive me for not falling all over myself for you, because I want your storyline for myself. It's selfish, I recognize that, but that's part of the reason things ended up as they did, isn't it.

--There are some days, I want to be a phoenix. I'm envious of rebirth. I keep feeling like I've already ruined myself again, that now the second chance is too far gone to mend, that my only hope left for redemption is to be consumed by fire and burst forth again, fresh and screeching. I know this isn't so, that it's not necessary, but I still feel that undercurrent try to pull me toward some sort of spirital immolation.

--I don't want to give up. Not at all. But there are days when I get weary of being me. Days when I just want to switch to another person. I hold no illusions that anyone's life is somehow so much better than mine. I know each person has their own problems and dramas. But I'm just so damned bored with being myself these days. I'm tired of the same old face, the same lumbering and sagging frame, the same aches and pains and shortness of breath at the top of the stairs. The same empty apartment with the same five channels on the TV. The same stack of unpaid bills, unfiled documents, unwritten stories, unread books. The same sin cycle, the same weaknesses, the same wickedness, the same shame. What's still holding me together is an occasionally wavering belief in the same God and the same grace that has carried me thusfar. And that's enough, even if it isn't as exciting to me as it ought to be.

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