What a wee little part of a person’s life are his acts and his words! His real life is led in his head, and is known to none but himself.
I’m not sure exactly when Mark Twain said that but no doubt well over one hundred years ago, and it’s true. I saw this quote actually for the first time today and, strangely enough, it made me think of why I maintain this site, why I feel compelled to write. It’s a compulsion really; it’s as of all this stuff is going on in my head and I just have to get it out. What’s weird is that I’m not even sure that I care how big of an audience the site has; it’s really just the purging that matters. Well, the purging and the recording. Maybe it’s death that compels me, maybe it’s the fact that this collection of cells that make up my brain, my personality, my character, my soul, will one day shrivel up and die. It will cease to exist, as will my entire body, and there will be virtually nothing left. After so many years there really won’t be a single thing left, not even bones. It’ll be as if I was never here.
How does one stop this? There is no immortality. The closest thing we have is passing our genes and our stories down to our children. But even then it get diluted, genes mutate and fade, children remember their parents, maybe their grandparents, but then those stories fade away. Eventually no one remembers you. It’s just the way it is. The closest thing I’ve found to immortality is to write my autobiography and pass it down. As long as each generation passes it down (and not too many other family members write their own stories to compete for my descendants’ time) then I can be a little more sure that someone will know who the hell I was. I won’t just be a name on a family tree somewhere, just a name with birth and death dates. Just a named duration of repetition. That’s what really sucks about death, that eventually no one will remember you, aside from the whole not being alive anymore part of course.
So how does one live outside one’s head? It can’t happen fully, not now, not with the limited technology we have, so it has to be with words, however inadequate they might be. And why will anyone else who suffers from the same condition of the bulk of their lives playing out in their own head for no one else to see want to to read about what’s going on in my head? I can’t answer that. I can say that people are fascinated with other people so who knows? Maybe people will care. Anything’s possible, I guess.
So I write. I’m compelled to write, even if there’s no audience. I guess I’m wired that way. If I don’t write it down it bounces around in side my head and drives me fucking crazy. I repeat the same topics over and over again, contemplating and pondering, wondering and thinking, amazed at the process yet frustrated at the same time. So if I’m compelled to write, why don’t I write more? Part of the issue is that I feel like the stuff I write for this site needs to be thought out, organized, written in essay form, in other words. Like a newspaper opinion piece, a review, or a tutorial. That’s all well and good but what about this “stream of consciousness” stuff? What about the topics that buzz around my head like a giant gnat that I can’t squash? I’m so anal retentive that this type of bursted presentation violates all my rules of organization. Organization is what I’m all about, it’s in my DNA. I have to have stuff a certain way. That, however, conflicts with a stream of consciousness, with thoughts that amble around for weeks, months, or years inside my head and then come blasting out in unordered succession.
The reality is that they have to come out, organized or not.
So I want to utilize this venue, no matter how small or large the audience, to serve as that conduit. Who knows, maybe it’ll make the site more interesting. I’ll just mix this in with all the organized stuff, the thought out opinion pieces, tutorials, reviews, or whatever the hell else I normally put here. This place is, after all, an eclectic mixture of what makes me who I am, so I guess it’s to be expected.
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