Monday, September 24, 2007

Journal of a long time

I think that as humans we have a fear of things getting stuck. As long as we can see things changing we feel comfortable and happy. Once we start to feel that life is going to be the same for a long time, we freak out.

I think that might be why I'm afraid of all this homework. It's not really that it's so bad, it's just that it leaves me with no options. The homework is here to stay, at least for now. There is no short-term respite from its onslaught. On a day I don't have "pressing homework" I need to do my background homework, that is, all state and C+P.

It's the long time commitment that's frightening. I don't want to be stuck in this tunnel without options forever. I don't want to have to read C+P the rest of my life. I wouldn't mind practicing all state if I ever got around to it. I really enjoy doing it when I do it. It's just a chore because I don't do it. It's a time commitment. One that I've been having trouble making.

These choices will come back to me. It's justice. When I work hard and do good things, good things come back to me. When I do not work hard and do not do good things, good things do not necessarily come back to me.

And so I'm writing here tonight. Not because I really have time, but because I think it's important to poke a hole out of the tunnel. It may just be I'm stuck in this tunnel for a very long time. It might be a while until I learn to breathe underneath the smothering tunnel-fluids. And so I'm poking a hole.

Yep, I'm still here. I might be stuck in a tunnel, but at least I'm here. The Ninja Turtles have been in tunnels before. They got oozed. Maybe I'll get oozed.

Probably not physically, but perhaps metaphorically. It's a tunnel, and tunnels always mean learning.

It's not really that bad of a tunnel. We don't fear tunnels. We just fear long tunnels. I don't mind writing an essay tomorrow. I mind writing an essay tomorrow and then reading and making a brochure on wednesday. Thursday means practice and reading and Friday means similar things. I've got commitments to Ultimate and other such business.

I like a good tunnel adventure. It is when the tunnel adventure becomes the only option that I get a little stir-crazy. I think we're naturally a little flighty. We like things to change. I like the weather to change. I like my clothes to change. I like breakfast, on occasion, to change. The same thing every day doesn't quite suit me. I don't like not being able to choose when I'm gonna do.

Now, by no means am I so restricted as I imply here. It's just a homework-induced blog post.

I will not let my life slip away from me. I will leave my mark and be something greater. I always, always feel good when I post. I think there are lots of reasons for that, but I think one of them is that I'm leaving parts of myself. I will not vanish. I'm like a bank. There's a paper trail that leads right to me, right now. Hey, I'm here. I've existed in writing for a very long time. I've got journals that go back a few years, I've got posts that go back two or so. Ha, I didn't just show up. I'm really here. I'm still here.

What does the future hold for me? Am I really capable of finding the balance? I feel like the classic argument about government. Where do we draw the line between freedom and security? Where do we need to stop letting the people choose their own destinies because they're all growing up to be mailmen? Where do we enforce structure and where do we let them run wild?

During the summer I feel there isn't enough structure for me to excel at anything. I am a lump. During the school year I feel smothered by structure, all I want to do is get free and follow my dreams. Once I'm free I don't have dreams any more.

It's the same deal with running. Cross Country was not an optional thing, it was just what I did. I ran, and I didn't really have a choice about whether or not I'd run. I just ran. It wasn't what I wanted. I wanted to follow my own running dreams. I wanted to run where and how and when I wanted to. And now here I am, without the obligation. My dreams are going unfulfilled, it's been weeks since I've been running.

So where can I draw the line? I think that's still a part of me that requires a lot of growth. I need to find balance. Balance between doing what must be done and what I would like to do. Balance between progress in one area and progress in another. Balance between myself and others. Balance between carbohydrates and insulin. Balance between the van and the bike, the ultimate and the anything else. Balance between freedom to sleep in and the power to wake up.

It's balance that I'm searching for. I'm going to work on that.

I hope that this post comes off the right way. It's not a sad post by any means. It's just an exploratory post. I'm writing the things that I'm thinking as I'm writing. I think that's another reason I feel so good about posting. I get to think. I'm sort of tricked into thinking about things and exploring their meanings. I get to know me a little bit better. I think that that's the goal behind every school assignment, isn't it? To get us to think. Not every school assignment, some are just designed to improve fine motor skills. But talking high school, I think everything is ultimate an effort to make me sit down and think. I think that it's by thinking that we solve problems. Thinking is how we make progress. We need to sit and evaluate and get to know things better and then we are empowered to make better choices.

I think that making better choices is the whole point. That's what we're shooting for, right?

Then isn't it natural that we ought to pursue a path that empowers us to make better choices? That's why we go to school and why we blog and why we dance and run and fret and do the things that we do. Because ultimately we're trying to be able to make better choices. We want to be empowered to make the best choices that we can. We're working on that.

One must ponder what is really important. There comes a time when I have got to ask myself if Ultimate is important at all. It has its charms, sure, but why? Why do we put forth the effort that we do? Is it truly worth it?

I do love Ultimate, but wasn't frisbee friday enough? What have we done to the pure tradition? If nothing else can survive, why couldn't frisbee friday survive? Where are my lights?

At this point we have to make decisions. We can't have it all. We must choose between two things. It's a compromise. Most of that compromise for me deals with time management right now. Am I going to take a nap or do my homework? One or the other has to give.

And I think that's how I'm seeing Ultimate right now. Why have I signed myself up to devote so much time to it? Yes, it's something that I love. But I also have a responsibility to do my homework and all sorts of other stuff. When it comes time to choose between the two, which one is really more effective for me to keep in my life?

Just some stuff to think about, that's all. Don't assume I'm abandoning Ultimate. I just wonder if we really need anything aside from Frisbee Friday. After all, I do really love frisbee friday.

I am not a shovel, but I am glad that I have come here tonight.

There is a certain allure to contradictions in literature. There's little better to describe a man than to declare him a contradiction. We love a contradiction. And why is it so? I believe it's because a contradiction proves that we are right. We don't believe this facade of a world that we've set up. We don't believe in the social class and the implied rules of men. We live by it, by all this fabric we've set up. But we don't believe it, and we're searching for the rips and the holes in the seams. We know it's not real, and we love proof of it.

That's why we love a contradiction. Because our ideas that we've collectively formulated about the way that society and people ought to be don't sit well with us. A contradiction shows us that we were wrong, and we love to be wrong when it comes to people. "He was a man." We love a man that can show us that what we know isn't true isn't true. We love a contradiction, it reminds us that there's something behind this game that we're playing together.

1 comment:

Nathan said...

I know exactly how you feel about the tunnel and balance. It's not just homework; for me, it's the warehouse. I've been there almost three months now, and have a little under three more to go. It's been mentally and emotionally straining on me, not from job difficulty (my job is friggin' easy!), but because I feel like I'm in a tunnel and I need to be patient while I wait for the light at its end. Patience is some hard stuff.

I need to find balance. Balance between doing what must be done and what I would like to do. Balance between progress in one area and progress in another.

That about sums it up for me. :-)

Good luck with your own tunnels, Thatch. Let me know when you get out of a big one, and I'll let you know when one of mine ends, and we'll have a celebratory bagel, or something.