I always thought I could write in a different style. I thought my voice was a construct and I could play with it, that I could vary the length of my sentences, that I could change the cadence at will, that I could use a different regional dialect, that I could write in a circle or in a square; I always thought that I had what singers call range. Now I think I’ve been writing in this voice for too long and it’s all I can do. It’s pretty good, I think, but I don’t like that it’s all I can do. It’s like what someone said (I thought it was Machiavelli but I can’t find it): being nice doesn’t count if you don’t have the strength to be mean, he said being nice without the strength to be mean was just indolence.
Anyway it turns out I can’t write a long sentence that doesn’t degenerate into a run-on. I mean I can but I really have to think about how to do it and that bothers me. They say practice makes perfect but other people say perfect practice makes perfect. I guess just because you’ve been doing something a while, if you do it without thinking about it and consciously trying to improve, well then you’re probably not going to get much better.
Well, it feels good to do the writing exercises, even though they point out my deficiencies. I don’t know what it is, but I have this weird sense that I’m the best writer that ever lived, while also thinking that I am probably not even supposed to be a writer. I also hate when someone else writes something good. Like deep down hate it. But it’s just not justified. It’s like when House tells that story about the janitor in the hospital who was an untouchable, but when the doctors there had problems they couldn’t figure out they would go to him and he would tell them the answer and even though he was treated like a piece of shit they still had to listen to him in the end because he was right and that was all that mattered. If I was a genius at something then I could be a real asshole like House and hate everyone and I could still have a positive impact on the world. But if I just hate people and think I’m the best for no reason, that just makes me even more of an idiot.
But I also think that I exaggerate my emotions to myself. I’ll be trying to figure out myself and be completely honest with myself but then I’ll say some outlandish shit that I think really cuts the bullshit and gets to my shadowy essence. But then I think about it and I look at my life and I just don’t think that I can actually feel that way. I think maybe I want to feel that way or something.
I am really trying to figure myself out, but it’s another slippery slope, to use a cliche. The reason it’s a treacherous path is that I spend a lot of time thinking about myself, because I think the more I know about myself, the better artist I’ll be, but then what happens is I get into that black hole i was talking about where my ego just spirals out of control and sucks in my entire life. So maybe I should stop thinking about myself and just think about other shit, and I won’t be able to help but have my own opinion on that shit that I think about. Or then again maybe I will be able to help it. I am good at not having an opinion. I am at least good at not expressing an opinion. Sometimes I don’t talk because I’m too lazy to move my mouth. I’m too lazy to be mean, that’s for sure. Hm, but that’s a philosophical question, whether it’s a virtue to be nice, even if you can’t help it. I mean some people would say yes, what are they called? Determinists? Or something like that. BF Skinner would say what matters is the result. You’re nice so you’re virtuous. Would he say that? I don’t know. But someone would say that while the counter argument would be that without agency your niceness is meaningless. Nothing is right unless you do it for the right reason. But I guess if you saved someone’s life they wouldn’t care if you did it because you were having a life saving contest with the guys next door or if you were doing it to get into heaven or if you did it because it was the right thing to do.
I did everything on my to do list today except make limeade, which I guess I’m going to get up and do now. Finishing the list wasn’t easy actually and took up most of my day. Going grocery shopping, going to the gym in the snow, and finishing that work for that old man was not at all relaxing. God damned Word started acting the fuck up with the page numbers and phantom tabs or some shit, I was about to fucking bite my fingers off one at a time, with a small pause in between to maximize the amount of pain my brain could register, just to escape that shit. Fucking maddening shit.
But I got it all done, and then I was ready for wife to come home, sort of, I mean not really, but I was about to get up off of this couch where I fell asleep on and off while trying to fix that stupid ass Word document, I was about to get up and make that limeade since she was getting all nonplussed about these two dollar bag of limes sitting around for two weeks before she got home but then she texted me and asked if she could have a drink with her friend. Well, shit, I didn’t even have a drink yet. I’m about to put some vodka in this limeade.
But that’s neither here nor there. I learned today that I have got to work on my technique. I mean, I still can’t seem to write a cohesive story, but at least I can learn how to write a different kind of sentence.
I also thought today that fuck it man, I’m just going to waste 2015. I’m not even going to stress about that shit. I’m going to pretend like I’m immortal and just fucking trash next year. I don’t care if I take three shits a day in 2015 and average 16 hours of sleep a day, fuck it. I’ll do something in 2016 if I’m still alive, is the way I see it. I always get these high expectations for myself, you know? Like I’m going to figure some shit out this year! Well, hell, fuck that shit. I plan on not figuring out a god damn thing. If I do figure some shit out I’m going to watch Grey’s Anatomy until I forget it. I’m not even going to watch a show I like in 2015, because I’ll be making progress toward finishing that shit. No progress allowed. I’m going to start at the end of Grey’s Anatomy and watch it all out of order in an alcoholic stupor so deep I’ll probably cut myself accidently with a steak knife while eating a raw cashew and I’ll bleed out, my blood will be so thin and I won’t even notice. That’s 2015. Hell yeah. That way, when 2016 rolls around, mother fuckers will be like, man, how are we going to top 2015? How are we going to do it big this year? And I’ll say, bitch, I’m…fuck man I’m dead. I died in 2015 of not getting out of bed to eat and also bleeding to death.