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Seth

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*Why do we remember the past, and not the future?* [Apr. 19th, 2004|10:43 pm]
Seth
[mood |hopefulhopeful]
[music |Forever - Circulatory]

This an ending.

Not the big one but just one. Ironically I've made 666 posts (coincidence that now I decide to end this?). Withintetsuo has existed since April 3rd, 2002 and I'm not the same person I was then. I look back with wonder at the person like a stranger I was briefly introduced to. I don't know him very well and he confuses me most of the time. I don't think I've been withintetsuo for awhile now, I just now kind of realized, in these last few months. It's probably been since around august/september that I felt the change begin. It always takes a little time to realize when you're a different person. I believe in so many different things now than I did in the beginning. Two years ago I was into existensialism which I now look back at and think "How sad." Its true that the older we get the wiser we become, we can look back on stupid behavior and shake our heads and laugh, wishing we could go back, put a hand on our own shoulder and try to explain things to ourselves.

So what was withintetsuo? The name comes from an anime film, those of you into this kind of stuff need no explanation but those of you a little foggier on this one I'll explain for. There's a 1988 anime film titled 'Akira' which has a character with a universe inside him. His name is Tetsuo and so I figured when I started this thing I was much much more introverted and it made sense to equate that with having a universe inside you. I was reading furiously, that's what happens when you never really hangout with anybody. You have much more reading time. And while I'm grateful for all the great texts I was exposed to I can't help but feel sad about all the time wasted in the abscence of people's company. I sometimes think about what would have happened if I had met some of the people I know now earlier but these are thoughts its not good to dwell on, they carry with them a sad fog that can come to hang over you. Better to live in the now and not worry about pasts that never were. I don't have that universe inside me anymore. It became so large and great that it spilled out and became part of the bigger universe that we make up collectively.

waitsfortherain, a friend of mine on here once listed his three favorite writers with me in the list. I'm not quite sure how to feel about this, I'm flattered but its very hard for me to think of myself as being someone's favorite writer. However, he referred to my journal as "your book of days" once and the term stuck with me. I can feel okay ending this because from a distance I can see that it was just the first chapter in a very large novel. This was the prelude in My Book of Days. Now it's time for the second section, this next one will be just another chapter too. More will follow and I think it would be quite an amazing thing if I were to continue this for the rest of my life. Think, if livejournal is still in existance at that point, what a great catalogue of a life that would be.

So, this is it then. I feel a little weepy but not extremely sad about it. In the next few weeks I'll have to see some friends graduate, most will stay in the area and for that I'm glad. One in particular will continue the pursuit of her dream, and while I'm happy that she has that opportunity, the selfish childish part of my soul can't stand to see her leave. Life wouldn't be life if there were never the lows.

“He would step through the door and there he would be: a century of decades ago, when his house was newly built, the only house in the neighborhood, and flocks of sheep were still cropping the grass. He wonders what the world would look like then. He had heard that the birds were so plentiful the sky went black with wings when they passed. He would like to see that. Why had he imagined that life must always end in death, and never in anything else? He is not nearly at the end.”
-The Truth About Celia, Kevin Brockmeier

I guess you could say, to be continued at truthaboutcelia
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*I could die right now, Clem...I'm just exactly where I want to be* [Apr. 18th, 2004|09:22 pm]
Seth
[mood |gratefulgrateful]

If you've seen 'Eternal Sunshine',remember that memory where Joel's laying with Clementine on the ice and he's in this state of joy. He remembers how good a moment could feel as opposed to the darker memories that were more recent. Today I was laying on a blanket outside, looking up at the sky. And I thought exactly what Joel thought at that moment: "Please let me keep this memory, just this one."
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*Ever take it off any sweet jumps?* [Apr. 15th, 2004|04:19 pm]
Seth
[mood |anxiousanxious]
[music |Born to Run - Springsteen (running through my head)]

Walked down to the library last night with Alicia and Stacey. Got '365 Buddha', 'The Music of Your Life: Stories'/John Yeowell', and a CD of Leonard Bernstein performing symphonic suites from 'Candide', 'On The Town', 'West Side Story', and 'On The Waterfront'. Fell asleep listening to the 'On The Waterfront' track (it's 20 minutes long), the liner notes described it as a tone poem to New York, alternating from a very optimistic sound in the opening to a very brash dissonant theme of violence and then ending with a sense of victory yet hopelessness towards the future.

Hung out at Davis-Kidd after the library. I read an article on writing by Michael Chabon for my Ind. Study. It was based off of his research of golems he incorporated into 'The Adventures of Kavalier & Klay'. The golem is the artist's creation that is a living breathing thing that has the potentiality to, and usually does, kill his creator. Frankenstien's monster is a variation on this traditionally clay monster. The golem is Adam, a man made from clay in his creator's image. It's an inevitablity that this creation will turn on his creator, renounce or kill him (in our instance, ideologically we reduce God to nothingness). What does this have to do with writing? Chabon says that when a writer is working at his most honest he is creating stories that have an element of risk and danger in them. He refers to his first novel 'The Mysteries of Pittsburgh' and how he thought people might assume he was gay, his second novel 'Wonder Boys' and thinking people would think he smoked pot all the time, and the short story 'Green's Book' (in 'Werewolves in Their Youth') and its incestual elements. The idea of the whole essay is that we aren't writing honestly (i.e. writing anything that anyone would want to read) if we don't feel threatened by the golem we produce. There must be the chance that the story could crush us at any moment under its emotional and spiritual weight.

That said, I've been feeling very internally conflicted as of late. It's strange how the same thing that can bring you the must fulfilling and beautiful happiness can also drag to the depths and give you pounding headaches (I'm not talking about writing here, writing for me is such a peripheral thing, living matters more). I got another one last night and popped more pills till I passed out around 11pm. It's bad that my stress and confusion causes me to write more than when I'm happy and content. About 2 & 1/2 years ago I put together a concept collection of stories. For me, I think of short story collections as albums, there should be a reason each piece is there to begin with and a reason that is placed where it is. My first collection was composed of a 80 page notebook I titled "Before I Die..." I thought what kind of stories would I want to tell people if I was going to die at the end of the summer (when I wrote them all). Kind of morbid, yes but it added to the immediacy and richness of the stories. I'm thinking of writing a second one, using the title "Everything You Say About Me Is True", the line came from a friend's ex-girlfriend responding to comments that she was a "slut" and a "schizo". That line has always stuck out to me with its sense of paradox. Not everything someone says about you can be true because they can contradict themselves. But, we're such multi-layered people it could be true at the same time. I have about six/seven brief story concepts that all kind of play around with the Self in juxtaposition to various things (parents, past, craft, solitude, etc.).

I was thinking about how my appetite is fading. Since I was incredibly sick in January, my hunger hasn't been the same. I think it's more than physical though. I feel so tired from the routine of eating everyday, tired of all the routines, that's why I probably eat the same thing almost everyday (if it's going to be a routine than let's make it as monotonous as hell). I feel like I've fed my soul everything I can. It's like a starving baby that keeps crying out of hunger. I've done all I can, I can't give it anymore. It reminds me of Kafka's "The Hunger Artist":

"I always wanted you to admire my fasting," said the hunger artist.
"We do admire it," said the overseer, affably.
"But you shouldn't admire it," said the hunger artist.
"Well, then we don't admire it," said the overseer, "but why shouldn't we admire it?"
"Because I have to fast, I can't help it," said the hunger artist.
"What a fellow you are," said the overseer, "and why can't you help it?"
"Because," said the hunger artist, lifting his head a little and speaking, with his lips pursed, as if for a kiss, right into the overseer's ear, so that no syllable might be lost, "because I couldn't find the food I liked. If I had found it, believe me, I should have made no fuss and stuffed myself like you or anyone else."
These were his last words, but in his dimming eyes remained the firm though no longer proud persuasion that he was still continuing to fast.
Franz Kafka, "A Hunger Artist"
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Read [Apr. 15th, 2004|12:08 am]
Seth
[mood |confusedconfused]

Here's the last short story I have to write for my Independent Study, it clocks in at 11 double-spaced pages/6 single. Enjoy.

The Doctor's DaughterCollapse )
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Movies!!! [Apr. 14th, 2004|04:12 pm]
Seth
[mood |excitedexcited]

Here's some new trailers that look very cool.

Love Me If You Dare - Looks a lot like 'Amelie' in terms of a very absurd style, very nice cinematography. IMDB describes it this way: "As adults, best friends Julien and Sophie continue the odd game they started as children -- a fearless competition to outdo one another with daring and outrageous stunts. While they often act out to relieve one another's pain, their game might be a way to avoid the fact that they are truly meant for one another."

Nói
IMDB describes this one: "Is he the village idiot or a genius in disguise? 17 year old Noi drifts through life on a remote fjord in the north of Iceland. In winter, the fjord is cut off from the outside world, surrounded by ominous mountains and buried under a shroud of snow. Noi dreams of escaping from this white-walled prison with Iris, a city girl who works in a local gas staion. But his clumsy attempts at escape spiral out of control and end in complete failure. Only a natural disaster will shatter Noi's universe and offer him a window into a better world."

Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter...and Spring
IMDB: "A young boy lives in a small floating temple on a beautiful lake, together with an elderly master who teaches him the ways of the Buddha. Years later the boy, now a young man, experiences his sexual awakening with a girl who has come to the temple to be healed by the master. The youth runs away to the outside world but his lust turns his life into hell, so he returns to the lake temple to find spiritual enlightenment."

The Mayor of Sunset Strip
IMDB: "Through the glitter and the grunge, from The Monkees to Coldplay, Rodney Bingenheimer--a.k.a. Rodney on the ROQ--has reigned over the Los Angeles music scene for over two decades. A constantly evolving fixture as rock fan, journalist, promoter, club owner and radio DJ on KROQ, Bingenheimer has helped advance every adventurous rock mutation--California pop, glam, punk, goth, new wave, alternative--since he first hit the Sunset Strip during its psychedelic 1960s heyday."

Coffee & Cigarettes
IMDB:"Short stories from Jim Jarmusch that all have coffee and cigarettes in common."
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*Music is worthless, unless it can make a complete stranger break down and cry* [Apr. 13th, 2004|12:59 am]
Seth
[mood |frustratedfrustrated]
[music |The Dumbing Down of Love - Frou Frou]

I was surprised to find 'Whale Rider' on Oxygen tonight. It was such a current film I wasn't expecting to see it on anything other than Showtime or a premium channel. But there it was. I really really liked it, was surprised by the achingly bittersweet ending. I think that Keisha Castle-Hughes was amazingly good, she was about 12/13 at the time and her performance is so rich and so deep.

I hate seeing a friend feel so terrible. Brent wanted to come by and talk and his situation makes me very upset. I don't think I've ever seen him in the shape he was tonight. You have to wonder what it is that makes guys like him and me such unviable properties. We're taught growing up that life and particularly love will come easily when it's right. Load of shit. We're both decent guys, I look at this campus and I can probably spot the guys who would treat a girl horribly and there's way too many of them. All we want, all anybody wants, is a little piece of happiness, nothing too fancy or great just something small that fills us up. I couldn't say anything that I felt could make him feel better, all I could do was just listen as he vented.

I hate to sound repetitive but Joseph Campbell had some interesting things to say:

Bill Moyers: Why do you think we fall in love with one person and not another?

Campbell: Well, I wouldn't be one to say. It's a very mysterious thing, that electric thing that happens, and then the agony that can follow. The troubadors celebrate the agony of the love, the sickness the doctors cannot cure, the wounds that can be healed only by the weapon that delivered the wound.

Moyers: Meaning?

Campbell: The wound is the wound of my passion and the agony of my love for this creature. The only one who can heal me is the one who delivered the blow. That's a motif that appears in symbolic form in many medieval stories of the lance that delivers a wound. It is only when that lance can touch the wound again that the wound can be healed.
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*Let your indulgence set me free* [Apr. 12th, 2004|01:45 am]
Seth
Been working on my Shakespeare Comedies paper since about 11pm (have 6 of 8 pages written). I was listening to 'Coquelicot Asleep in the Poppies'/Of Montreal and I realized that the finale song on the CD parallels the end of my topic play 'The Tempest':

LET'S GO FOR A WALK
I know that in my dreaming world
the friends I've made aren't imprisoned there
and they are not pretend.
They are just as real as this world
that I've grown to know.
And though I have enjoyed myself I really have to go

Let's go for a walk so I can say goodbye to you.
That is unless you'd like to come too.
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*We've got to live, no matter how many skies have fallen* [Apr. 11th, 2004|12:37 am]
Seth
[mood |thoughtfulthoughtful]
[music |Gymnopedie No.2 - Erik Satie]

Today has been an odd day. I actually did some schoolwork, reading in 'Little Women' and working on my 'Tempest' paper, due Monday. Alicia went home unexpectedly which was kinda sad and then I assume Emily went home too. Just Stacey, Marissa, and I hanging out tonight. We went a senior vocal recital which was really really good, then down to Centennial Park where we ended up swinging, very cathartic. I was sad not everyone was there.

I thought about Hannah's suicide a lot today. For as bad as my days can get I don't think I've ever gotten to that point. It's a hard thing to understand. It's made me think about that old cliche that we don't have much time left on this planet. I'm tired of never saying the 100% truth of what I think, too little time to play word games.

I bought the transcript of The Power of Myth with Joseph Campbell and I have a feeling this is going to be a very dog-eared book. Here's an interesting excerpt:

Bill Moyers: So joy and pain are love.

Campbell: Yes. Love is the burning point of life, and since all life is sorrowful, so is love. The stronger the love, the more the pain.

Moyers: But love bears all things.

Campbell: Love itself is pain, you might say-the pain of being truly alive.

I'm going to talk frankly. I'm tired of having to write cryptic things that everybody sees right through. I hate when people know what's being talked about but still skirt around it. Say what you mean and mean what you say.

I was pretty much a dead person until this past summer. I've mentioned how I went to U of I and while walking around felt what James Joyce would describe as a "peak moment", a moment when the beauty in life is clear. It's not permanent but essential. After that I felt my heart open a bit, I had locked it air tight after all the junk between my parents in May. I believed that you couldn't truly have feelings for another person. Then I met Alicia. I don't think I've ever clicked with someone as quickly and as well with as I did with her. It was one of those truly odd things where we ended up in three of the same classes, the first two people in the room on the first day of Lit of the South. Later that same day I'd find her in my Creative Writing class. Then the next day I saw Miranda, who was going to my Bible class. As we walked in she said, "Oh hey, there's Alicia, let's sit by her." At this point I thought it was all a little strange.

I had never been as quick to talk to someone as I had with her. I remember the next week in Creative Writing, I brought in a copy of 'Smoke & Mirrors'/Gaiman to use as an example of good dialogue. She noticed the book sitting there and thus a connection was made. I would tell her about the Sandman series and she would go on to read them all in record time, and much to my happiness, fall in love with them as much as I did. Still, I sat back and thought it was all very, very odd - too convenient. My heart was still slightly locked, though the latches slowly crumbled. Later, Dr. C would tell me how from observations in two seperate classes and from one-on-one conversations she realized how similiar these two students were. Both fairly quiet, passionate about writing, excellent imaginations.

It's impossible for a normal human being not to begin to feel something in a situation like this. It's rare that people like us meet like-minded thinkers. In a world of emptiness it's really a treat to find someone who seems to be on the same level as you. But, I was still in the mindset most men are. We become so afraid of being told 'no' that we can stiffen up and never ask. When we hear 'no' it causes us in a way to reevaluate ourselves. We wonder what it was in us that was wrong, why weren't we good enough? This was the negative mentality I had. Eventually I worked up the courage to say something and got a reponse so similar to what I would have said a year early. When another person speaks your words from their mouth, directed at you, it's a very disconcerting thing. So, I let things move slowly. Away from everybody else I was slipping. In October I made myself monumentally drunk (11 Hauser shots and 4-5 rum and cokes in about a two hour frame) and was really really miserable.

I made myself miserable though, I'm a worrier by nature and it's something I am finally taking control of. I went to NYC over Xmas Break and was able to meditate on a lot of things while there and told myself that life would work itself out. And was good for awhile until a girl from another class came and up and started to flirt around with me one night before dinner in Feb. While she did the only think I could think of was Alicia. That hit me like a freight train, and combined with my parents reaction to my additional year at school, sent me into such a bleak sadness, I hope I never feel it again. I finally sat down and said exactly how I felt and got an answer that I didn't want to hear but needed to. There are inevitablities in the world, there are things we can't control, but we must learn to be happy with what is good in them despite this. At the time I felt myself shatter inside. I came back to my room and cried, eventually called my sister and we cried together on the phone. It was one of the most terrible feelings I've ever had.

But you know what? Something amazing happened that those who fear the "no" don't believe in. I lived. Feb was down the shithole but March came and I felt myself get better. It's was very gradual but it came. Over Spring Break I really did a lot of soul searching and thinking about how little time was left. We can't squander precious hours in self-pity and thinking about what could of been. What could of been isn't and we have to live in what is. My heart has a few tiny scratches on it now and I wouldn't have it any other way. I hope one day that my heart is battered and scarred, it should look like's been through 'Nam and back. Because that means I will have lived, I will have taken chances and some of them will have worked and others will hurt.

"...you begin to meet people who are in the field of your bliss, and they open doors to you. I say, follow your bliss and don't be afraid, and doors will open where you didn't know they were going to be."
- Joseph Campbell
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Bravest at the last, She levelled at our purposes, and being royal, Took her own way [Apr. 10th, 2004|10:01 am]
Seth
Last night I found out a girl I knew killed herself. Her name was Hannah Balfour and she used to go to Lipscomb. I would say she was a friend, not as close as most of my friends but she was one of those people I would always talk to in the classes we had together. We sat next to each other in Comm Theory and would lament together over how boring Dr. Parker was. I would talk to her when I'd see her around campus and she always told me she liked me better with a beard than without. She was always dying her hair different colors, I remember it being pink when she left Lipscomb. She even gave me her teeth. She went to get impressions done for a retainer and they gave her the mold of her lower teeth. I sat down in the class the next day and she reaches into her bad and plops them out on my desk and says, "Want 'em?" I still have them, I actually contemplated tossing them out last week when I was trying to minimize and now I'm so glad I didn't.

She never really liked it here, the school's conformist nature can never sit right with people like her. She was too free of a thinker and so she decided to go out to California for school. I figured that she'd get out there and things would be better, she'd find a school that let her do her thing and it would be great. I didn't keep up with her for these last two and a half years or so but obviously things weren't better out there.

She's the first person I've ever known to kill themselves. It's easier to deal with someone you know dying in an accident or of some illness. Suicide is a deeper death, it's the person making a decision to die, in essence they believe that hope is lost. I don't think I've ever felt that bleak about life, even so it hurts my own heart to know that she did. Hannah came to the point where in my her mind it was impossible for life to improve, it had sunk to the bottom and now there was no other choice. This world has a penchant for keeping people who aren't the same as everyone else miserable. Look at the majority of great artists throughout history, they all at one time or another suffered some form of persecution, some greater than others. I wish that everybody could just be happy in their own way, that wouldn't have to try and bully people or make laws against their happiness. They hurt no one but we hurt them repeatedly.

"If I commit suicide, it will not be to destroy myself but to put myself back together again. Suicide will be for me only one means of violently reconquering myself, of brutally invading my being, of anticipating the unpredictable approaches of God. By suicide, I reintroduce my design in nature, I shall for the first time give things the shape of my will."
-Antonin Artaud
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*You looked happy. Happy with a secret.* [Apr. 8th, 2004|11:31 pm]
Seth
[mood |calmcalm]

I realized recently that I've been consistently happy for like three weeks now. Usually there's a day in there somewhere that feels bad but I can't really think of one that's happened recently. Over Spring Break I thought a lot about those people who won't be coming back in the fall and I realized the time we have left is so short and so precious that letting these petty little things get me down would waste all of that. Most of what we let get to us could just be shrugged off.

When I was leaving the writing center today, I was walking with Alison and she said, "So what's the story?" I genuinely didn't know what she was talking about and she smiled mischievously. "What're you talking about?" I said. "You know," she replied. Then she came right and said what she was asking it about. It's something a lot of other people have noticed and made assumptions about and if this had been two months ago it would have depressed me beyond belief. Instead I didn't feel that sadness I felt at all back in Feburary over the same matter. I just explain the situation, how things just couldn't be the way I'd like, but that it's just one of those things. I was surprised afterwards because I never felt that all too familiar heartsink I had been feeling in association with this topic.

We underestimate ourselves so much. We're scared of such temporary pain, never realizing how unbelievably strong and resilent we are. The key is don't get weighed down so much. We let regret drag our heels in the ground and it ruins our time here. I was thinking the other day about how much I love the people around me, I mean really just love them with no conditions or inhibitions. It makes me feel valuable when Kristina talks to me about her parents and very similar kinds of things she's going through with them. I like feeling needed, I like when people seek me out to talk about things that bother them or problems they have, I don't promise solutions but I will listen. Those are the times I feel the best.
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