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[personal profile] dar
Writing with a new keyboard is kinda like test driving a new car. Taking it for a quick spin around the internet. Check out those hotkeys. Listen to how quiet those new, slim buttons are - no clack, clack, clackety like on your grandma's typewriter, no sir. And no more thumbs hitting the wrong one, either. Naw, naw, keyboard like this? Be with ya 'til the day you die you get something with a touchscreen.

I had noticed that my old keyboard was clunky and noisy, especially when writing at night. But what caused this episode of out with the old, in with the new was downloading OmmWriter and thinking "Wow, they weren't kidding, this really is distraction-free writing." What helps is that the program runs full-screen, so checking Twitter and stuff isn't such a passive interruption. You'd have to actually interrupt yourself to do it. Handy. And so, while I was trying it out, I realized that the biggest distraction was how DAMN noisy my keyboard was. You know, a good workman never blames his tools, but anything that makes you more conscious of the writing process is detrimental to it.
So yeah, new one.

My life actually IS more exciting than that, by the way, I just wanted to get that out of the way first because I liked the whole new car analogy. Life's full of new lately. It started with little things, things I didn't even notice at first. Like my poise, for example. I noticed I found myself standing with my hands in my pockets or on my hips. When I was younger, I'd be self-conscious of my hands, never knowing what to do with them. I'd wave them around and hit things, or people. So I took to standing or sitting with my arms crossed (which I'm told sends out fuck-off vibes) or keeping them behind my back. And then that worrying about what to do with my hands just faded away.
I think sub-consciously, I've gotten a lot more relaxed. My self-consciousness seems to be finally eroding, thank God. I've loosened up colossally. It was when I decided I was going to allow myself to feel, and I was going to enjoy everything I could get out of life, and God what a burden that lifted. Just realizing how much there is to life and what I'm allowing myself to do now that I always self-consciously held back on.
Like realizing I'm very tactile. I don't mean touchy-feely (I never trusted guys who said they're touchy-feely because they tend to be only touch-feely with women. I can be a bit that way a bit when I'm drunk, sure, but at least I have no problem hugging a dude when I am.), more sort of just touching the world. Every post, railing and lamp I walk past, I'll reach out and touch. I go into a bookstore, there's a stack of books in front of me and I drum on them.

And the part of my brain that goes "Don't do that." has been gloriously, mercifully, finally and thankfully turned the fuck OFF..

I like touch, taste, hearing and seeing. I don't want to just use these senses, I want to indulge them. Yes, I left one out back there, clever of you to spot it and yes, I do wonder if that has something to do with it. I like the bounce in these keys under my fingers. I like the way whiskey burns at the back of your throat. I love when a song I'm listening to pounds in my ears, goes down somewhere past my heart, under my lungs and then back up to my head. I like when I'm in a park on a beautiful day and I can't see anyone else, my music blocks out all other sounds and it's so easy to imagine the end of the world came and went and I'm the last man alive. That is a feeling nowhere near as morbid as it sounds, by the way, because then you're thinking "If it's only me, then there's only me to appreciate it."

So yeah, stuff like that. I think you'd call it being a sensualist, though that word's been hijacked by advertising and given sexual connotations that eclipse its true meaning. ...Not that I don't like sex, mind. I'm a big fan of sex. I'd like to meet its inventor and buy 'em a drink (then who knows, maybe back to their place and they can show me how they got the idea).

But really I just feel quite free to enjoy myself. It's not really any one thing that did it. A combination of different factors, I guess. There's realizing that tsunamis don't make exceptions for people with goals, for starters. There's getting angry at fear and wanting to face it down at every opportunity. There's knowing I shouldn't be afraid that something fucking terrible might happen to me because something fucking terrible IS going to happen to me because something fucking terrible happens to EVERYONE. It's compulsory. It's part of life and life is... kinda stupid. I mean, really, when you think about it. Nobody would play a game designed this way. But I have played other games that were terribly flawed and I loved them too. Probably because they had such great characters or elements. Hey, just like life. So yeah, life sucks but I still love it. And between love and fear, love is undoubtedly the better motivation.

It's also knowing that life isn't a movie and I'm not the leading man. And even if it were, I wouldn't want to be. Have you ever noticed characters who AREN'T the lead have so much freedom? The lead can only act a certain way, live a certain kind of life. The lead has to be either winning or losing, they can't be just getting by. They can't have bad habits or flaws. They have to be with their love interest, have to get that happily ever after and the story has to be all about them. We've become conditioned to see life as a movie we're the main character in.
And I don't WANT to be that lead character. I don't want to pressure myself that way. I don't want to feel I have to punish myself for not having movie star looks or being a prodigy. I don't want to feel like I have to be in competition with everyone else for the Best Life award. (When and where DO they hand those out, by the way?) If you want those things, I want to be the supporting actor who backs you up and seems wise but really is just there to have fun.
We cast ourselves in these stupid roles, then we get mad at ourselves for not being able to live up to them and mad at the world for not following the script. And what roles have we chosen? Well, for guys, it seems we all have to be James Bond. And I don't know if you noticed, but James Bond is kind of a dick. Not that women have it any better (their choice is only one Hepburn or the other), in fact they have it worse. Why? Because us guys decided we all had to be James Bond. And James Bond can't be seen with a fat girl, so you're gonna have to lose weight. And James Bond can't be upstaged by his own love interest, so you're gonna have to be worse at and paid less for everything we do. You're gay? Lesbians only exist for James Bond to fix with his cock, so if you're not gay for our benefit, you don't exist. And don't you go opening your legs for anyone or enjoy it if you, because the only one who gets to enjoy sex is James Bond, and that's us.
If you search, you can find someone who has actually fulfilled that James Bond role us guys set for ourselves. His name is Charlie Sheen. And I don't know about you, but I really don't want to be Charlie Sheen. Seriously, THAT is who modern life encourages us to be. We're supposed to be Charlie Sheen and women are supposed to be his 'goddesses'. So isn't it good to know there are so much better things in life to be?

...I think watching Angel might have been a part of it too. (Shut up. They killed Spike in the last ep of Buffy, it was the only way to make him not dead.) Watching Angel and going "Oh God, is that what I've been like?! That's boring and depressing and teenage and UGH!" Again, I think I'd rather have been more like any of the characters who actually looked like they were having fun. Mind you, I didn't brood like him. I've had depression issues, which is something I'll always take seriously, but I'm not a victim of mental illness. I'm a survivor of it and I'd rather live like one. And I'm free from it, that constant self-consciousness. Like it would be the worst thing ever if someone caught me dancing to Talking Heads at work (Someone did. World didn't end). Or if I sing along to something, people are going to discover I'm tone deaf. Which, I suppose, if it's the worst thing people think about me then I'm getting off easy.

It's funny, you know.
Every so often I think "Okay, I'm done learning, ready for the world now." And then I'll learn something else and realize "Ooh, good thing I learned that, because if I'd gone out not knowing that, things would have been MUCH harder. But now that I know that, I really am ready now." Ah, but there's so many things to learn. Life to this point has been one big long education in how to undo being a screwed-up, bullied kid. Lesson worth learning, I guess.

In less introspective news of me, I beat Dragon Age 2 but can't talk about it because some friends haven't played it yet. And the one other person I know who IS playing it is behind me. So, since getting my evenings back (Oh! Evenings! I'm planning on taking an evening course in Japanese. I know Chinese will be more useful after the inevitable takeover, but knowledge of Japanese is more urgent. I need to learn how to say things like "No, she's not my girlfriend, we're not a couple, just friends!" in Japanese by autumn.) I've been watching Community, upon [livejournal.com profile] fragmentedsky's urging. I guess it's finally time to give a American comedy show a chance again after Scrubs going all babies and stupid and pointless, in that order.
And you know, it's pretty good. The writing's sharp, but not "Haw, haw, look how witty we are!" sharp, since it balances out with so much wonderful silly. As I suspected, Chevy Chase is mostly unscripted. And Ponder Stibbons John Oliver is great in everything. Oh, and I think I've fallen in love with Alison Brie. Fallen hard. I think this might be it, you know, I think she might be The One. I've picked out a ring and everything. See, it must be love, why else would I be having such Hinckley thoughts?

And so finishes yet another of my novellas journal entries.
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December 2011

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