The Wanderlust Misfit

Don't Run From Anything, Run Towards Everything

Archive for the month “May, 2012”

Speaking Open

I was walking to Bernie’s for their dollar-fifties, pleasantly strolling and whistling The Doors (who else to whistle in sunny spring?). Along the sidewalks in Columbus, especially around the campus, are four sided billboard signs for the public to post miscellaneous notices. I check these frequently, being always with the open eye for things to do, and I noticed a notice for a free ‘start of the summer’ concert at the Columbus Commons, a public park in the city center where they’ve been building a new stage. ‘First concert on the new stage!’ yelled the post and I got real excited because I have this thing with free concerts, I can actually go to them and all. But then I saw the date, Friday May 25th. ‘Fucking A!” I yelled out, and this little squat lady walking by gave me the curious eyebrow. I should’ve said to her ‘it’s the day I’m leaving!’ explained to her the free show is when I wouldn’t be in town. I wanted to and I thought of it quick enough for it to be understood, but there came the ego, or the super-ego rather, being inhibitions engrained by society. But I’m getting there: I can talk freely, thoughts unchained, speaking my mind, if you will. I was whistling loud the whole time walking and I had no qualms about my frustrated outburst of expletives. But then I though. And my frontal lobe, so carved by society, filled my head with doubt and seized my voice. But it’s fleeting, that mist of uncertainty that forces the processes of logical reason, and inhibition.

Should I Stay or Should I Go

When I went to New Jersey last month I learned my friends from home were going to be spending a week at the Outer Banks in North Carolina. My friend Greg’s girlfriend has parents that own a house down there, right near the beach and fully equipped with hot tub, in-ground pool, and all the wrap-around deck you could ever need. I told them I would definitely be there.

Transportation? Not the usual. I’ve decided to save myself the $200 and instead of taking bus or plane, I’m going to hitchhike it. I’ve never attempted this before but ever since reading On The Road I’ve been anxious to get out there. There’s something romantic about hitchhiking, something all too American — the need to feel free. I’ve gotten myself real excited about it, about sticking my thumb out for the first time, completely alone and nothing to get by with but for my wits, about catching that first ride, about waiting for hours on the side of hot sticky road.

I’m leaving Friday morning, hoping to get there sometime Saturday. For a place to spend the night I’m going to get a sleeping bag that I can attach right to backpack, and I figure I’ll buy this stuff at the military surplus store at the end of my road. Get myself a big canvas backpack, a sleeping bag, a canteen and a pocket knife. I’ll pack some fruit and trailmix, wrap my laptop in my clothes if I decide to bring it, and a few notebooks. Everyone’s going to get there Saturday though I’m not positive what time, I need to call Greg up. Anyway, I’m completely revved to spend a week drinking something reckless with my favorite friends, lay out on the beach and enjoy the beautiful weather and read and write lots. And I want to meet at least one girl down there, that’s a goal.

My dilemma lately has been whether or not to spend the summer there. I wouldn’t have much of a problem finding work nor a place to stay, and I’d have a whole week to get set-up. It’s the first official week of summer so I’m betting there would be plenty of opportunities for employment and shelter. I could have a nice easy summer saving up money and writing, enjoying the beach and the beautiful sun, cool water, and find myself a summer fling, one of the foreign girls that always flood the place for the summer.

On the other hand, the Outer Banks are rather boring, flat. It’s all families down for a relaxing week at the beach. There’s one bar. Two liquor stores. And everything’s spread out — it’s all huge houses spread far apart by the standards of usual beach communities. Since no one stays there for more than a week at the most, I wouldn’t have much of a selection of people to hang around. Whereas here in Columbus, there’s a lot going on, always is, and the plethora of like-minded intellectual misfits is comforting, and exciting. Columbus is where things are happening, where ideas are spreading and discontent simmering. The Outer Banks is one long afternoon nap. My decision has been between action and relaxation.

There hasn’t been much keeping me in Columbus aside from my job (a very tenuous reason for staying) and a few acquaintances. My manager at DP Dough has put together a canoeing trip where we close the store for a day and everyone gets drunk and has a great time floating down the river. I was the first to sign up for the trip, I was excited when I heard about it and me and Derek, my manager, have been trying to figure out a day when we both are off so we can go to the bar. The canoe trip is after I leave for North Carolina.

Up till this weekend I was steadfast on spending my summer in the Outer Banks. At DP Dough last night me and one of the delivery drivers, Chris, struck up a conversation. I’d been browsing around blogs for tips on hitchhiking (http://hitchtheworld.com/hitchhiking-tips/) and left the browser up on one of the store’s computers. Chris saw it and we struck up a conversation about traveling, where he’d been, where I was from, all that. He’s the same age as me, turns out he doesn’t go to college, and better yet, we share the same distaste for the limited offerings of society. It was a conversation that started something. We hit on everything from literature to reasons to travel to the benefits of not owning a television. I told him I’d split from school on 11.11.11. and he went on saying he doesn’t think of coincidences as anything trivial, all a part of recognizing some pattern in the Universe — also his birthday is 11/11 — he thought we were supposed to be having this conversation and I said I was real excited about it too.

That’s the truth too. A whole reason for my taking off the way I did was because I want a group of friends who are like-minded, intelligent and cool and most of all fed up with society and revved up to do something about it. He’s got a few other friends around town he said were real cool too, that I would get along with, and this is where I am on my little summertime dilemma: in the Outer Banks I have a slim chance of meeting any real cool people I could run around with while in Columbus I’m starting to make these sorts of friends. Anyway, we hit it off real well agreeing on everything and he invited me hiking in Hocking Hills tomorrow. He said he’s going to try and get another one of his friends to come along, we’ll see what happens. We’re heading out at eleven tomorrow. Also, my manager and his wife are in Hocking Hills right now, enjoying a mini-vacation for their anniversary. And from what I’ve heard them say about it they’re doing nothing but sitting around drinking the whole time, so I’m fixing me and Chris can stop by and have a few drinks with them.

My plan now is to hitch it to the Outer Banks, spend the week, come back and start searching for a new job because the hours at DP Dough have burned whatever shred of social life I had. I’m writing to publish now, finding contests and general submission publications and writing whatever they need fiction stories about. I’ll spend the summer doing that, making friends, and saving up for the end of summer, because at the end of August/ September I want to hitchhike clear across the country and go see Ali in Los Angeles. I’m hoping Chris would want to come too, seeing that he’s fond of hitchhiking, minimalism, and the fringes of society. Also he was telling me about this real hip town (listen to me using words like ‘hip’, sheesh) in North Carolina by the Tennessee border called Asheville where he’s planning on going after summer some time. Sooo, maybe I can convince him to go out to LA for a couple weeks, then come back and go right to Asheville. I’d rather hitchhike around with people than by myself.

Heard the Old Crow Medicine Show for the first time and decided to learn how to play the harmonica. But it has to be a good harmonica I buy, not a cheap plastic thing because I want to get real good at it and play screeching soul real gritty and bluesy on the side of the road while I wait for rides.

We were all in the living room 6am sun rising with molly and I came upon the idea that the reason for anxious running is a pent-up cathargy, the precipitate that needs to explode — that furious load — blowing wild crazy energy across the globe for passionate feasting  on the love for life. But it’s the same thing that blocks my writing, it’s an urge to break free but it’s the U. Will trying to burst, as if that were the precipitate! The desperate urge to burst past the wall of ego that ego built around to suppress the id, the id bursting free — that’s how to write. Maybe. But the best way: tonight molly did it, so did drinking the other night on the roof. But beyond acid!  Beyond the lubrication! How to step without positioning. Live without an ego? For then where is liberty?

The ego comes to fruition by breaking from the id, now the id is trying to break from the ego, and possible this’ll bend back and forth forever. Maybe. Maybe I just need to find that balance, the center, freedom. Maybe. It’s all very much up in the air.

When everyone had stayed up all night from the molly Greg had brought out his paints and Brian painted a picture of a bottle, a rather good depiction. Anyway, he’d been saying as Greg was looking for paint brushes how he was real creative, he was just a creative person and that was his thing, that art was something he was good at. Someone said that having a knack for art was something you had to have inside you, to be born with. I asked if he painted a lot he said no, not really the time nor the impetus. So he began painting and for a bit the conversation was about painting, encouragement and praise for his work. Later, Steve’s girlfriend came over and she too began to paint and seeing all of this creativity really got going in me the urge to create my own work from the energy of the evening. I thought briefly of running upstairs to grab my journal but I decide against it. What would I write? I couldn’t sit there and write a story, too much thought and concentration must go into it, too much planning and weaving. That’s what I thought for a moment anyway, then realized I could and should sketch a brief scene, write the painting, an idea in a frame. But I never did. I’m not sure why. Later on while everyone was standing out front I felt a brief disconnect from the action, the conversation they were having I hadn’t any input, probably the conversation was sports. That’s when I decided to run upstairs and grab my journal, I’d had an idea and the moment was perfect to scribble for a little while, I wouldn’t miss anything because for the time I was outside of the action, the conversation. I sat on the floor beneath the window in the living room and wrote the first paragraph at the top here. People were walking in and out but I paid no attention, dove into my own little world and hid there for a bit. Greg walked over at some point. Huh? I said, not having heard what he’d said. ‘I called you ‘my little writer’ and I thought you might want a hit.’ I was sitting on the floor cross-legged, my notebook in my lap and he passed me a bowl. I hadn’t thought of it like that, but I was really floored by his impression, being that little writer in the corner while everyone else goes about the schedules of life, like Kerouac in the Dharma Bums sitting beneath a tree by himself while a bonfire party burns below. ‘Hey man, I really appreciate you thinking of me.’ I was, it’s not often someone hands you a bowl without being prompted and so the gesture was really something. But more still about what he said, the image stuck to me and it hasn’t left my mind. I’ve came to understand, to a certain extent anyway, how people have been seeing me all these years, as the kid everyone has to look out for. And it’s always that feeling of child-like innocence, such easy and simple love that I get when I’m tripping, or rolling. In hindsight I realize people have spoken of this before, but Greg put it so simple and succinct: my little writer — the kid in the corner who will never learn what he wants nor how to achieve and so he gives it all up and decides to write for simple pleasure. Continuing about Greg, he’s absolutely the sort of people I want to surround myself with. Get this, he’s thinking about moving to northern California, live in a cabin in the woods and grow his own food and pot, brew his own beer, completely self-sufficient and if he’s Japhy I’ll be happy as hell to stay the little writer. Continuing, that morning he’d gone upstairs to fetch chairs, taken the one from my room. I noticed the next day that my towel was hung over the window (I use my towel as a shade) but so was my t-shirt, I’d hung up the t-shirt but not the towel. It dawned on me then that I’d left the towel on the chair and that Greg must’ve hung it over the window. But why wouldn’t he just toss it on my bed? Because he knows I hang it over the window and he was simply spreading possibilities. He’s a real receptive dude.

When we’d gone to the 7/11 to get beer me and Greg left everyone else at the apartment, not really caring. I’d been asking him for about an hour, let’s take more lines and he’d said yeah definitely, let’s run and get beer first though. But then it was distraction after distraction and finally when we got there it turned out neither of us had grabbed our id’s. So I ran back. I knocked on the door real loud kept slapping at it until someone opened it and I said ‘There’s been a situation!’ without stopping quickly running upstairs, grabbing my driver’s license and bolting back out the door leaving all the kids wired paranoid wondering what the hell was going on. I ran all the way back. Greg and the kid who worked the counter were standing outside. I was panting. ‘They should give molly to cross-country runners. I felt like I could run miles.’ We got the beer and Greg invited the kid behind the counter, Justin, to come drink beer and snort lines with us when he got off at eight. Him and Justin had been talking while I was running, turned out Justin didn’t smoke weed, only did molly and coke. Justin did come over and we were all still wide awake at the time. He’s 27 and in school, had taken a few years off to figure things out, now works 50 hours a week plus being a full time student. He hadn’t been able to sleep in 48 hours. No wonder he only did molly and coke, dark raccoon rings round his eyes. Listens to a lot of punk, emo style. I asked him what was up with the no weed policies and he explained, simply didn’t like the high, that there was so much else to be doing than sitting around stoned. Respectable position I told him and we fist-bumped all that. He was a cool dude, a lot different from the crowd we had on molly but so I was I, though I feel like he got a different impression of me, that of the jock ‘bro’ type. Anyway, we got to talking towards the end of the morning, after everyone else had left, Steve for work, Brian for class, and it was just me greg and justin left. He said he thought of me as the goofy kid, but he wasn’t meaning it in a bad way, and this all comes back to that childish mood. That’s the Universal, children.

At one point during this molly rolling morning I started talking about college, that it was broken and a few of the guys, Brian most notably, took this the wrong way, rubbing their faces in exasperation saying ‘Nooo, dude’. I forget the rest of the conversation but I don’t mean that college is worthless or that it’s stupid to be in college — that would be the last thing I’d say or believe. I think that the college system is broken, that even though it still works for plenty it is a system plagued with problems, most prominently the problem that it has become a system. What I fear is that college has become the only way to be successful in life. We can’t have a free society if we must pay dozens of thousands of dollars for a someone’s signature before society will view us as intelligent and capable citizens, before we can be happy and wealthy and raise wonderful families. That’s all.

Struggles

Writing has become a job. I have taken to view it as something that I must do, my work, and that is the antithesis of creativity. I have to release myself from the boundaries of ego and only write because I want to, not because I have to in order to reach a goal. And here I would like to make a distinction of categories of desire: there is desire of the id, that which you must do, and desire of the ego, that which you want to do. Live without wants, and only with musts — I can only write when I feel the animalistic need to, not the egoistic motivation that strives men for success.

A Mid-Morning’s Roll

I’ve been trying to write the events of the other day, how we all came to be walking around campus waiting for Mick to finishing pissing on a reserved parking sign while teachers and students walked by and we kept laughing because of the absurdity it was to be in that situation on molly at nine in the morning. But I keep running into roadblocks, thoughtblocks, whatever. I can’t sort out the events as they happened in order and that’s only served as an obstacle to over-coming this ‘writer’s block’. I thought writing about our mid-morning stroll while rolling on molly would serve the perfect catalyst of a story to hurl me over the writer’s block, but it hasn’t worked. When I got off work the day of the trip I was too exhausted and slept straight until work the next day. I was going to write as soon as I got off of work but I couldn’t, too worn out from the trip so I decided to save it for tomorrow. Tomorrow came and instead of writing I slept all day in bed again. I woke later than I’d plan, rolled around and fell back to sleep, woke up and showered, ate breakfast, was still tired and went back to sleep, and instead of writing anything I slept all the way till 10 p.m. when I had to go in to work. So then at 4:30 when I got back I chilled out for an hour and half then gave writing a shot. The shot didn’t leave the barrel, or else shot into my foot. I got stuck and depressed and now I’m lonely and I hate having this nocturnal schedule, things need to change. i can’t stay nocturnal it’s fucking driving me crazy. I can’t write, I don’t sleep regularly, I never see anyone outside of work, I don’t have friends I can regularly hangout with and I hardly even see my roommate at that. I’m lonely still, in need of friends!! The other morning rolling with everyone was amazing, if only because it showed me how much I need other people, I can’t live this alone, and to be able to feel the flow one needs friends with whom to be open and excited about life with. I want to bash my head in.

Indifference

New rule: If I’m not writing I’m drinking. At least some extent, or otherwise loose and spacey minded. The point being if I’m not writing a world, I’ll just go and trip the fuck out of my mind instead.

The government should do nothing but pay for education and national armed services, for defense only. Abolish the Congress, create a House of Governors. There is no reason that the governors of states should not represent their constituents in the National Legislative Branch. They can do it better, more directly and swiftly. Congress isn’t supposed to do that much in the first place, nor the President. But we still need representation to foreign sovereignties,  so allow the President to remain in place as a figurehead.

The fact that the Senate has let the student loan plan fail, which then allows interest rates on federal student loan subsidies to double, and is a major reason why college students loath the government, is a wonderful reason why the Federal Government shouldn’t be meddling with what are, 100%, private contracts and institutions. I completely agree that the right to an education is something we must never short-hand, but there is a difference between primary and secondary education and it is only primary education that each child is legally entitled.

Perhaps then what is considered primary education should be redefined, to include at least the majority of General Education Classes college students often waste up to two years on. If we were to add even a year to highschool we could reduce time spent in secondary education by up to 50%. This saves money for the student by reducing how many semesters they have to pay for, obviously, but it also reduces the amount of money colleges and universities must spend on faculty, which will lower expenditures, and these savings will be transferred to student tuition costs. Plus, a student can go and learn exactly what he wants to do with his life (after of course he makes up his mind), and not have to spend time learning subjects benign to his career track, because these subjects will have already been learned in highschool.

Also, I’ve decided that to open a category to document my reactions and thoughts to current events, reading news articles and writing responses in a category titled… Current Events. Also, double-time also, I’m going to keep the blog going and stop stopping like that. Who cares if it doesn’t go anywhere, it’s a way for me to practice writing because the only way to learn to write well is to write lots, and who the hell are you, anyhow? I don’t know you, nor am I completely sure you exist. The illusion of obscurity is relenting of inhibitions: The illusion of worthlessness is relenting of inhibitions: The illusion of nihilism is releasing of doubt: Dionysus is freedom.

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