Bad Acid and ‘The Road Paved with Madness’
Writing did not go well today. I sat at the coffee shop and wrote only a couple of paragraphs, spending most of the time editing through the previous chapter. The problem was that I couldn’t get my head into it. I’m at the part of the story when things start to get, weird. Chaotic. Maddening.
Some people call it the flow, others God’s Will. Whatever the name prescribed it’s all the openness, the macrocosm, the Universal Will, and I’m at the part of the book when I become absolved into all this.
The whole point of the story, and indeed, hitchhiking, is the openness. To hitchhike with any amount of success you have to follow the flow and live by coincidence, taking things as they come and talking with as many people as you possibly can, being completely open and honest with everyone and speaking to them as if they were your best friend or closest confidant — this is you how you find rides. But dangers reside in this, because when you dive into the flow and absolve yourself into the Universal Will you lose your self, literally: by blowing yourself open to the Universal you abandon your Individual, your ego and your self; you become secondary, lost and helpless in the currents without the means to keep afloat.
The part of the story I’m at is when I’m riding with a certain individual and the two of us go fully to the flow. And the only way I can describe this is by likening it to an acid trip: everything glows and all you see and experience is wildly new and wonderful and the smallest things will get you going, throwing your head into spinning ecstasy and the world around you and every word spoken is joyfully ecstatic. But this turned for the worst. And this ‘worst’? Well, the only way I can describe that is an acid trip gone horribly wrong.
Once we absolved ourselves into the flow, that’s when we lost control.
When you absolve yourself into the Universal Will you abandon your Individual Will, and without a balance of both you haven’t any Free Will, no means of controlling the world around you or the events that shape your destiny. That’s when you start to drown. What acid does is dissolve your ego, and this is why everyone who’s ever taken acid feels so damn lovely and connected with everyone they’re with and with everything around them. — The ‘bad’ acid trip is the ego fighting this dissolution.
And this is why I couldn’t write: it’s scary. It’s frightening. And I don’t want to submerge myself in this mindset, which is what I must do to write this truly, when I’m about to go hitchhiking again. I don’t want to leave to go hitchhiking with that awful feeling of helplessness because setting out with that mindset is certainly going to exacerbate it. Feeling helpless on the road means I will be helpless, means I won’t have any control and that something terrible will inevitably come about and plunge me into ever deeper helplessness.
I’ve decided to put off writing the rest of the book until I successfully get out to California. There I’ll have some certainty — shelter and a place to sleep and food to eat and I won’t have to worry about losing control and I’ll be able to write truly and well. If I work hard and well it should only take me a couple of days to finish this second draft. Then, while I’m back home for the holidays I can rewrite the whole damn thing and be satisfied with it and put it online. The title is going to be ‘The Road Paved with Madness’ and I’ll have it online for e-readers and in PDF for anyone to download for free.
I’m off now to spend a final night with all the friends I’ve made since living in Columbus and when I wake up hungover tomorrow I have a lot of preparing to do. I need to find myself a new pair of shoes, a canteen and a poncho. Then I have to figure out what I’m going to do with this laptop that I’m currently typing on. I want to have it in California with me so I’m going to see how much it would cost to send it out there. If it turns out to be too pricey I’ll get a box, some packaging material and pack it up nice and tight and wrap it all with a few plastic bags and stick it in my knapsack. The laptop’s small and light so I’m not worried about it being too cumbersome to travel with, just worried that I’ll have to keep worrying about it so that I remember not to toss my knapsack around or drop it while I’m out there.