7 Feb 2007

Selkirk Sutra

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remember those innocent times when you’d drink just to stay alive? drink in theory, not necessarily reality, millions of pressure-cooked words on hypothetical intoxication… now the intoxication is in my coat pocket. it’s real and more powerful than words, a bottle of jagermeisster, i think i’ll need it to get through this job fare. fair?

i’m back at the college, holed up in the library without the guilt-blanketing quilt of drudgery, because this is a one-time thing. so i’d better do something, but i thought i should rest, and eat, and take a drink first, in my own horribly nostalgic library hole, where years ago i would sleep with my head on the cubicle desk, and wake up and write, and rub at acne sores, anything to avoid study.

a lot has happened since, and i have little use for the words i wrote then. but i guess they’re not totally worthless, they did a good job of documenting my delusions, and being back here makes me realize how close to the surface the paranoia always is, and how i could latch onto those old things in a heartbeat, with the right triggers.

i grabbed a norman mailer book off the shelf so it would look like i was involved in a book and not this lunacy. “the naked and the dead”.


too many people at this damned job fair. throngs, balloons. and the whole venue perversely reminds me of the quantum experiment, where i went on a rampage with materializing handguns, for no good reason, jesus. i’m scared to go back there. maybe i should drink some jager first. i’m sure it can be arranged.


back here amid college kids, college grown-ups, all seeming so committed, putting my glorious slack into clenched contrast. i remember how i could escape into discordian philosophy and the church of bob when a simple statement of “spoon!” could be the funniest thing i’ve ever read, lack of context being the root of hilarity. it was the duress that could wring from me hysterical laughter, the most brash hack-and-slash route to escaping the vines of confining society. the driver complex. for a fantasy video card. still never rendered my pyramids, except for a month-long love affair with vistapro 3.0. it’s not what the pros use. but i should have got into that line, 3d rendering, i had a passion for it once. it almost seemed purposeful, to advance the cause of virtual reality technology, in my own small way. i should be rendering buildings for grand theft auto games, with auto-collapsible wire frame skeletons, in polygons. and i could do my own texture mapping, cause i have aesthetic sensibilities to go with the technical ones. yeah, but i don’t think they have that booth at the job fair.

ran into chera in the library. i heard “hey john”, turned around and she was standing up from her study table with that beatific smile of hers and saying hi. is she one of those naturally serotonin rich people? oh jesus, why must i ruin everything with chemical analysis? it was nice, she is so warm. introduced herself to me, as is her habit, since i always seem so lost and confused when she greets me. i got a hug before i left, she told me to call sometime. then i drew rainbows, squiggles, overlapping perpendicular waveforms, noodles in a cup, and a bomb blasting celestial profusion in a symmetrical arc.


emotions will be the death of me. i’m wondering if i should send that letter. i’m not on anything, so it’s not a state bounded issue. it’s fairly normal, just slightly friendly, but i’m wondering whether i’ll regret it later, like that phone call. i got another complex to add to the catalog: something about unrequited social initiative. i know how insane it all is.


mother’s little helper.
tobias’ little fantasy

so the crowds thinned enough for me to poke my head down to the job fair. all the scary high school kids, glazed with malevolent innocence, left on their busses. it’s a little more cozy. i walk up to the pacific insight booth. three young healthy happy looking people – two girls and a guy. beautiful people, but i feel weird approaching. they don’t exactly look like they’re waiting for anybody, nah, they’re too cool for that, they’re pacific insight, they’ve got benefits, the benefit of the doubt, that i’m worthy.

still, i break the silence and one of the beautiful people looks up from her laptop.

“so, i’m just wondering, how do i get hired at pacific insight?” i say the company name, rather than “here”, or “with you guys”, because i’d rather sound like a clunky android than be presumptuous. they take my droid statement literally, and talk to me about resumes and online applications. i say no, i mean what skills are you looking for?

ah, at last, cracking the shell of that cryptic corporate distance – they say experience in manufacturing, and team work. okay, solid information, finally. solid enough to know i have no shot unless i get experience working at the factory that won’t hire me unless i have experience, the great tautological circle of the unemployable.

so i decide i’ve done enough, head outside for another drink of jager, thinking about getting a degree in electrical engineering or some crazy thing like that, so i can join the elite club, those beautiful spokespeople behind laptops, a job, what every good serf wants.

outside, freezing, i find a filthy alcove under concrete stairs, dead leaves, bleached trash, overflowing butt can, structurally unsound chairs that are classroom outcasts. i wonder if i can drink here, the parking lot is close by… oh hell, it’s february, i could smoke crack under here and no one would notice.

okay, that’s enough herb liquor. the bottle barely fits back in my coat pocket.


back to the library, waiting for 4:00. i pick up a michael parenti book from the ‘60s – he notes that while america is going nuts worrying about how communism is going to take over the world, anti-communism already has. then he goes on to describe this unrecognized ideology. i’m finding reading easier than usual, after a few drinks. it allows me to be swept up in the words and not get hung up on semantics. it keeps me from feeling the need to question the precise intent of the author all the time, and what everything ought to mean. but of course, my critical facilities are blunted as a result of this. still, with less hang ups, i take in more information.


val’s back on the bus. i ran into her at the stop on my way here. our eyes met, then i said hi, which seemed to relieve her, seemed she wanted to talk. a rare case where my initiative paid off, we had a good chat. seems she’s studying to teach english in china. one of those. she’s the same, enjoyable.

back to nelson we go. i’ve filled a few pores in my brain with herb liquor. it does take the edge off a bit. maybe if i get that valium script i’m hoping to score from the good doc, i can take a pill and a shot and function in society. in these strained, unstructured times, my maladaptive neuroses regain control. it’s ridiculous, i should just get on with my life. but it’s february, and things seem really bleak, so can i just chalk it up to lack of sunlight and wait for the miracle? shift the burden to my future self? i had to leave my jager with the bus driver. better remember to get it back. it’s a charmed beverage, one of those things you leave in the woods as an offering to yetis.


stare down the sniper’s gun
maybe this time, hope a flower barrels out of the maw


Jenn D said...

Just wanted to say that this post was a brilliant read - reminded me (and I hope you take this as a compliment) of some of Douglas Coupland's earlier stuff - I mean, whatever, I'm not really literary enough to know what I'm talking about, but I'm just trying to convey that I enjoyed reading the post - not what you were going through, but in a way that I could relate to and laugh at/appreciate the scene. Great stuff - today's post too.

Hector the Crow said...

thanks jenn - yeah, i don't mind the coupland comparison at all - and i see what you mean, now that you mention it - never occured to me before, but i probably have taken something from his work - "microserfs", and "miss wyoming"... oh, and "hey nostradamus", i read that one too

Tasha Klein said...

this is hilarious! i couldn't even just sit and laugh, i had to get up and walk back and forth.

'Ran into Chera in the library. I heard “Hey John”, turned around and she was standing up from her study table with that beatific smile of hers and saying hi. Is she one of those naturally serotonin rich people? Oh Jesus, why must I ruin everything with chemical analysis? It was nice, she is so warm. Introduced herself to me, as is her habit, since I always seem so lost and confused when she greets me. I got a hug before I left, she told me to call sometime. Then I drew rainbows, squiggles, overlapping perpendicular waveforms, noodles in a cup, and a bomb blasting celestial profusion in a symmetrical arc.'

damn! that is so good!

Hector the Crow said...

hey tasha - glad you enjoyed :)

cutoff - Cutoff from nothing, it's okay, there was nothing there anyway - wallfacer, door closing, wallfacer project... let's cut ...