Wednesday, March 10, 2004

Matters of my Mind

I took the afternoon off to relax by the water and enjoy a good book (Lila) in this beautiful weather we are experiencing. The view of the river fit with the story of piloting a sailboat down the Hudson river. I ended up walking the halls of the CEGEP I attended back in the early nineties. Come to think of it I graduated almost ten years ago. I felt as alone and alien in the place as I did back then. I also ran into the owner of the bar I had my last significant drunken experience at last fall. He was opening another bar, an Irish pub, named for his mother's maiden name which happens to also be the maiden name of my cousin's wife. I noticed that I have this habit of looking away from people when talking to them and that I have a strong aversion to sentences that start with "you know what you should do?".

The looking away probably has something to do with the fact that I tend to speak about myself with preprepared chunks of information rather than a dynamic flow. Maybe I don't like to experience a persons reaction to what I am saying while I am saying it because I know that in the past I have had a tendency to cater to their reactions. I tend to not enjoy talking about myself because I fear criticism and get a bad taste in my mouth from advice, regardless of the good intentions. With all my lip service to open-mindedness my own perspective is the last thing I wish to discuss with anyone. It's not that my mind is closed but rather I feel that trying to describe a static picture of its contents tends to help close it. I think speaking has an effect of somehow setting things in stone for me. The dynamic nature of my own thought is easy to accept but exposing that flux to others produces some anxiety thus ideas that have been shared tend to become entrenched. Some people have this tendancy to want me to explain myself when that is exactly what I am trying not to do. It is easy to forget that you are trying to eliminate a pattern of behavior when that pattern is expected of you. It is hard enough that you expect it of yourself.

I stopped by a little coffee shop and overheard some teenagers having a conversation about which came first, the chicken or the egg. There was a day when their simple juvenile arguments would have enraged me but not today. I was just happy to hear youth beginning to examine the intellectual paradoxes inherent in the cause and effect perceptual framework imposed by consensus reality.

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