Thursday, February 11, 2016
I don't give a damn what the history books say about me
I've had some time to think about it and I have decided that I am pro compost and anti mucus, only as I think about it further, as I am obliged to do while writing this pro compost/anti mucus declaration, it occurs to me that mucus provides some really valuable services and, despite the time that went into thinking it, I may need to rescind my original statement.
This evening I discovered that at some point in the seven years or so that I've used this phone, I saved the following text to my drafts:
"I don't give a damn what the history books say about me because they're probably going to be wrong."
I cannot speak for the state or the mindset I was in when I wrote this, nor where nor when. I have no memory of punching these words into the keypad. It seems a bit presumptuous of me, to assume that I will end up in history books in the first place. My life is remarkable but only in the sense that all of life is remarkable; not the kind of remarkable that gets written into history books. Perhaps I meant it more as a rallying cry: "Dance like nobody's watching," and all that. Don't worry about what other people think because they don't know you anyway, and all that. Was I drunk? The statement seems to imply a certain level of defensiveness, which I find unnecessary, because I believe there is nothing to defend. Or perhaps somewhere I read something about myself in a history book after all, and I found the contents upsetting, and I was trying to comfort myself, because even if nobody else was or ever would be aware of it, I myself knew that the inaccurate content was wrong.
I didn't go to the lit reading tonight after all. At first I felt fine about it, because I was hungry, and staying home meant that I would have time to eat. I was also quite looking forward to taking a bath, and I thought I might do some writing afterward. Now I have eaten and laid in the tub reading for close to an hour. I am wearing clean pajamas and writing on my laptop while Wilson sleeps on my lap on the white chair in the living room. It is a peaceful, uneventful evening, except for the occasional, piercing bouts of regret that I feel for not having attended the lit reading tonight after all.
Trying to explain
There is a cut on the middle finger of my right hand. In addition I have a dozen or so small, dried cuts spread across my knees, the result of Wilson bapping me for attention as I sit at my desk. I have tried to explain to him that I am not covered in nearly as much fur as he is, and consequently what would feel like an inconsequential bap to him, for me quite stings and tears my flesh. So far I do not think he has understood this lesson.
Today it was cold enough that I decided to run inside, at the gym, instead of outside, which is where I usually run.
The wounds in the left side of my cheek are healing quite well but the wound in the right side of my cheek, where they sewed in a few stitches (I opened my eyes, for the first and only time, right as the surgeon was pulling the thread through the wound and up out of my mouth), looks like a relatively large, black hole, and I cannot see into it nor determine where the hole ends. For all I know, if I drop a grain of rice in there it will fall out somewhere near my right pinky toe.
What Lydia Davis was trying to say, I think, is that you can tell two entirely different stories with the exact same words.
I need to buy a new toothbrush.
There is so much to see. This used to make me anxious: How will I ever see it all in this lifetime? Now, I think, I find this liberating. There is no way I will ever see it all in this lifetime.
Suddenly and inexplicably I am overcome with the urge to write banana.
I didn't mean to sound so callous. I'm not here to break hearts.