Monday, September 1, 2008

Oh, poor me.

It's far too easy to focus on the negatives. They overpower the positives without effort. I think it's because people are inherently selfish. No matter how much good they have in their life, they always want just that little bit more, just so everything can be "perfect."

I want a bit more money so I can afford to buy comics, or I want this girl to like me as much as I like her, or I wish I could be in Rome instead of Seattle.

Those are just some of the examples that run through my mind at night. I never think about how lucky I am that I already own 1,000 + comics, or that I've been in relationships with girls who were head-over-heels for me (too much, even), or that Seattle is a pretty damn cool city that many people would give the world to live by.

I guess it's just human nature.

Living in America, Part 2

The view from my balcony consists of a paved alley, four garage doors, and another balcony.


and the top of a tree.

Thought for the night: 8/31/08

If a group of men got together, wrote, and performed "The Penis Monologues," they would be mercilessly ridiculed.

A random thought about The Iliad

I think most people misinterpret "The Iliad." I know Hollywood did ("Troy," anyone?). Homer's epic isn't about Achilles' greatness, or power, or fall. It's about Achilles' weakness and how it leads to his fall. No, not his heel. His heel was his fleshly weakness, yes, but not his true weakness. It was Achilles' rage that ultimately lead to his downfall.

The Robert Fagles translation of "The Iliad" is my favorite for many reasons, the biggest of which is his strong focus on that theme.

The first lines of the Fagles translation read:

"Rage - Goddess, sing the rage of Peleus' son Achilles,
murderous, doomed, that cost the Achaeans countless losses,
hurling down to the House of Death so many sturdy souls,
great fighters' souls, but made their bodies carrion,
feasts for the dogs and birds,
and the will of Zeus was moving toward its end.
Begin, Muse, when the two first broke and clashed,
Agamemnon lord of men and brilliant Achilles.

Very blunt. "The Iliad" is a tragedy about a flawed hero, much like "Hamlet." It's unfortunate that too many see it as a swashbuckling adventure. Thanks for that, Brad Pitt.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Nicotine Hourglass

It takes two good cigarettes to write a poem.
Three means it's taken too long; the creative burst is gone.
Scrap it.
One means it hasn't been long enough; there's not enough substance in the words that have been penned.
Scrap it.
Two is just right. Enough time to fully create. Not long enough to fill in loose ends with valueless dribble.
Sometimes, though, on a crisp Summer night, when the stars shine in just such a way,
It takes four good cigarettes to write a poem.
And in that case,
All bets are off.

Nothing isn't Nothing

"Nothing really matters,
Anyone can see.
Nothing really matters.
Nothing really matters to me."

- Queen, "Bohemian Rhapsody"

Nothing really matters. I think it's the impulsive reaction of a lot of people my age. I know it is for me. When someone asks me if something is wrong, or what's the matter, my instinctual response is to say "nothing."

In reality, that could not be further from the truth. But I have found that saying "nothing" is a good way to shut people out. And to shut them up.

I do this for a lot of reasons. One is because actually talking to someone about something weighing on my mind is an admission to myself that something is not quite right. Which I don't want to do.

Another is because, frankly, I'm scared it will hurt more to talk about than it already does to not talk about.

What I've recently (as in, tonight) realized is that saying "nothing" is unfair to those who care about me.

Usually, your friends and family can tell when something is not quite right. I know mine can. Saying "nothing" might shut them up, but it does not allay their worries that something is wrong.

On the flip side, it may be unfair of them to present themselves as help for a problem in which I have asked no help for.

I think, however, on most occasions, they are simply presenting themselves as a sounding board for me to let out my issues, not to find solutions for them. Their intentions are not intrusive.

I'm going to try and do a better job of not shutting them out of my mind. Because they love me. And I think I'll feel better for it.

Friday, August 29, 2008


Seven billion.
Such an enormous figure.
It can fall by a few hundred, or thousand, or hundred thousand;
You won't blink an eye.
You can't tell the difference.
It can fall by one;
Your world comes crashing down.
It always falls by one to someone.