“I can only write from the porch of my narrow world.” -x
Some people try to stretch everything said and done to include people not intended to be in the commentary. If someone tries to get you to believe that I’m talking about you, please stop and look at the person trying to make a claim. If you think I’m writing about you, there is probably nothing I can say to dissuade you from the idea.
Part of the reason I started this blog was to get my words out, even if imperfectly, so that no one could easily set their record in my regard. This isn’t a two-minute dash to angrily lash at people. It’s a long-term commitment to share some parts of me. When I’m gone, it will be hard for people to attempt to change the nature of who I was. They will try, but these thousands of hours of seriousness and farce found here will drown out the attempt. A person doesn’t just sit down one morning and write hundreds of posts without some motivation. (Even if it is misguided motivation.)
Everyone reading this has their hobbies. Whether it is sports, napping, television, long walks, or any other activity, it translates into time spent in the manner they see fit, even if no observable benefit to them or society will result. Each of us wastes our lives to some degree. Whether writing will result in a better life for me isn’t a real question: it will. Whether I will say stupid things or inadvertently hurt people also is a dumb question: I will.
For those who know me personally, you can’t just accidentally find this blog and start reading. If, by a miracle, that is how you found me, you should know that continuing to read it is a choice. Like any account of a person’s life, my words suffer from the present moment, meaning that a person’s mood at a specific moment can color the tenor and meaning of one’s words. I’m prone to the same ecstasies and sorrows as most other people. A careless synonym can sometimes set a reader’s mind far away from the intended purpose. In the same way that the bible admonishes masters not to overhear their servants, you should know as you read that written words are powerful things, capable of provoking emotions that weren’t intended. They can also unintentionally wound people we love.
Revisionists insist on painting their lives with a soft brush. They’ve even given themselves convincing amnesia about their past. I’ve written a lot about the need to remember that my parents were capable of so much good – when they weren’t at the mercy of alcohol or anger. The violence overshadows that potential. But I don’t walk around whimpering about my horrible childhood, and I don’t use it to justify anything I’ve done. Of course, if I am indeed fooling myself, that could also be stupidity on my part. Whatever stupid or bad things I’ve done are at my own feet. People who know me intimately will tell you that it is almost ‘just’ a horrible story to me. I laugh about it quite often. Not that fake laugh-to-cover-unhealed-wounds laughter, but the authentic, healthy “Can you believe it?” laughing.
Much of my goal each day is to avoid cynicism. Like you, I fail.
I write words to appease whatever drives me to do so.