C a r o l y n ' s D i a r y diary.carolyn.org
|be warned: this is my diary... clb||page 31|
lose the physical awarenesses
let go of thoughts wriggling in from the how spaces
breathe deeply again
"What do you want?" "Do I keep that question or toss it?" Tossed.
it isn't working
open up to the world freely - let go of the fear that holds tight. There is nothing out there to fear anymore. it is gone. You are different.
Old friends sometimes do hurt you on purpose. Let go of them. They are not who you care about anyway.
Life is not a race against old friends, but it can feel that way sometimes. Why does Peter think this way?
Do I want a vibrant family life? Should I work towards that? No.
I am jealous of the old friends only for their having built a social world they like. I do not like theirs, but wish there was one I liked more.
No one asked if she liked the gift. It's features were pointed out to her whenever she tried to say anything, until she too knew how to talk about it. The salesrep had done a good job. Where was the value in it? A cat's face in the artwork? I still do not understand. Love?
time to think again.
Kathleen wanted a baby. In her search for the perfect genes, she met Peter. And Bill. And Robin. And several other qualified donors. Potential donors. In desiring a sperm mixing ceremony, Kathleen might have gone too far. In desiring to be a single mother, she might not have. Today, she has a wonderful x month year. Back then though, she was desparate.
Peter came into my room one day. He had been in his car talking with Kathleen for several hours. His idea was to move into her expensive suburban home, both of us, while she raised their kid. We'd all save on rent, and Kathleen could have her baby by proxy. Never have been opposed to children, Peter felt that he wouldn't be adversely effected.
Citing paternity suits of the future, I objected tohis risking all of our financial future on a woman he barely knew and a child he did not personally care to have. Her one condition was that the child would be hers to raise alone.
Seeing that my future may not be gong inthe way that I was expecting, and being at a crossroads myself anyway, I exploded in anger. Their plan didn't get going. But mine began.
I realized inside that I was relying on too delicate a situation. I needed to live more self-reliantly. I declared loudly that I wanted to go to the United States to continue my studies. I applied assembly line style to 15 schools around Canada and the US. My plan was to move out away from Peter without breaking up with him. I invited him to travel along with me, but refused to be dissuaded from going myself. I declared it to be my turn - I had spent years with him during his horrifying law school days.
And with three really smart offers under my belt, off I went to Carnegie Mellon in Pittsburgh. My emancipation was almost complete. A 5 hour drive from Toronto, Pittsburgh is a lovely city, the nicest place I've ever lived in fact. Richard applied for and got a post doc at the neighbouring University of Pittsburgh, and dropped in once every 2 or 3 weeks for a few days. Part of the plan really.
While there, I had to live on my own wits. I knew noone. I had already finished my Master's back in Canada, but in an area only related to that which I was studying down there - computation and logic. Fun stuff, but difficult.
I went out regularly. I tried to get to know people. I remember going over to a fellow student's for dinner once, Oliver. And having an affair with a prof, a georgeous guy from Serbia. I had the most amazing room in a large old house, shared with four male undergraduates, serious types mostly. And it was a 5 minute walk to campus beside the train tracks.
I acquired theatre tickets and took different people with me to each show. I studied T'ai Chi. I ran for student council. And I was running FSC remotely, flying out now an dthen for sales meetings. Richard and invited the capacity for Internet 6 months before anyone else had heard of it, and we used it a lot to run the business, and to talk with each other. And I ran up phone bills anyway. It was hard.
I shed a lot of tears during that time, and yet perhaps not more than after I came back to Toronto.
I left Pittsburgh for many reasons, but foremost was the pressure from the business - it was taking off, booming. Without me there to run things, I think we wouldn't have it now. So I can't regret giving upthe best time of my life. Almost.
What made Pittsburgh best though was the secret plan I had had to get there. I had resisted absolutely every other person's wants to get there. Noone wanted me to go. Peter, Richard, Tracey and Hella, all thought I was abandoning them to some extent. Funny that I had been, but that I didn't want to break the connections that were there. The plan made me feel that I was in control of my own life. It gave me the strength to stand up for what I wanted. And I got it. I have been happier before. Once. I'd like to be that happy again. Vivid.
I push people away now in the hope that they will give me space to move in myself. And yet, I have no movements to make right now. I have given everything to making FSC move forward, not myself. It is time perhaps to do both. Or at least to move myself once again.
Through Pittsburgh eyes. Thanks Kathleen for helping me look through them.
First can be last if it is everything.
It's quiet around here.. still holiday like.
I heard yesterday that my tub picture will be in the Smithsonian with the 24 Hours in Cyberspace featured exhibit. Wow. I may just attend the ceremnoy on January 23rd in Washington. Wow. :)
I'm back. I've been wrestling with writing here. It's done me good. And yet... as well something else. I'm almost bereft of feelings about my past. It shows so starkly in writing constantly that I don't remember yesterday. I look back at one year ago's entry or even last week's and find things that I am completely surprised about. Events, reactions, people. I live in Beverly Crusher's ever shrinking pseudo-techno-babble-StarTrek-jargon hyperspace warp core bubble. I forgot thatI was seeing a cute guy last month.
It's been a sad week. So much is changing and perhpas noteven that, just disappearing. People dying. People getting sick. Time being used for nothing much. Help.
I'd like the feeling of ever present growth to continue. I know it's there to be had. Just now though... I have to move in a couple of weeks, and get FSC shiny and polished after the holidays. I wonder what it is.
I wonder indeed. I haven't been able to write in any satisfying way for awhile. This diary is part of it. Really I want to connect more. Get out of htis box and out into the world.
I am getting depressed.. I need to get thngs going positively.
I can't bouy up my feelings that things are shrinking. I'm growing colder and sadder. What is it? Could it be that I think the future isn't as bright as I did previously? Could we be tiring out? I think I don't do all I could to make this work. My own private indulgences carry me away. What used to be wisdom - trusting my decisions - mow leads to foolishness. I tried to hard endlessly to cause things to move when the wieght was toomuch for me. Now although things actually are lighter - now that defectors have been asked to get the hell away - now that those around agree to listen to me - now, I forget what to say. It is time to step in again, and for a few days I had the vision again.
But it is gone right now. Where should I go? Where is the strategizing heart I had? Have I burned out? Or is it the defection i feel all around - remants left behind by persons who do not share well. Certainly I have a way of sharing that is rather controlling - but of course, I use it. What I control tends to come out very well.
I spent the last year building a solid infrastructure here at FSC for instance. Now it is incredible. But the energy I used to place at the disposal of the future, to visionary end, it si flighty now. A series of weights placed on me from what seems to be the loss of my friendshi with Tracey to having to move twice in 6 months to not getting my million dollar parking spot there after all to Richard's weird tantrums. Taking a PR person and placing her in charge of my own enjoyments - and losing my enjoyments as a consequence - her adgenda came before mine as it turned out.
I went out with Ed for dinner last night. I sorta wondered about what he's been doing these past few years.. after philosophy school sent him on to law school. He seems fine. Kinda unhatched still - being in schol seems to make people look unripe, perhpas more flexible is the right word.
And tomorrow I'll go out with that cute guy again. Funny he wrote to me after I I wondered aloud here. Funny to me. At me?
Where is the peace of mind that comes from being a has been? Sure as hell not in me. So I should find peace in being a non has been. Not a bad idea. But I pull back from taking this into me further. So many regrets - they come from from having done things and having made choices. God I am such an asshole. I hate it.
She makes me cry, seeing into my soul as I vacate the posture of success for a while. The ache of seeing myself become unattractive. But wasn't I always - in some way? First too smart, too tall, too shy. Then too smart, too pimply, too shy, too isolated, too incoherent. Towards too loud, too geeky, too much to say in the new found words. Becoming too poweful, too confident, too unreachable, too beautiful. Big fish looking for big pond. Almost found it. But I've flopped back in and the stares there are not admiring. God. Not alone. But not liked either. What is it?
Where is the simple pleasure without tears?
OK. I'll gain 20 lbs, dress down, walk the streets without notice finally. From brief celebrity to anonimity. I had wondered if the former was undoable. Of course it is in part. Surfacing again will always bring flashe of recognition. People will look at me, "she acts like a once beautiful woman." I always wanted to avoid this. Where is the source of fear? I thought it went away with Tracey's hostility towards her own life. But it resides in me too. Will louise's lover ever look at me that way? The several men I went out with lately have collectively not. Is it age? status? My goddamned personality?
People have been expressing interest in me more than ever in my life really. And yet I have this feeling, this omnipresent ache, that I'm doing something gravely wrong. What? Why?
"No," echoing through my head. I phase into a social life and lose the ties into my own mind. Coasting on savings. I remember when I stopped trying to learn anything in school. I was fifteen, in grade 12, and I had discovered, uncovered, the teachers lying to me, to us all. For our own good, the pedagogy filtered information in digestable chunks. Rather than in the harsh truths. In mathematics of course harsh truths abound. They hadn't mentioned that maths are used, even high end maths like calculus. They hadn't really spelled out that interpretations of math theory lead to it's being studied or tumbled aside, that math wasn't just an amazing excercise in extension from arithmetic - for fun and enjoyment alone. And they said ignore this little oddity. And later, they said, it is important this little oddity. It explodes into a whole area of higher mathematics, into a full calculus and beyond. Fools. Their pedagogy missed the point of the excercise. I wonder if most of them even knew. And I shut off my ears. And coasted through high school and two more years of university - engineering. Three years of not listening before they really noticed. And wondered why their shining star had imploded.
And as I implode slowly into a social being - a being with no internal structures matching the needs of the world - as my teachers of old watch and appreciate my social maneuverings - as I hold my breath to lift a big weight.. will I rebecome a person of internal integrity? Who but me had the courgae to go beyond my own little navel into the world? At that time, only Richard. Now others too. good
It's just that I know I'm really full of shit. What more is there than this? I don't want to be nice to anyone, or to smile. I want someone to be so nice to me that the pain starts to go away. Let it go away.
I don't think I can spell it out any clearer. I am trying to organize so many peoples' time here, and am growing confused.
I'll be going to Washington for sure on Thursday. Finding an apartment before then, and trying to enjoy my choices. Richard agreed to buy out my share of FSC if I want. I haven't said yes, but the option is freeing. He's learning. I must dress.
Where is my heart anymore?
It's funny. Sadness prevails in me. The emptiness of life.
Flowers on my desk. Airline tickets in my hands, and Louise's too.
And the day ticks by. Louise on the phone? The world gets smaller.
Some old learned rule, dating back to Niels, pops int my mind. Things are never the same once you switch channels - e to real. I'm not going to let anything so foolish happen - famous last words.
Can I be running a company here? It's all over the place. I have never even had a serious job before this. I learn about what people expect by watching them react to what we have already arranged. My god. I love the learning potential, but.. can others handle it?
Business text books? Business savvy? What is natural talent when there are such educated monsters in competition. Can this work? Yes, and if it weren't, people wouldn't hand over advice and remain around purring too. ALright, sothis isn't jsut in my head. I look out the window while I type here, listening tovoices over the office. Excitment. New contacts. New sales. Big ideas. They are enjoying this, even if I feel like an imposter. Confidence.
I was off at a gallery the other evening, one of Peter's events. People saw only the new me. Effective. I think this is funny. ANd yet, everyone changes with time in some ways. If my changes are more type oriented and less token oriented (only Peter will understand this, and a few philosophers), what of it. That is the success story. I'll be featured this Thursday night also on WTN around 9pm. Overlapping.
And Louise and I spoke. Funny, after knowing each other forever we meet in this more touchy feely way, and then even more so on Thursday. I invited her to share my hotel on Thursday.
I find myself with several invitations to meet e-friends and e-sympathizers this weekend. I thought an invitation to do so openly here would be fair and simple. Please do visit with me, and hopefully with Louise as well. And a digital camera.
Friday, Jan 24: 5pm. Harrington Hotel restaurant. 436 11 Street NW. In Washington.
Travelling through time leaving a trail of words in the memory banks of network computers. The understanding of my own self filters through the bits towards a happier me. I hold still, looking into the eyes of the mood. And I see an educated soul inside knowing with wisdom that will alone makes the difference. Hold still.
Let go, I tell myself. Enjoy the journey oflife, and destress. Old ways of being really are changing, and gone away now. Enjoy the new ones. They are not just acting normal, they are pursuing happiness too. It's kind of wonderful to know that being oneself can work.
And a postcard to clb, to me. Now to go offline for 4 days.
My digital photo album
Fondly remembering last week at the Smithsonian Institute, 24 Hours in
Cyberspace features in the National Museun of American History. The
ceremonies started at 7. This is my photo. Without the socks on, I'm
afraid I'm not so very recognizable. But after a lot of hand shaking, I
did indeed meet many people there. With a cocktail in hand, and my
nerves steeled, I circulated through the exhibits. There was a bank of
cameras lined up at the rear beyond the entrance, and a blue rope
blocking my way to the podium. CUSeeMe kiosks were setup though not
working throughout. People milled, all of them dying to know who was
who. And me. For one reason or another, even with my photo being the
cover of the invitation to this event, people did not immediately
recognize me in general. This was surprising. It made my journey
easier. Introductions always began with mention of the bathtub picture.
And the response varied little from people wondering where my socks
were! Heh. I really should have conceded heels for my warm and cozies.
Louise and I, and quite a number of the project's subjects came in for the opening ceremonies last Thursday evening. This is a guy everyone recognized instantly. I also met Eno, Miss D.C. and Will. Hi to all of them! We share somethng special.
Eno briefly told me about her experiences on the net. I believe the woman with her was her mother. They remarked on how wonderful it was to meet with me. Miss D.C. was in the middle of commmenting on how this project had "made that girl famous" as i walked over to a giveaway table. She was looking at my photo on the cover of U.S. News & World Report. I spoke up, telling her that I was that woman. In a burst of laughter and love, she gave me a great big hug. We talked for quite while about the exciting events leading up to this.
I'm sorry that I didn't get a photograph of Will and his parents. Moments after my arrival, adn as Rick was greeting me, Will and his dad shook my hand. They did know who I was.
After hanging up my coat, I wandered into the photo exhibit - open
briefly for all of us to see. Will was being interviewed by a film
crew. He waved at me and the cameras sung my way. I asked him to show
me his picture. Trapsing quickly over all the camera wiring, he lead me
down the row of photos, past my own, and over a few more. His was a
picture of sorrow. He told me about his illness, and the various painful
chores he has twice a day. His excitment in talking with me dwindled
into tears as his story spilled out. I was left almost speechless as
the two of us looked up at the photo taken almost a year ago. I was
glad later on to see him laughing again. I think my heart broke right then.
And of course, we met with Vice President Al Gore. He gave the opening speech, speaking of the information superhighway, expanding the backbone of the Internet 1000 fold, and of course his recent 5 minute presidency. Washington had just wrapped up its last inaugural ball the day before. The swearing in ceremony on the 20th seemed to have kept him cheerful.
I also had a fabulous time with the folks from Kodak and several people from the media.
They helped me try to get a picture talking with the Vice President.
I think only my shoulder got into the shot unfortunately. I had the
opportunity to speak with him for a moment while hand shaking. The man
is charming, and intelligent. It's nice to see that behind th political
stuff that there can be a person left.
Louise is terrific. I found in her someone who understands easily things I say and do. Her life is packed with surprising twists and turns. She's not just real. She's quite remarkable.
Louise met up with me in Washington only an hour before the ceremony
began. We hit it off quite immediately, and with remarkable ease
managed to navigate the ntire evening as a team. She marvelled at one
point that i have undrstood her writings, and the artform we have
created together here. I am left smiling. In fact she and I spent the
next two days walking and talking, sitting and talking. We seem to know
each other already. She, I and Ramona.
Rick Smolan of 24 Hours fame was charming all evening. I am amazed
at his abilities more and more. That's him with the Vice Presdient
accepting congratulations. These two share the dream of a prosperous
Internet. He mentioned to me that his choice for the graphic banner
hanging on the front of the museum had been my photograph instead of the
book logo. Ummm.. WOW. I was relieved in a way to find that the
Museum had asked that they refrain from this. Of course, in another
way, I would have enjoyed becoming a part of the national institutions
of America - an icon in Washington and in Cyberspace.
I gold my breath coming home from a lecture at OISE. And I wonder about the way the world spins around us. Little features that pop out as unique are not with 6 billion souls all thinking the same thing at that moment. Strength in the variations, and in the assembly lines.
And is this called a paradox, needing to write and being unwilling to write. I feel the urge to tell nothing ever again. Tracey tumbles into oblivion - a place where people get excited because she showed up for a swimming class. She knew too well that things change. She knew and I knew. And we did it anyway. We meet on Za'hadoom.
Let go of the barriers. These are not the walls of the writer's block. These are of a privacy reaction. I acheive celebrity for writing who I am out clearly. And now I look at the web I've created, not online - in people. Remarkable. And where is that intimacy I sought? In them. As my time dwindles, has this forum created that which I lacked finally? I feel a terrible sense of paradox in this. Letting go of that which works for me. I can't do it. And I don't know that I need to do it because it was successful.
It is so much easier to create that which relies only on my own efforts. And even this is not as true as it once was of my diary here. I have swallowed a snake's tail, and am now surprised to see snakes fangs approaching my lips. The media saw this recursive paradox and puzzled it out. They could see where I must be heading, where I am now. The snake is a constrictor though and as the loop tightens, I can see the meta-level of thought that might emerge.
An awareness that this vehicle can create more than I thought it could. An hypothesis about the nature of celebrity is true - pursue it actively and directly. This is sufficient to attain it. I am close to it, close enough to perceive the end clearly as I was at Carnegie Mellon too. This confusing recursion, that of becoming a public figure, is nice. I become a player on the world stage and shake hands with those who also understand. I give up an anonymity that I had embraced only through the fear of prisons and asylums. But now I am safely sane, and safely legal. I can simply shine.
Why must I pretend, to quote Richard, that I am seomthing less? My weaknesses will provide such opportunities all on their own. I should indeed embrace Agassi's advice now, and let people know how I can and do shine. No more fear - there is no room for it except in retreat from my own wants. Foolish mortal am I.
What a puzzle is my life.
Structure: static or dynamic?
The days tick on travelling with me through the finiteness of life. One after another like a rosary, I watch and wonder why. The finiteness - ending soon - what is this? How can I frame everything a life can be and still let myself know that this totality is not the immense fractal of being that is the universe. Why should I pretend that life can be everything when it unravells into specific threads? I could weave a different fractal and still, it would be a specific thing and not everyone.
Am I the only one who would switch my life for everyones'? Out beyond the stars there are fantasy machines capturing our perspectives. The stars glint with chaos effected madness recording the what was, projecting the is. And I sit at a computer terminal here and now, and one second past now, and wait for the durations of time necessary to us all - to die again. Capture and record - obcessed with counting. Not with being or qualitying, but with counting. One amongst the many. So easy to have been Adam or Eve, Dionysys, or God. No pressure to stand out from amongst similar forms. But is it hard to stand out really hard? Magnet yourself to a famous person. Assassinate them. It becomes easy to in turn borrow their own glory. This was Brutus. This was the garden's snake. But what of the ways to stand out that are not so easy. Soul searching around to find the thing that makes me special. Is it anything, or is it my focus on some one thing?
Of course, and I see the snake looping madly wondering where it missed the point of existence. Betraying those who did nothing but were distinct so that all of us in the future would become numbers instead of qualities. Thank you snake for this. To be one or to be infinite or even the largest prime? The godel points of being human in the 20th century.
Today I will be moving to a new apartment away fromt eh ghosts and closer to my own dreams. Goodbye Tracey.
What are people made up of?
They want and dream, they strive and achieve, fail and re-emerge anew. Each of us goes through a life cycle of attempts to simply be something worthy of our own effort. We don't start or finish this way. But the drive persists. Self-respect peeks in and out of the oyster shell while letting in the next grain of sand for a new insecurity to be smoothed.
My cats bat the pearls around on the floor, cinnamon scented feet luring only cappachino mice closer. I watch wondering why mice flavoured cat food doesn't hit the shelves and yet cinnamon can. Is the mung bean generation watching anymore? Will car exhaust dictate the end of our own future possibles?
I hide out at Richard's waiting to unpack tomorrow - waiting for the future to start now. Cats roam where they have not been, and we all breath easier as the ghosts and the ceiling fan are left behind. I wonder if they noticed us go.
I see virtually perfectly what the future could be like and gently push in this direction. Over the ocean of waves hovers the is - I draw it nearer. As we inherit the earth - we are those who know that the old must or do die - as we grasp these resources more closely and simply know that our peers will see this too, so we mature and ripen. Once crisp, black and white, now we are complicated and understand why politics, chess and Shakespeare are important. Strategies emerge as our experiments fall off the tree of life and the seeds have a chance to embed in the soil we laid for them. Questions about the future beyond our own selves emerge: did they fall far afield or close by, and will they breed true. touch the world an dsee if the imprint stayed. For how long?
A mark in the wind travels farther but also disperses. A carving stays still and endures single gazes. An idea floats through many minds and emerges in many things we produce after effect. A monument allows those to enter and hear a simle story about its creation, its significance. Do we all want only monuments? Is the world better because of us? Can we even tell from within our own value systems whether the systems themselves are really and truly worth living in accordance with? Of course not. We fit into a survival of the fitest model wherever those of higher ethical goals cannot yet have peered. And we wait. Waiting. Life ticks on and the hope is that somehow sthere is an objective standard by which this would still make some sense. And I do not know what it is. Let me in.
A trickle of feedback suffices to let us play a game together. You and me. We dance and dally and divy up the time space with thoughts of being significant. Has anyone gone beyond this perspective that so haunts me? Histronics? I no longer want to eb let out. I got out myself. And so we go on as interpretation machines.. never a clear and single meaning-ed insight amongst all of our intellectual produce. Go forth and look more closely.
Gibberish. And writing and a flow away from nothing and out from several intense experiences. Finally. But..
Today I have soemthing t say an dyet, I don't really know wha it is. Can it be that the scarey things are past and I've had time to trickle back into my life. I remember in the airport, I decided that I didn't really wnat to go after all. Let me back into my normal and boring - to me - life. I thought that that would make me feel awful, and yet the scariness of what I was doing welled up in me for just those few moments. Less than ever before really, although my babbling act during last Thursday's reception was quite a remarkable experience from the inside. Interviewed. Business contacted. Photographed. Autographed. recognized. Recognize me please. Let me be seen not as special but just as known. A person who is known. I am back to my starting point with more clarity. It is the right direction for me, and I stand off for a moment seeing that there was an effective pattern here.
Hello to everyone else.
One page of thoughts floating terribly emptily in the universe. Alone.
A party last nigth where people knew me but didn't really talk with me. Contact free socializing. Twist the knife. I've left my he
[... computer failure ...]
Mood slipping crashing spraying below. I cannot think a good thought. I've had enough.
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