C  a  r  o  l  y  n  '  s      D  i  a  r  y


... Today
... FrAmes
... From The Beginning
... inDex
... as FeaTureD in ...

Top 5% at the

diary cast

The SpinnWebe Odd Award
be warned:  this is my diary...  clb   page  39

Bookmark: http://diary.carolyn.org

For the future...

frames: http://carolyn.org/diary.html

elephantine footsteps in the dust.

Sun Aug 3 1997

The center of the universe.

Mon Aug 4 1997

There are several ways to tell when you are at the center of the universe. People do not need to leave phone messages for you there as eventually light photons from every event that ever will be or ever was will show up there. Although perhaps not within the light cone of opportunity to attend.this in itself should serve as invitation to those events yu'd like to attend. In fact, you can sit back and watch for events which include photons bounced off of your own body. Attend those ones.

Sound doesn't work this way so you cannot sit back waiting to hear your own laughter and attend those events only. You'll get stuck with the bores too. At the center of the universe though, other people are likely to show up univited. It's much like this planet's north and south poles, or the highest mountain peaks. These are spots that simply beg to be visited. Hanging out makes you an instant host. If people drop in on you all the time uninvited, suspect that you might already be at the center of everything.

I guess I'm not there yet.

A week ago now, Peter came to me with a proposition, Let's be nice to each other. He said some wonderful things. He talked about how when he respects himself, and allows himself to do what he wants, I'm at the top of the list. You coulda knocked me over with a feather. He asked me to take a chance in being nice to each other. We agreed to keep our business disagreements more isolated from all the other things we have shared and can do so again. This sort of worked well. Surprisingly.

I've tried to agree, I think it's succeeding. Peacefulness in and around me. I had reached the point just a week prior to that where I was willing to completely let go of him from my heart. I must have had that on my face. He's different from me. His stuff is nice and all, but it doesn't match the image I have of the world, good or bad. And while there is so much room for differences in the world, we share a lot, more by his design than mine anymore - as has always been true really.

I took this lesson in being nice seriously though. Several things. In my mind the self image doesn't match up to the nice behaviours. I am imaging myself as tougher, alone, hurt, waiting, wishing. So there's this wonderful mental clash in me. I hold Peter's hand and notice that pushing it away would feel better than caressing it, but I ignore the impulse easily. Pushing him away seems more natural than smiling at him. But smiling at him makes him smile back. He's a goddamn mirror, almost only.

I've taken this lesson into other relationships to see how it works, to see if it will improve things elsewhere. I don't think I could have been more alone lately. I have been as alone and cold as I was as a child, without friends or family - living amongst the uncommunicative dead.

I've tried to relate to Richard nicely since I want him to relate this way to me too. It seems to be working as well. I guess I'd forgotten that people like being nice, even to me. Sometimes a breakthrough occurs. This feels like one, and it feels like the momentum of the change is up to me. I must remind these two people, my family that we are friends, we care about each other - image in my mind is of throwing up in ironic disgust.

[ ... one year ago today: splendid, it's over ]

the email alert.

Tue Aug 5 1997

Rules exist for lots of useful purposes. I've found living outside some of them to be freeing, and now I've found adopting some of htem to be similarly freeing. A long time ago, Peter talked about grouping knowledge up into summaries. I liked him much more before he did that. He knew who he was. After fifteen years of chunking his knowledge, I don't think he does anymore. Perhaps he was mistaken to alter his ways then. It got difficult, but he shouldn't have given up. I think.

But the model of grouping things together to make room for other things that are new is useful. This is a set of rules really. I have two cats living with me currently. Neither of them looks standard cat. Both are black and very long furred. Moppins is also prone to fatness - she's a great hug. Her previous person, Laura, was always keeping the beautiful Moppins on a diet. Eventually, Moppins just moved in with me instead. I didn't think weight was a concern, for a cat or a person. My second cat, Fleiss, is a true guy cat. He loves roaming the outdoors, bringing in mice and chipmunks, never grooming. He was just covered in knots up until the nazi vet shaved him into a lion look last month. His knotted fur was as improper as Moppins' being a fat cat. Even though both cats are happy and like their lives, we humans are expected to slot them into a perfect shoebox look. Pretty brushed fur, sleek body, the Calven Klein chic cat. BS.

If I used just a little discipline with my cats, treating them differently, brushing Fleiss against his will every day, feeding Moppins special fat cat diet food, I'd probably be able to change the looks of my beautiful friends at least halfway. I've never found it worth it to bring the force of institutions down on friends' heads. I wouldn't call the audit bureau on a friend, or the fire marshall, or the postal workers. woulnd't call these organizations on non-friends either - not unless someone's life was threatened. Being fat or sloppy are just as much features in species' phenotypic range as being a bookworm or an athlete. I believe. So what the hell are people doing?

And yet...a few simple rules brought down on me, or other people, can change the situation. Is it worth it? I think it just might be - on me, but not on my cats.

Speaking of which, I must run to dress. There is a staff meeting this morning as yesterday was a holiday around here. Another rule to follow.

[ ... one year ago today: what is the right question to ask? ]


Thu Aug 7 1997

She asked me what I would write today. I couldn't say at the time, I didn't know. A small party, several fun conversations and in the middle, talk about hope and dreams made true. Beautiful. Funny how her eyes lit up - mine probably did not. Too many thoughts interwoven - the is and the ought with the might still be.

And now this morning, not enough sleep. coffee from yesterday, a feeling that I like this way of being. Have to learn to get enough sleep though. I am swimming in mentle cotton now.

Ny attitude of new seems to be helping me go in directions I want. I cried enroute to the bank yesterday, and back too. Tears of frustrated sorrow, holding up the standard of this is business as usual. Confronted by the knowledge of endurance. And yet, later after a miserable day pushing tasks around with my nose to the floor, I went out with Kimberley, for dinner, a pub get together, and then this little party. Together these things warmed me up. Perhaps being a miserable office creature is the compliment of having a sparkling social life.

A different she told me that these things are either in conjuction or or complement. Social comes from work or from play, but it is there. Mine is switching back to play after my play switched into work.

I guess it is awkward to have built a business with one's friends. Play became work on purpose - to enjoy our work, it seemed obvious to do at the time. If I were a more naturally chirpy person, pehaps tht would work perfectly, but, heh. I'm just not a chirpy person usually. Writing perks me up now strangely though. My business is woven with friendship and love. My social life must phoenix from old ashes and new flames. This is a surprise.

Myths about not working with relatives come from those who couldn't bridge this new aspect. No rest where work comes easily to the lips. I concede I am not perfect. But then who wouldn't.

[ ... one year ago today: jump highly and quickly ]

quietly edging out of the winner's circle.

Fri Aug 8 1997

I'm sick again today. Phew. Nothing eeath shattering, but dribbly noses are such a nuisance. Stuffed head, puffy eyes, a pretty sight.

People around the office all bubbled at me yesterday - they know I love doing interviews, and yesterday I wrapped up a month long session with this cool journalist chick. She 's doing her spin on the online diary phenomenon, And then off to a party-ish thing at this funky restaurant down on King. Hmmm, I'm doing well on the social front. Guess it would have been a good day for them to ask for a raise.

Out with Kimberley two nights ago. It sunk in finally about how much I've isolated myself from the social world. I've lived in librarian fear, dissing other peoples' social lives without participating. No fun. Do I write about what I think? I think that I've beenhiding behind men a lot, and behind Tracey a lot. Not now. There's no room behind any of them any more - good for me. I like meeting these other people, awkward and twisting inside me.

This hiding thing: I feel like I need a wall of intent around me to keep others from trying to talk with me. It's so awkward inside me. This feeling that something will come out my mouth that is anything but right. Perhaps embarassing, mean, stupid, insulting, intelligent. Pick one. I have this whole repetoire of styles that are all unsuitable. Where are the serious people? Why isn't serious ok too? I guess it is. Just need a light-hearted bubbly surface too, to go with the short skirt.

So what is right or wrong in socializing? Nothing really, just effective and ineffective. Is socializing just about creating and harvesting opportunity? People crops? networking? Ah, I still have so much to learn.

Perhaps I'll curl up with Oblomov for awhile this morning. And Moppins.

[ ... one year ago today: sensory summations ]

decking the cards.

Sat Aug 9 1997

time for breakfast.

[ ... one year ago today: kryptoanarchy ]


Sun Aug 10 1997

Thoughts from a Sunday morning's cafe and cool breeze. I back away from the keyboard. The notion that I could explore something now feels awkward. Why should I? It doesn't matter. I remember it will feel good afterwards, like doing Tai Chi really. Just try.

Fizzling around the edges of each thought cranny - no summation, no direction, no frustration. So then what? I trickle: Peter keeps jumping towards me and then away again. Lingeringly wierd as if I didn't exist. Some pod has replaced me in his mind. It interacts with him, and he reacts to it leaving me sitting in the dust. I don't get it.

love: Time for some gruelling truths. When I love someone, I fall into their perceptions and feelings and views. Loving itself is a choice for me. But what it is, how I feel, what changes in my life, that is not somuch under my control. I don't want to be in love at all anymore. After breaking up with Peter years ago now, after the horrible washing away of my friendship with Tracey, and after numerous acquaintanceships, I chosen only to get involved in the latter. The little love I have left anywhere does me no good. It is used by tired people to make them feel a little better. How dreary.

My life without the emotional intensity is just dreary. Neither depressing nor joyful. Dreary describes it. And running around with a perky exterior as it seems I have been doing is for them. I'll be invited back because of it - which is for me, the need for socializing is strong in me. The need for love, a distant fantasy of a handsome and calming man Harlequin romance style. Finally. I agree with Tracey in that finally - that is where love and romance should lie. Far away in the corners of one's very own private time. How awful, and dead. How dreary.

The winds of fate have played a funny game with me. I choice not the standard course, and I find that in alternative courses I can never relax. For they fail to exist if I do.

So love for me has become a distant metaphor for comfort and satisfaction - which I believe is not what love is.

I remember this wamr and gentle feeling I have towards Peter. No matter what it is there bringing us together. And I wonder where this leads, for I no longer have the inclination to create a unique structure in this relatiionship. Perhaps he does, perhaps not. Perhaps he will for once allow normal relatings to occur.

Perhaps I will meet that handsome man, and perhaps he will be riding a white horse.

So what is love? A dream for later.

For now, there is still Oblomov. For a little longer.

[ ... one year ago today: sorrow ]

bathing the wings in oil.

Sun Aug 10 1997

It's late. I've mixed feelings about everything. Why can't I find anything, anyone, I mean, who is stable. Smiling. Should I write to Niels perhaps because he was so suny and beautiful? Even if he hates me? It's been just so long, and friendships like that never renue themselves. I should have fallen in love with him and fallowed him around as he wanted to know who I was so much. Regret? Not really. I am finally defrosting, and I look back over what I've done to calibrate.

It is almost midnight now, 11:30 EST. My eyes blink closer to closing. But what have I done that is so awful? Why am I left alone? Why do people go back to who they were long ago after so many changes? Can we not be the people we set our hearts on? Is only getting rich going to influence anything? How do I do that then? Why does that seem to be the answer?

It seems so because both my closest people are convinced it is needed, necessary, derserving unto them.

Is my writing here finally a perversion? God how awful that it might be. What I need and something else I need annhilating each other, like old friends.

Go away with you, world. You were to have been otherwise, even without idealism.

I guess a tired form of regret lives in me. And in Oblomov. I wish I knew how this novel will end. Where in the withering glances of fatal love pushing away and pulling in closer each time will this Russian author decide to represent his world? Will my life's coin toss match the bet?

How I can only dream. And that funnily enough is the beginning. Whenthe dreams recur, hope can not be far behind. (Still the regretted sadness laps at the shores of my solitude.) Rescue me, white knight.

but why.

Mon Aug 11 1997

but I didn't do anything that deserved that. Fuck you? Go away? Apologize? What should I respond? Is it really that awful? Why does pummeling me make it better? Should I just smile instead? Is it pain he wants to see on my face?

He thinks he is so right. Who cares who is right anyway? Hurting me isn't any good. This has to change.

Why does a person be mean? And why to me? I think I know the answer.

[ ... one year ago today: pillory ]


Mon Aug 11 1997

and on and on I wrote looking for myself, for answers, for friends and happiness. Can it be this odd? A tangled web of words woven within my own cognitive wanderings. What more? Questions arising, repeating, nourishing the efluvulent mental meanderings. Opening valves closed tight by men twisting their own strenghths in showoff luxury. Oh I wish I had a tv tonight. It'd be good night to beam in Seinfeld or some new thing I've never even heard of.

Email chattering into the box, clatter clatter. A note from Niels, from Tom, the Kodak guy, from, well... you.

Take a vote. Let's do so. We'll take a vote to decide the world's future. We do it already in little ways now and wait, now again. Vote with our dollars, our feet, our tastebuds, change the channel, vote again on something else. Demographic isolation breeding quicker response time, slimmer product niches, brand spectruming, nuclear atomization. Votes all. Let's decide to make it terrific.

So much of what we do is designing, planning, bulding, and wishing for a better future. Why don't we do this more coherently? Let's. Little bits of good will, and caring sticking to each other, linking up like an Internet. Covering oursleves with hyperlink connections, in's into each others' souls. Wearing blue underlined importances noteworthy spots to others. Touch here for details. Rub more gently for legal parameters. Bookmark this activity. Covered in hyperknowledge. There be ticklish spots. Internetizd anthropomorphistic devices.

Pulling in the final wave of socio-tech development before we leave the planet. [Did I really write that? clb]

Do I still have time.

Tue Aug 12 1997

Not really. It's late. Hair drying, dressing for a cool day, feeding my beautiful cats, preping for another grey office day. and movie night. I wonder what I haven't seen?

Nothing more to this mind except waiting for Niels to write back. Funny how eagerly this feeling comes to me. Later.

[ ... one year ago today: Letter to a friend ]

more edges.

Wed Aug 13 1997

What is an edge? Walking along in a straight line, I have long legs, sometimes they tangle. An edge is the sort of walk I have when this happens, people think it's a sexy thing, my giraffe entanglements.

Holding in the tears, smiling without the right connections in behind my face, this is an edge.

Waiting to move away from where I live because the eavestrough leaks, the basement floods when I wash clothes, the gregarious artists upstairs, children of the landlord, through midnight parties while I don't sleep. This is not an edge because I am afraid to get near the edge, generating Oblomovitis.

The spot in my mind that holds still when all esle fluctuates.

My heart.

An edge appears beside any attempt to be what I want to be when I fail.

I live on the edge.

My edge is always miscommunication. A world of edges slashing up my heart like a samurai blade. Without thickness and only length. The edges tear.

They are real, perceptible, my own understanding weaves them into markers of doubt in my beliefs. I may find answers, I may not. And others will continue to live on the other side of the edge.

Please stay still for awhile, no fluctuations. Communicate.

Alsatian vaguery.

Thu Aug 14 1997

Bigger things emerging. Thought of running a personal ad this week. What of it? A line in When the cat's away, the two makeup girls comenting onhow men don't take them seriously enough, and the model looking at themwith pity. She ran a persoanl ad to find someone after 2 years of being alone. It's not about looks. Looking for something beyond the surface, we all are. And some people know how to announce their availability.

I've had trouble sleeping all night.

[ ... one year ago today: emminent thoughts ]


Fri Aug 15 1997

So there I am waiting. I'd rather be doing something else I think. But what. I am afraid of onoy ever working hard. It's been two weeks since I decided to always be professional and to work hard. It's so boring. What would be interesting to do?


me. I'm in a lazy mood, really rather avoidance mood. I know that if / when I get dressed and go in, I'll get all caught up in doing stuff there. I don't want to get cuaght up in this. I have no palns for the weekend - perhaps having a good idea that my life will be a little bit enjoyable might help.

I'll go see a play. Then go off to a little cafe and drink tea, read a book, smile at people who seem nice. A plan. Alright. Not sufficient but necessary.

a journey without a goal.

Sat Aug 16 1997

With a whole world of options open, why is my life this way? Why follow the closest best opportunity instead of jumping around to other spots, teleporting in to new opportunities. Urban myths of pretty girls gone to hollywood, intellinerds off to MIT, tall bouncing youths aiming for the basketball circuits. Teleporting away from the initial situation rather than walking. I'm a walker really. Looking a local options, making the best of it.

Leaving one's known space to try it elsewhere, elsehow, is stressing, and I've seen people who live that way, perhaps more like gypsies - Laura. Jumping fromthe local into the international will be like this. Some few get teleported by someone, but most who would like t o be somewhere else must do it alone.

The causal pathways for these different routes usually work step by step. We are either filtered and selected for our outstanding new by the instituted bodies controlling these things (like a budding astronaut fostered by NASA), or we have a heart set goal that we do what is necessary to reach (I want to be an astronaut).

My goal (helped by my mantras) ...

ever more stirring inside.

Sun Aug 17 1997

Building checking time. Gotta run.

Time for that personal ad. Time to rec that I am in my thirties and men just don't catch on that I am wonderful as easily. Sigh.


A day of contact with other peoples' hangups make me smile. For a change, the hangups are elsewhere. After a steady two weeks of being secretive about my own, other peoples' shine brightly out, beacons guiding me between the rocks and shoals.

I had this feeling last night. I noticed that I was alone in many ways, ways that I have never been. Without love, without a boyfriend, without a best friend, I listen to Kimberley talk about all her losses, and realize that I haven't had any of those things for a long time now. I've grown enured to their absense. She still moans and pines about such even thoguh she's had all sorts of relationships until very recently. The comparison strikes me as ironic. That I listen to her pains too.

And similarly, having struck up a dialogue with Niels again, suddenly Angela has popped up quoting herslef from "Some parts of me are not Niels", her now defunct online diary at Angela.org. My simple talking with him prompted so much energetic response from her. She wants to be friends, again and again. I've told them both to work their own stuff out without me.

This soap opera style day leaves me feeling that I am best off living some other way.

And my feeling last night. That finally after being young for so long, I am past the stupid male drooling threshhold and will have to behave as if I am more interested than I am. That or do something more accomplished than being pretty.

Like being the president of several companies. Like becoming a little bit famous. Like perhaps being someone considered a writer at this point. Like what?

GOD. People like successful people. I grant the point. So do I. So I would like to seem successful, after all, I am. :) I think I should bury my head in a glass of whine with Kimberley. Off to change. I wrote to aNgela today instead of for myself.

Simple gossipy small talk out of me now. Nothing more accessible. Ciau.

[ ... one year ago today: fiddley details ]

[ a week is missing here ]


Thu Aug 21 1997

8 pm

Further along the life spectrum than yesterday. Tangled up feelings. Crying on the bench in front of the office during small escape breaks. What has happened that I am so discarded?

And an invitation from Niels to travel with him. Such a contrast.

Where is me? What is me.

Bookmark: http://diary.carolyn.org



...flip the page...  

All non-daughter writings of Carolyn's Diary are not copyright © Carolyn L Burke, 1995, 1996, 1997, and may not be copied with permission except for non-commercial gain. See what your lawyers can't make of that.

Carolyn's Diary
[index]|[mail me]|[finale]