10 December 2010

Private

I'm seriously considering going private for a time.  At the very least, going on hiatus for a while.

I still have so much to say:
  • about my belief that most reparative therapy is unnecessarily lobotomizing, cleverly packaged, subtly emotionally manipulative mind tricks with good intentions, 
  • about my continuing support for those who choose alternative-alternative lifestyles such as mixed-orientation marriages as long as they're being honest with themselves and their spouses (yes, maybe even to a level not required of other couples because of the circumstances and assumed risks), 
  • about my own persisting desire to have a wife and kids, 
  • about my skepticism that I can do so without being a bit selfish and/or losing myself (sorry, friends, I haven't liked the all of changes I've seen in those who have taken that route, even if they believe they are as happy as anyone), but still wondering whether losing myself a little might be worth the trade-off, and questioning whether I'm fully engaged in the relationship if I've tucked part of myself under the rug, but figuring maybe that's my spouse's choice to make, and reminding myself maybe I wouldn't lose myself at all or would but could also find lost parts of myself and maybe I can't know any of this until I try,
  • about my questions as to whether the only truly selfless path, for me, is to never have children,
  • about my theory that gay male culture began as a snowball of men who, because of the outright rejection of all homosexuality back in the day, left their jobs, families, and religions, and therefore had nothing left to lose and threw out the baby with the bathwater regarding commitment in relationships and standards of behavior, how gender roles and male physiology may come into play to magnify seed-sowing or gratification behavior without the tempering influence of women (who have higher risk of investment in promiscuity),  and how there seems to be a trend, slow as it may be, towards stabilization and maturation of gay culture in general as it re-assimilates certain values and relationship perspectives, 
  • about my theory that gender constructs are malleable and based primarily on what traits happen to be generally predominantly found among males or females of our own species and how pockets of nature challenge notions of inherently "female" or "male" roles, and whether we can actually tweak what is considered "masculine" and "feminine" evolutionarily by adjustments to social/cultural ideas around gender and who ends up pairing off and having offspring, and whether education of those concepts might naturally, gently push the population in that direction, and ethical questions around what I guess I'd call social engineering,
  • about wondering who my reader from a particular government office is, or the one from some studio in Cali,
  • about my increasing belief that there is meaning, beauty, and optimism in life and the universe with or without a god or gods, 
  • about what might become if our actual, physical communities and 'tribes' reassumed the roles which religion clearly dominates now and therefore seems uniquely positioned to provide but isn't necessarily inherently so but might be because of its acute and structured appeal to supernal emotion and ideation, 
  • about how I'm full of crap trying to sound intelligent by forming sentences like the last one and how more intellectually honed people readily perceive it, 
  • about what "light in your eyes" is really all about and how I think it has little to do with "having the Spirit" based on my experience and observation,
  • about my increasing belief that the church is useful in a way and a great model of community in some key ways but doctrinally arbitrary/fantastical and possibly irreparably socially ill in others, 
  • about my love of fireplaces and how that might be one of the top three elements I want in my home, 
  • about my current, somewhat surprising happiness despite enormous stress and possibly very limited prospects for the future, 
  • about my somewhat whimsical desire to go completely off the radar for a year and work as a baker in Italy or join some Spanish commune, 
  • about the hot cop I saw at a Panda Express on Monday and how I figured coming on to an ambiguous police officer having lunch with his police officer friends was probably not the wisest thing in the world to do (a wise friend pointed out it's generally unwise to come on to men with guns),
  • about the frank and clarifying conversation I had with someone close to me about the gay marriage debate and how I realized there is probably no true reconciliation to be reached on the issue on a legal/political level, even if I still believe there should be, because it's fundamentally about the subjective definition of marriage and whether someone believes God and predominant thought define it or that it is only defined as it is because of limited, flawed, evolving understanding,
  • about the conversation I had with a pretty typical male on the subject of whether physical violence is an appropriate response to unwanted advances and how the genders of the one coming on and the one being come on to affect the appropriateness of the response, and how I think tempering gut reactions (physical violence and disgust when a man comes on to a straight man in no more offensive a way than a woman might) with conscious processing is as clear an example of 'overcoming the natural man' as any,
  • about my frustration with having to constantly cater to the "majority" and their constructs, accept their lack of vision (yes, I know how arrogant saying this may seem) as somehow authoritative just because they think or were wired more like each other than I do/am like them, and abide by their change-resistant rules for the sake of arbitrary stability at the expense of progress when I think the balance between stability and progress has room to be tilted toward progress in many aspects, 
  • about family dynamics and some realizations I've had regarding how certain family members' outspoken views throughout my life have significantly colored my own self-perceptions and my perceptions of others growing up, 
  • about how belief may come down to choosing what to believe rather than figuring out what is concrete truth and why not to choose the pretty stories (even if they come with some ugly ones) just in case they're true or why someone would choose to believe in a godless universe and how it's not the bleak, meaningless perspective I, for one, always thought it was,
  • about the sustainability of morality not based on authoritarian deity and arbitrary constructs/dogma,
  • about discovering, with a fun smirk, that a long-time crush-from-afar was not one-directional, even though clearly nothing is going to be done about it,
  • about tying up loose ends, moving on, and feeling good about it, 
  • about my favorite recently watched movies and snippets of music, 
  • about the joys of public transportation and quirky bus stories,
  • about wanting to find more between the closeted angst and hypocritical repression of Utah gay men hopelessly attached to their stifling religious community and beholden to family expectations and the swishing and brazen flippancy of Seattle gay men hopelessly attached to their licentious sexuality community and withering in empty individualism,
  • about the moment my friend's toddler son sweetly touched the cheek of a guy I was dating and cared about very much when he found the two of us bundled in a blanket together at my friend's house, the flicker of hope I smiled at that maybe he'd warm up to the idea of having kids someday (with whomever, not necessarily with me, though I admit I kinda liked the idea), and how--when I asked if my friend was OK with us being affectionate around the boy (just leaning on each other)--my friend said it was good for him to be exposed to us,
  • about my prayer experiments from years ago,
  • about my story of experiences with homosexuality and with the church, told as two separate but connected stories, from childhood to now, in several audio installments, some of which I already recorded months ago,
  • about feeling like I've had a good love and not feeling the need to try to top it or supplant it for now because despite the pain and anger around how it ended, I still feel satisfied and filled, maybe permanently changed, and at least for now content in a way I'm not sure I can describe, and it's time to focus on other things for now,
  • about my mission journal and the ways it all fits, maybe even better, within a completely different perspective than I had then, and the code I wrote into it in case someone else read it and I didn't want them to know what was hidden behind the words, and what it has reminded me of that I'd forgotten and can't honestly ignore,
  • about the book I'm reading, The Happiness Hypothesis, and the many ideas I'm loving from it which reflect and support my own realizations and questions and the questions it has magnified about my own probably kinked psyche,
  • about the fact that...I might take that hypothetical pill if it were offered, after all, but without shame...
  • ...about this and more, far too much to try to explain fully here and now.

I'm feeling a desire to just take it all private, visible to only myself.  If I did write more about all of this, I'd want to give it due attention and do it justice.  And readers would surely react and misconstrue and jump to conclusions and ask questions and challenge and confirm, which would leave me wanting to clarify and refine and tease apart emotion from reason, conviction from suspicion, and questions from assertions...and even after all of that, it all seems so pointless sometimes that I shrug and say to the world, "You do your thing, and I'll do mine."

I see blogs which appeal to more lusty appetites gain zealous followers quickly, while my favorites are generally not hugely popular, being not nearly sensational or provocative enough, nor party-line-toeing enough, to appeal to the comforted masses.  Maybe I prefer that kind of company though.  Maybe I want to get away from the mobs anyway, despite missing certain aspects of the community they tend to carry.  In any case, it seems this little blog most likely won't make any lasting, actual difference outside of me, and I have been questioning whether my energy would be better redirected as I evaluate my probably nearly half-over vital life.  Please, no bites on supposed fishing line here, I'm talking about what's best for me, not lamenting and insisting I'll go eat worms.

In many ways, I've been closing chapters of my life, and as I've done so, I've hit a realization: I'm not sure I'm interested in writing the next chapters of this book.  I may be more interested in starting another book altogether and setting this one aside for now, maybe coming back to it someday.  If I'm honest with myself, I probably can't completely set it aside.  I'll probably just journal instead of publish for a while.  Maybe I'll never compile all of these thoughts into something cohesive to publish in book form.  Maybe I'll quit blogging with the hopes that this little, mostly undiscovered nook of cyberspace will become a compendium of my journey which might positively impact at least one person in some non-negligible way.  Maybe I'll keep blogging as usual with or without a hiatus.  Yeah, probably that last option, with a little of the others mixed in.

I'm looking forward to a future "download" feature to install in my brain.  I hope neuroscience advances quickly to enable that.  That'll be fun.  But for now, even if for only a symbolic night or two, I'm taking a vacation...I think...ah, heck.  All I know for sure is that I'm going to slip into a deep sleep induced by the powers of prescription cough syrup.  Ah, yes, I feel it.  That "good luck waking up sooner than 147 hours from now" feeling as Vienna Teng lulls me.  Mmm...



Note from the  next morning: that was trippy...as I listened to some of my favorite Vienna Teng bedtime songs, like 'Lullabye for a Stormy Night' and 'The Last Snowfall', it was like I was living in slow motion, like the short songs which always end too soon were extended far beyond their usual length, and it was so satisfying.  Perhaps there are ways to slow down life without codeine... :-)

8 comments:

Bravone said...

I'm tempted to say what you said the first time you wrote on my blog, something to the effect that I'd be back. I do hope you'll stay just because I enjoy you and your thoughts so much, but I respect your reasoning and motivations too much to ask you to stay on my behalf. It wouldn't work anyway :)

You're a good man and a good friend. Whether or not you continue your blog won't change either.

CJW said...

If I were on the verge of a new chapter in my life but still had many questions, I'd leave and teach English somewhere or try and start a non-traditional career; photojournalism maybe, or some other freelance work? Problem is, you would need some quick access to cash. Not a lot, but enough to get you where you're going. How satisfied we are with our lives is completely subjective and entirely within our own minds. If you feel like there's something lacking, then go after it. What's stopping you?

MoHoHawaii said...

Your list includes topics that are relevant to a lot of folks. Blogs like yours are useful for others.

As an alternative to going private, you could disable comments for the posts where you just want to let it all hang out without having to deal with the reactions of your readers. Or just don't read the comments or respond to them in some cases.

Pulling the plug entirely seems like a drastic measure for someone who has as much to say as you do.

JonJon said...

I like what MohoHawaii said. There are lots of things in your list that are relevant and important to explore and I want to know your thoughts. Disabling comments is a good option. Of course, do whatever feels best. If you wanted give your blog the appearance of salaciousness, you could have added the word "parts" to the title of this post.

El Genio said...

Some studio in Cali? That's probably me - duh!

Scott N said...

I'd read nearly every one of those posts from start to finish (even knowing how long your posts tend to be, and yes that's the pot calling the kettle black).

I'm having a similar conversation with myself, though, so I'd understand entirely if you closed the door or took a break.

BLB said...

You might want to keep at least the fireplace posts private, seeing that it's the topic that would polarise your readership the most and cause World War III.

jimf said...

> . . .gay male culture began as a snowball of men who,
> because of the outright rejection of all homosexuality
> back in the day, left their jobs, families, and religions. . .

I don't known about "left their jobs, families. . .". Gay male
culture was terribly **secret** back in the days when cops
could amuse themselves by rounding up people in fag bars.

There are books that give you a taste of what the atmosphere
was like 60 or 70 years ago -- James Lord's recent (but
posthumous) _My Queer War_, for example, or Charles Jackson's
_The Fall of Valor_, or Gore Vidal's _The City and the Pillar_.

The institution of "camp" goes back a long way. I'm reminded
of that episode in the Granada TV production of _The Jewel
in the Crown_. a dramatization of Paul Scott's "Raj quartet"
of novels, taking place in the final decade of the British
Raj in India.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Jewel_in_the_Crown_%28TV_series%29

In the story, an upper-class British officer named Guy Perron
is investigating the past of a sadistic (and repressed
homosexual) police officer named Ronald Merrick (who rapes
a British girl at the start of the series, but of course
the rape ends up being pinned on the girl's secret
Indian, but British-educated, lover). Anyway, one
sordid episode involves the narration of a story about
Merrick by Corporal "Sophie" Dixon, an obviously homosexual
older soldier who takes it upon himself to "mother" younger boys he has
identified as probably queer. Dixon recounts during an
interview with Perron that he missed his chance to help
a certain Lance Corporal Pinker ("Pinky", as Dixon calls
him), a very young man whom Merrick got to first. Pinker was
just beginning to deal with his own homosexuality, while working in
a military psychiatrist's office, and Merrick surprises him reading
the psychiatrist's private files (about cases similar to his own, of
course). Merrick hounds and blackmails Pinker, who
commits suicide, as Dixon recounts to Perron.
Dixon refers to Merrick and his native (male) servant
memorably as "Count Dracula and Miss Khyber Pass
of 1935".

As far as rejection of religion is concerned -- of
course! How could it have been otherwise? And it goes
further than that -- homosexual men have always regarded
themselves as profound outsiders in the human community,
and have cultivated a somewhat bitter edge of irony
and skepticism toward all cultural givens and sacred
cows. That's where camp comes from, partly.
It's a gift, if a burdensome one.

> . . .male physiology may come into play to magnify seed-sowing. . .

You're on the right track here. See Donald Symons'
_The Evolution of Human Sexuality_.
http://www.amazon.com/Evolution-Human-Sexuality-Donald-Symons/dp/0195025350