Let slip the dream.

August 21, 2011

I haven’t been writing here because I’ve wanted to keep the Aaron Smith posts on my homepage in some vain hope of keeping that part of the dream alive.  Dreaming precludes work, but work is meaningless without a dream.  I’ve been resting on the former and neglecting the latter.  Time to switch things around, be profound and work, write, speak without a sound.

Aaron Smith may someday leap out from the distant past, and my personal past, with his enigmatic smirk and become very real again (in a post-modern sense).  Until then, onward.

I’ve been busy not working on this new screenplay.  Living instead.  Well, not even that.  I think I’ve been in a waking coma for the last several months.  Like insanity…one cannot self-diagnose in these cases.  I am reaching this conclusion based on my total lack of output since February (or earlier).  And in this retrospective moment, I have been struggling to scream and nothing can escape me.  I am a prisoner within me.  I don’t want to listen to me anymore.

Ummm, that’s not wholly precise.

The wrong part of me does not listen to the right part of me and I am mostly the wrong part of me in many regards.  An internal uncivil war because there’s only one victim…me.  Or so I think.  There are many around me who could claim to be casualties of this war.  Friendly fire.  Shrapnel.  Debris.  Hubris.

Bullshit.  All of it.  Time to get back on track.

Long time (some bad destination)

August 21, 2011

I wish the world was full of simple wonders for me.  To marvel at a tree, not for photosynthesis and things of the like, but for its august stance, its many-coloured robe, rough skin and roots.  If I stretch my memory far enough, I can recall my first real, startling scientific revelation about trees.  Everyone who lives far enough north or south of the equator has witnessed the leaves annual change of suit and descent.  Although incredible, this is something I’ve experienced since my pre-memory.  This ‘fall’ is part of the natural rhythm of nature, so is not what startled me.  It was the rings inside.  A marker of age, health, climate.  The way this information is embedded in the rings of a tree, like grooves on vinyl or bits on a dvd (to be current!).

Then I start thinking to myself – be weary of rings, for they bind you.  Any kind of ring is binding by its very nature.  We imbibe the ring with deep meaning or beauty, in which we can enthrall ourselves and forget about the being bound aspect of it.

Bound is another one of those words whose various meanings conflict.  In the simplest phrase – one’s bounding (leaping) is bound (restricted) by gravity and it is bound (destined) to be this way.  Discombobulating is not something that can be combobulated, and it’s somewhat upsetting.  What happened to the combobulate?  Maybe it implied too much hope and was therefore struck from the official record.

What came first – the desire (long) or the distance (long)?  They both imply some sort of gap between ourselves and something we want, one emotional and the other physical, one destiny and the other destination.  Destination sometimes sounds like the digestion of destiny.

“Oh man…I have some bad destination.”

And I guess the destination is the consumption of destiny…if you get to where you were destined to be.  Anyways…it’s becoming clear that I don’t really have a destination for this post, in mind or in sight.

I began with the thought of my three year old daughter, who wanders and wonders at everything around her.  I sometimes find myself melancholic over the loss of that simple wonder.  When I really think about it though, I realize that as much as my world is full of complex and often incomprehensible wonders, it is still ripe with the simple ones as well.

I have brought this full-circle and within this ring I have bound some meaning.

How Shit Is My Job? (part one)

February 23, 2011

I am really trying to be less negative at work, but it seems to be impossible so long as people keep forcing their own personal dramas into my life.  Don’t want it.  Don’t need it.

Here’s a perfect example of the kind of shit I don’t need.  At work, I’ve sent several emails to two co-workers, both in management.  These two have a terrible track record for responding to emails, and when they do, they leave me with more questions than I had at the onset.  I need timely answers.  Well, I’m not getting them.

This is not an issue limited to me, so a new policy has been put in place.  Send the email once.  If you have to resend, copy this other manager.  If still no answer, copy the owner of the company.  Unbelievable, right?!

I’m kind of nice, when I shouldn’t be.  I don’t escalate the emails to other managers.  I quietly resend.

Today, I took the time to go through my sent mail folder and resend all of the emails to which I have not rec’d a response.  As I pushed the send button I made a friendly bet with a co-worker:

I’ve sent these reminder emails.  Now, you watch.  In response, I will get my own reminder email from one of these guys & this will happen within two hours.

Sure enough – there it is.  And the prick copies the owner!  Okay…so this makes me look bad.  At least that’s what my co-worker is trying to do.

Let’s back-track a little.  I am resending emails that are one week, two weeks old.  I am missing information these guys are supposed to provide.  Quirky decisions are being made.  For instance if we have to assemble X number of finished goods, then they produced X-Y goods for no apparent reason.  One of the emails is wondering when the balance of goods will be completed.  This is critical, time sensitive shit.  It’s also an example as to the subject matter of my inquiries.

The reminder email that came in retort (copying the owner) was originally sent to me Friday afternoon around 4pm.  It was a request to have something done by Wednesday afternoon (today).  Saturday and Sunday constitutes the weekend, at least where I work.  Monday was family day.  I didn’t get to it yesterday, but that’s fine because it’s requested for today.  At noon, halfway through the day, I get this friggin’ reminder.

Needless to say…it was a petty response from a very insecure co-worker.  Like the first thing that went through his mind was – “Oh yeah?!  I’ll show you.”  And he didn’t.  I still met my deadline.

S/ashes & Un\wanted Punctu@ti.n

February 5, 2011

I’m still learning this keyboard.  New laptop.  I can understand why it’s easy to grow resistant to learning.  It’s frustrating.  I should be a lot further along in this post than I otherwise am.  Of course, you’d never realize in reading.  Still I trudge along, fingers falling on foreign keys, incessantly hunting for the backspace button.  My thoughts whirling through the hinterland between keys and dribbling onto the floor, wasted off of the screen.

I hate not being able to correctly name this medium.  I think ‘screen’ is most appropriate…or ‘monitor’.  If you actually care to see this, you will more than likely view it on one or the other!  Funny words too…very Orwellian.  If you were more inclined to Huxley, then I guess you could call it a ‘display’ or something open and Utopian as such.

No matter.  You are being ‘screened’ and ‘monitored’ as you put pretty much everything on ‘display’.  Never before has this been more true than now.  Big Brother is watching you through the soma.  Shit…he’s the pusher.  Cute.  You see where I went with that…a blend of 1984 & Brave New World.

It occurred to me this morning, I’m not even a blissful idiot, which is a nice sort of idiot, imbecilic and cute.  I’m a miserable, opinionated, increasingly uninformed kind of idiot.  Unbearable.  Phew!  It feels nice to write that.  I think a little self-depredation is healthy and realistic.  It doesn’t necessarily keep me tempered to any degree.

No matter how steep my learning incline is with this keyboard, I am very pleased that I can sit and write again in the morning.


Judgment (turn your doubt inside out).

January 12, 2011

As  mentioned before (maybe here, but possibly somewhere else), my writing partner and I have completed drafts of 5 feature-length screenplays (4 original + 1 adaptation).  Pretty cool (I suppose).  The stories may not always be better than their predecessor (arguable), but the execution of the script always improves.

We’ve also completed outlines for 3 other features.  I should’ve had the first draft of one of these outlines complete before Christmas (I’ve written 5 pages).  Moving a little slow.

What the hell is happening to me?

Two factors weigh heavily on my ability to write:

1. Time

2. Confidence

I don’t have enough of either and am getting desperate for more of both.

In terms of confidence, my biggest problem is finding, then getting feedback from someone who is qualified to give it.  And then believing it when it comes back positive.  It drives me nuts.  Mainly because it’s all subjective bullshit.

I am remembering something that’s making me feel better.  We did receive some negative comments on the first couple of scripts…but after that almost nothing negative.  That’s impossible.  There has to be something wrong.  Why?  I don’t know…maybe because it would be unrealistic to believe it’s perfect.

What we receive are suggestions as to how we can take a good story and make it better.  Surprisingly, I get very excited when people offer a good suggestion.  I thought I would maybe be possessive.  Nope.

Coincidentally – you know what gets the most criticism?  The titles.  Yep.  Very superficial, but very important in a culture with little time to be anything more than superficial.

It’s a love/hate relationship trying to craft the perfect title.  We’ll spend hours over days (months) working out potential titles for our scripts.  In the end, it doesn’t really bother me.  It’s much easier to change the title page, then it is to change any page after it!!

The Slump (is over)

January 4, 2011

I’ve been in a mental slump as of late.  My mind, too tired to wander.  My time, too precious to squander…on anything other than the basic essentials of daily living.

Work, care and clean.  Go to work.  Care for my family.  Clean the house.  That’s about all I do.

In terms of money – income=output.  Some months you could replace ‘equals’ with ‘less than’, but never with ‘greater than’.  I am as broke as I have ever been.

My hands are riddled with eczema (stress).  I sweat profusely when (if) I sleep at night (stress).  My back muscles have been in a state of civil war for a few months now (and more stress).

Up at 6am and go, go, go until at least 9pm.  In bed somewhere between 10-11pm.

When do I write?

And this question lays at the base of all my complaints.  I need to write.  It’s ultimately becomes a biological imperative.  If I don’t satisfy the need, then I develop frequent headaches. become moody and self-destructive.  I don’t want to dwell on this aspect of myself.

I need to move forward.  Bring change (growth?) to my life.  Rid myself of my daily dragons.  This constant combat is killing me through attrition.  I have to make a break and finally reclaim myself.  I have to.  Don’t want to.  Need to.

I simply wish I could reduce my wants to the level of my needs.  I guess a billion Buddhist’s are trying to do the same thing.  Very challenging.

Time to refocus and remember my mind generates my reality.  I will be more positive without and therefore, I will be more positive within.  Within and without, although polar opposites, are really the sum of a greater oneness.  It is this greater unified reality which I need to behold and embrace.

Get my life back on track.  Mark my words – big things will start happening for me.

The Hangman’s Reel

August 7, 2010

I’ve been given a length of rope.  I can tie it in a knot, tie it in a noose.  Or be wise and put it to good use.