outline tectonic / topics of concern / letters

Grable / 16 October to 15 November

Dear Jillison,

I want to be vulnerable with you. 

Most interactions are either transactional or performative. We’re too self-conscious to listen. We’re thinking about what we’ll say next or how we’re being perceived.

All the posturing destroys any chance for a genuine connection.

A question worth asking: If you looked into the world’s most honest mirror, what would you see?

We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be.”

― Kurt Vonnegut Jr., Mother Night, 1962

Maybe I should stop going into the men’s bathroom.  

Castle / 16 November to 15 December

Dear Jillison,

Causality is a common lie.   We only believe in it because our brains evolved for it:   Tool making implies a world of causality. This action leads to this result: a very direct illusion.

You used to repeat yourself.  You told me over and over.

This weeks theme is garbage gray.  The goal is to pay attention to the illusions, knowing full well your brain is complicit in constructing them. 

Possible theme: fragments are existentially valuable.  Inherently valuable.

The movement of animals closely resembles in many ways the random walks of dust particles in a fluid.”

Plowshare / 16 January to 12 or 13 February

Dear Jillison,

Now the loneliness was evenly mixed with the air.  Settled like pollen and dust on table chair and dishes. Thin little lines lay under your eyelids.

When you were a child, what did you think happened after you die? When did you start thinking about death at all? 

I tried to remember the phantom limb of where we’ve been.  Maybe there once was a room where I knew what to do with months like these.

Prime / 16 March to 14 April

Dear Jillison,

Do laundry.  Go to work. Order/pickup medication.  Pack what you own. Find a temporary place to live

No money for concealer or caffeine. Reschedule face hair removal appointment for when you might have money.  Read an old story. 

Move?  Publish a book?  Get arrested? Maybe throw up again?

Be kind to yourself. Talk to friends.   Fuck dissociation. Wear what you have. No makeup necessary.  Fuck dysphoria, Go into world. Listen. Laugh at yourself. Actually make the trip to get your pills.  Be kind. Get a good night sleep. Write.

Confession: I have noticed this violent masculinity to our writing.  Short clipped sentences Too much force put on the period and line break.

The only form I trust are fragments.  What possible problems could this cause in our relationship?  In all relationships?

There’s got to be a lot more change in my life.  Let’s start with the way I write / think / collect / obliterate information.

continuous omissions / distortions

copying always / scavenging others 

entirely broken as a generative machine

trash collector / plagiarist

Shortcuts, cheats, so many breaks.  I collect scraps all week, just to leave them out.

Nevada / 16 May to 14 June

Dear Jillison,

“The map is not the territory…”  

Positive shame versus problematic shame.  I tend toward the latter. Internalize. Over-personalize.  Ignore external conditions and chance and circumstance. I catastrophize. I feel like I can’t change things, I lock in a spiral, I withdraw myself from others. 

Habit loops contain three parts. Queue (Trigger). Behavior. Reward.

A lot of addictive and destructive behavior may be caused by unacknowledged shame.  Concentric circles of denial and absence. 

We are so reliant upon the human face to read/understand intention and motivation, the face is a communication array.

A lot of gimmicks, too many gimmicks. The mask is an ancient performative tool.

It is easy to become sentimental.  It is easy to make poetic promises.  You are right to see these tendencies for what they are: flawed, human.

“I don’t know what’s the matter with people: they don’t learn by understanding, they learn by some other way — by rote or something. Their knowledge is so fragile!”

― Richard Feynman, Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman!, 1985.

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