Hi PG. I enjoyed reading your writing today. You are in an exceptionally frank and revealing mood, which is usually a good sign in my oh-so-humble and
ever-limited experience. But be careful about opening yourself up too carelessly to strangers on the Internet, even on good old ATS. It's always
all-too-tempting for lonely expats, among many others who find themselves in strange spaces (physical or psychological). There is something about the
public e-confessional booth in particular that packs a punch no private communiques or journal scribblings ever can. It's heady stuff. Strong
medicine. And thus requiring cautious and judicious use. A lesson I've learned the hard way more than once, as you well know.
And yet, if done right It can be just the thing for the traveling blues, and genuinely cathartic if not downright revelatory and transcendent. Heck,
most days, this worn-out old exile can barely stop himself from indulging in the same danged thing, and often not for lack of trying, either.
allow me to take the mic for a moment, in the spirit of a fellow traveler who recognizes the mood you seem to be in all too well.
I was unconsciously fishing...with this thread.
Since you are admittedly on a public fishing expedition let's see what creatures from the briny depths I can throw into your wide-cast internet-net.
You've already gotten one quite nice fish in this thread, and devoured it with grateful and obvious hunger, but you deserve a few more for sure.
One good wall-o-text deserves another, after all.
And the whole point of a public fishing expedition is sharing the catch with our loyal audience, be it big or small, no? That's both the captivation
and the danger of the internet-as-public-confessional / fertile fishing ground.
Captivation and danger. Let's riff on that theme for a minute. Quite a pair. And notice how frequently they travel together, especially when you are
in a traveling way, in a far off place. It's all too captivating. But captivating can all to easily morph into its evil cousin: addictive.
danger of many.
And that's what I want you to be careful of more than anything, PG. I don't know if I've been at all successful in communicating what I want to
communicate to you, my fellow traveler and Japan-survivor, but if you take only one thing away from everything I've ever said or written to you, its
that you've got to make sure your captivation
with life - in all its glorious forms - doesn't shade off into addiction.
"Shading off" is
another way of saying "modulate," as you may or may not realize. Captivation tends to modulate to addiction, in all things. And now I modulate the
conversation so I'm not just talking about the captivation/addiction of the internet as public confessional and fishing lake for the lonely traveler
(dangerously tempting enough) but, more deeply and dangerously, the content of your confession, not just the form. Specifically, what you choose to
Strip away everything but the essential, and this thread is really nothing but you covering yourself with ashes and sackcloth for feeling something
that is a common response to catastrophe, at least for a certain personality type, if not for most people. What is rare about you is that A) you have
the desire to be honest about it to yourself at all, let alone to others, and b) the way you have chosen to be honest is to be force yourself to use
the public e-confessional here at ATS to expose something most people in the same situation spend prodigious energy hiding from themselves at all
It takes one to know one, PG.
To expose yourself in public this way, especially about something like this...thing
..you are feeling, is a brutally effective way of coming to
grips with it, because it removes your ability to hide from it. When you confess, its no longer inside you.
, and thus no longer deniable and
hide-able. When its public, and when other people affirm it, it becomes objective
, and however bad the results, at least you can't hide from it
anymore in the crazy smooth-contoured internal world of your own heart. Its out there in the cloud, for good or for ill, and you are going to have to
deal. Public confession is wonderfully liberating in that sense.
We both know that important confessions are probably best made to a loved or trusted person or people, not to a bunch of lunatics on a semi-anon
But sometimes us traveling people have no choice, right?
edit on 4/30/2012 by silent thunder because: (no reason given)