(sometimes withershins, widershins or widderschynnes) means to take a course opposite that of the sun, going counterclock-wise, lefthandwise, or to circle an object, by always keeping it on the left. It also means "in a direction opposite to the usual," which is how I choose to take it in using it as the title of this blog. We're all in the same world finding our own way.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Widdershin Writings Episode IV: A New Quarter

I've returned from spring break, freshly exhausted from a great start to racing season for crew and have now started classes.

I only technically have two classes, Chem 121 and Anth 365 (Peoples of Latin America), but am working on an independent study project with Tony that has turned into a kind of case study into what I can best describe as the ontological and socio-political effects music has on culture and literature/art. Like any study experience with Tony though, I'm sure there are many levels beyond this that I'll only start to see once I've been working with and analyzing the texts provided for a few weeks.

Which is, to say, expect more than a few posts with postmodern philosophical influences over the next few months.

I like this idea of independent study because it lends itself to that self-taught experience that makes learning far more valuable than your usual class experience. In that I am helping to create this course of study and have an active role in choosing the texts and directions it will go, it becomes a far more personalized curriculum.

Now, I'm not saying everyone should go out and make their own independent study plans with one of their professors, I myself only resorted to this option after realizing a schedule of three classes on top of my athletics, youth mentoring and club activities would not be conducive towards any kind of sane or healthy living for a full quarter.

I've realized too that in choosing this independent study though, I've pushed myself one step closer to becoming Kai. It was after all, her sitting through the second Nanotexts course last year during her own independent study with Tony that we became acquainted. Perhaps this means I'm transitioning to a new role in this hierarchy of the plurk/English environment Tony has introduced us to. Maybe somewhere amongst this group of thirty or so new Parasites is the next Ace.

And so the evolution and perpetuation continues.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Perhaps this is where we're headed

And we've crossed a line
Or perhaps the better way to put it is crossing a threshold
Off through the looking glass to join the Hatter
Though maybe I'm thinking of the Other
Who is it I see in the mirror?
So many questions -- what are you thinking -- asked
I'm exhausted
I want to hide behind these allusions that
keep things distinct.
We've lost ourselves in this blur.
It's all a fog.
Warm my hand in yours.
But who are you strangers beside me?
Inside me.
Eat. EAT. Forever hungry for more, hungry for love.
What was the tea party but a civilized orgy?
What is class but an orgy of ideas?
Well the orgy is over. [or near enough]
But we're still here.
"watching myself write and create is painful sometimes."
The inside looks at the inside from the outside
Of course it's painful.
It's excruciating.
The ultimate pleasure-pain, like crack for the mind.
It takes a certain kind of crazy to
to this constant ontology
analyze analyze analyze
When we connect the dots, we lose them.
They become just another part of the line.
But they get just as lost when they remain
The individual is a cancer upon the hive mind.
It stimulates the kind of change
necessitated by its mutation
For it is something new.
Or else it is destroyed
Rarely does it remain benign
[p]lurking silently
ignored or else forgotten
There's a crack in the glass:
A hole in the fourth wall.
We can taste it and know it is there
like a gut reaction
but this does not mean we see it.
It is invisible to us just as the wall was.
And yet we run at it
smashing ourselves on it
bugs on the window
window to the soul
blink away the disturbance
Something changed.
It scared us.
Or at least it scared me.
And so we back slowly away from the reflection.
But it stays there.
Perhaps not physically
but mentally it stayed with us
like that trip to Vegas
So we're running in circles.
Always ending up right where we started.
Alice was just a little too nice and innocent.
Ace was just a wild card.
Didn't it take the Queen to cross the landscape?

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

What in hell am I doing with all these words?

Eye contact with passerby
your velocity is negative to mine
moving in opposite directions
That ear bud connection keeping us separate.
"What are you thinking?"
I hold it as long as possible
It's soup-can direct
between windows to the soul
so tense you can feel the vibrations
Let's play it like a banjo
sing a little song in this moment we shared
Hey dilly-dally, we're crossing the line
Crossing this campus and walkin' so fine
Yeah, it's corny, but that's why we keep walking
We power through that scary contact.


I sometimes wish I were more musically inclined. Sometimes, I get these songs in my head and they're epic, right? Just so effing over the top amazing, but I can't write music. I can't compose and translate these brainwaves into sound waves.

So I dance. People catch me at it all the time. When my mind is elsewhere, my hands start to flail and gesticulate. Here's the tinkle of a piano, there's the wailing thrum of a violin. Up and down and right and left in sharp staccato movements.

I can't control it. I don’t want to. It keeps it from overwhelming me, this music. Is this what Kreisler feels like? Is this the sound of the tapeworm speaking in my head?


I realized today that I'm terrified of eating disorders. We were watching a documentary on anorexia during my Psych 101 class, and something about it made me royally uncomfortable. It wasn't until I was walking out of the room, leaving early to start my crew workout before Parasites, that I realized how deeply this had affected me.

They kept talking about how for people with eating disorders, it's about control, about being able to affect and manage one part of your life when everything else has gone to shit. It's an obsessive compulsion.

This probably speaks greatly to my idiosyncrasies and the ways in which my particular obsessive compulsions manifest themselves, but for me, control means I have to eat right. I have to do my best to be healthy, no, to be more than healthy, and I'm constantly paranoid that I'm not.


While I'm here making all sorts of confessions…

There are days when I feel intellectually dwarfed in this Parasites class. Who am I? What the hell do I know?

do you even know what the fuck you're talking about half the time you say it? or do you just like to use big words in a seemingly arbitrary order and confuse people into thinking you're hella smart?

I try pretty hard not to talk if I don't know what I'm saying and will freely admit that I don't necessarily know and am only offering my best guess. Really, it depends on the subject.

And if I'm going to use big words in a seemingly arbitrary order, it's not to confuse people into thinking I'm smart. It's just to confuse people.

Whoever asked me this on Formspring clearly knows how to get under my skin. I'm good at projecting confidence when I need to, and even believing in that illusion to the point where I actually am confident in myself as I speak, but there's always that lingering doubt, the insecurity biting at the back of my mind.

It's why when my voice falters and I'm often so much quieter when I speak in front of the class. I'm taking the time to connect the words and thoughts I'm trying to use so that I can say them right the first time.

And there are days like today, when I feel more active, when I have the desire to talk, but that's usually because I see my place. I see where I fit in and how I can use myself as a tool to facilitate and further the conversation.

Half the time it's not about knowing anything. It's about being able to put the pieces together, to draw lines between everything said on plurk, in class, in blogs, in the readings and even in previous quarters. It all connects. It has to. Doesn't it?

Why do I spend so much energy seeing these connections? If this is one giant connect the dot, I'm the tip of the pencil right now. I can't see the big picture until it's complete.