Archive for February, 2009

On The Nature of Friendship (Part II)

Posted by on Friday, 27 February, 2009

Then the LORD God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone; I will provide brothers suitable to fellowship with him.”
— Gen 2.18

I was asked once (well probably more than once, really) what someone could do “as a friend” to help me. I do not remember what I said. (I think you said, “Buy my CD.) No I didn’t. I probably said that I would let them know, and then never did. [Although in thinking about it, I realize that there is actually a surprising amount of depth in that seemingly flippant answer. I do not want to get into it just now, other than ask you to imagine that I had phrased the same idea slightly differently, “Show me that you appreciate my music.”]

As to the topic at hand, I keep coming back to the person I consider to be the best friend I ever had. Back in high school, I had a friend who, if she perceived that I had something on my mind, (something that, knowing me, I was most likely trying to conceal) then she would not rest until she had extracted it. I can not say that I appreciated it at the time; I once got so angry that I threw her out of the house. (Or so I was told, as I was actually so angry that I could not remember the details afterward. Impressive, really.) It was some years after we had gone our separate ways in life before I realized that someone like me really needs someone like that.

Certainly I meet people from time to time that ask a lot of questions. But I usually interpret such people as just being nosy, like they only want an answer so that they can check off that box, not because they actually care what the answer might be. No, what I am looking for is someone who is not necessarily naturally inclined to ask the tough questions, but who cares enough to step out of the comfort zone.

My, aren’t we picky?…And why the hell should anyone do that for you? I do not want to say that I do not care about anyone, because I think that, on rare occasions, I will do something that shows I care. But regardless, I am really not involved in anyone else’s life.

Sometimes I get to a point where I am absolutely going out of my mind struggling with some issue, and I will finally break down and call someone up and we will meet so that I might unburden myself. Although I feel much better afterward, those relationships never actually seem to be any deeper after that. I have actually done this several times and I do not think it has ever been the same person twice. More importantly, I have never been that person to anyone else. No one has ever called me up to say, “I’m going out of my mind and you’re the only one who I think would understand.” Maybe it is just because most people do not let things get that bad before doing something about it. Yet even when people do share serious things, I rarely (if ever) feel as though I am the first to know.

I write this blog and I generally expect people to read it. Yet I do not read anyone else’s blog, and, well I do not even know what this “twitter” thing is exactly. When I started blogging years ago, there were a few other blogs that I followed, but I gradually gave up on each of those as they began posting even less frequently than I did. I still check in every once in a while if I happen to think of it, but that is rare. Some other people have blogs that I have looked at when first brought to my attention but never went back. Sometimes someone will mention that they have a blog but do not mention the address, in which case I assume that they do not actually want me to read it. Though now that I think about it, maybe they just want to see if I care enough to ask. Does anyone out there have a blog that they want me to read?

I blog to be honest, to show a side of myself that I can not show in person. I blog to connect with people. After all this time, it was not until last week that I realized that that really does not work at all. It might make sense as a starting point, and I think part of my motivations in the beginning was to start conversations and discussions. Yet when people leave comments, I either do not respond at all, or else respond in a way that does not encourage further discussion. I tried last week to be more intentional about responding to comments, but I still think it probably came off as condescending. As for private conversations, it is rare that I even admit to having a blog, and I am extremely reluctant to discuss any particular topic in depth. Why is that? I guess it is because the “right” people just never ask the “right” questions.

I simply do not try very hard at maintaining friendships. On some level, I do not think that I should have to. You either like someone or you do not, you enjoy their company or you do not, you find them easy to talk to or you do not – you really should not have to “work at” anything. But that is not really true, is it now?

“But you don’t understand!” I protest. “I have realized all of this before… I did have a friendship that was important to me… I was trying to be specific and intentional and I still got it all horribly wrong!” But that is *my* problem, and I really have been much too hard on my friend who at least had the decency to say, “I can’t do this anymore,” when most people just fade away. Oh well, “next time I have friends”, right?

So, to answer the original question, a real friend would not take all of this BS from me.

Where exactly do I expect this magic friend to come from? Or these “right” people with their “right” questions? Deep down I suppose I have always believed that there would only be one person to whom I could really talk, one person who would really understand me, and if you aren’t my soul mate then I’m just not interested. I have not been looking for a friend, I have been looking for a “savior.” That really is not going to happen, is it?

I was at a bar last week, watching those (quite frankly, unattractive) people drinking and smoking. I was doing neither, I was only there to play music. A couple of thoughts occurred to me. One was that I never seem to “belong” anywhere. It seems like no matter where I am – church, school, job, this bar, whatever – I am always there for a different reason than everyone else. That is a whole topic in itself. The other thought that I had was that I really need to get over myself and try to be friends with some “real” people.

So I have been trying to be better about initiating contact with people, actually asking the questions I wonder about, following up on things they have mentioned previously… which probably does not seem that impressive to you, but none of which comes naturally for me. It is really too soon to tell what is to come of it.

*Someone seriously might want to double check this.

On the Nature of Friendship (Part I)

Posted by on Friday, 20 February, 2009

It’s no secret that a friend is someone who lets you help
It’s no secret that a liar won’t believe anyone else

I lost two friends last week. I mean, not “lost” lost, but they have moved away. One moved physically, the other, for lack of a better word, emotionally. I know that I just recently admitted to more or less lying to everyone I know, but these were two of the people who, among my current acquaintances, had known me the longest, that I saw with the greatest regularity, and were on the very short list of people whom I consider to know the *real* me, if anyone could make such a claim.

I wanted to clarify: I do not lie on my blog. When writing my last post (which I think unintentionally ended up as a sort of summary for the entire blog) I found myself having to reread a lot of old posts in order to refresh myself about sequences of events and so forth. Clearly a lot of the posts are vague. [No, really?] I like to think that was more so in the earlier ones and that I have gotten better over time, but your opinion may vary. I also go through long periods of not posting anything, but then sometimes come out with a rash of posts that are about as brutally honest as I have ever been about anything in my life. A lot of times I will work in a subtle joke that I might only expect one other person to get. There have also been a few cases where I have attempted to conceal a private message for one specific person. (Not always for the same person, and I actually do not know if any one of those attempts has ever been successful.) I guess I have to admit that the last example does seem to border on deceitful. But I stand by the statement that I do not lie on my blog. I do not write something intending for you to believe one thing when I know another to be true. Or at least, I do not remember ever doing it on purpose, and I hope that I never have, because the whole point of the blog was to be honest.

In one older post, I mention that it is actually the person who writes this blog that is the “real” me, and the one that you see walking around that is the made-up personality. That may be a bit extreme, and it certainly is the opposite of what you would probably expect, but it is reasonably accurate. I have a lot of “friends” on Facebook who (as far as I know) have no knowledge of this blog. [Edit: well I guess they do now.] There are people who read this blog that I know are not on Facebook. And of course, there are people I interact with in the real world who do not do either. I would say that anyone who does not read my blog is probably missing the larger piece of my personality. I’m wishing that was not the case now. It would be much better for me if I could talk openly in person about the things on my blog.

There are a lot of things that have lead me to question the nature of friendship lately. A little while ago I watched the entire series of a show called “Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip.” I’d never heard of it until it was recommended to me. The show is about the cast and crew of a “Saturday Night Live” type show (not unlike “30 Rock”, except that it’s a drama instead of a comedy.) Anyway the first episode is about these two guys who are coming back to the show as Head Writer and Producer. Basically, a few years prior to the current story, one of them had been fired/encouraged to quit over some controversy, and the other guy had quit in support and they ended up making a couple of successful movies together, but now the second guy was being coerced into coming back to the show and the first guy came back as well, rather than continuing to make movies and his reason was basically that they were a team. Of course it’s only a TV show, but I was inspired by that friendship and loyalty and just that overall sense of “what are ‘we’ going to do now”. The series actually had a second example of such a partnership, but I won’t go into that.

Back to my two friends. The first was a simple case of new-job-new-city-ok-bye. It all happened quite suddenly, but that is the way life goes. My regret there is that we were never really as close of friends as I always thought we could be and I am sorry to have let that opportunity pass. The other case is challenging because it is a lot more my “fault”… at least in the sense that if I had said and done things differently in the past then this particular trouble might have been avoided, and I fear that my efforts to correct mistakes of the past have only made it worse. Is it too late to heal? I honestly don’t know.

A long time ago there was someone whom I cared about very much. This person was on what I saw to be a very destructive path, and nothing I said or did seemed to make any difference. This was so painful to me that eventually one day I made up my mind that if they insisted upon self-destructing, then at least they were not going to take me down with them, and I walked away. I still tend to think of that as the hardest thing I have ever done, to turn my back on a friend. Was it the right thing to do? I have questioned that many times over the years. But I was so young. Is it possible that I have never been truly able to care about anyone since? I never thought about that before, but I suppose it might be.

I bring that up because I realized that I (quite unintentionally) wrote two posts in a row in which I mentioned my own funeral. That is probably not a good sign. Along with everything else, I could see how someone might read that and finally say, “That’s it, I’ve done all that I can for you… I’m done.” Not that anyone has, but I recognize the possibility… because it is exactly what I once did.

Ode to Joy

Posted by on Sunday, 15 February, 2009

Let’s take a break and focus on something else for a change, shall we?

“Window in the Skies” was one of two new songs on U2’s career-spanning (and curiously-chosen) singles collection a couple of years back. From things I have read here and there online, I gather that a lot of U2 fans do not particularly care for it, but at the time it came out, I felt that it was very appropriate for what I was going through. (I meant to blog about it at the time, but no one ever reminded me!) Especially after a couple of sub-par albums, I was finally content to say, “Okay U2, this one is actually good… so if you just STOP NOW then all will be forgiven.” [Hold on, I’m just getting word…] Oh. Nevermind. Anyway, there are two different videos for this song, both of which seem like they must have been mind-blowingly difficult to create, but I happen to favor this one. I was able to download it from the official website when it first came out, and have never been able to watch it just one time through. How did it not take years to put this together?

I used to read an awful lot of webcomics, and though I have tapered that off, there are still a handful that I keep up with. They all have their unique charms and are entertaining in various ways, but none of them make me exclaim, “I love Kate Beaton!” quite like (Although that site seems to have a lot of technical difficulties and I find it easier to go here.) The art work appears simple, yet the characters convey emotion quite well. I must warn that the comics occasionally contain language and “adult situations” so are probably not for everyone, but her unique perspective on historical figures (most of whom I have either never heard of or know almost nothing about… so it’s educational!) is definitely worth the price of admission. Especially this one.

Speaking of webcomics, this one panel happens to be from a side project of another comic I enjoy. Some of you know that I take my humor very seriously, so it is no small endorsement that I say, without exaggeration, that this is the single funniest thing that I have ever seen.

Back on the music side of things, Sigur Rós is an experimental band from Iceland that sings songs in a made-up language. Okay. They also happen to make cinematic masterpieces for music videos.

This dude actually quit his job to dance around the world. With the popularity of his first video, he got corporate sponsorship to make more.

And what’s this? A new Purple Robe song? Okay, it’s not that new… It was just sitting in a pile of stuff on my computer that all needs a little something-something to be finished. But hey, it’s new to you. I put together this song after watching the above Sigur Rós video as an experiment to try to capture an entirely different sentiment than my music usually conveys.

So Far

Posted by on Thursday, 12 February, 2009

You say
You want
Diamonds on a ring of gold
Your story to remain untold
Your love not to grow cold
All the promises we break
From the cradle to the grave
When all
I want
Is you

It began with five words.

So, courtship. You may wonder, like I did, what the heck that means. A few months ago I was party to a conversation about courtship where it was described as “dating with purpose.” That purpose, of course, being marriage. (Isn’t that always the purpose of dating, you ask? Tragically… it most certainly is not.) Six years ago, all I knew was that “courtship” meant that I was not allowed to ask out a certain delightful young lady without first consulting her father. That conversation went about as well as you might expect.
“Do you know Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior?”
“Uh… no…”
That was sure over quick. But this courtship thing had me intrigued. Maybe it was because when I met this girl I had recently come out of a breakup. I did not need any convincing that the practice of dating has an enormous capacity for confusion, for deceit, and for pain. A number of my married friends have mentioned how horrible they think dating is and how relieved they are that it is over. Single people seem to just except it as a necessary means to an end. But what if you could skip all that? What if it could be over before it begins? Sign me up for THAT. How hard could this “Christian” thing be?

So I started reading the Bible. By this point, I had already accepted the existence God, because the whole situation was so ridiculous that I was convinced that there just had to be a higher power that was screwing with me. I started going to churches and was invited to join a Bible study group. I had grown up believing that Christians were simply not very bright people who just believed the nonsense that their parents had taught them. It had never once occurred to me that an intelligent person who had not been raised in a Christian environment would actually convert to Christianity. But I found that there was far more depth to it all than I ever could have imagined. And I met actual intelligent, thinking people who still believed in all this. I started a website to record my thoughts and experiences, which later became a blog. The Pastor at one of the churches that I visited gave a convincing argument about the necessity of publicly accepting Christ, and I was one of the ones who went forward. I started seeing and hearing references to baptism all around, so I did that too. I stopped playing my music, because it was ever so depressing, and I was caught up in the idea that life does not have to be so bad.

That girl was long gone now, but that was okay. I was still learning, and I figured that if this was really meant to happen, then God would bring us back together when I was ready. Wouldn’t that make for an amazing story? Besides, I knew where she had gone: Cal Poly Pomona.

If you go to church long enough, you get involved in the lifestyle, you learn all the lingo, and no one even thinks to ask if you are really a believer. Of course I did not want to advertise that I was still a “seeker”, and I certainly did not want anyone to know that I was really doing all this because of a girl. I figured that one day, I would get it all sorted out, and once I had arrived at a happy ending, I could finally tell the whole story. Then I met another girl. I was not looking to meet anyone, and certainly had no interest in dating, because I already had my plan all set. But I had to admit that she was ever so intriguing.

I transferred to Cal Poly Pomona myself. In the very first week, I saw that girl who had started it all. She was holding hands with another guy. At least, I thought that it was her. I did not get a real clear look… and I had kind of forgotten what she looked like? Even so, I died a little that day. But I also thought of it as a warning to not let that other girl get away. So we dated. It was more good than bad. I was able to be more honest with her than I had been with anyone since I started going to church. I finally was not afraid to share my struggles about God with someone. But what about courtship? What about that happy ending to my amazing story? I had set that aside, but I had not let it go. I remember one day, I fasted and prayed like they tell you to do, I went for a long walk and asked God if it was really right for me to be with this girl or if that other one, who I may or may not have seen, who had reached almost legendary status in my mind, was really still out there somewhere. Two days later my girlfriend ended the relationship.

Then my life proceeded to burn to the ground. My mother died, then my grandfather. My grandmother would later follow. I hated my school and had completely lost interest in my major. In spite of all my talk and all my time in various ministries, I still did not actually believe in the Bible. I was putting on a charade to everyone I met. All I cared about anymore was that girl, not that first one, I mean the real girl, the one that I had never appreciated and never fully committed to when I had the chance. Our relationship had unofficially rekindled for awhile, but she had long since made it clear that that could not continue. I started to get violent and destructive around my house. I spent a lot of time just lying on the floor.

Eventually, I reached a point where I absolutely could not go on any longer. Yet, somehow, it occurred to me that for all the time and effort I had spent studying Christianity and learning about Jesus, I had never tried to actually trust Jesus. When I finally reached the bitter end, I cried out to Jesus… and I kept walking. Things did change. Life did not exactly get better, in fact, for a while it became significantly more dramatic. But I had a strange peace about it. I started going to two more Bible studies. (Making it three a week.) I blogged up a storm in those days (at least compared to my usual output), finally clearing out a lot of the baggage that I had been carrying for years. For the first time, I fully confronted my feelings about that original girl, who started this whole journey. I was somewhat surprised to discover that there was not anything there. There had NEVER been anything real there. I described at the time that I felt like I had been carrying around a piece of baggage for years, only to look inside and find it completely empty. Moving on from my real love was not so easy, but I finally was able to do so. I finally was able to admit that there were other women in my life that I could see myself in a relationship with. There was one in particular that I honestly felt as though God was DARING me to ask out. So ask her out I did. She was not interested.

What the Hell, God? What the bloody Hell? Alright, so I had made the wrong choice there. But at least I was back in the game right? But no, I was not. I realized that I was still selling my dreams short. Five words: “We don’t date we court.” I have no interest in casual dating. I want an honest, permanent relationship.

It became clear to me that it was my desire to get married that interfered with my honest search for God. My father once asked me what made me “want to believe” in Christianity. I do not recall now what answer I gave him. However, “wanting” to believe was never really the issue. I simply needed it to be true in order to accomplish my goal, and therefore, the fact that deep down I did not actually believe it could never be acknowledged. I also began to feel very strongly that several passages in the New Testament actually discourage Christians from marriage, indicating that marriage and family interfere with one’s obligations to spread the Gospel.

So, in order to achieve (my understanding of) a “Godly” marriage that I had sought for so long, I first had to pursue God. In order to pursue God, I first had to give up my desire for marriage. I turned this over and around for some time before finally, in a sudden fit of maturity, I declared, “Well fine! How about if I just don’t do either then!”

And to this day, I haven’t.

The final straw came when my grandmother died. I was still in a Bible study at the time, and as with my mother and grandfather, there was always someone who asked if they knew the Lord. I always tried to dodge that question as best I could, partly because I simply did not know the answer, but mainly because deep in my heart, I honestly do not believe that it makes any difference. That being the case, and that point being the fundamental basis of Christianity, then nothing else about my church involvement means anything at all.

There has always been a great emptiness in my life. Christians sometimes refer to it as a “God-shaped hole.” At various stages in my life, I tried to fill it with alcohol, with love relationships, with music, with MORE alcohol, with education, and finally, with God. And I have to say (and I think that any long time reader of my blog would have to agree) that my search for God has left me every bit as empty and despairing as any of the others.

I’m not saying that I do not believe in God, and I am not going to go on record saying that the Bible definitely is not true, because I can not be sure of that. There certainly is a lot of truth to be found in it, but one would expect that in such an extensive body of work. I would imagine that there is also a great deal of truth to be found in the collected works of Shakespeare, but that does not mean that the stories themselves are true, even if many are based on actual historic figures. Still, there are many things that I can not explain. A great many things really. In the past, it was easy to say that bizarre circumstances were the work of God, because that is what all of the people around me would say. Maybe they really were, I do not know. All I know is that I have long since grown tired of hearing the name “Jesus,” when I have never experienced that relationship of which others speak. These Christians, they tell such wonderful stories… but ultimately, I do not believe that there are real answers to be found here. I just pretended that I did in order to get to what to I really wanted.

I began formulating this post because I was asking myself, “Why are you still here?” I do not really go to church anymore, but I still work in ministry. I still occasionally have conversations about God and I probably too readily give my interpretation of Bible passages while conveniently leaving out the fact that I do not actually consider the Bible to be authoritative. Why am I here? Going back now I realize that from those five words to the “God-shaped hole”, all of this, all of it, has been simply because I did not want to be alone.

And how has that worked out for you?

Not. So. Well.

Waking Up

Posted by on Wednesday, 11 February, 2009

Six Fingered Man: I have just sucked one year of your life away. […] How do you feel?
Westley: [Whimpering moan].
Six Fingered Man: Interesting.
–The Princess Bride

Did I honestly spend an entire year doing absolutely nothing productive? That just can not be. “What about [this]?” I ask. But that was at the end of 2007. “Well how about [that], that was like, last summer, right?” Checking my records… January 2008.
No… just NO.

And the worse part is, it’s not even the first time.
Some days you wake up with your head in a cloud
And when you look up, a whole year’s gone by.
Some days you wake up from living underground
And when you go out, the sun spits in your eye

…But it’s alright
It’s alright.
Some days are like that.
–Less is More

I was out and about on Monday (which is highly unusual, because normally after working all weekend, I do not feel like leaving the house for a day or two… or five), and I was thinking about how, in the beginning, I felt compelled to start visiting churches; felt that I was led by God to be baptized, to pick a permanent “home” church, and other things like go to New Orleans. I have not felt anything like that for a very long time. I idly wondered when exactly I stopped feeling “led by God.” I sort of thought it was a rhetorical question, it was one of those things that just slowly fades away. Then later in the day, it suddenly occurred to me, Gee, ya think maybe it was when you felt “led” to abstain from marriage, and you basically told God to “eff off“? Are you ever going to finish that story?

Oh right, THAT. I started to write something a few months back but never finished the thought. I have now posted what I had written so far, with my best guess at a back-date.


Posted by on Monday, 9 February, 2009

I noticed something about my last post. I did not say anything at the time, because I was trying to create a certain mood… but I am fully aware that I wrote four whole paragraphs that contained no actual information.

My New Year’s Resolution in 2008 was simply: No more lies, no more pretending. I do not like to think of myself as a liar, but I’ve long been aware that the amount of things that I just “don’t bother” to mention quite often qualifies as a willful deception. Often I will be aware that someone has a wrong perception of me and I make no effort to correct that. In many cases, it’s because I honestly do not care what that particular person thinks about me in that particular matter and it is just easier to let them believe whatever they believe. But then there are the times when I say things that intentionally contribute to people’s misperception about me. That is much harder to explain. I pride myself on always trying to say factually accurate statements in such cases and therefore I am never outright lying… but who am I kidding really. I heard somewhere that you should always tell the truth because there’s less to remember that way. I realized that the other way to go is to tell 100% consistent lies. I think that is what I was really trying to say in my last post, that I do not *have* to remember what I’ve denied and to whom because I have been 100% consistent in my denial. You do not know me. I do not even know me.

Like I said, in 2008 I wanted to stop lying and stop pretending. And I did for a little while… but then I started leaving the house and interacting with people again. Ahem. Actually, by the end of 2007 I had become so tired of just about everything that I spent the entire calendar year of 2008 avoiding reality and simply doing whatever I felt like at any given moment. It seems that that resolution was a miserable failure.

By 2009, I was astounded to realize that I had been getting away with it for so long. Furthermore, I realized that without some change I might keep going indefinitely. So my resolution this year was again simple: to start caring again.

So what has happened so far this year? First, the child who carried my name passed away at 17 months old. A month earlier I had received a Christmas card from the family and my first thought was, “Awwww, he has my eyes!” Of course I had to quickly remind myself, What the Hell are you talking about? It’s a black and white photo, and you do realize that he isn’t actually your son! The card also thanked me for supporting and loving their family this year. That stung a bit, because I really was not sure that I HAD loved and supported their family this year. Not only was he not my son… I barely knew him. I’d like to point out that I know nothing about babies, but when he was older I certainly would have been more involved… maybe apprenticed him in the family woodworking business and all that. Of course I knew that he had health issues and was generally aware that he was not expected to live a normal life-span… but I never actually asked the specific questions and did not appreciate how little time he had. I will regret that until my dying day.

Shortly thereafter, a U.S. Airways flight made a water landing. Which is not particularly relevant unless you know that I have nothing but problems whenever I fly, and for my Christmas travels I was trying to think of what problem I hadn’t had yet and somehow settled on “water landing.” Now according to one website I read, there have only been 11 water landings in the history of aviation, so the fact that I had become obsessed mere weeks before one is really quite an impressive coincidence. Not to mention that I was also on a U.S. Airways flight. I find that very unsettling.

A couple of weeks ago, my manager was laid off at work, and my department was merged with another one. Even before that I had long questioned whether or not I belong at that job. The manager was a good friend of mine, and one of the main reasons I took that job at all was because he asked me too. I know the economy is in trouble and a lot of people are losing their jobs, but the circumstances surrounding his dismissal were rather shady, and I really do not want to work at a place that touts having an “umbrella of grace” but treats their employees that way. The next week this same friend decided to quit the band that, once again, I had joined because he had asked me to.

So, with all that going on, the question remains: have I started caring yet? I’m still not sure. I had fully intended to give my two weeks notice at work this weekend… but circumstances conspired such that I was just too busy to sit down and type it out. Curiously, I have listened to an awful lot of speakers at my job over the last year, but today was the first time in a great long while that I actually heard. I do not even remember exactly what he said. To be honest, until this morning, I did not like this group. I did not like this speaker. But somehow through his words today it became clear just how much everything is falling apart around me. I am not going to be safe in my private little world for much longer. I have been doing things very, very wrong and I do not have much time left. Not much time at all.

Grave Secrets

Posted by on Wednesday, 4 February, 2009

I spend a fair amount of time thinking about my own mortality. Probably more than most people, but then, I figure that most people probably do not ride a bicycle late at night with questionably adequate lighting. When I do, I think about what might happen if I was killed. My affairs are not exactly what one would call “in order.”

I wonder if my family would have the funeral here, there, or just wherever they happen to be. I wonder what sort of service they would do and if they would know whom to invite. Will they be able to say, “It’s what he would have wanted”? Good luck with that.

Of more immediate concern, if I were to die, then my place of residence would be examined, my effects sorted. And what sort of things would they find? For, blog aside, I am an extremely private person, and I have secrets. First of all, there would be evidence of many projects, both physical and computer-based, most abandoned in various stages of completion. It used to be my policy to never speak of whatever I might be working on until it was finished. That way if I succeeded, I could impress people by pulling something seemly out of nowhere, and if I failed… no one would ever know. I have relaxed this considerably in recent years, probably to my detriment, but there are still projects which I have never mentioned to anyone, and I wonder how many of my ideas will anyone be able to make heads or tails of.

Then, of course, there is my life. Past, present, future. Events, situations, goals… certain things that other people might know about only because they were directly involved, not because I have ever shared with anyone. I imagine that some things might come to light that would surprise people who thought that they knew me. And there are some secrets that I would take to the grave.