Saturday, November 13, 2004

A blog entry.

So I’ve decided to write a blog entry. This was never something that I had expected to do, but today it just seems…it seems like the right thing for me to do. It’s a small thing, really. But that’s just the point. It’s the small things that matter the most. The big things, everything, those are what can be taken in stride, we take them in, we think of them, we say we worry about them. But these aren’t what really mean the most in our lives. It’s the small moments, the countless scratching on the back of our necks…they mean the most. They do.

Today I walked to a Borders. This isn’t anything shocking, it’s something that I do all the time. When I went in there, I decided to walk directly to the small section of wall that features the books by Haruki Murakami. Once again, this isn’t anything strange. But today I was there with a specific agenda.

There’s a person on myspace who I’ve been idly chatting with on the subject of Murakami lately. I told them that my favorite book of his was without a doubt The Wind-up Bird Chronicle. They told me that their favorite was South of the Border, West of the Sun. I had yet to read this book, so as I strode towards the bookshelf, I figured that I should finally get around to giving it a look.

I read that book today, in one sitting. I walked down the stairs and sat in a comfortable chair, one near the selection of comics and manga. I read the book there, although the amount of time it took me to read the book isn’t the point. It isn’t the point at all. This is about the shiver that refused to leave me when I was done. It’s about the fact that Cab Calloway found his way over the live speaker at that very moment, his spectacularly singular crackling voice making the whole experience all the more real. Or perhaps unreal. I can never be too sure.

A book about life and love and books and music. More than just music. Jazz. Pure Jazz. It’s about so much, more than what a guy like me can handle. And maybe that’s what the real point is.

I cried. It happens sometimes, and it isn’t anything to be ashamed of. But as I cried, I thought. I thought of many things, of life in general. But mostly I thought about the book that I’m in the midst of writing at this very moment. It’s a book that features four principal characters, all of which feature some aspect of my own personality. All of them have something which they always have an unending supply of, as well as eternally dark eyes that do nothing other than draw people into their own madness. The book features many moments of musing on the substance of their own lives, in the pretentious way that assholes like me tend to put things. It also features a man with a large pair of scissors and a weakness for “The Pillows,” fighting a Hindu man on roller blades who swings about a guitar. I thought of this book of mine, and I was ashamed.

Ashamed that in a world where The Wind-up Bird Chronicle and South of the Border, West of the Sun exist, all I could be bothered to produce was some stupid bullshit pulp. And I’m even more ashamed that it’s bullshit pulp that I love with all of my heart. I love all four of my characters, Nelson May, Carl Houd, Max Weiss, and Simon. I love Nelson thinking about everything and nothing while riding in the back of a bus, and I love Carl being brained with a spatula by a British man in the back of a Laundromat. I love Max sitting in a prison cell while knee deep in cigarette butts, and I love Simon walking in a hotel while knee deep in corpses. It’s confusing. But it is part of me, just as the book I read today shall be. So today, I am a man crying in the face of beauty, ashamed of his very own hand.

I don’t suppose that this really means much. But as I said before, it’s the small stuff. That is where the importance lies. After I read the book, I stood up and rested it gently upon the seat. I couldn’t bring myself to put it back on the shelf. No, I had to give someone else the chance to come across the book and discover it for themselves. As I walked out of the store, I remembered the movie “Orange County”. Guess I’m not that original after all.

It was cold when I walked home, but somehow I couldn’t bring myself to take the bus, or even put my aching hands inside the pockets of my coat. The coat was one that I bought at Costco a long while ago, and it’s a coat that I’m very fond of. On normal days, I wouldn’t think twice of putting my hands within the folds for warmth. But it didn’t seem right. It didn’t seem like the real thing to do. I just wanted to experience the cold, feel it against my skin, even though my hands felt stiff and my ears fell off. So it goes.

So here I am, sitting here writing this for myself and possibly for people that won’t bother to read it. I might make a cup of tea and watch a movie, I’m not sure yet. Right now, I’m still thinking. About the latest chapter that I’d written for my book. The chapter is titled “…” and it’s only two sentences long.

“A shapeless man cries out through a rainstorm of tears. No one answers.”

In a simple, wonderful way, I’d say that it reminds me of myself. It makes me happy.


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