Saturday, May 5, 2012

I Know It's Personal But Are You In Love?

   

- I know it's personal. But are you in love?
- In love, yes, with people who've parted ways with me.
- I'm sorry.
- What about you?
- A girl. Also a tragedy. Big tragedy. It took me two years to recover.
- She wouldn't come back.
- No.
- Why did you ask if I was in love?
- Your last two stories are about love.
- I shouldn't repeat myself like that.
- You asked me why I'm nice to people working this waiter job.
- It didn't fit with your saying you're going to be an accountant because you love money.
- It does. I've found 5 girls here since I began a month ago.
- I see. And you keep in role by being nice to everyone, even me, bring out tea for me when you see me standing making notes.
- Yes.
- Don't believe it. There's this theory I've been reading about, of 8 basic levels of life, from primitive desires and fears, to appeals to authority, rationality, compassion, then an understanding of how they all can fit together, some higher because they include the others and do more with them. I think you're a good guy despite the bad things you say about yourself. Some things we do connect deeper than others. But we know almost nothing about it. We can't even say better knowledge will not bring worse misuse of knowledge, connect fear and aggression to knowledge itself. That we can move to a higher level does not imply a continuing progress to history, or progress in our own lives.
- I don't really understand.
- Ok. Writing a story, talking even, is many things at once. It feels claustrophobic, it means being trapped with a couple ideas, ideas I can and do make logical mistakes relating to each other. Yet it feels open too because the ideas I'm hoping will lead me somewhere new. I am literally afraid of the whole thing. I am isolated from every human being on the planet while I do it, I am stuck in myself, not religiously lost in the whole, not completely rational following through a task at hand, not even having a good sleep. In other words, it seems to be a low level activity I am engaged in, but I can say without hesitation it is the highest thing I do. When it's over I level out as it were, feel fine and grateful to the experience, but by then I am not especially high up. I am not a higher order thing, the truth is I'm down on the level with an infant looking at his mother's face and smiling.
- I've got to go back to work. Stay and drink your tea.