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Jul. 27th, 2011

alex eye

streetlight halos

halos

Red and orange and blue and green lights haunting the black familiar weirdness. Thousands of people drawn to a city of pretend and bigger things. We came here. Friends till death, or at least till the fun remained. Torn hearts reaching out in the darkness for anything, for each other, for the stars, for something real in this life of plastic emotion. Drugged on whatever, following the night where it went.

I contrast the provincial, tacky neon of International Drive against the timeless, endless night sky and wonder if anyone else finds it as tragic as I do - that our friendships and our dreams and our innocence all vanished in that night sky throughout the years. Only our chemical-addled memories and a handful of pictures are left to prove our love, fun, and tears even existed. That and those lights.

We all changed by now but those magnificent artificial stars, those halos shining in the darkness still remain, telling us there is something more than this soul-less grind. Every time I see those lights, I think of lost love, of lost friendships, of the reckless nights chasing ideas we could never possibly explain. I see the lights of this city and I remember all the hurt and all the joy the people here have brought me. I think of the love and hurt I’ve brought them. I remember all the very real moments set against this fake tourist backdrop of facades and urban sprawl. I remember what brought us all up here in the first place.

I hope that the people that brought me those memories remember some of those nights. And I hope that sometimes when those halos reflect off your windshield as you drive somewhere none of us are a part of anymore, that you remember me. That you remember us. That you remember what it was once all about.

Jul. 4th, 2011

alex eye

patchouli

an imagined kiss
i love summer, i hate it
in passionless heat

Jun. 26th, 2011

alex eye

dream state

in my sleep
i do not get nervous

vices of old in my clutches
clusters of memory
driven to subconscious action

dream state conquistador
railing along
gliding
by nature of chemistry
and irrepressible history

happening
with tiniest application
of will, logic, mystery

stars retreat
as i rest, assured

May. 4th, 2011

alex eye

general purpose

There’s a song I’ve been listening to a lot lately. The lines in the second verse especially: “[We’re] just trying to find a place / find our way through a fourth-dimensional space / and our reward for this / is not knowing why we exist.” While I realize the ideas expressed in these lyrics aren’t new or particularly profound (the question of why we exist has likely been asked since the beginning of man) the lyrics from this punk song have genuinely resonated with me. What I take away from them is a somewhat sarcastic, almost hopeless assessment of the human condition. Thoughtful and well-intentioned enough, though. It is frustrating not knowing the answers - as a human obviously I can relate. Just as the question “Why?” has kept philosophers awake since the beginning of man, I guess it sits pretty heavily on this dude’s mind. In return, this song has kept me awake while my eyelids sit pretty heavily on the drive to work.

Portal has also been keeping me awake. Only at night, though. I beat the game last week, years after everyone else. Portal was the first video game in a long time I’ve played all the way through without a single hint or walkthrough. Usually if I’m stuck in a video game I either give up or go to IGN to cheat my heart out. With Portal though, it never crossed my mind to get hints. It is not a game to be played with a set of instructions, at least not from outside of the game. It is a series of ‘mind-bending puzzles.’ If I did consult a walkthrough, playing the game would just become a pointless set of tasks. If someone gave me the answers and I immediately understood why all the objects within a level of Portal existed, the game would cease to be fun or meaningful.

A few mornings after I beat Portal, I was driving to work and listening to the aforementioned album. The same lyrics came on, but this time I could not help but feel slightly annoyed by them. What would it feel like waking up every morning knowing why we exist? More importantly, what would the world be like if everyone knew for certain what this was all about? What an ingrate, I thought. Maybe cosmic uncertainty really is our gift for navigating this existence. Perhaps the Universe did us all a huge favor by not giving us an absolute purpose. Rakes have purposes and they don’t seem very happy. They rake leaves and slowly rust. That’s it. Having a reason why we exist, our lives would become the effort or shadow of maintaining this purpose. We would become slaves to our purpose in the universe. This is part of the reason I can’t accept organized religion as an answer for anything. Without attempting to figure out things on our own, life is like playing Portal with a walkthrough: boring and pointless.

The absurdity of not knowing “Why” is part of our humanity. It makes us cry and it makes us laugh. I contend with complete sincerity that our reward in life truly is “not knowing why we exist.” If we understood why we were here as a species, we’d eventually stop asking the “little” questions. We would stop pushing and exploring ourselves. Our souls and minds would have monotonous full-time jobs with no room for growth. We would be the janitors and accountants of the universe. Instead of a defined purpose, humans have a sense of humor. We have empathy and misery. We have dozens of fields of science and math. We have poetry and prose. We have Punk Rock and Hip-Hop. We have ecstasy and love. All ultimately helping us deal with the eternal question of “Why?” and the hardships we face in that uncertainty. Life doesn’t have to have a specific answer; the magnificence of living resides in the mystery.

Apr. 1st, 2011

alex eye

(no subject)

Old shitty tire pieces fly up and over the hood of my 1995 Camry, as Mazzy Star plays the slowest damn song I have ever heard in my life over partially-blown factory speakers. I press the brake pedal as hard as I know my old friend will allow, but this does not really begin to stop the aging chunk of white metal. The cement wall to the left of me opens up and I steer into the construction area behind it at high speed. I barely miss the steel guardrail lining the upcoming bridge. The sand at the site is a brown, fine dust. It slows the car to a stop in about thirty yards. Hmmph.

I get out and the front-driver’s side tire is completely fucked. Looking down, I see a tangled nest of shredded metal and rubber that has partially unwrapped itself from the rim and beat itsef to death against the front quarter panel of the car, decimating that as well. The wheel is still attached to the CV joint though and I guess that’s something. I see a cop pass by me with utter indifference, and I realize that everything is okay and normal in the world. My car is fucked, but relatively speaking I am alright. Apparently, this is what it feels like when you know for sure that you are not going to die.

I’ve never been behind the wheel during an …incident at this speed before. Perhaps not having hurt or been hurt takes much of the thrill and hardship out of it all, but it was really no big deal. I want to say I wonder why the old movie cliche of having my life flash before my eyes did not happen, but I know why it did not.

I know my car much better than that. It would never purposely hurt me. We have a pact. I feed it dead dinosaurs and it gets me to places I really don’t need to be. We have learned each other’s limitations and we work well together. I was not doing anything particularly cruel to it this afternoon and it was recently fed. It is not going to kill me. Nope, not today. Not over a stubbed toe.

I believe the main reason I did not freak out, see my past, cut the wheel the wrong way, and die - or even have that notion throw itself in the mix - is that I have developed a Groundhog Day-like hopelessness and courage within the confines of my current situation. I know I’m not going to die, because that would be much too easy. You see, I’m in The Grind. I’m 9-5. I’m part of it. Day in, Day out. Tide goes in, Tide goes out. A Cog in their Machine, Another Brick in the Wall. Dying would mean real vacation time.

I know that this situation is temporary (ultimately everything is fleeting) but my existence is painfully habitual. Impermanent yet static, this life I lead in burden to the Man. Some people call it paying dues, but sometimes it feels exactly like Purgatory. I know the Universe and my subconscious have much bigger plans for me, hardships unforeseen and far-reaching. I am not to be taken out by some measly toll-road and ancient tire, because as a lover of life, I am a glutton for misery.

The notion of panic in the face of death seems dated in this society where being overwhelmed is the status quo. Drowning in a sea of commercialism and bullshit, we speed to work and school on no sleep and too much caffiene, to sit in front of terrabytes of information, to input little characters in mass quantity, to cook and serve food to people who already had enough, to build houses for people that have too much …all in order to grease the cogs of a machine spinning out of our control. It’s all a bit too much but that’s normal. Cest la vie. We don’t have time to stop and think, or even be afraid. We don’t have time for that now. Within our own lives, the wheels explode, the bottom falls out, but we patch it all together and go.

Apr. 18th, 2010

alex eye

momentary laps of teasing

There are moments when the only appropriate action is taking a shot and letting the burn infiltrate every neuron and capillary. Immediate pain followed by momentary release. The numbing depression fades as the mind preoccupies itself with something immediate and acute. Empowered with the want and ability to say fuck it and run with it. And keep running. The power to forget yourself and to forget others. To lose yourself in the moment, the emotion, and the environment. An elixir to make sterile moments immediately more intimate. Alcohol allows you the ability to turn your back on sanity and give in to the howl of the unknowable. It is the vehicle needed to travel many dark, twisted highways of the psyche with demonic glee.

I pass an ABC and I get immediately nostalgic. I chase the phantom into a cheap motel as it turns around to envelop me completely. We grope needfully into the furious night, desperately holding on to the notion that a sun won't rise tomorrow. The wreak of gin and sweat. The fumbling and fouling of words and clothing. The sickly pink and yellow glow of cheap, dimming lights. The sweaty, filthy sleep. The pain of sunlight into bloodshot eyes.

I turn into a Publix shopping center just past ABC. My calves burn and my armpits stink. My shirt and shorts are wet with sweat. I hop on the scale, lighter. I pass the Dole. I pass the cranberry juice. I pass the tonic. I end up getting sushi and some green tea. But I act shady at the checkout line, just for old time's sake.

Nov. 20th, 2009

alex eye

(no subject)

“It goes as far as you want to go with it.” The words labor on the edge of my brain as I stare at the intricacies of the wall. I say nothing. I know that I will not be able to fully explain myself here. I feel much of the self-created anxiety but I am not necessarily experiencing things in a different, hyper-real context. The wood floors want to breathe but they are clearly not alive.
What I want to explain to my room of friends, what I suddenly understand, is that making an experience extraordinary is simply a string of actions. It seems pretty simple; the chemicals in your brain will react accordingly to the things and people you put around you, the things you do and feel, and the way you interact with your environment. Each moment is a chance to take the experience further.
Consider those people in high school, who after drinking one or two beers acted ridiculously uninhibited. My mind told me that they were just playing the part, being terrible actors. Now I think that maybe their actions were without social intent. Perhaps they were just taking it where they imagined it would bring them. Maybe they really did completely lose inhibition, because that’s exactly where they put themselves. They expected certain things from the drug, and the chemicals in their mind bridged the gap between the effects of the drug and the expected or intended outcome. Alcohol was just one part of the overall experience that allowed them to get loose. They made other choices besides drinking that put them in that mindset, from where they physically stood to who they surrounded themselves with.
Do drugs put you one step ahead of the fact or one step behind it? Its flooring to stand outside of daily life and at the same time live within it, and for the first time live life before your subconscious takes time to filter existence. Drugs take people where they want to go – or rather, people take the drug with them to where they want to be. There is an expectation, an intended outcome, there that is fulfilled; the junkie or alcoholic finds himself constantly satiated yet discontent.
I allow the wood floors to breathe. I notice the brown and gray grain of the wood, along with all of its elegant imperfections. Flowing as freely as I can imagine, the wood stands still to the rest of the room. My mind suddenly comprehends the material as an organic and changing substance. The tree is dead, but its matter continues to transform.
I now understand why we surround ourselves with dead trees in the most urban and synthetic environments: in order to reintroduce life back into our lives.The irony is easy to appreciate. In the same instant, I realize that wood is more beautiful and perfect than anything man has ever created – nothing we make can compete with the effect.
In realizing this, the significance of the moment lay inherit. Each second is a chance to take knowledge and experience further. But only if you allow it.
The next logical step is to apply the model of singular experience to life in general. It seems so easy to grasp, but impossible to live out. Life can go as far as you want to go with it, just like two beers can get you drunk. Life goes exactly where you expect or imagine. It’s just a matter of letting yourself visualize it.
Perhaps the reason you never saw wood move as though it were alive is because you never allowed yourself to. Perhaps the reason I’ve never truly found happiness is because I never permitted myself to see life that way. The reason I am completely broke is because I never really allowed myself to be anything else. Making life extraordinary and magical is simply a string of actions, though choosing the right sequence seems insurmountably difficult.

Oct. 22nd, 2009

alex eye

(no subject)

We get drunk off of words; worlds crumble away into nothing and we are left smashed from rhetoric. I've seen what you mean, I've seen what they are trying to say. In our stupor, pride leaves us all vulnerable. I've hinged my life around the words of a few. The writers and idea junkies that mean nothing to me seem most prolific, and the ones teaching it all are so pretentious and self-absorbed. 'Those who can't, teach.' Isn't that how it goes? The words that get typed, the sentiments being conveyed all fall into a loop of insignificance. We still read blogs everyday. How pathetic. What the Greeks established and documented is .01% of our current datastream. In 1000 years, replications of their documents and ideas will remain one of the few things tangible in human life. I can't stand the sight of these bytes across the screen. Why am I typing this garbage? Screaming electronically, everyone's a poet. When you are your own muse, and you are a piece of shit - everything you write is going to be a piece of shit. How much more self-obsessed blather can we all pump out?  As I lay dying, I will remember the words that we shared. All this garbage in the datastreams will be long lost. So few do it beautifully; I solemnly remember significant words gone by.

Aug. 14th, 2009

alex eye

(no subject)


i've had this journal long enough that it now serves as a breadcrumb trail - which i guess ultimately was the intended goal. i too, can observe my slow and eventual decay, and can even see the exact days my life took strange turns into the dark. sometimes this thing helped me believe i wasn't entirely alone, or not entirely insane.

today i went to a pool party at joanna's - on a very damp and rainy evening. social roles are hard to break, and i find myself often falling flat without the booze to keep me retarded. we are all grown up, yet we all still play these children's games. we still throw water balloons and spray eachother in the face with high powered water cannons. we still create cliques and teams and we still double-cross eachother. 

after the fact i cant help but feel saddened, really. because we know that its all about nostalgia. we know, but rarely admit,  that the reason its fun is because adults dont act like we act. nights like tonight, though entertaining, actually feel like observing and memorializing the death of fun.

oddly enough,  most of us were dressed in black.

in memory and following tradtion of the wasted years, lyrics to another embarassingly melodramatic punk song

September Nights

When you feel the fray -
When Christmas comes delayed
Don't ever be afraid, and never change your ways.

Don't push too hard inside -
Don't laugh once you decide
To never feel alright; To never feel alright

Don't look around and say,
"On some quaint September day
That dreams just fade away; All your dreams just fade away"

Ah, baby don't you cry -
It tears me up inside.
You spend Friday Nights inside; You're the teenaged virgin bride

When you need a friend -
I'm right there to the end
I'm buried in the sand, as it trickled through my hands.

Baby when you cry -
It tears me up inside.
Come drive the Boulevard, or die in my backyard.

All teenage dreams die hard
Your teenage dreams die hard
All teenage dreams die hard
Your teenage dreams die hard



 

May. 4th, 2009

alex eye

(no subject)


wear your devotion like a cape - wrap your love in red tape
bind your body in jurisprudence and shared cliche sentiments
your ego seeks a permanence, slightly better than your parents'
might not be my place - but why should we save the date?
eternal love as your job? excuse me, friend - that's simply macabre
right there under your ringed paws, an epoch as domestic slobs
 

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alex eye

July 2011

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