An Urban Yawp

Five thirty. We’re going to jam on the 2nd, a Sunday. Mike is giving me a ride to the rehearsal rental. I’m supposed to pitch in ten bucks, so I’ll have to use an atm. It was an enlightening afternoon. I really liked Ron, and he says that Mike is a good guy as well. My walk to and from Black Rock was a time of feeling expanded. Eugene all of a sudden got gigantic in one day. I feel a little uprooted even though this is my hometown. I barely recognize the place, though most of the buildings and other structures are the same. The difference is in the quality of the people I see today. Eugene has become urban, after an eternity of being run by redneck people. I must say I love the way it is changed. I don’t want to turn back the clock like the conservatives I know. The influx of people from all over the country is mind boggling, and it’s also occurring in Bend. I just never noticed it before… The people are indeed more intelligent than the native hicks I grew up with here. And while I’m loving the change, my sister must be hating it. I couldn’t stand my next door neighbors John and Rhonda. They finally moved away in June 2015. The day I decided to quit drinking, I realized that everything was different now, with those neighbors displaced. Is it possible that I will finally be free from the redneck attitudes I was forced to grow up with? It seems like an act of divine providence. The State of Oregon nearly killed me with its rustic people. Sheryl the therapist told me that Oregon sucks, and I agreed with her. And perhaps she was right about my sexuality. As Eugene grows bigger and better, it may be ok to be a homosexual.

Wednesday evening was interesting as the night was falling. There I was standing on the corner of the cul de sac at Laurel Hill, waiting for my taxi. I felt abandoned and helpless, yet I knew I would be all right. I was thinking about how I might be gay, and it scared me. Across the street from me stood the Even Hotel, where the windows were lighted and where strange people were staying. I felt alone in a hostile world, but part of that strangeness was internal. The alien, the foreigner to me was my very self. I felt like Walt Whitman preparing to sound his barbaric yawp into the night. And then I was driven home by a former meth addict. She said she was just as night blind as I was. Nothing else of great pitch and moment happened, but Aesop barked at me when I got home.

Mental Chess

Warning: Sexual content

Quarter after three. In a violent erotic fantasy, I turned the tables on Sheryl the therapist. It was a necessary step for my sexuality. The catalyst for it was reading some brutal William Faulkner. Sheryl had me convinced that I was submissive and gay, but I finally turned it around in fantasy to myself being dominant and straight. It was up to me to undo the damage done by so-called therapy. No amount of further therapy with women would’ve helped. Unfortunately, there aren’t very many male therapists in my area, no one to teach assertiveness anymore. With me and Sheryl it was always a power struggle. Towards the end she was losing control over my sessions, and that panicked her. She was a mean sort of person, disliked by her coworkers. I didn’t like her either. Her project was to dominate and subvert her clients and be a little Hitler. She played mind games with people. I only saw her for ten months, but it was enough to get me messed up for time to come. The final analysis is that sexuality is entirely a state of mind and of power, of dominance and submission, of male and female. Strength begins with the mind and not necessarily the body. Perhaps masculine and feminine are merely states of mind, of spirit or principle. One is active and the other passive. I’m not sure. But I’m done with mental chess with little Hitlers.

Apology

Eleven twenty. One of my followers removed a like from the last post. My guess is that he was offended. What I wrote there is very revealing about me but also insightful to the origins of gayness. My former supervisor fit into this model, himself being gay and close to his mother, very well. It’s the classic theory, which doesn’t get the same approval from the public anymore. I only adhere to the theory because I choose to be straight in spite of it. This is why I insist on indeterminism, or at least a belief in free will in the face of Freud…

Even while I argue thus, I’m aware that I had the same thoughts about a year ago, so the time of year with its seasonal cues is triggering me to think a certain way. Such a trigger is far from a-causal, though it is cyclical as opposed to linear. The seasons go round in a circle, and memories accumulate in layered transparencies. What we recollect can drive our behavior unconsciously until we catch ourselves. The important thing in whatever we do is to have insight into it. Only when we see may we act freely and wisely.

After an Excursion

Quarter of three. Polly called, and we talked for a while. Then I walked to Bi Mart and also stopped at The Veterinary Hospital for a dose of flea medication. I just felt like doing that. I had Kate on my mind from years ago and paid my respects to a memory. We were so progressive together, or so I believed. Neither she nor my psychiatrist had faith in God; but looking back, I had a personal reason for rejecting God. All I wanted from life was pleasure, especially from alcohol and women. Now that I’m older, I don’t take much pleasure in sensation. Different things give me pleasure now, such as social interaction. I can’t get enough of people. Anyway, the weather was sunny and mellow with the autumn and it triggered my mind to remember old devotions. I almost ducked into Grocery Outlet for something to eat, but then I realized how long the checkout lines would be. The Vet Hospital was just across Silver Lane, and traffic wasn’t bad, so I crossed the street and popped in. I recognized Debbie and the woman who helped me. I noted the absence of lustful feelings for anybody. That must’ve been a function of being an alcoholic. Of course I admired the looks of the receptionist, particularly her blue eyes and full body. But it was just a passing observation that I wasn’t blind to. She was attractive. I told them about the fire and they were sympathetic. The pretty one asked Aesop’s weight before giving me the med. She remembered him because of his breed. He isn’t due for any shots until next February. Interesting that I feel something I’ve been missing, and it is indeed the pleasure of desire. One can feel sexy without the stimulus of alcohol. As for the all or nothing of life, I again sense the shades of gray of experience. I might be able to smuggle more of that into the church. The Erik Satie music was a big step yesterday, devil chord and all. Satie’s message to his stuffy peers was that they needed to loosen up. Hence it’s a bit paradoxical that his music should find its way into my church. I sense the winds of change arising…

The Sea-goat’s Family

Henry James was quite a genius for identifying how language in its subtlety operates between people. It’s also called innuendo. The subtexts are not irrational, but they do involve desire. There’s nothing wrong with that. The Christian mythos is just the milieu we have to work with. The truth is more like Freud and his predecessors. Schopenhauer was a great discoverer. Melville turns his philosophy into a play. Harpoon the white whale and make sex go away… but it refuses to be killed. It drags down the whole ship and leaves but one survivor to tell the tale. Melville links the whale to Satan, some infernal force. It is actually normal psychodynamics… I’ve been close to having florid psychosis irrupt when zeroing in on the truth. The biological clock seems to be a matter of life and death. Procreation is the aim of all life. A fancy way of saying I want to have a kid.

Sexuality?

One o’clock. Carmen assumes that queer people are born that way. That was what Ron told me about himself, too. She said that psychology as a profession overturned the methods of some conservatives (and the Church) to force gay people to be straight. I always agreed that the Church was way behind the times in that regard. And yet for myself, sexuality has never been a fixed thing. It has been malleable according to what was available to me. When the door to women slammed shut, a second door opened. The whole thing is still very intricate and hard to define. I think we should just leave it up to individuals to define for themselves. Surely the Church can’t impose rules on people’s sexuality anymore. James Baldwin identified three main enemies to gayness: the Church, the police force, and the movies. I once believed that my parents would’ve been happier as queers, especially my dad. They only married because everyone else did. I envisioned them as victims of the silver screen and what I loosely termed an Aristotelian society. They certainly weren’t happy together, and if anything made each other more miserable. I saw the need of a Platonic alternative, as Plato was gay. My parents did not love each other. Marriage was the convenient thing everybody else did. I feel sorry for them having given in to peer pressure. But now, if anything, the pressure goes the other way: figure out your sexual identity, whatever it is, and act it out. I’ve been so confused by therapists on the topic. They seem to be at odds with the Church, so the conflicting positions on sexuality pull me in two directions. It’s stupid today, though; everybody’s buzzing about sexuality. It angers me to be under pressure from anyone at all. And again, it’s such an individual thing. Why don’t we change the subject?