You dirty monster you.
The Juggler (1956) by Remedios Varo
Sometimes prose is just a way of writing things you don’t want anyone to understand. When I was having surgeries (I’d prefer not to explain or provide details here) in the summer of 2020, I wrote a lot of strange posts about having my body violently reorganized. I want to read some of those posts now, out of curiosity, but I’m not sure I’ll like what I find. I want to peek through the blinds at my past writing. Isn’t that fucked up? I’m afraid of reading something that anyone can wander up and read at any time!
But why wouldn’t I feel afraid? I’ve grown comfortable with overexposure so I’m always at risk of writing all kinds of screwy things. At some level I’ve trained myself not to care what people think. I have to be free in order to write good stuff! Not caring is vital and important, if you want to keep writing!
But I do care enough to occasionally wonder if I’ve written a bunch of nonsense. Seems more than likely!
But writers have to write what they love the most. I love nonfiction. I can’t write anything that feels like bullshit because then I feel like my job is pointless. I would like to keep doing my job instead!
But if my writing is not prose, if it is clear and direct, then I also need for it to be funny or at least amusing. This necessitates making fun of myself and jeering at the sick ways my mind works. I’d argue that you can’t be funny without making an ass of yourself, but who knows, maybe that’s just an ass’s justification for being an ass.
What I’ve come to realize lately is that, thanks to the things I value and love the most, I am destined to feel humiliated or misunderstood a lot. This makes simple sense, since I’m often humiliated or misunderstood in real life, because I like telling the truth and making aggressive jokes in real life, too. This behavior isn’t popular among many humans in the world. To make matters worse, I often don’t mind that much if people dislike me (see above) because how could I write if I did? So I’ve grown into a kind of demented, depraved monster.
And perhaps because I’m a fucking monster, I need for you to understand that none of this is really my fault.
Recently someone on Amazon reviewed my book and put this title on it: “She thinks she’s better than you.” I wanted to reply to the review: “I don’t think I’m better than them, but I do think I’m better than you specifically.”
This is frankly how it works for everyone alive. I know that sounds like more justification, but I’m right this time. No matter how humble and egalitarian you are, no matter how vociferously you embrace all of humanity and also the entire animal world, including slugs and amoebae (that’s the extra hot and sexy plural of amoeba), you do occasionally stumble on someone you dislike. Maybe you dislike their choices (projecting their deepest feelings of inferiority onto a random book and then posting an Amazon review that reads like a detailed map of their personal issues and baggage). Maybe you dislike the way they smell (obvious from Amazon review that they smell like toe cheese). Maybe you have a problem with their value system (wanting to feel unconditionally loved by the author of a book is the absolute epitome of poor taste. Imagine, for a moment, the books this person reads! Books filled with sweet-natured, loving people who write in the literary equivalent of a soothing whisper so as not to startle some sad little pussy who poops his pants over each and every strong opinion or sentiment!). Or maybe you don’t like their whole way of being, because it reminds you of a parent who didn’t give you the sort of love and support you really needed (they’re no-fair and super mean, not nice at all, they don’t UNDERSTAND ANYTHING!!!!!!).
Remember, we’re talking about YOU here, not ME.
The point is, no matter who you are, every time you open your mouth, you’re drawing an elaborate map of your personal issues and baggage. You can’t AVOID projecting. You are always projecting. Every single sound you utter is a building block in your vast and glorious kingdom of projections, constructed over the course of your entire deluded lifetime. You are a human projector, and when you die you’ll be broken and covered in dust in some back closet where they keep the fucked up AV equipment that no one has bothered to haul to the dump.
Not only that, but even when you’re projecting sophisticated sounds and images that entertain and delight others, they’re really just animalistic sensations, transmuted through your specific maze of psychosocial toils and snares. Whether you’re being iterative, generative, performative, or some other -itive that is widely deemed as good and healthy or bad and stupid in the current (deeply bad and stupid) bifurcated lexicon, you’re really just a bird screeching at another bird for stealing some seeds or fucking its favorite bird lover by accident. Everything sophisticated and generous and friendly and daring and sweet and charming you do boils down to squawking and cawing and pecking at the ground.
Even when you think you’re just shooting the shit casually, you’re still an amoeba trying to attract other amoebae for some hot… well, cell division, I guess. Maybe you’re all just hanging out, no agenda, no theme, no moral to this story, and then one of you starts talking about the problematic folds of Hanya Yanagihara’s latest novel and suddenly you notice that she’s quietly and discretely doubling her genetic material, creating two nuclei, forming a narrow waist in the middle, and then BEFORE YOU KNOW IT THAT BITCH IS SPLITTING IN HALF.
Hot. Super duper hot.
Everything we do might seem not very hot at all but it is actually very hot indeed, because we’re all just trying to procreate, replicate, multiply, divide, conquer. Even if you think that you’re trying to generously HELP someone, fix the world, I mean you are a fucking monk squatting in a cave with no material goods, meditating about world peace, you’re still an ego-driven monster who responds to texts from your accountant sister about your yearly family vacation with texted riddles about the impossibility of overcoming suffering on this mortal plane. Even when your sister is ignoring your riddles and texting you simple logistics and you’re replying with more riddles, your riddles are filthy dirty because they’re all about dominating, bending the world to your monstrous monkish will, spreading world peace thick like butter because you’re a self-satisfied peace-loving ghoul who just wants humankind to recognize that we are all one — one big dirty perv who wants to deep dick the whole globe until it screams for more.
You know, I could be like a macho version of Jordan Peterson if I set my mind to it. I’m a little too macho to be a straight up tearful proselytizer of man feelings like Peterson, but I could do a kind of swaggering she-bro (another term pulled from one of my Amazon reviews) version of his “I see through all human artifice” thing. See how my monstrous monk thoughts always move in the direction of world domination? What a loathsome twat I am!
The moral to this post is that we’re all loathsome twats?
I don’t mind that about us. What I do mind is people who never want to be understood because they don’t love themselves enough to make themselves clear. I guess I have a clarity fetish. I want a Google translate for all of your squawking. I’m not better than you, I know that, I just want to GRASP WHAT THE FUCK YOU’RE TRYING TO SAY. Even though it’s just some random futile attempt to peck on some seeds or sidle up to some hot amoeba to watch it struggling to divide (oh yeah, baby, that’s how you do it, just look at those TWO NUCLEI, you are begging for it right now), I still want to know what your specific projections happen to be. You know. Before you break and get rolled into a dark closet and start gathering dust.
Anyway. I’m going to write a wider range of things here moving forward, because I contain multitudes and also because my sense of humor came back recently and I want to use it. I hope you can understand. I try not to directly address you in this newsletter because I’ve witnessed how easy it can be to fall back on that: Look, here’s what’s going on. I have a cold this week plus I spent three days doing my taxes. You don’t need a newsletter that sounds like an annoying text from your friend who never has time to grab a fucking drink.
You need notes from a dirty monster, because you are also a dirty monster.
I know you. Oh yes I do. Shut up. I understand you completely.