May 2010

On Happiness #10

"'Or she may find out what is at the end of the harbor road…that wandering, twisting road like a nice red snake, that leads, so Elizabeth thinks, to the end of the world. Perhaps the Island of Happiness is there.'" -L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Windy Poplars

Nothing Pleasant

"Nothing More. Nothing Less. Nothing Else."

You are not going to change the world. That is a fact. I have seen the future and I know that in the end you do absolutely nothing of any importance. I made sure of that when I saw that I had a glimpse of the future. I looked you up. I actually went and squandered my chance at taking hold of the future – seeing what stocks were up and which to avoid even shitting on, what inventions were making millions and how I could invent them first – and went and looked your future up. All because you’re such a fucking optimist. You think the world is everything brilliant and you are everything brilliant and your life will be everything brilliant one day. Well guess what, that’s all bullshit. I’ve seen it. I saw how useless you are and always will be – not even in just the little things like making the people around you happy, but the big things like fighting world hunger and poverty. You end up failing at everything even the most pathetic schmuck normally manages to accomplish without even trying.
I’ll admit that I didn’t believe it at first. I didn’t see how you’d ended up such a miserable fucking lunatic. How could the promised boy end up like that? So after peering at the future, I went and looked at all of God’s logs and accounts and saw that you really were worthless. It was confirmed by even divinity above. He actually had you marked as “Worthless.” Wait, that isn’t true. He has you marked as “Worthless.” That’s what the problem is. From the beginning of existence your name has been shit to the world, and that is never going to change. You can’t fight God. You know that. You live by that. You’ve just always assumed he was on your side.
Isn’t that depressing? Isn’t that horrifying like nothing else you’ve ever seen or thought of in your life? I think it is. I hope you think so too. You have to. I know you’re stupid, but you’re not that stupid are you? If you are, and even I – and I hate you beyond anyone else in existence, unless you’re counting God I suppose – don’t see how you could be that much of a prick. So now you know for a fact that your big goals and ideals and all that shit come to nothing. No matter how much you try, you will do nothing. It’s predestined that way.
It’s predestined that while you fall on your ass over and over and over and over again as the years stretch out in front of you and remind you why some think death is sweet, you really will be miserable. I’ll save you the suspense and tell you that you’re going to be miserable for the next twenty five years. Then you’ll die. Yes, you heard me. You are going to be miserable for the next twenty five fucking years and then die. I didn’t decide this. No one decided this. You aren’t murdered or anything even remotely like that. You just die. You die just like all those people on the planet who God doesn’t hate. You’re gonna be sitting one day, just sitting at your kitchen table, reading your newspaper, when you suddenly keel over cause your heart’s stopped. You’ll be 53 years old. Only 53 years old. That is your future. And you’ll have done nothing of any importance before this happens. Nothing. No one will even remember you. That’s right, no one will remember you. Well, actually that’s not true. No one will remember you fondly. You’ll have no children, no friends, no other family except for a wife who hated you in life and wasn’t afraid to let you know it - but wouldn’t dare divorce you in case God really did exist (her words, not mine). Your legacy will be $15,000 in debt and a stack of porno magazines hidden under the bed. That is it. Nothing more. Nothing less. Nothing else.
So look at the future as a done deal my friend. I know you won’t really believe me on all this. You’ll think I’ve gone apeshit crazy or something. But I’m not lying. I wouldn’t lie about this, I couldn’t lie about this. This is just how the future will be and you, instead of trying to make something of it, should just let it all go right now. You’ll save yourself the disappointment. You’ll save yourself the pain. Just accept it all and throw in the towel. If you’re lucky, and God really does have a crazy sense of humor, maybe you’ll even save yourself that way.

On Words #2

"'Words aren't made – they grow,' said Anne." -L.M. Montgomery, Anne of the Island

On Words #1

"She had always wanted words, she loved them, grew up on them. Words gave her clarity, brought reason, shape. Whereas I thought words bent emotions like sticks in water." -Michael Ondaatje, The English Patient

M-agination Short

Random Musing
I wrote a previous post about the short I wrote and directed last year for the university's student film group M-agination Films. Well, I actually ended up writing and directing a new short for this past school year as well. The short was very recently added to youtube, so here it is for your viewing pleasure.

The End of an Unwanted Hiatus

Random Musing
You are probably unaware that for the past few weeks I have not written a single new poem or bit of prose or really anything at all that fits under the heading of creative writing. How would you know that? I had not - in earlier posts - made you privy to that bit of information. Instead I just went ahead and posted a bunch of quotes and some "old" poems that had not yet appeared on the the blog - kind of passing them off as new.

Now however, I am willing to admit to having fallen into a creative slump since classes and finals wrapped up. I only admit this because I have finally broken through the "block" - stereotypically speaking that seems like the appropriate terminology - and started on some new poems. They're not at all finished, some barely actually started, but I'm not going to complain. It's something, which is much better than the masses of nothing I've been dealing with. So yes, expect some new poetry in the future. For now though - and at least until those poems are actually entirely written and edited - you only get this little blurb about my life.

Accept it. Life's just unfair like that sometimes.

On Happiness #9

Clarissa Vaughan: So this is the beginning of happiness. This is where it starts. And, of course, there will always be more. It never occurred to me it wasn't the beginning: it was happiness, it was the moment…
-The Hours

Random Musing
I obviously find all the quotations that I've shared, as well as the ones I've so far only collected and have yet to use in a post, meaningful. However, this particular quote is probably one of the very first quotations I ever wrote down, and is one that has really resonated with me. It's a really honest way of looking at the "concept" of happiness.

On another, and yet still related, note: If you have not yet watched The Hours, you need to put some time aside to do that. It is really good. Really, really, really good.

And that's all I have to say about that. As Forrest Gump once said.

The Longevity of Happiness

"They had one year of perfect happiness, which is always worth living for, even if the rest of life be a dreary pilgrimage…" -L.M. Montgomery, "Old Man Shaw's Girl," Chronicles of Avonlea

"'She used to say that she had given them three perfect months, and no one had a right to more; and I sometimes think, Katherine, that's true, you know.  It's more than most of us have, only we have to pretend…" -Virginia Woolf, Night and Day

The Emptiness of Nothing

"'Nothing is worse than emptiness…'" -L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Avonlea

"'…it's so dreadful to have nothing to love – life is so empty – and there's nothing worse than emptiness…'" -L.M. Montgomery, Anne's House of Dreams

"'My life has been empty – empty. Nothing is worse than emptiness. Nothing!'" -L.M. Montgomery, The Blue Castle

"She had nothing to love, and that is about as unwholesome a condition as is possible to anyone." -L.M. Montgomery, "Old Lady Lloyd," Chronicles of Avonlea

Random Musing
I personally find L.M. Montgomery's choice to repeat - essentially verbatim even - this same thought on emptiness interesting. I've noticed that she's done this same thing with other ideas or concepts as well actually. If you've read enough of her books you may have noticed this trend as well. These must have been particularly important ideas for her - or just ones that really resonated. Given my obsession with her writing, I find such little insights into her psyche worth noting. If you're not a fan of hers - which I'm going to pretend isn't at all a possibility - then this bit of information probably appears trite and useless. In that case, I apologize. Except not really. Cause how can you not like L.M. Montgomery?

*Post edited on 11-9-2010 to include a quotation from The Blue Castle

On Happiness #8

"'I guess I'm the Black Death,' he said slowly. 'I don't seem to bring people happiness any more.'" -F. Scott Fitzgerald, Tender Is The Night

On Happiness #7

"…what they were all afraid of saying, was that happiness is dirt cheap. You can have it for nothing. Beauty." -Virginia Woolf, "The Man Who Loved His Kind," Mrs. Dalloway's Party

On Happiness #6

"He had learned the rare secret that you must take happiness when you find it – that there is no use in marking the place and coming back to it at a more convenient season, because it will not be there then." -L.M. Montgomery, "Old Man Shaw's Girl," Chronicles of Avonlea

To Think

"'To think is to be sick...'" -Djuna Barnes, Nightwood

"…Where but to think is to be full of sorrow…" -John Keats, "Ode to a Nightingale"

For Mother's Day

"Gilbert put his arm about them. 'Oh, you mothers!' he said. 'You mothers! God knew what He was about when He made you.'" -L.M. Montgomery, Anne's House of Dreams

"…and your mother, white and weak, smiled just that dear, slow, wonderful smile I loved, and said, 'We've – got – the – only – baby – of any importance – in – the world, dear.  Just – think – of that!'" -L.M. Montgomery, Emily of New Moon

"…suggesting how mothers down at Scarborough scribble over the fire with their feet on the fender, when tea's cleared away, and can never, never say, whatever it may be – probably this – Don't go with bad women, do be a good boy; wear your thick shirts; and come back, come back, come back to me." -Virginia Woolf, Jacob's Room

Kate: Everybody loves their mothers. Even people who hate their mother love their mother.
-French Kiss

In Light of Thunderstorms

"I am glad the rain is coming down hard. It's the way I feel inside." -Sylvia Plath, Letters Home

"So with all the lamps put out, the moon sunk, and a thin rain drumming the roof a downpouring of immense darkness began." -Virginia Woolf, To the Lighthouse

"O Rose, thou art sick!
The invisible worm
That flies in the night,
In the howling storm,

Has found out thy bed
Of crimson joy:
And his dark secret love
Does thy life destroy." -William Blake, "The Sick Rose"

For Insomniacs

"But there is something very strange and terrible in being awake when all the rest of the world is asleep. You are alone then with nothing but your own feeble personality to pit against the mighty principalities and powers of darkness." -L.M. Montgomery, Rainbow Valley

"…and tell me why I couldn't sleep and why I couldn't read and why I couldn't eat and why everything people did seemed so silly, because they only died in the end." -Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar

"I'm not going to bed after all. Somebody around here hath murdered sleep. Good for him." -J.D. Salinger, Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters & Seymour An Introduction

"…The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep." -Robert Frost, "Stopping By Woods on a Snowy

"Hours continuing long, sore and heavy-hearted,
Hours of the dusk, when I withdraw to a lonesome and unfrequented spot, seating
        myself, leaning my face in my hands;
Hours sleepless, deep in the night,…" -Walt Whitman, "Hours Continuing Long"

Paris Eustace Geller

Paris: Well, how nice it must be to be you. Maybe someday I'll stumble into a Disney movie and suddenly be transported into your body, and after living there awhile, I'll finally realize the beauty of myself. But until that moment, I'm going to go in there and I'm going to become a Puff. Now get out of my way.
-Gilmore Girls (Episode 2.07: Like Mother, Like Daughter)

Paris: You're not torturing me, you know. I don't care. My scores were great. I'm very, very happy with my scores. And I hate looking at a sunset so my standard for happiness is high!
-Gilmore Girls (Episode 2.11: Secrets and Loans)

Janet: No. I cannot calm down. I have tried to be reasonable. I have told myself over and over, "God, look at her. Imagine what she's been through to make her turn out like that."
Paris: A lot!
-Gilmore Girls (Episode 4.05: The Fundamental Things Apply)

Rory: No, I'm just making you crazy.
Paris: Like that's hard. Feel proud.
-Gilmore Girls (Episode 4.09: Ted Koppel's Big Night Out)

Paris: Great, we have one prop, and it's blowing away.
Rory: You knocked it over.
Paris: Well, you put it right in front of me.
Rory: How was I supposed to know you were gonna jump out of your seat like a maniac?
Paris: You know me. You room with me. You should have known.
-Gilmore Girls (Episode 4.17: Girls in Bikinis, Boys Doin' the Twist)

Female Student: Is it raining?
Paris: No, it's National Baptism Day. Tie your tubes, idiot.
-Gilmore Girls (Episode 4.17: Girls in Bikinis, Boys Doin' the Twist)

Paris: No man is an island, but this woman is.
-Gilmore Girls (Episode 6.13: Friday Night's Alright For Fighting)

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