Friday, August 28, 2009

in medias res (interrupted conversation # 45)

That’s just what I’m saying. You can’t look at…sorry, I mean “perceive” people in that way. Not all the time. Not when your brain is wired in a certain way, and it’s also their sense of who they are that might be coming across, coming through to you too, you know, like that…you know these things. I’m pretty sure of it. Well, with what we’re snuffling about here it’s just a matter of speaking, but I want to kind of dovetail into something that differentiates twixt the body-mind-atmosphere-sense of the thing and what it means to have some sort of cognitive regurgitation going on…some, well, some sort of pulled switchblade slicing through what it means to see and be seen and have those selfsame reactions of being perceived and perceiving, um, and also comprehending the fit of it all into the tiny package of the patterns your thoughts tend to take in that constantly fluctuating brain of yours. Everything is ephemeral and changing. It is all in flux, right? All we are, all everything really is, is change. Put that in your pipe and smoke it. There. You. Have. It. Um. Pauses are very dramatic, and they reinforce what the speaker is saying, giving some heft to what is being said. That’s what I’ve been told by those who are paid much more than sufficiently to know such things. So, I know this “that” is certainly an odd way to go here, but just bear with me, okay? There’s a worthwhile struggle in here, and it’s sort of like music, but not quite. Get it? Good. God. It’s rough. So, let us see here. Hum, hum, um, hum, harrumph…People see you seeing them. Let’s get down to cases. We can understand cases, right? If I give you an exempli gratiā you can maybe get a bit better of a grip on what’s eating at me here. So, there’s this guy. He’s a good guy. A fellow of much bonhomie and munificence and all that, you know, that etcetera stuff that might apply here…I mean, to a guy like that. You get it. It’s not hard to get something like that. When I start saying etcetera then usually there is no need for it. It just goes without saying. You know what I mean, you know? That’s that. And so this guy, well, he just likes to look at things. Not just things though. People and places too. Nouns. He likes to look at nouns. That’s it. I mean, can you really look at anything else? Maybe. I don’t care. It doesn’t matter. This guy is your prototypical ogler. He likes to look, and he stares at everything and everybody. Goes without saying he gets himself into a lot of difficult situations. Maybe gets punched around a little more than a lot, or a lot more than a little, and he probably has some scars here and there, lesions on his skin, whatever. I feel another etcetera coming. Anyway, this guy, when he looks at certain people, well, he can like intuit their being. God, that sounds absurd. But I guess what I mean is that he can generalize their sense of what it is like to be seen by him through their own filters of perception without the machinery of his own sense perception getting in the way, id est he interprets an other’s reflexively biased reaction to being looked at based on the other person’s interpretation of what his own looking is doing to that person instead of basing his own mentation of the scene on what his own (the ogler that is) thoughts tend to register in their vainly unique and haphazardly ego-driven way. Now I know this is a lot of hot air without much punctuation coming at you all at once, and you most likely want to run and shit out your eyes and do some rustling and shivering over there in the corner. Or maybe you don’t know. It’s not important. What is important, what is of the most vital necessity to our little essay into the nether regions of sightseeing here, is that the way the “looker” sees the “lookie” and the way the “lookie” sees the “looker” are mutually exclusive of each other. To put it bluntly, they cannot both exist simultaneously. One must be happening while the other is not. That doesn’t make sense. Not completely at least. But that’s okay. It doesn’t have to. This guy, the “looker” is a special little dude. He ain’t a beauty, but hey, he’s alright. You know the type. He’s got certain…qualities. He specializes in magical thinking and paper airplanes. He can get stuff on a gut level, without even trying…things that most people don’t even bother to notice or turn over even once in their little minds. He’s not smart. He’s cool though. Really cool. Calm? Collected? Yeah. Those too. He’s that and this and a little bit of everything. He can play xylophones and toy pianos, and he can make chandeliers from newspaper. Can’t play the harmonica though. Don’t know why. Just can’t. Spends a lot of time alone. Anyway, this guy, in this instance I am speaking of, in this specific case, he is walking along on the sidewalk, kind of uphill. There is a definite grade to the street there. And he’s making his way up it, but it’s not too steep. It’s enough to make him huff a little. It’s enough to make him take his jacket off, which he does. It’s rather hot out. He’s walking in the shade because he sunburns easily, but he’s still somewhat hot and sweaty. As he’s taking his jacket off…he slows down his stride here, almost stops actually…he kind of sees this short girl with short black hair walking towards him. I say kind of, but he definitely sees her. He’s just not paying a whole lot of the old attention to her. He’s more concerned with wrangling out of his jacket smoothly. This is unusual for him because, as I’ve already mentioned in more than lucid detail, he looks at everything. Obviously he can’t always be looking at everything. That’d be impossible. And, you know, we all only see what we want to see and disregard the rest, la, la, la, lalalala. Well, this time just so happens to be one of those times when he isn’t looking. He’s taking off his jacket and he is hot and sweaty and walking up a fairly steep hill. So he slips his way out of the jacket one sleeve at a time, and he’s still got one arm in one of the sleeves, you know, kind of like a little kid will do, getting stuck in the sleeve while the other hangs loose and kind of wraps around him, and he feels a bit silly. He smiles. I don’t know why. Sometimes when he feels ridiculous…well, he just likes to laugh at himself. He can’t help it. It just comes on like a sneeze. Nothing he can do about it. The thing is, while he wasn’t looking this short-haired girl was looking at him. And she sees him all caught up like that, sees him smiling, and his smile is kind of coming across in her direction. It is aiming her way, going towards her. So, she starts in on a smile of her own. Now, this guy, he doesn’t even notice that he is smiling, and he doesn’t really see the girl yet…not really. Just maybe out of the corner of his eye, you know? He’s all caught up in his sleeve and his arm is all dangling there and maybe he’s thinking about sleeping in the twilight by the riverbed with the wide-open country in his heart and these romantic dreams in his head, you know, all that no-retreat-no-surrender stuff. Whatever happens to be twirling its way through that tilted mish-mashed head of his. Stupid crap. Nonsense. He’s just going about his business there, caught up, you could even say trapped, in his own tiny cubicle of existence. The girl there smiling at him might as well not even exist. Not for that moment. Not before he notices her. The gaze, the one she is experiencing, the one that is like ricocheting back from him to her…at least for her it is…is a completely independent thing from anything happening for the guy, who is now in the position of the “lookie” though he doesn’t even know that the position even exists. Not yet at least. Not in this transitional moment, this happenstance of everyday life. He has not arrived yet. The girl is there, smiling at him because she thinks he is smiling at her, and he looks funny all tangled up in his clothing like that, and sometimes smiles just happen. It is just something that happens.