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Thursday, October 31, 2013

Amfortas the Obscure

(more from the backlog...scattered bits,from around June,'13)

And all should cry Beware! Beware!
His flashing eyes, his floating hair!
Weave a circle round him thrice,
And close your eyes with holy dread,
For he on Honeydew hath fed,
and drunk the milk of paradise.”(1)



.and then, I went to the Ball Game.
I love my Sons, but my god!
What I go through!
In such a state, going and sitting in the truck, and watching all the peripheral shenanigans...Sports is, at root, why I am the above enumerated things.
It was Rednecks and Jocks that set me on the path to my current Anger and Frustration.(in Magnolia, Texas, they are one and the same...Rednecks and Jocks)

In the Woods, I was as sure-footed as a deer...but on a Ball Field?
Retarded Clumsy.
Was the ensuing Ridicule really necessary?

I think of these things...I really can't help it...from my perch on the hill, behind Center Field.
I hope I make them Nervous!
The Prancing Gorillas, and their Screeching wives.
I read.
I pay attention enough to know when My Kid is doing something.
The rest?
I honestly do not care.
Great!”(pats back)
Their Pitcher was 15...”(pats back)
My Eldest understands that I Love him, but do not give one damn for the whole lot of it.
My Youngest is not as Thoughtful.
(“Taciturn” is a good word)

It doesn't help that I'm in a Melancholic Anhedonia, at the moment.
The normal Frustrations of Life in America, compounded by Great Intelligence and Eidetic Memory.

I'll say it again....
I'm too fucking smart for my civilisation, and too Honest...and too...
I have never Fit...anywhere.
I feel this most acutely at the various Sports Events I must attend...and, to a lesser extent, the other it Band, or the Elementary Talent Show.(jury selection? Fighting with the tax man?lol)

Is it Opened Eyes?
Is it the result of determining the Truth, regarding Humankind?(at least the more likely Truth,lol)
Or is it 10+ years in the Wilderness...both literally and figuratively...after 911 and the closing of my cafe, and all the crazy that was unleashed that day?
Maybe it's the 30 years of Odd Duck-ness in Texas?

I call myself “Liberal” the Jeffersonian Sense...and yet I struggle with Misanthropy.
I Believe in the brotherhood of Man...and in His potential God-Hood....
And yet, I see the People running backwards, gleefully donning chains, and flinging poo at each other.

A grief without a pang, void, dark and drear.
A stifled, drowsy, unimpassioned grief,
Which finds no natural outlet, no relief,
In word, or sigh, or tear-”(2)


“The world is too much with us; late and soon,
Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers:
Little we see in Nature that is ours;
We have given our hearts away, a sordid boon!
This] Sea that bares her bosom to the moon;
The winds that will be howling at all hours,
And are up-gathered now like sleeping flowers;
For this, for every thing, we are out of tune;
It moves us not.—Great God! I'd rather be A Pagan suckled in a creed outworn;
So might I, standing on this pleasant lea,
Have glimpses that would make me less forlorn;
Have sight of Proteus rising] from the sea;
Or hear old Triton blow his wreathèd horn.”(3)

How did I “get” Agoraphobia(nos)?
Was it that water fountain on the Bolivar Ferry, all those years ago?
Was it the aforementioned Rednecks, Jocks and Cops?
Was it the Glazed Eyes...the Cotton Minds...of my Contemporaries?


The Current Milieu.
Since 911, and the accompanying Hysteria and Fear of the Other, I have found myself more and more Hermitlike.
In this same period, I saw the birth of my sons, the failure of my Cafe, the loss of gainful employment(cost benefit analysis), and the increasing Disability, arising from the Wreck, (in 1990), and what can charitably be described as ,”Hard Living”.
The first 5-6 years of this period also saw increasing Panic Attacks, and attempts at self-medication for the Psychological issues, as well as the increasing Pain, related to the Disability.
Almost 5 years ago, the lifelong hostility from my stepdad finally became too much, and we moved to town. Concurrently, I was prescribed Vicodin for my pain, Amytriptaline for nerve damage, and found a steady source of Weed.
These combined with my wife and mother finally coming to understand just what was going on with me, Psychologically, and Physically.
I learned, due to my long habit of Introspection, what my “Triggers” were...and learned to avoid them.
When I must go among the Mundane, I take Valerian Root, in addition to the above listed meds....and gear myself up for the Ordeal.
If I fail to take these precautions, I find that I end up Drunk.

The Roots.

I was the Freakish Genius, from a very early age. 180 IQ, a Shining Mind, and a Voracious Curiosity.
While there was outward praise, there was always a sort of covert condescension...which I now regard as a coping mechanism, by those who used it.
As time went on, I found that I didn't “Fit” into any of the pre-determined Social Groupings. I was obviously not a Jock, or a Redneck...nor was I a typical Geek.
Band was full of what I will term,”Goody-2-shoes”,lol....most of whom were also Geeks.
From 3rd to 9th grades, I had a Best Friend,MRL...we shared all of this symptomology, save that he was a better student than I , and he had more ability to Conform, and to be a part of Groups, at least peripherally.
The first time I noticed the Problem of Assumptions was in 7th grade, when my folks got divorced....teachers and counselors, and my folks, all expected a set of reactions and emotions and behaviour problems from me...which weren't there.
I understood the Divorce...what led to it, etc...and I could see the necessity and benefit of such an action.
This understanding went against all the expectations...which was, apparently, unacceptable.
I found that I had to repeatedly Explain Myself to various authorities whom, to a man, seemed incapable of understanding my Not Fitting into their Preconceptions....
These were my first experiences with outright denial of what turned out to be my Anomolousness.(there's the “diagnosis, right there,lol)
When, in 9th grade, my best buddy moved, due to his own folks' divorce...I found myself alone in the crowd. I had become fascinated with Da Vinci...and began writing in Mirror was just something to do, to relieve the Boredom.
This was seen with much Concern, as a symptom of some underlying Emotional or Psychological Disturbance(from Divorce, etc). I was shocked to find that the school counselor was so Dense! Was there nothing in her books about Freakishly Smart Kids?(that's 2013 me talking, there,lol)
I was not believed when I explained that, no, I wasn't upset about the divorce...or anything else, really, except that my BFF had gone, and I was alone with a bunch of Fools and Jocks and Rednecks and a few other Smart Kids who, sadly, had little in common with me (they were all Xians, and incurious about most of the things that interested the time , this incuriousness was not hostile, and had not ramped up to the anti-science insanity we see, today).

By the time I reconnected with MRL...who had moved 20 miles down the was too late. We had diverged.
I'm coming around to the conclusion that this Loss was pretty Foundational to my development, and my subsequent wrestling with the System.////////////////// ya even want to...Try and Find me?”-Black Crowes,Sometimes Salvation

What choice did I have?
I never wanted, nor expected, to end up so broken and all alone.
Mike the Martian.
Even the Weirdos thought me weird.
But I couldn't help it...
It wasn't my fault that I was too smart...or that I found Authority Figures so wanting...or that I recognized , so early on, that most of the Social Structures were just that, and were mostly Bunk.
The Fools and Idiots had already Won, and were in league against me.
What could I do, but Embrace my Weirdness?
When Austin was not the Hippie Paradise I had expected, I despaired.
I gave up, back then, of ever finding a Place to Belong...
So it was with this in mind that I removed to the Wilderness.
Bad idea, it turned out...between Mom/Don, the Townies, and lil George and 911, the Wilderness morphed into Tea...and I am stuck.
I should have followed my instinct...once I had run off the first wife...
Hit the Road and headed West.
I had the Means and the Body, as yet...and the Will to Make a Go of it.
All that Will and Effort was wasted, here...broken against the rocks of being either well ahead of my Time, or Out of Touch..or just taking the advice of others....the jury is still out.
So here I sit...body my Library...the one that's never used.
I have no Friends...and even my wife and kids think I'm a weirdo.
I spend my days with agoraphobia and Pain...and rarely leave the Monastery and Environs.
I will likely die, here...misunderstood, if not hated.



I finally got a new hip in Feb of this year.
Hip feels great.
The problem is, that the hip is connected to the rest of me.
Doctors, friends , relations and acquaintances...even strangers...all of them, to a person, seem to believe that my problems are Over...I am a New Man, and can now get off Medicaid, stop taking pain meds, and go get a job.
This is especially frustrating with the Doctors...who should know better.
Fear of Audit...and a heaping(and surprising) dose of Mythology, regarding Opiate painkillers,...and I'm cut off....
Given Naproxin (aleve)...and some other pill to prevent the first from fucking up my belly,(but which has it's own set of digestive side effects)
I have reserved the Percocet they gave me after the hip surgery...didn't need it, then...I had sufficient Norco, at the time.
Since I quit all the Pharmaceuticals, about a month and three weeks ago, I've taken perhaps 8 Percocets: all for extraordinary situations...going to Houston for a week, and doing the museums, etc...and my 36 hour whirlwind to Padre(took one for the trip back).

This is hardly behaviour indicative of addiction....
But I'm still screwed.
There are no Rheumatologists, in the State of Texas, who are currently accepting adult Medicaid patients.
I must wait for someone to be miraculously cured...which, given the nature of the diseases that Rheumatologists deal with, means that I must wait for someone to die.
I'm on a waiting list(and this is Texas...this waiting list has zero to do with Obamacare).
My regular Doc wants me to see a Rheumatologist to find out why I feel so terrible...why all my joints hurt so much. Then, he'll send me to a “Pain Management Specialist”(if I can find one who takes Medicaid,lol), who will...presumably...take the prescription of opiate painkillers out of my regular Doc's worried hands.
Xray of back and knee don't show any likely culprit...neck, shoulders other knee, wrists and elbows, have not been scrutinised, radiologically.
Neither has my gravel-like ankle.
I suggested an MRI for my knee/back...and was brushed off. I assume this is due to the inefficiency/incompetence(willful and on purpose) of Medicaid.

My offending eyelashes...which grow into my left eye...and have for 23 years...are due to be electrocuted next week.
I am both extremely leery of the procedure...and cannot wait to have it done.
3 ½ weeks of “letting them grow” has been nightmarish...even with the “bandage contact lens” I've been wearing.
That eye remains open when I sleep...and . Thus, dries out.
Both eyes suffer from “cotton eye”...which I suspect is related to the left eye's issues.
Dry eyes, with a contact is a bitch. So I lubricate...and wear a patch.
I am ready for the electrodes.
(this was done...but they missed 2 was expected by all concerned)

On top of all of this is Psychology.
I'm a mess.
...mostly because of my life-experiences...cops and hillbillies...the frequently lamented Anomalous-ness.

I find that I am enraged...oh, so quietly.
I am enraged at the Injustice I see all around me, at the injustice of my Medical the continual assumptions made by everyone from the garbage man to Rickfuckingperry, that it's all, somehow, a brilliant plan to mooch off the gooberment...
at the Bullying I was subject to, as a kid and young adult...
I am enraged at the carload of Rednecks(the hats gave them away) who ran me off the road, 12-17-90...and were never looked know, because Joe is obviously making it up, and deserves his fate(Cops...really).
I am enraged that it has become unheard of and silly to refuse to kiss the bosses' ass...That demanding a better wage, and humane working conditions, is for some reason, a bad thing.
I am enraged that Stupidity is ascendant.
...and that the Enlightenment Project has been abandoned by so many of my countrymen.
I am enraged that the successful businessmen are usually the most corrupt...and that the entire regulatory apparatus excludes the small, the poor and the Honest.
That one is expected to set aside Integrity, in order to “get ahead”...and that one finds oneself falling behind, anyway...and without Integrity.

I am Enraged by these things...and many others...and yet I offend by falling into the beer pool, on occasion.
By behaving stupidly, and forgetting my Mundane Filter..(.that habit of being so clear that the most ignorant moron can understand me.My Mundane Filter is usually Silence...I just don't say anything, at all.)

I offend.
What is unknown...or forgotten? that I am Offended...continually...
By all those things, and more.
I have, as perhaps my greatest curse, Terminal Curiosity about the universe.
As a result, I find myself more knowledgeable, in more pertinent subjects, than anyone I know.

All this seems to accomplish is my further alienation from the rest of the least the Texas portion of it.

I manage to limit my news intake for a week...and when I can't stand it, any more, I take a peek....
and find that Texas is in an uproar, that Gay People can marry(somewhere), and that our Right to Vote is on the block, it's 1956.
Oh...and the NSA is watching and recording every phone call and email and facebook post...which I have known for many years, but the majority is only now having to become aware of.

I think about the 6 years of low boil terror, from mom's prowling neighbor (who is now in an asylum for early-onset Altzheimer's !!)...and I think about the ridicule my mom and I endured from friends and family and cops.

Add PTSD to the diagnosis.


I am afraid to attempt to utilise Medicaid for a shrink.
I'm afraid for several reasons...
For one, I have some experience with shrinks...both in clinical and in educational settings(I really like Jung,lol)...they are not semi-divine...and the specimens I have examined are , simply, not qualified for someone like me.
For another, I am in the middle of Texas...there are few shrinks this side of Austin or San Antone(100+miles away)...and Medicaid frowns on shopping around in these terribly slim pickins.
Out of the 5 or so shrinks I have interacted with, however briefly, over the last 18 years, only one has not had crosses and bible verses all over the room.
All but one have worn their Christian Zeal on their sleeves.
I don't want to do that.
I don't want to have to defend my agnosticism, or paganism or whatever.
Even the nice, educated and tolerant specimens have always ended up at “if you would only offer yourself to Jesus...”
Another reason for this reluctance, is that all or most of the symptomology looks like perfectly rational responses to intractable problems...Rebellion against increasing Cripplehood, the whole Anomaly-Thing,the world being basically Screwed, and the Ascendance of the Insane and Ignorant.
Is there a Pill, for this?

Turns out that there ARE NO Shrinks who take least within 100 miles of me.


I have thought about getting out of Texas...
perhaps the issue is Place.
Perhaps New Mexico, or Colorado...if not California or Oregon...are better suited to someone like me, in my situation....
But I have no money.++**
I have no Strength.
...and I have zero experience with anywhere but Texas and the rest of the Deep South.
I have contemplated an attempt at reconnaissance....
Stick a camper on the truck, and take off for points west, just to see what's up...
That's really what the Padre trip, and the campout for the boys, were all about....test runs.
Experiments to find out my endurance for such endeavors...driving and living rough.

Should I wait till I'm as fixed as possible?
If so, how does one determine that point?
I could lose Medicaid, etc at any moment...due to the dysfunctional system, due to some misunderstanding by the underpaid and undertrained staff at such agencies...or due to simple , arbitrary fiat by for no reason, at all.
Folks who have no experience with these things should shut the hell up, every once and a while...and listen.


Killing Hope.
Some folks, whom I listen to, say it's a Good kill Hope.
Frees one up for Action...or something...
I am not convinced.
I see the state of the world...and I despair.
I see the state of my life...relatively stable;at least on a material level, at the moment...and I despair.

I haven't written a word in weeks.
I find that I have both too much and too little to say...
I also feel like I've said it all before...
Is this because I have become a Cliche?
Or because so much is still unresolved?

It is an Impasse.

I am all but Powerless to resolve the health issues...things must “take their course”...all I have , as far as Agency, is to keep reminding the various Doctors that I ain't done.

The rest?
Well..I suspect that Health is what's in the way, there.
If I can get the ankle fixed, and get with some rational pain management people(lol),for the rest of me, I might be able to find some work I can do....which, it is hoped, would help with a whole host of other things.
I have the makings of a shop...I could make wind-chimes, or something.
I'll never cook for a living, again.(more psychologically damaging realisations.)
I really have no idea what I can, or want to do for a living.
There are so many unknowns.


Lack of Agency is likely a large part of my current anhedonic melancholia...
I have always been the guy with the duck tape and wire...perhaps a bit of rope...
I always could find a work-around...
But no longer.

That way of living seems so exhausting...and
Much like living rough...I don't think I'm up to it, any more.
Not physically able.


  1. Kubla Khan”, Samuel Taylor Coleridge
  2. Dejection;an ode”, Ibid.

++**I'm probably the only person any of you readers know who has never had a credit card.
Try that for a week.

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