Friday, 26 June 2009

That practice, what was it again? That practice of posting into the future, setting up a delay on a weblog post in an effort to predict or influence the future. And what of the other practice, of posting into the past? Invalidating the dailyness of writing by throwing words back over our shoulders, words weighed down with hindsight sinking to the bottom of the river like a brick. There is a Berlin morning here like all the others. The birds are awake, the courtyard noisy. In the sky, no trace of sunlight, just heavy passive aggressive clouds. A normal routine is followed - shower, coffee, food, reading, writing, despair.

The words of previous writings stand alone. There shall be no reference made to them here. So, they expose themselves bare. That is all they do, they gleam like awkward stars against the night sky - evident, contrary, but no answer to the questions of the universe. There can be no author found there, nothing revealed about a person beyond certain habits of writing.

At a crossroads, as always. There are moments when it is impossible not to think that there have been wrong paths taken. How is it that all around me there are those that know so much and I know so little. What wasted years stretch out before me, like disused no-mans-lands in the centre of a city, all rubble and ruptured pipes! Those months and years of routine education set out by school, sixth-form college and two universities. At all points I was undecided, shifting between sciences, philosophy, the so-called humanities. At all points, perhaps, there were too many subjects. A rounded education is one thing, but where is my physics now when I need it the most? What distant shore did I leave my rudimentary understanding of mathematics upon? Why, when computers absorbed all hours not spent learning, was that language omitted from my curriculum? I should have been guided by voices, instead I was guided by timetables.

It is possible to trace things in the rubble - a young fascination with novels, open-ended constructive computer software, soft fatalism, the abstractions of various continental philosophers, the rupturing, soon boring pomo of American literature. Then, Europe. None of this explains however, none of this validates. A continuum is experienced, little more. The arbitrary divisions of time, those that men revel in, become all the more arbitrary and all the more forgotten. What can we do to locate ourselves within our own histories?

And, what of this habit of mine, this habit of switching horses mid-race? A talentless polymath, even worse, a polymath unable to multi-task, a polymath with limited scope, a one-track polymath. Master of none, I retreat into association and like some drunk fallen from a casino, penniless and in need of more, I'm always one break away from getting myself back on track, one break from returning to my original horse. I began here with a list, long since deleted. A list of all the philosophers and thinkers I should have read but haven't. Perhaps it is too late to remember it.

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