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4:32 pm - Mon 2.22.2010
What's My Story

What's My Story?

Sun 2/21/10 (5:17 pm)

For some time, I’ve felt I need to get better at “finding the story”.

I’ve become increasingly frustrated in recent years by my journal writing. For some reason - fear of really “revealing myself”, frustration at my inadequacies as a writer, who knows? - at the same time I’ve improved by leaps-and-bounds stylistically as a writer (If you don't believe me, you should read some of my journaling from the 80s), I’m doing an increasingly piss-poor job writing about the things I really need to write about.

Cause who cares if you can string words together if you’re not saying anything meaningful or interesting?

I’m starting to bore myself. Which is probably why, increasingly, I worry about boring you.

For example: I’ve been off-line for the better part of five days now, and I’ve been writing about it (offline), preparing for the glorious day I will be back online, posting the entry in Diaryland.

I wrote about how I couldn’t get online. Then how I got back online for a time (Just long enough to post a Facebook entry...which I thought was an interesting priority, by the way). Then how I was offline again. Then how I got back on (Long enough to post my last Diaryland entry and pay some bills). Then how I lost the connection again.

I wrote about the calls I made to Time Warner - At first there was an “outtage” in my area. Then that was fixed, but I still didn’t have a connection. So I called to set up an appointment with a repair person. Then I canceled it when I got back online for a time on Thursday night. But the connection didn’t last, so I had to call back and reschedule the appointment (For tomorrow morning).

I went on and on with this minutia.

And that’s not the story..

The “story” was hidden in one paragraph, to the effect that being offline was making me feel “cut-off”, but that I imagined “the Internet was somehow managing to soldier on without me”.

(Perhaps a bit melodramatically, I likened it to death - Someday I will “go offline” for good, and like the Internet for the past number of days, the World, and everyone in it, will somehow “soldier on” without me. Which I have to admit, I find upsetting.)

The “story” isn’t “I’m having problems with my Internet connection” - That’s the set-up.

The story is that, take away my online world...and I don’t have much “world” left.

It’s not exactly a secret - that I don’t have a life - but having my Internet go down (For the longest time I can remember since first going online) has put it into pretty sharp relief.

Mon 2/22/10 (9:23 am)

The Triumvirate

I assume I’m in the waning hour/hours of my offline-ness - The cable guy is due anytime within the next 2 ˝ hours - and will be back online looking at porn and updating my Facebook status before the clock strikes one (pm).

(My upcoming Facebook status: “Back online. Looked at some porn. All is well.”)

Can't imagine there’s a good time for my Internet to go down, but this seems like a particularly bad time, at least in terms of having other distractions - There’s nothing happening on the acting front, there isn’t much in the way of good movies out (This time of year being a traditional “dumping ground” for crappy movies), and the Winter Olympics, which I couldn’t care less about, has wreaked havoc with my tv schedule.

Like I said yesterday, I know I don’t have a life, but to lose my Internet this long has really thrown it in my face.

I do much of my business online (Both in terms of paying bills, and getting emails about auditions/downloading sides/getting info about the jobs I've booked).

I get almost the entirety of my news online (via CNN, The Huffington Post, Entertainment Weekly, TV Guide, The Onion/AV Club, etc.); about the only news I get outside the Internet these days comes from the LA Weekly, scanning the newspaper headlines when I walk by a newspaper box, and “the word on the street”.

I get almost the entirety of my porn online (Sadly, the Internet is my longest-term “sex partner”...by far).

(With so much free porn online, I have a very minimal porn collection, consisting of 4 dvds, 2 videos, three sexy movies on my dvr, and a handful of still pictures on my hard drive).

My “social life”, if you want to call it that, is pretty much entirely online (Basically consisting of emailing back and forth with Jane, periodic chats with a handful of other friends, and updating my "status" on Facebook).


____________________

Well, the cable guy has come and gone, and I am back online.

(He did a lot of testing on my modem...but it turned out, near as I could tell, to be the cord plugging into the modem that was the problem. But anyway...)

I want to address the title of this entry, and how it relates to my recent disconnected-ness...

I've been journal writing for a long time now (Starting sometime in 1980, at the suggestion of the therapist I was seeing at the time at Catholic Social Services).

After awhile, I noticed three things kept coming up in my journal writing (Three "I am"s, if you will).

1. I am tired.
2. I am bored.
3. I am lonely.

Once I noticed that, it became increasingly hard to write about "The Triumvirate", as I started thinking of it, because I started feeling like I was "repeating myself", to no good purpose (Though my feeling about "repeating myself" in here has gotten a bit more nuanced over the years - If the point of keeping a journal is to be more "connected" to myself, there's some value in noticing what "themes" keep surfacing. But anyway...).

Over time, "The Triumvirate" became a "given" - I didn't just feel tired and bored and lonely...I was tired and bored and lonely; it wasn't just my physical/emotional state at a given time, it was my identity.

I haven't specifically thought about "The Triumvirate" in years.

Till earlier today.

Initially, I put "I'm tired"/"I'm bored"/"I'm lonely" on the back burner in my journal, as I said, because it went from being "news to report on" to "just the way things are".

Or "Just the way I am".

But in part due to the Internet, things changed, and I didn't really notice.

The Internet didn't do anything about my tiredness, of course, but it definitely had an effect on my boredom and loneliness.

I wouldn't say I never feel that triple-whammy of being tired and bored and lonely since the Internet, but I would say it's comparatively rare.

But in the past number of days, even while bemoaning being unable to get online, I started to feel like the Internet is not really a "solution" to boredom and loneliness but a "patch" on it, if that makes sense.

And I think I'm going to leave it at that, for now, because I am - you guessed it - really tired, and I think I would very much enjoy a nap.

 

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