Nothin' much, you?

I dunno about you, but I've noticed quite a dearth of blog posts lately. I suppose it's because, to be honest, there's nothing all that exciting or interesting going on with me these days. Just school, y'know?

The new semester began last week. I have four classes: Mass Media Research, Interviewing, Media Ethics and Screenwriting. I have a pretty good feeling about all of them right now, which is easy to say because it's still the beginning of the semester and I'm not yet deluged with papers that need to be handed in all at the same time. Then again, I'm not really foreseeing a ton of work for these classes either. There's one fairly long paper for the media research class, like, 15 - 20 pages, I think (which, if I take care of each section as it comes along and don't procrastinate, I don't think will be too bad), and the other three classes don't have any papers longer than, say, six pages or so, so I think I'll be able to spread my time evenly amongst the classes.

The screenwriting one is the one I'm most curious about right now, as I've never taken a class like this before. My previous film classes have been nothing more than history and appreciation, and maybe a little theory, but of a final product, the film itself, rather than its script. And my previous writing classes have all been basic prose work. So, yeah, I dunno. I mean, I've read a lot of books about screenwriting and storytelling, and, of course, I've watched a shitload of movies and read a ton of scripts.

It's been a while since I've written a script, or tried to. The script I finished while I was out in CA, I stalled halfway through my rewrite and I hadn't really written anything since I'd been back in Omaha except for the stories and exercises in my creative writing class last semester. It felt good, though, to write again. I seem to have this problem of, I want everything to be perfect when my fingers start clacking away at the keyboard, and I know that's not even close to possible, but, like, I don't want to write until I know exactly what I'm writing about. I try and work things out in my head before I commit them to the page, but that's really just an excuse not to actually write. It's this fear of not wanting to write crap, even though I know everyone writes crap at first. That's why FSM invented first drafts, second drafts, editors, and I know this, yet I still hesitate. And I don't know why.

It all boils down to this illogic that I can't seem to shake, that if I don't try, I can't fail. On the other hand, if I do try, and succeed, then more will be expected of me next time. I've mentally painted myself into a corner with this. I've created a no-win situation for myself and I don't know what I can do to break myself out of this way of thinking.


The NFL playoffs are happening as I type. I'm finding it hard to care. There are some nice storylines, certainly, especially in New Orleans, but the Steelers aren't playing, so I'm just kind of ... meh about the whole thing. (Thankfully, Pitchers and Catchers Report in about a month.)

Recently, I've found myself spending time analyzing myself, my personality, trying to, I don't know, better understand why I act the way I act, especially in regards to my relationships with others. I suppose my outlook toward writing stems from my outlook toward people, or vice-versa. If I don't try, I can't fail (of course, some would say not trying is failure). And if I do try, and something good occurs from it, then I'll be expected to continue to be that person, whoever he is. This is sounding kind of rambly, isn't it?

I'm 28 years old. I'll (finally) be done with school inside two years. I haven't had a relationship, serious or otherwise, in years. And every time I do begin to get close to someone, I find some way to fuck it up, because that's what I do. There's this girl out in CA who I've known for, what, 10 years? 11? She used to live in Florida, then went to college up north before moving out west a few months after I did. And I care about her. She was always a good friend, better than I deserved, and when things were looking to become more than that friendship, I fucked up, pulled away. Hell, I came back to Omaha. Not that I came home to get away from her or anything like that. I had some serious depression issues going on at the time, but I don't think I ever explained myself to her. I clammed up, shut her out and ran away, which is no way to treat anyone, especially someone you care about.

I can be an asshole sometimes. I'm well-aware of this fact. And I don't know why. It's easier, I guess, than actually dealing with people on a deeper level. Ever since I got back to Omaha, I've felt this weight, guilt, I suppose, due to the way I (mis)handled things with this girl. And I don't know what I'm doing with myself, y'know? I don't know what my life is going to look like in a year or two. What right do I have to have, to begin, any sort of relationship with anybody? I don't know who I am or what I want, so why would I want to inflict whoever I am on anyone else?

I wonder, sometimes, what people think when they look at me. I don't necessarily care what they think, but I'm interested nonetheless. I should qualify that by saying, I don't care what most people think, the general public, people I don't know. But there are other, closer people, my friends, or people I'd like to get closer to, to get to know better, and I find myself over-analyzing everything to the point of paralysis. Who am I in the eyes of others? Who can I be? Who do they want me to be? It's fuckin' stupid, I know. It's like this social retardation back to when I was in high school. But, like with the writing, I can't seem to break free of this mental prison I've constructed for myself.

Oh well. As they say, Rome wasn't built in a day (season two starts tonight!) and I'm certainly not going to figure myself out anytime soon. I just wonder, y'know, about who I am, why I am who I am, what I can do to change parts of who I am. You know, nothin' important.

I'd like to apologize to this girl in CA, too. I don't imagine she'd want to hear from me, but you never know. But what would I say? I'm sorry I was a jerk last time I saw you. I'm sorry I used you and abused your trust in me. I'm sorry I haven't spoken to you since that weekend in San Francisco almost two years ago. I was an asshole, scared and depressed, and you didn't deserve to be treated as an afterthought.

Suppose I can just cut and paste that into an email, or I could just let sleeping dogs lie. What right do I have to insinuate myself back into her life? Or into anyone's life, for that matter. This is how fucked up I am, that I can't imagine myself being worth anyone else's time.

Sad, ain't it?

(P.S. - I blame the weather for the above post. It's cold and snowing and I hate this time of year. I'm not depressed depressed, just, you know, a little depressed.)


the artist formerly known as Boston Jen said...

I'm glad you seem excited about the screenwriting class... I do miss the first couple weeks of being in class and feeling all upbeat about what the semester will bring (although you, my dear, are slightly not upbeat). I think it's natural to hold back from a meaningful relationship when you feel you haven't quite figured yourself out, but I also know for a fact that if you find someone who is open to investing in a work-in-progress (which is more people than you might realize, since quite frankly that's who we all are - a work-in-progress) you may just find what you were looking for - both in her and you. And you may still feel awful or continue to be an asshole at times, but you may also grow and learn from the experience. So cut out this "if I don't try, I can't fail" shit - you’ve obviously realized it's not working for you.
As for "What right do I have to insinuate myself back into her life?" I have asked myself that very question about my own fuck-up for years now, and to be honest... the jury is still out. I would like to be able to have a mature conversation about moving beyond events that happened so long ago rather than having to put up with the hushed comments that are still uttered amongst mutual acquaintances, but I have a huge fear of inadvertently causing any further pain to him or his new love, and if that means not ever getting real closure about things, so be it. Everything seems to come back around eventually, and maybe someday you'll get an email from her. So that's my two cents. But I may be biased since I tend to see you as a good friend and possibly even a nice guy...

Grumpy Old Man said...

Dave, If you want to make thing right with Char, get on the phone and call her. Tell her the truth. You owe it to her and you owe it to yourself. It must be weighing on you.

Angel said...

"What right do I have to insinuate myself back into her life?"

I asked myself that very question on that odd day I decided to look you up and actually found you....

I can't say for your end of that email... but on my end... it wasn't nearly as bad as I thought it could have been.

raptorpack said...

it is good to have a blog to vent sometimes...I tried getting back to the communcation stage with a former loved one that I push away...she ended up not wanting anything to really do with me anymore; course, there is the fact that she wasn't a very considerate person in the first place...so...dodged a bullet there right, huh, huh; wink, wink; know what I mean...say no more...:)

AliKat said...

From very recent experience I have decided that it is best to let the past stay in the past. Now saying that sometimes its okay to call or email and make amends for something in the past espeically if it is weighing on you, and if she is the kind person you say she is then she will understand. Just be careful because people change and sometimes you have no idea what you are walking into. Of cousrse when I do something it always has to be 10x more complicated than if anyone else does it, so maybe everything will work out fine for you. :)