Tuesday, December 05, 2006


-- looking from the outside in --


Anonymous said...

I do wish that brains were better at communicating with themselves. Can you imagine what it would be like if your brain said to you, "Look, Annie... I really think we've got to get out more / cut down on soft cheese / dance a bit / put our feet up / forget this memory or look at it again/..."?

Then we could turn about to the highly-structured lump of gloop and blancmange that is ourselves and say, "Well, brain, I see where you're coming from there, but I don't see how I can do it unless you get your act together and help me feel more positive about socialising / get conscious about Camembert / feel that natural rhythm / become ordered so I can relax properly / be objective about what I may or may not have done wrong in the past (both whether it was really wrong -- in which case learn from it; or if it was not really wrong, to go forward holding that truth closer than memory)..."

Instead, we just end up with the feeling that there's an ALARM BELL going off which disjoints and discombobulates the whole damn system. The crockery falls off the shelves of our selves; our little treasures and achievements & self-respect all tumble in the earthquake of anxiety.

These are the bugs in the system, built by a blind watchmaker to work just well enough to pass small changes from one generation to another. We're all running Chimp 2.0. We're none of us perfected. The good thing about the alarms is that they're there to help us -- it's like a clumsy internet friend who can't quite say or feel exactly what is what, or who doesn't quite get it. I guess all we can do is go back to the wiring system, look at the fuse box and try to see what the damned thing is trying to warn us about or urge us to do. Not in a hostile way & not recriminating; just observing as a scientist of one's self, lab coat and clipboard -- or an engineer, spanner in hand -- or as our own private Dr Who, slipping forward and backwards through our own pasts and futures, fixing, tweaking, nudging, and loving the whole of our time.

I wish I knew something better to say. But, looking from the outside in, I like Annie. Looking from what I know or can guess about what it's like being Annie from the inside out, I really like Annie.

If you do have a duvet day, may it snug & comfort.

Mr Apparently Creepy Guy

Anonymous said...

Ooops. Missed out a bit.

...to go forward holding that truth closer than memory)..."

And then your hundred billions of neurons, your googleplex of interconnections, turn back to you and says: "You got it, boss! There? Can you feel that pressure of joy behind your eyes? Can you feel your tum tightening at the thought of foods that won't help us at the moment? Can you feel your eyes and words and fingers and feet starting to tap out the random, careless, creative rhythm of a life living well -- from the pulse of your heart and blood in your bones to the deep, slow tide of your breathing? And all these memories that have been bothering you -- I've sorted them into two piles with labels. Some of them I think we need, because they help us be happy; some of them we need to look at again, because I think we didn't understand what was going on, and perhaps the people involved in them... well... I'm not sure they were really being as helpful as they could have been -- but then we're all human, aren't we? We all make mistakes... but we're okay..."

Then we could say to our brains, "Why, thank you, you loving lump of gloop! By my ears and whiskers, you have made things better and more comprehensible to me. I feel better about myself and my experience. Now I'm feeling like one of the most extraordinary structures of crystals and water and protein within a thousand thousand light-years, drifting on a beautiful world that is warm even in winter..."

Instead, we just end up with the feeling...

If there's anything else you could imagine I could say, with care and concern and respect... please imagine that I've said it, because I'm only human, and I'm sure I've missed something else out.