I am launching a new website.
From the center of Babble Town. A speck on Google Maps, indistinct from its neighboring towns, except for its inability to register dangerous decibels on a sound meter. Yes, oh yes, there will be language. One language unique to the user. Letters, words, sentences and even paragraphs allowed. Notes, memos, and for the particularly glib, a novel or thesis permitted. Oh and links. Apps. Tweets and text. The format is expansive enough to accommodate each and every being on the planet.
Thoughts, opinions, ramblings, speculation, ideas, viewpoints, perspectives, projections, evaluations, and the assorted odds and ends of errant or fluctuating mind wandering.
Wandering nomads, the nouns and verbs, adjectives and descriptors, linked together by dangling tangling participles and conjunctions.
In other words, in Babble Town, on the new website, the only language you will recognize is your own. You will control the conversation entirely, because only YOU can ask the questions and only YOU can answer them. Here, and only here, YOU will always be right, even though you won’t be able to prove it, because NO ONE else speaks your language.
No challenges to your logic, no alternative point of view, because no one can HEAR you, let alone comprehend the extent of your enormous wisdom and knowledge.
Welcome to Self Chat. Com/SHHHHH
Feel free to post an anonymous Avatar. We encourage you to be creative, or snarky or sweet. This is your chance to be wild and crazy or deeply introspective, as whatever you decide to share or thumbs up or down, is perfectly acceptable. You are on a one way street, traveling solo, in perfect harmony with the most important person in the world, YOURSELF.
You will never have to apologize, or eat your words, or copyright or trademark your ideas. They will forever be fully embedded in one sweet spot safe from hackers. Inside of YOUR brain. Think of it as somewhat similar in design as iCloud, except that sharing will occur only on the available neurons in YOUR mind. You will have an infinite amount of data storage, no need for back up, plus the added bonus of no longer needing tech support, as YOU are the tech. The Geek. The only one able to reboot, erase spam, ad block and upgrade to a smarter system. Why, you will be able to Photoshop your images in the blink of an eye. Literally.
There are no cybersquatters here. No filters. No copycats. No infiltrators. No deviousness.
Alone inside your head.
Zooming around freely to create your own neighborhood, 143 characters less than on Twitter.
The only character you require is the letter I.
You are the story editor. Whatever you think is true. You are the copywriter. You own the eraser at the end of the pencil. You decide which thoughts to keep, and which ones belong in the trash.
Self Chat. Com/SHHHHH
There are no rules or laws to obey. Only one simple recommendation. If you are used to yelling over someone’s head, or into anyone’s face, in order to be heard, don’t waste your time. You have, at your fingertips, YOUR full attention. Yell, if you must, but our PSA recommends that YELLING or typing to yourself in ALL CAPS may result in a headache that lasts over four hours, and may require medical attention that you won’t be able to get as no one can understand a single word you say. So there’s that.
Self Chat Users should expect instant euphoria and the urge to speechify at an alarming rate. The slight down side, is echolalia. You may ask yourself a question, only to hear your question reflected back echoing through your head in its new form, a statement. i.e. Was dinner tasty? Dinner was tasty.
Self Chat. Com/SHHHHH Licensing Agreement
I know. I know.
You expected there to be a lawyer hanging about in the shadows, ready to pounce and demand you sign on the dotted line.
The goal of Self Chat. Com/SHHHHH
...is simple and straight forward.
A mind is a terrible resource to waste,
but perhaps all that is needed is a clean sweep.
A wipe of the hard drive.
A swipe to the left and to the right.
Something along the lines of…
A soft answer turns away wrath,
but a harsh word stirs up anger…
Here at Self Chat. Com/SHHHHH,
there is only one selfie.
No followers. No trackers.
Let your voice be heard,
and decide how much YOU like it.
I know that Self Chat. Com/SHHHHH will be amazingly popular, an overnight success, because…
EVERYONE LOVES TO HEAR THEMSELVES TALK.
It’s the listening that trips us up.
Now you have the perfect tool to practice…
So Listen here please.
Self Chat. Com/SHHHHH
You might just learn something about yourself.
I just logged on,
and this is one tough neighborhood.
I suggest a flashlight.
I think I just scared myself.
It's really LOUD in here.
Oh, that's right YOU can't hear me.
Wednesday, January 18, 2017
There is a line from the old sitcom I Love Lucy,
that never fails to crack me up.
“Lucy”, an angry Ricky replies,
“ You’ve got some splaining to do!”
Just try to talk yourself out of this one.
There should be an AA type group for explainers. A twelve step program to help people like me to stop stop stop stop stop stop explaining. All the time. Of course there is the tried and true Duct Tape remedy. When the urge to explain arises, simply tear off a piece of duct tape with your teeth and slap it over your mouth. The downside to this technique, is that like a band-aid or a wax strip, it hurts like heck when you rip it off.
Years ago, I read a remarkable book The Wise Heart, by Jack Kornfield. It is a study of the Buddhist approach to dealing with life experiences and challenges. I would love to tell you that I have discovered inner peace through meditation, but I struggle with impatience each and everyday. Practicing mindfulness requires relaxed breathing and the ability to sit still for long periods of time.
As in, like, more than five minutes.
That is how long I lasted. I could handle the deep breathing, and the quiet sitting, until I got an itch or noticed an odd spot on my leg, or felt the urge to, to umm, NOT SIT STILL. The urge was always VERY loud. Louder than the soft chanting on my iPod.
A LOUD URGENT CHANT...
TO GET UP AND MOVE MOVE MOVE.
Just as I did today, at the gym. Mindfully moving one step at a time around the track, into a slow yet steady mindlessness. Stepping out of my mind and my thoughts provides such sweet relief. I lose track of my surroundings and notice only my breathing. The same thing happens when I swim laps.
Back and forth. Touch the wall.
Back and forth. Turn and breathe.
An out of mind experience.
No NOT an out of my mind experience. Well, maybe, that is exactly what it is. Stepping outside thinking into just being.
Just being me.
With no need to explain to anyone anything. Anything at all.
Including myself. I am a self talker. And the conversation lately, stinks to high heaven. The drab and dreary soggy soaked sky may be a hint,
that heaven has reached its limits with my malodorous musings as well.
I have no desire to mess with the universe,
when I cannot even keep good company with myself.
I make mistakes. So does everyone else.
I see the world one way. You see it another way.
No need to meditate, pontificate or extrapolate.
Here, then, are the steps I recommend, as a Personal Programmer for Over Explainers.
Be still. As in SHHHHHHH. Shush up. Zip It.
Have an out of mind experience. Walk away.
Read a good book. In bed. With Cheetos.
A good book like The Wise Heart,
by the very wise Jack Kornfield.
I leave you with perhaps his best Zen philosophy for splainers.
“If someone calls you a dog, check your butt.
If you don’t see a tail there, that settles it. “
Two words too many.
New Year’s Resolution:
Friday, January 6, 2017
To left of where I sit lies a brand new yellow pad, and on it, in numerical order, a concise list of activities, I resolved to resolve.
As soon as I am able.
So I complete number one and cross it off with a flourish of my black Sharpie. Snort. So there. Done.
I stare at bullet point numero dos, and look away quickly. Oooh that one. Uhhh, yeah that one. Let’s see what about number three? Yeah. That one.
Instead I decide to reorganize, rather than resolve. So I reorganize my paper clip box. Sort out the plastic colored thumbtacks that had wandered in uninvited. Hah! Then I reorganize all the folders on my desktop, and arrange them in alphabetical order.
Okay. Back to those resolutions. Nope. Shredding. Everyone needs to do some shedding, some shredding of excess in the New Year, so why not me? I love my shredder. I love it so much, I shred two garbage bags full of miscellaneous piles of meanderings, that I compile randomly and keep for no apparent reason. Thoughts, ideas, suggestions, that at the time I wrote them seemed so clever and fascinating, and now make absolutely no sense. I guess you just had to be there, and I was, but now I have no idea.
Resolve. I resolve to...
Go on the Web and look up the definition of the word...RESOLUTION.
Wow! Two full pages of definitions. One for the legal community. One for medical personnel. One for writers and authors. Scientists. Chemists. Grammarians. Actors. Camera buffs.
Yet the one that catches my eye, grabs my attention is, and I quote...
“The process or capability of making distinguishable the individual parts of an object, closely adjacent optical images, or sources of light.”
Stay with me folks. This is where the real fun begins. Instead of staring down my list of resolutions, I stare instead at the wood grain patterns of the floor beneath my feet, and gasp. I see a face.
Yup. A woman’s face with long curly swirly hair cascading down her back. Oh and over there, a squid. With one eye. Wait. A feather. A perfect feather fanning out in layers.
Yup. Crazy time. Too much time sitting in one place procrastinating, hiding and evading the truth. It is January. It snowed last night. Bitterly cold outside. When I turned out the light last night, I felt smug and satisfied. I had a plan. A list. And no more excuses. I resolved to resolve everything on my yellow pad list before the end of this business day.
This monkey business day, instead, I am monkeying around. Procrastinating. Putting off. Avoiding. Refusing to be resolved.
I know exactly what I need.
Not resolution. More of a revolution.
Perhaps a revelation. A new beginning.
To be honest with both you and myself, I need to play. I need to be less serious. I need to quit looking back, and to jump headfirst into this New Year, with fresh eyes. A clean sheet of paper. Crayons and alcohol ink experiments, new lines and designs. Scissors and glue and paper cut outs, and of course, words words words.
I hope you will be patient with me. The truth is I have a new story bubbling inside my head. Very different from the Yard Yeti Gardener’s Tale. In fact the first chapter is one of the few things I did not shred. It has been an itch under my skin since early last year, but I let too much else pile on top.
One of the other definitions of Resolution reads…
when an inflammation subsides...
You know the feeling. You wake up one morning, and the pain is gone. Really gone. Relief. Relief followed by the sheer and simple joy of doing the things you love once more, only this time it won’t...hurt.
Here’s to new and less painful beginnings for us all. Here’s to the joy of a new discovery, the thrill of a new skill, the first page of a new book.
My resolution is to help you enter the New Year with a full and happy heart. But I cannot do that if either you or I are staring at the floor looking for optical images to appear. I mean, that was crazy.
So let’s both look up and resolve to make angels in the snow. To be playful, and grateful for one more chance to create.
So resolve NOT to do THIS.
Lift up your eyes…and…
Resolve to DO THIS…