Friday, January 18, 2008

Myope: Short sighted

“But of course it’s a shitty world out there when your eyes are turned inwards.”

This is a fragment of the monologue Mark, the main character of my Process Cheese trilogy (play/novel).

Tonight as I was cycling past Jenny Lou’s – it’s a wonderfully peaceful and introspective bike ride the path from sihue to chaoyang park ximenr – it dawn on me that I keep muling over anger issues because I kept my eyes inward.

I have issues not worse or less than anyone else. In French we say I have to fight my demons. Things happened and I am so ok with it all. But my Freudian hiccup fights to keep in when I want it out. E.g. I go over facts that make me angry so I can keep angry as if anger was the fuel of my life/my purpose. I guess it’s like some kind of curse or ghost or residual memory that just don’t want to die.

I feel for the memory. She’s a trouper and she wants to live. Good for her bad for me. Anyways, I am short sighted you see, so to my disgust (in Beijing, there is so much gobs/spits/shiny horks/mucus oysters on the ground it’s best to avoid looking down) I often look down rather than up because up is one blurry horizon. I can’t be bothered to wear glasses when I ride my bicycle, and contact lenses are sand catchers. So I look down which is the most in-focus distance I can manage. And since down is a puke (see the above mention on gobs) I learned to look inwards to avoid puking myself from the sights of so many oysters.

The result is that I keep in my head – sometimes I wonder how I made it on the third ring road past 3 sets of traffic light not remembering if the light was green or red.

The physical position of the eyes, where they look to affects what we think about. I have proof on this through the many experiments I conducted with my students. Look over to the up left, is configuring a plan; algebra, calculating, forecasting, figuring out the maths. Looking over to the top right is reminiscing a memory in detail. Looking down centre is reading a memory; for example translating literally a thought into another language. And so on. Positioning the eyes full front and relaxing the actually eye/skin muscle is prone to get you inside your skull. Shutting down the world outside.

If I shut the world outside I most likely than not will be mulling over memories. I could be fantasising, and planning. I could be. But mostly, I work with the information I have. I work with the past and the present. Even when so I built up the future.

Therefore, it dawn on me that if I wanted to give myself the chance to break out of this anger, and to assume the choice of looking forward I made, I would have to look on. Look on to the 100% unknown horizon. So I lifted my eyes up. I stared at the (somewhat blurry) horizon. And all of a sudden the anger lifted. Just like that. I am not an angry person per say. I just have past issues that piss me right off the map. Grrrrrrrr. But on a usual basis I’m pretty optimistic; naturally giddy. So by lifting my eyes up to the horizon, concentrating on nothing else but on what’s coming, there was no other way but to be released of the anger. I even had a faint overall feeling of hope.

So here goes for the string of hippy thoughts. But it worked. Try it. I’m sorry about that memory who so strongly refuses to die. Are there any “we don’t eat memories” group out there who can house this trouper of mine? I’ll send her off; put it on my tab.


The positive reassertion of myself goes on. I do write best when I’m up and all smiles. I don’t understand people who love to wallow in their despair. Well, here’s to another beautiful midnight bike ride in Beijing. 08-01-08

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