Yesterday I evidently traded writing for picking up operational supplies from the grocery store. Because that was the lone negotiable item in the day. It was a nicely paced day, with time enough to do each thing and then turn to the next…but none of those things was writing. Until 11pm. Which is, as you know, a complete nonstarter for me. That I am writing now (8:50pm on the evening after the 11:30pm crash) is, I think, pretty amazing.
Today, too, was nicely paced though not optimized. For example: writing now, not my fave. Missing art-time I also regret. Though Art-Day lunch out with C (at my latest restaurant crush!) was satisfying as always—perhaps even comforting, since today’s schedule was mostly new and different. I can’t decide if My Sweetie’s absence makes all this unfamiliarity better (because why not peg the dissonance?) or worse.
My new scholastic adventure began today. This term I’m taking “Introduction to The New Testament,” which uses three books in addition to a Bible. During his overview-of-the-course remarks, my professor paused to draw a parallel between how a good conversation operates and how we will be encouraged to absorb our class texts. Not the back-and-forth part of conversation, though I expect we’ll be doing a lot of that. He was emphasizing that in a good conversation, the listener will be absorbing the speaker’s words while making an effort to interpret them the way the listener understands the speaker to mean them. (I can already see that my writing will become a lot more ‘meta,’ if only in self defense!)
In this pause, RevDr D went on to comment about the futility of that “understanding” part, commenting that he’s been married for (I forget, more than 30) years and he’s “never going to quite ‘get’ her.” Sure, this is widely believed…
…and here’s the unrelated part that struck me: Is he ever going to ‘get’ himself, either?
We assume we’ll never completely know any other person. There’s a whole interior life that refuses to allow language to let the person experiencing that interior life expose it totally—I know, because I keep trying and not getting there. OK, check,
…but the part that tantalizes me is that, even though I desperately want to know what I’m “like,” each person I’ve asked goes thoroughly tongue-tied. How they experience me seems to be equally as beyond language as how I experience myself. Even though they’re probably not the same.
Not only that, but don’t you think it’s true that “Kimbol,” properly speaking, is those experiences combined/all at once? That it makes no sense to have only my own experience of self, or only another’s experience of me? It’s another form of “no man is an island,” perhaps…an equal and opposite version of interconnectedness. Like with a poem, completeness requires all the players.
During class I was pretty sure this musing was completely beside the point. No biggie, “beside the point” and “muse” are things I routinely do, even (though not especially! y’all shush!) during lecture. As I pin it down on and spread it out, however, I wonder whether it ties very tidily in after all. Our semester’s project is to read the New Testament itself, read works of history focused on the first century CE, and “read” our current-day experiences all at the same time. If I can possibly hold these three elements together and separately at once, I may be well on my way to doing the thing our class is designed to do.
My assignments are going to read like Pikkety, though.
PS: for those of you school-nerds playing at home, it’s *Chicago Manual of Style 16th edition, and *they-pronouns because inclusive language. Carry on as you were.
PPS: in case you haven’t watched Mel Brooks’ High Anxiety multiple times, today’s title comes from my dad’s and my favorite line.