The Hollow World

I was mildly annoyed until I got to the hearing and then surprisingly calm. ¬† The officer revoking my license went through the hurly-burly of official procedure, studiously reading through pages of small text which he’d undoubtedly already read, scatching pencil marks and cross-referencing his screen, making quite a production of the process.

I almost smiled. ūüôā

But I felt badly for him, too.  He seemed so hollow.  Consensual authority has no need to parade its credentials over and over.  That is the Truth of Lies.  Lies hollow out all things over time, leaving them ever more false and fragile.

I walked into my apartment, drank a bottle of water and realized… ¬† I felt no anger at all. ¬† I’m not sure why. ¬†Perhaps it’s the anti-depressants. ¬† Still, it seemed very odd.

Then I walked down to Walmart and bought a bicycle. ¬†ūüôā

 

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The Path

large_detailed_highways_map_of_USA

This is The Path.

The red lines are where I traveled from Feb, 2004 until now, after Dominique cut me free of Phoenix, material possessions and my ex-wife. ¬†I’ve traveled cross-country seven times across the United States:

1) Phoenix -> Portland  (2004), Portland -> NYC (2005)

2) NYC -> Charlotte -> Phoenix -> Seattle (2006)

3) Seattle -> Miami (2007)

4) Miami -> Seattle (2007)

5) Seattle -> Hartford, CT (2011)

6) Hartford, CT -> Los Angeles -> Seattle (2011)

7) Seattle -> Washington, DC (2012)

#8 still in process: Washington, DC -> Denver (2013)

I don’t understand The Path but started on it in 2004 and didn’t name it “The Path” until 2008, when I finally grasped some of its nature. ¬†Simultaneously, I took up drinking because I can sometimes invoke my alter ego, which I believe is the source of my visions.

In 2010, I realized The Path had taken on a life of its own.  I rarely had a choice in where I went.  For instance, I had no desire to travel from Seattle to Hartford, CT in 2010 and kept wishing for another offer even as I was driving cross-country through Kansas.  Likewise, the trip back to D.C. was after four months of fruitless job searching in Seattle.

My only choice was in 2010 after I received three job offers in the same week.  That never happened again.  I had no choice about Denver in 2013 and not much choice from 2008 until that week in 2010.

 

Visions

It’s strange I wrote so little about Dominique in 2013. ¬†She was a major influence and I wonder why ¬†I didn’t. ¬†Am I more clear-headed now? ¬† More retrospective?

My visions began around the time I found Dominique on LiveJournal (2000). My first vision was how to crash Saleslogix (my employer at the time) and details are in my 2006 DEFCON presentation, available online if you care. ¬†I’ve had nine or ten visions and thought my mind was processing information in a different way until 2009.

In Sept of 2009, I had daily visions of the Lakewood, WA police shooting which occurred in November.   The visions were vivid and in the first person.  I saw myself enter a coffee shop (Starbucks, not the minor chain of the real event) and shoot four male policeman in the head.  Rarely it was five men but never a woman like the real event.   Sometimes I had a Glock, sometimes a revolver and the real shooter had both.   This vision lasted until shortly before the real event and repeated over one hundred times.  All my other visions were a one-time occurrence.

I searched for a rational explanation after the shooting. ¬†Perhaps we’d both read of a similar event but I couldn’t find one. ¬†To my knowledge, the Lakewood shootings are unique in US history. ¬†Perhaps we’d watched the same movie or been subjected to a subliminal internet broadcast but Clemmons (the shooter) was jailed in May and I don’t own a television.

I put it aside until last year when I looked up his history and was surprised. ¬†He, too, started having apocalyptic visions just before his arrest. ¬†Something happened to him, he’d had a stable life for five years after a lifetime of small-time crime and no history of visions or mental illness.

Last year I wrote a semantic analysis model which uses thirteen ratios of word type/count to determine the state and direction of personal relationships. ¬†It suddenly sprang into my mind during Thanksgiving as I drove to Kansas City. ¬† I scribbled it down when I reached my motel and later wrote a more formal document. ¬† For weeks I wasn’t sure but now I think that it, too, was a vision.

Most of my visions were work-oriented and more of a guide than a prophecy, laying out a path of action which I could take if I wanted to. ¬† I’ve only had one personal vision, of a waitress with deep personal problems. ¬†She changed in front of me, aging fifteen or twenty years, turning serene and happy with her problems resolved.

I had a strange series of events when I came to Denver. ¬†Normally, I’d brush them off as chance but… ¬† ¬†I’ve only had one physical sign, also in 2009 and immediately after the Lakewood visions. ¬†I left my girlfriend’s apartment at 2 am and drove along Alki Beach, where a white dove suddenly shot out from the brush and hit my driver-side mirror. ¬†A month later I was driving to Portland and something, probably part of a truck tire, flew across from the opposite highway, bounced in the median and slammed into my windshield at 100mph. ¬†The windshield instantly shattered and I was blinded by mud. ¬† I pulled over quickly and surveyed the car. ¬†The driver-side mirror was gone.

It could be chance.

Still, the timing seems odd, coming immediately after the Lakewood shooting.

So when I came to Denver…. ¬† ¬†I walked to a nearby Target and bought something which left seven cents in my hand. ¬†Usually I’d put it in my pocket but that day I toyed with it and dropped a penny. ¬†I reached down but it was gone. ¬†There was a quarter there instead.

How odd.  How long could a quarter lay in front of a busy Target?  I picked it up and went home.   The next month I was at Target again and thought how odd if I found another quarter.   I walked out and there it was.   Another quarter.

Now I’m freaked out. ¬† What are the odds? ¬† Two pennies, maybe. ¬†But quarters? ¬†How often do you find a quarter on heavily traveled ground? ¬†I checked the ground carefully that month, finding several pennies, a couple of nickels but never a quarter.

The next month I walked to Target again, almost expecting a quarter. ¬† And it wasn’t on the busy walkway this time but in the parking lot. ¬†I can’t stop thinking about it. ¬† ¬†Now I check the ground each day, week after week, but never find another quarter until I’m at the goth club. ¬† I’m reading my phone and a reflection catches my eye. ¬† I glance down and there’s a quarter by my foot.

It could all be coincidence but the odds are astronomical. ¬† What are the odds of three quarters in three trips to Target? ¬† It must be millions to one. ¬†Three in a row? ¬†I can’t remember the last time I found a quarter on the ground.

Roger Ebert was an atheist until shortly before he died, which isn’t unusual. ¬†But I can’t stop thinking about some of his last words. ¬† He had a vision of the afterlife and told his wife, “This [world] is an elaborate hoax”.

That phrase plays over and over in my mind,

 

 

Dominique

I suppose I should write about Dominique.  Dominique and The Path.  In fact, there are several related things I should write up.  The visions.  The quarters.

Dominique Mainon was hateful at times but mesmerizing, too. ¬† I found her on LiveJournal in 2000 and her explicit sexual posts drew me in. ¬†I ¬†found her a year later, under a different name but didn’t recognize her at first. ¬†She alternated between sexual dominance, heartbreaking despair and spiteful malice, and I became obsessed.

For several years I sent her money, gifts and in return she opened my mind. ¬†She broke me out of my cultural programming (which, being me, wasn’t that strong to start). ¬†I don’t regret anything regarding Dominique, except perhaps towards the end. ¬†I’m not sorry she was the catalyst for my divorce, she only made me realize the truth that my marriage was an unpleasant sham. ¬†I’m not sorry I harassed her with anonymous emails, on and off over the years. ¬†Most of that email was well-meaning and she goaded me into some of the sexual content.

I am sorry I didn’t realize the extent of her OCD. ¬† My website logs showed a spider visiting my site every hour but its signature was different than the other spiders. ¬†It had clockwork regularity… MOST of the time but would sometimes glitch by five or ten minutes. ¬† Eventually I realized that it was Dominique clicking on my site compulsively, her OCD at work. ¬† I felt sick inside when I realized what was happening. ¬†Her compulsion was driving my actions, my email, which triggered her OCD into more compulsions, an unstoppable feedback loop.

She had no choice in many things she did.

That’s when I stopped communicating with her.

I tried to make peace with her before she died.  She often reminded me of my dead sister, at least in terms of the cancer.  Dominique is the reason I divorced, the reason I set out on The Path in 2004, she is the root cause for most of what I did from 2004 until 2014.   I discovered the world because of her and I also discovered the Truth of many things; often depressing truths.

It seems strange that I wrote so little about her until now.

She is the reason I am here, writing this.

She was my muse and she liked seeing herself as a muse, even if she hated me.

Limbo

I don’t have anything else to do. ¬† I’ve tried extremely hard to get back into a real job but after seven years, I don’t think it will happen anymore. ¬†Mostly I’ve gotten garbage contracts and I’m often resented by team members and managers. ¬†they fear exposure, they fear layoffs, they carry resentment and their resentment breeds guilt, and that guilt breeds more resentment.

I go over it in my head, again and again. ¬† I have nothing else I want to do. ¬†Just a real job and some good sex. ¬†I killed many hours with pool and vodka since 2006 but I don’t care much about it. ¬† Well, the vodka I do. ¬†The pool, not so much. ¬†ūüôā

If I’d made more money, I might buy a boat and sail up and down the Americas for a couple of years.

The one bright spot since DC is that I finally managed to shake that endless flood of phone calls and email from bumblefuck Indian recruiters. ¬†And when I look back over the past eight years, I feel like Bill Murray in “Groundhog Day”. ¬† Each project is a mix of bumblefuck Indians, resentful child geeks and conniving managers. ¬† The mix changes each time, sometimes there are fewer bumblefuck Indians, or more obnoxious geeks; sometimes it’s a bumbling manager or conniving Indians but it just keeps repeating over, and over, and over.

And each gig gets flakier. ¬†Amdocs… holy cow, what clusterfuck of conniving Indians and resentful geeks, ¬†The VA project with the new director who knew nothing about anything and worsened a failing project. ¬†Cablelabs and John the Fraud. ¬† The Born Agains trying to convert me and save me, even as they let obnoxious Robert bring the project to a standstill because management was weak.

I’m tired of it. ¬†I can’t believe that I can never find a quiet place where I can just write my software and earn my money. ¬† It’s a hostile workplace now, I used to enjoy writing software and still do but I no longer expect a good environment or co-workers/managers with integrity.

I spin in limbo year after year. ¬†I can’t get sex because I can’t get stable. ¬†I can’t get stable because each gig is hostile, each gig is hostile so I ¬†can’t get engaged with it and I ask God “why” but He never answers.

And it goes on and on.

And I only continue because I still have a small, fading hope that somehow I can get things right again.

Nitrogen

Robin Williams impulsively chose an ad-hoc path because he didn’t plan. ¬†I’ve had several years to research suicide and chose nitrogen gas. ¬† In 2011, I was in Hartford, CT during that bad winter season with ninety inches of snow. ¬† I drove to the Cadillac Ranch one night and realized I could gulp a fifth of whiskey, park on a sidestreet, walk into the snow and freeze to death because no one would notice soon enough to save me. ¬†I’m glad I didn’t, not because I cared about living but because I later learned it’s a painful death.

In the Denver County court, I could have jumped off the open-air fourth floor for some mayhem and newspaper headlines but… ¬†four stories isn’t enough, I might be permanently crippled or brain-damaged. ¬† And I didn’t seriously entertain the idea.

I think.

Washington, DC was when I decided to commit suicide, started this blog and serious planning.  Craigslist often has nitrogen tanks and in March (or maybe April) I found a nitrogen-based fire extinguisher system from a defunct restaurant.  The guy had two tanks, each about 80 to 100 cubic feet of nitrogen, enough to fill my car interior.   I bought one tank for $50 but left it behind when I moved to Denver.

The only thing I had for most of my life was work. ¬†And I liked working in software. ¬†I put enormous effort into it and I’m still quite good. ¬†That’s what rankles the most, being cut out of jobs when I’m at the peak of my skill. ¬†It’s not about what I can do, or my work ethic. ¬†It’s about their resentments, their lack of perspective, their paranoia that they hide even from themselves. ¬†It’s about America turning into a herd country, filled with mediocre, petty people who defend their turf through dishonesty.

I never got much sex. ¬†I had sex three (3) times before I was thirty. ¬†And I never had good sex until Janet (2008-2010). ¬†I’m depressed that it took so long but OTOH, I never thought it would happen at all until Janet.

Most women thought I was creepy and I never got many dates. ¬†In my mid-thirties (after I started earning money) I became “attractive” to women. ¬†After my divorce, I met/dated about five hundred women from 2006 until 2010. ¬†I treated it like a job, I worked my ass off, tried different things, read articles but in the end, I came around full circle and realized that:

half of them aren’t sexual, so why do I want them?

at least half only want my money, so why I do want them?

answer: I don’t.

Calculating the intersection leaves 25%. ¬† At least half are unavailable because of my age, and half are buried in debt or kids or ex-husbands. ¬† ¬†The remaining 3 or 4% think highly of themselves and aren’t worth the effort.

My final epiphany was that my twenties and early thirties wasn’t so bad after all, because the thing was doomed anyway. ¬†I quit dating after I broke up with Janet in 2010.

I’m not scared of death, exactly. ¬†It often sounds peaceful and quiet, I’d be away from the petty people who slandered me, resented me. ¬† I never did anything to them except work my ass off. ¬† I thought that was what America was about but not anymore. ¬†Maybe it never was.

I did the best I could.

Reflections from Summer, 2014

I started this site in March 2013 as a suicide blog; my final words about things on my mind for the few people who might care. ¬†I was in Washington DC then and almost out of money. ¬† Sixteen months later ¬†and nothing has improved except my nasal problems, ¬† The jobs have sucked, mostly; the women non-existent and I’m having more employment trouble than ever.

I think I would have suicided this month but luckily(?) my retirement fund from Boise State University (the Mormons who fucked us over) vested this year and I cashed it out. ¬†So I have money until Christmas. ¬†I’m not sure I can last until then, though, which may be just as well.

It’s funny reading my comments from 2013. ¬†The “Happy” post seems prophetic now. ¬†I haven’t accomplished much as I was blocked by a fradulent director at Cablelabs, then by an obnoxious kid at Gloo, followed by a one-month gig with a flakey startup which hasn’t paid me yet.

I’ve had no sex in 4 years now instead 2 1/2 but at least I didn’t put out effort.

And I’ve applied for three thousand+ jobs instead of two thousand.

I put up a Ghost blog with new technology code I’ve written since DC, but as I predicted in “Skill”, it’s not my skill that’s the issue, although that is the excuse 3000 managers and HR people will use. ¬†Work isn’t about work anymore. ¬†It’s about conformity and obedience, about telling the right lies at the right time. ¬†It makes my head hurt just thinking about how sickly convoluted and dishonest it’s become.

“Nothing will ever be right again”.

I wrote that seventeen months ago.

It seems even more certain today