Too Many Feelings
tourists, trees, and escaping from reality
I saw a couple of tourists for the first time in more than two years.
The girl: Unwashed hair going in every direction, oversized tie-dye tunic and baggy jean shorts.
The boy: man-bun, covered in tattoos.
Neither wearing a mask.
I forgot how much space Westerners take up. I don’t mean physical space, but there was some of that, too. They walked far apart with their arms and bags swinging. Sort of the walking equivalent of man-spreading.
I mean energetic space. Psychic space. People discipline that stuff here. They keep their energy close and private. Only children let it fly all over the place. Well, children and tourists.
I also forgot the sensation of being in a place that you think is for living and working, and then seeing people treating it like an amusement park. It doesn’t annoy me. Everyone is a tourist at some point, but what is that feeling?
A couple of weeks ago, I said to Adam that I’ll be glad to see the tourists come back. I’m tired of sticking out so much. Now, I’m wondering, will I?
Yesterday, I read an article about how Mrs. Bennet is the most subversive character in Pride and Prejudice, and they made a pretty good argument.
Over the weekend, we went to Shinjuku Gyoen and lay in the grass under an ancient tree so massive that it’s outermost leaves brushed the ground. The branches were weighed down by themselves.
Staring up at the innards of the tree was like looking at the ceiling of a cathedral, and I wondered whether people of the past appreciated nature as much as I did just then. They had it all the time. We only get it when we seek it out.
When we came out from under the tree, it felt like emerging from a cave.
The other day, I dreamt I went to a therapist and told her how frustrated I am because I want to move forward with my writing and get more readers, but I can’t. She told me that I should learn how to leave my body, and then people would pay attention to me. I was skeptical, but she seemed pretty confident that I could do it.
I’ve buried my frustration because I’ve decided that it’s not an acceptable emotion. There are too many reasons my frustration doesn’t make sense, plus it annoys people.
It also makes me miserable. Stuffing it down makes me miserable, too, so what are my options here? I guess that’s why the dream therapist told me to leave my body.
I went to the hairdresser, yesterday, which was a nice escape from reality. I used to escape every week when I went to ballet class. I keep losing long periods of dance time to pandemics and foot injuries.
I miss the old days when going on the internet was an escape. Now, I use real life to escape the internet.
Dance class also might’ve helped because it gave me a sense of agency over my life. There’s so little I can control, but there’s power in deciding to do something and then doing it, no matter how insignificant it is.
Last week, I learned about Method Writing by Jack Grapes. Yes, I did just have the gall to link you to a three and a half hour video.
It made me rethink my whole approach to writing. I did a tarot spread on my writing last night, and it told me that internal transformation would lead to reward. So, I guess I’m going in the right direction?
Method Writing has inspired me in a way that I haven’t been inspired in a long time. It’s all about how deep emotional truth connects people to art. I know that sounds really obvious, especially if you’re an artist or a writer, but I’ve been doing this for awhile. I’ve read a lot of books on craft, and I’ve been to a lot of writers’ group meetings. My head is so full of different approaches and techniques that every piece I write feels like a chess match against my readers. I always play plaid, which is far below black. I get one move out of every three.
Anyway, I let someone who I believe has pretty refined literary tastes read my most recent story. She favorably compared it to a story in The New Yorker, which generated a million dollar book deal for the author. She said mine was better because I’m “funny in a unique way.”
If only magazine editors saw it the same way.
We went hiking a couple of weeks ago, and the hike turned out to be longer than we expected. We were still on top of Mt. Takao at sunset.