Ch 15 ~ Irrational Rationality one of any Possible Paths to Building a Mystery
Making sense is not always a linear thing. It often defies logic.
“What else do you see,” Forge nearly whispered. Pat had long since buzzed away and had set herself back on track to masterfully whirl around the tables in her station taking orders left and right, assisting with hostess duties, checking customers in and checking customers out. Mainly, Pat leaned heavily toward the checking out part of the equation…at least checking out mentally, with her mind still thoroughly engrossed in the reality television programs that were beaming inside of her skull.
That left Emily and Forge to the booth by themselves. Forge — nearly hunched over the formica tabletop — managed to freeze the endless motion and noise of the restaurant around the two of them. The freezing was true for himself at least. Forge had tunnelled in, something that Emily was fairly adept at doing. But while she saw different dimensions when she tunnelled in, Forge saw the ideas behind people’s eyes when he tunnelled in because when he did tend to hunker down, as the saying goes, he usually tended to do it around somebody. The eyes of the somebody were the things that anchored him. So very much to see and learn there.
And so he dug his heels in, and he studied Emily’s eyes with unshakable intent.
How ironic…within precisely that moment, from somewhere not too terribly far away, a flight of geese honked with great objection as they traversed the skies. Emily heard their animated cries quite distinctly. She moved her mind in flight to them but she didn’t travel fast enough. They were already gone, leaving an echo chamber of objection behind in their wake…underneathe which on the ground, on a polite and manicured road, a muscle car silently split the asphalt down the middle.
She’s knee deep into it now, he thought as quietly as he could make himself think, lest he break her concentration. He always assumed Emily travelled forward when she traveled. For no particular reason other than it seemed logical to assume, he thought the progression would always be forward. What many — those who could suspend their disbelief long enough to entertain the possibility of her particular talents — didn’t realize was that for Emily the future sometimes unfolded by way of journeying the past. A forewarning of a forward progression.
“Don’t stop believing…hold on to this feeling”
The lyrics coursed through her head like a river winding to the mouth of the ocean. She journeyed down its path. It led in any number of directions, none of which she could trace back again without a great deal of effort. The path charted itself along multiple levels, multiple dimensions. Kind of like the inner workings of a rubix cube, she supposed. Best to just flow with it…center yourself, be in the core, and flow with it. Arrivals of some possible future existence (even by way of the past) always made their presence known. It wasn’t like she would miss it when it happened, even though she couldn’t explain what it was like when it happened. It was just suddenly there and she was just suddenly thrust within it. How long the Arrival of some possible future state woudl stay…that was always the question. And exactly what the staying meant…the even larger, more pertinent question. The one that she usually dwelled upon…once she knew enough about what she was experiencing to even ask the question.
Sometimes Emily was a slow learner. In those cases, that was when the lesson usually established the deepest roots within her. But that wasn’t to say that it was ever a particulary pleasant process, no matter how beautifully the lesson blossomed.
Seeds of understanding were taking hold for her bit by bit with this. What she knew enough now was how Forge had come across this brainchild of his (even she had to chuckle at the irony in the term “brainchild”). Whether or not he fully realized it, he definitely had set about the path to connect all the brains in the world. Already done, some would argue and while that was true, it had already been done by external devices. What Forge was exploring was a direct plug in, the implications of which were both awe-inspiring and fundamental all at once. If everyone on the planet carried this mechanism in their heads, behind their eyes or wherever it was, not much would ever or really could ever be the same again.
“…When a person walks, lifting and dropping each foot in turn, he or she produces a slight sideways force. If hundreds of people are walking in a confined space, and some happen to walk in step, they can generate enough lateral momentum to move a footbridge — just a little. Once the footway starts swaying, however subtly, more and more predestrians adjust their gait to get comfortable, stepping to and fro in synch. As a positive-feedback loop develops between the bridge’s swing and the pedestrian’s stride, the sideways forces can increase dramatically and the bridge can lurch violently. The investigating engineers termed this process ‘synchronous lateral excitation’ and came up with a mathematical formula to describe it. …where previously there were diverse views, now there is unanimity: everybody’s moving in lockstep. …all the elements that formed a virtuous circle to promote stability now will conspire to undermine it.” from “Rational Irrationality – the real reason that capitalism is so crash-prone,” New Yorker magazine October 5 2009
Luke could fly and touch the sky even while he was driving his wheelchair through Pages & Crumbs, and he could do so, so incredibly beautifully.
So incredibly beautifully did the next thought reveal itself to her. The slight woman reinserted herself into the process, inspite of her very best efforts not to do so. She had just had a thought, about playign with the form and rhythym of this 50,000 word count exercise. About playing with the form and rhythym of the thought process itself…somehow she convinced herself it was a perfectly sound thing for her to interject into this piece, seeing as this piece flirted quite heavily (albeit a bit clumsily) with the notion of interactive mental processes. And so her thought went something like this, phrased a bit vaguely if only in an attempt to create a sense of mystery. So very many relate mystery with poetry, clarity with the prosaic, interestingly enough. Words and feelings often overlap and as such, so the pattern of the Arrival could make itself known. At least for this telling, perhaps not beyond these sets of words, but at least for this chapter, if you will, she would see if she could anticipate this pattern and become one with it, instead of being subjected to its whims absent her own participation with it. (Was the process so binary really? Was one either in it or was one completely out of it? Was there no weaving together of the two?) Although even she admitted to herself that this could be quite difficult, indeed.
“This could be quite difficult, indeed,” Miles Thomas Brown murmurred in heavy thought…a texture of thought that was unusual for Miles. His thoughts had more depth and breadth than anyone she had ever met, but evenso, she coudln’t say that she could recall too many instances when his thoughts might also be heavy. Emily and Miles were flying across the skies at a startling rapid pace yet conversing freely. They were also driving at what felt like the speed of a million miles a minute trying to get to Forge, who had made a vital mistake and was about to be proven wrong so crushingly proven wrong in one of the most violent of ways. This was not about saving face. Miles and Emily raced to save Forge’s very life.
“This could be quite difficult, indeed,” the slight man said out loud. He spoke to himself increasingly these days, when before he had arrived on the planet Earth he had been defiantly silent. He sneered at the realizaiton that the planet itself was successfully corrupting his very nature…when it should be quite the other way around. And he would make it so. He had convinced Glenwood’s local entrepreneur to embed the technology behind the eyes of the slight man with the average build. Yes, behind his own eyes. Forge had enlisted a small group of volunteers to undergo the procedure. The slight man didn’t bother with questions of how Forge managed to obtain approvals to proceed even this far in his new venture — from idea to actual implementation involving surgical procedure to fuse technology with biology on a permanent internal basis. Some might be interested in the ethical, legal, and health considerations involved with such a thing. The slight man was not among those interested in this. The incremental how was of far less use to him than the overarching what. If he had wanted to discover the answers to those trivialities, though, he could. And quite easily. Because tapping into the collective consciousness was far more real than ever before…thanks to Forge who, in his rush to be right, didn’t comprehend this fact. Somehow the true power of his endeavor — the means to create a connected world brain that was embedded within every individual on a cellular level — had never registered with Forge. “This could be quite difficult, indeed,” the slight man repeated to himself. Tapping into every thought process, shifting through and organizing the unspoken, unrealized entirety, channelling global intent into directed action…directed by himself as one person, for lack of a better word considering that the slight man of average build had found his way to the small town of Glenwood by way of a Black Hole. If anyone had the resolve to harness the power of the collective consciousness, it was he…an alien personification of Big Brother.
“This could be quite difficult, indeed,” the slight woman — Michele, well, me — said. Well, I said. How to face the blank screen and weave a cogent piece (or even minimally cogent…even at the edges would be fine) within 30 days. Exploring, discovering, wrestling, fusing into, agonizing over, playing with the process. “The third week…something about the third week seemed to bring my fingers to their knees. Amazing how QWERTY can be such an ultimate fighter without even saying a word or lifting a finger. And whether it’s ugly or not or makes sense or not and pushes the reader and the writer both into the center of the creative struggle or not — as oftentimes impolite and ragged as that can sometimes be, such as it always seemed to be in the third week — it is a thing incredibly worth doing.
The slight woman (well, Michele…well, in fact me, myself, and I ) tucked a leg under her rounded bottom. Her ankle nestled under her firm yet cushiony hip. Although she was slight, she had a shape…a not unattractive shape, which is a double-negative way of saying an attractive shape. It was more her movements that were small and quiet, that suggested any kind of “slightness…” more this than anything at all having to do with her physical form. She was fairly unobtrusive, not really one to bully her way into the world, confident enough in fact to be in the world in a collaborative way without any attempts — feigned or concerted — to try to push the planet around. As if that even could be done. But the creative process was a different and amazing oftentimes confounding world and one just as different and amazing and oftentimes confounding as any other world. In fact, sometimes the world of the creative process felt like a massive black hole. Of late, in this third week as it approached and descended on her vocabulary, no words for this story were escaping. This was most acutely, most particularly true in the third week. What is it about the third week, she mused, wondering why the words came more slowly to her now. She couldn’t help but move the napkin front and center again, carefully placing it out of harms way from her coffee cup or carafe or her totebag or any of the other items that were randomly or permanently scattered across the table. She gazed wistfully at the circles she had placed on the napkin…at her pictograph…her evolving outline rendered in the form of a drawing. She was certain suddenly that the nearly crushing agony of the third week had something to do with the entire approach to story telling. The third week was just about in actuality her half-way point in this annual challenge. Somehow it served as a milestone. Somehow it served as a trigger to do something more with this process if she allowed herself to focus on that trigger, which she seems to have allowed herself to do. She half grimaced, half smiled. She remembered this creative fork in the road last year as well. The third week, when her vocabulary became increasingly elusive as if in wait of…something. …there was something nagging at her about the need to develop a character arc, a story arc…a beginning, a middle, an ending. But the story doesn’t end when the story is about a process. The story doesn’t end when the story is about eternity. Past, present, future. She began fidgeting now. There was something remarkably uncomfortable for her at this point in this creative endeavor. How had she not been as aware of the tension at the onset…the mounting tension between the artist or the instrument or whatever she thought herself to be and the muse. A fickle and flirtateous creature the muse. First here, then there, then leading her — the instrument through which her muse has a presence — to discover the story’s identity and voice all on her own. She fidgeted quite a bit more now. Nearly uncontrollably, uncomfortably so. If she could get up and pace without risking losing her seat in the restaurant, she most definitely would. Flitting her eyes back and forth onto anything at all…the napkin, the salt and pepper shakers, the silverware, the fact that the utensils were not lined up perfectly (of course she would notice the messiness in the table setting even if the utensils had nothing whatsoever to do with the process…or did they because her now near obsession with diverting her eyes away from the story arc — whatever that may be — seemed to inject yet another layer onto the creative process. Maybe the story arc would make itself known when she wasn’t looking. Or maybe she would find it hidden within the everyday spaces, the everyday minutiae she encountered along the way. Stories are alive, after all. Steeped in the ordinary as much as in the extraordinary. Crossing all dimensions. Past, present, future.
NaNoWriMos total word count this chapter: 2,470; total word count todate (not including this notation) this chapter: 24,470