Thursday, July 28, 2011

The Courageous Transitions Building

How does an architect design a rehab house? What are the thought processes that go into that? Vomit and blood and piss proof? Providing a sense of privacy without giving any of the actual thing? What does the architect think about while drawing these doors and hallways meant to keep people together and visible, like expensive daycares, teaching us to stay in groups. Does he think about trying to make it pretty? How the sunlight will shine through windows in order to give spots of happiness to the concrete and tile. How best to make someone feel safe and secure while still imprisoned. Do architects collect design features? I think they must, like I collect thoughts or musicians collect chords. People who want to change the topography must be aware of the details.

Things that people are addicted to: sensations, endorphins, superiority, wind, cable tv, sugar, cigarettes, filth, shame, self loathing, compliments, noise, sex, power, weakness, makeup, alcohol, approval, animals, speed, sleep, money, love, heroin, stupor, escape, hero worship, politics, sarcasm, g.o.d (good orderly direction), newness, the golden light.

Reasons Why: the speeding up of the notes in the song as the guitar gets faster and faster like an approaching train, the sharp thrill of the tiny little hairs of your arm at a foreign touch, the cunningness of nature, the tininess of ears, the fear of obscurity, a loneliness that increases with every conversation that doesn't live up to expectations which you have with someone you'd like to sleep with, the niceness, the pleasantness, the relief, the relaxing into something familiar, the hormonal imbalances, the chemical cravings on a deep trained cellular level, the desire to distract, the fun of it, the Just Because, the Why Not.

Reasons Why Not: Because there is a deep well inside you, one that you keep boarded up in order to stop town children from falling into. The well is dark and goes very far down, and when you look into the graduating blackness of it, you hear a sound coming up from the bottom, a sigh, a long whisper. It tells you that you will always be alone, because no one is ever really going to understand the thoughts you have. Not all the way. Not even if they have similar ones. The thoughts you have are unique completely to yourself, your particular random compilation of genetics and experience. You are a snowflake, a special all together by yourself snowflake. Everyone has this dark place. Sometimes people like that place a lot. Sometimes people go and sit in that cool dark place when its really hot outside. But its a terrible place to be helpless.

There were so many spiders living here. There were spiders in every corner, every door jamb and windowsill. Long skinny red ones and fat crunchy brown ones. Tiny little worker ones scurrying alongside out of the sight of the giant aristocratic great white shark ones. Better to be small and unseen than hated and unloved for being the obvious monster, but ah such an admiration-less path. Can't be loved unless you risk being unloved. Dear little spiders, I didn't take any pictures of you. Instead I looked to the hungry and dangerous ones.

But I didn't really want to get to know any of the people who had been here. I wanted to avoid them, and thus avoid having to think about the unhappiness of probably people I've known and people I'll meet. Their pictures made me sad, their still packed bags and coats hanging in the closet, and the chairs outside where they would sit and smoke cigarettes, their motivational posters. I felt a repulsion to the human presence, as if it had soiled the beauty of the building of itself, the tiny little rooms like a honeybee cell and the thick glass walls. It should be an aquarium, or a pool, or a museum. Now it's been used up by dirt and despair and left to be subjected to black mold and insect invasions. It's insensitive of me. When the war comes, I'm on the side of the inanimate creations.

One of these closets leads to your happy place, where he pushed you against walls and whispered in your ear. The other one takes you to smoking cigarettes in the car during a rainstorm with a mix cd that your friend in California made you. The third one is just a closet, simple and plain and ready for curling up and shutting the door. The last one gets you out of here.

We've got obsessions. Go ahead, transition me. Try.

1 comment:

  1. Really cool post. Starting with "Things that people are addicted to" and ending with the paragraph "Reasons Why Not" could be a kick-ass prose poem.


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