It's good to blog again. Even just conjuring the ghost of the OG's once-estimable audience frees me up from the perils of whatever ruminative "insights" can get forged out of isolation.
If you go to enough therapy for the right reasons, you become suspicious of insight and the false hopes attached. Insight is for bedwetters and wayward spouses and people trying to quit smoking - folks for whom therapy is a mere pit stop. Maybe I won't have to keep meeting Frannie in the motel room every other Wednesday if I just really sit with my grief over my father's apathy!
Therapists pay the bills and patients get better all the time from these medium-term exercises in knowing and grieving and accepting, etc. But the process has nothing to do with my life and times. While I am far too self-conscious not to bring my reflexivity with me everywhere I go - and far too pretentious not to confuse over-reading my environs with a necessary and beneficial form of personal alertness - I have nonetheless all but abandoned the formulaic contours of memory and narrative for what is I daresay a more materialist and data-driven set of behavioral tactics and strategies. It is not enough for me to dwell upon an imperfect past, to grieve and/or "move on." Perhaps it's not particularly helpful to take up that work at all.
But then, I want to write again! And what does it mean to write in a post-insight mode? Well, I suppose I could just take up the old polemics (i.e., Trotskyism is dumb/awesome, Laclau is awesome, man-sandals are dumb, Facebook is dumb). God knows snark needn't be insightful. And surely there will be time for telling you more about why I don't like things that I don't like. But I hope there will be more than that.
Writing for this blog brings me closer to Oregon. Some years ago I made two bold decisions, getting married and leaving Oregon abruptly for a state where I had no prospects and very few friends. One of those decisions turned out better than the other, and it pains me to recall the anguished looks from so many friends who politely watched me leave town without the degree I had chased semi-fervently until that point. (Similarly it pains me to have to ponder leaving Michigan, where I have worked hard to make a rock band and good new friends. But I wish I still lived in Oregon, notwithstanding all the ghosts therein. I can still taste the beer and smell the hippies and I miss being the guitar player in the fucking Squids.)
One makes decisions and comes to regret some of them, but if I have survived this long for any reason it is to rise above the false friend of retrospective insight that chases after fully- and semi-momentous events. That I might have made a mistake and could have known better is not as real as the laps I will be swimming later today, nor as real as an effort, like this OG revival, to unleash my personal history upon the present tense and make of memories something more than nostalgic quicksand.