What is Dead Men Tell No Tales? It is a selection of (hitherto) undisclosed, private ruminations and epiphanies. Most take the form of (slightly) edited letters to unnamed recipients, but some have been scavenged from the depths of private journals recently rediscovered. Over the next little while (however long it takes – days, weeks, months, years?) I’ll be posting them in episodic fashion for the reading pleasure of my nonexistent audience.
In Epic Catastrophe, our young author makes a series of unfortunate miscalculations and mistakes with one KL. Going Crazy sees our author in one of his darker moods. The entirety of this conversation took place over a period of roughly twenty-four hours.
[In response to an inquiry as to why I got rid of Facebook, how I’m feeling, and a desire for me to trust KL more:]
I got rid of Facebook because I am fucking sick and tired of people I barely know wanting to be my god damn friends. Sick and tired of people saying “OMG where have you been what have you done in the past year” when all of my contact info has been the exact fucking same since I left. Don’t fucking pretend like you cared when you didn’t: if you assholes had wanted to stay in touch, it was real easy to.
I’m two steps away from rolling over and dying.
I don’t know, where we?
Why do you want me to trust you anyway? Why does it matter? All that would get you is more pain. I have nothing good to share with anyone. Nobody likes me for me, they like me for the mask I’ve created to interface better with the world. JJ Durden is not humorous or caring. JJ Durden is not intelligent or loyal. JJ Durden is not honorable and integrable. JJ Durden is not honest.
JJ Durden is a scared little boy who doesn’t have any fucking idea why the world is such a terrible god damn place. He just wants his mommy to love him but she won’t; he just wants his daddy to be around but he isn’t; he just wants his brother to stop drinking but he won’t; he just wants his sister to fix her shit but she won’t; he just wants to make a friend but he can’t.
I am not Me, and Me isn’t around to give a fuck. Make sense?
Me is stuck in 1999; I just want to die.
I share Me with people and get fucking judged and told that My problems aren’t real. My feelings aren’t fucking real. Which just makes I more prone to be a fucking asshole who won’t talk about Me with anyone.
I hate. I hate I hate I hate I hate I hate.
Creep you out yet?
[In response to this rather honest account of my feelings, I get guilt tripped:]
“You cant make me stop caring by throwing fits and getting mad at me and blaming me for not keeping in contact. Believe it or not, last year actually really sucked for me, but since you’ve never asked, you wouldnt know. Maybe I couldn’t be a friend to you then, when my life was being fucked over, but at least I’m TRYING now.”
[Obvious that I can’t express my true feelings, I kick over into elementary analysis:]
I’m just confused. Why the sudden change?
There was a time when I wanted to talk to you, a lot and often. Yet you showed little interest, were hard to get a hold of (despite the fact we lived in the same town, had the same classes) and generally stymied such efforts. It is not the first time that such things have happened to me; it will not be the last time.
Now, after being a year removed from Bellingham (and for the most part, correspondence with you) and on the eve of my departure for the Marines, you want to chat? Judging from your various messages, I sense two things – one, you feel guilty for something (don’t know what) and two, you have misinterpreted things I have said.
When I said I was angry, both of these problems manifest – you take that to mean that I am angry at YOU, which is both a misinterpretation of what was said (I left my the target and source of my anger purposefully vague – I am not careless with words) and some evidence of your carrying guilt (why else would you immediately jump to the conclusion that I must be angry with you, and go to great lengths to mentally prepare yourself for the burden of my anger?).
And other mysteries – you would say you love me, if I didn’t take it the wrong way? What way should I take it, then?
You claim that you had difficulty staying in touch because “life was fucking you over,” yet this never came up in any of my attempted conversations with you. At best, I was told you were “busy.” Am I supposed to magically know – from text based communication, no less – that you were in pain, and looking for comfort? It was not a “fit” that I threw, and it was not designed to push you away. I did not get mad at you and when did I blame you for anything? This is what I meant when I said that “I share Me with people and get fucking judged and told that My problems aren’t real. My feelings aren’t fucking real. Which just makes I more prone to be a fucking asshole who won’t talk about Me with anyone.”
Me = the true self, I = the layer on top that is not necessarily the true self… a distorted window, hardened to protect Me.
And again, the misinterpretations… I do not so much try to push people away as I try to make them understand. When they can not understand, I can’t sustain the focus and energy necessary for meaningful communication – for such things require that I reflect upon myself, which is a task that I do not like to perform. When that happens, I recede into my apathetic shell, and my taciturn nature takes over. Such simple things you tripped over – taking the universal “you” I used in my rant as a personal one…more evidence of some kind of guilt? But from where?
I do not trust the motives of others, because I have often been betrayed in the past – what some deem small or trivial matters much to me, and for that reason alone I avoid entanglements. Perhaps I have unrealistic expectations for how relationships should be forged, but I am happier living the way I have. A loneliness bred of having no one near you is far easier to cope with than the shadow of isolation one drowns in when surrounded by friends they can’t trust. One is simple, pure, and honest – it makes sense; the other is complicated, painful, draining and confusing.
So, to get back on topic: why the sudden reversal in attitude? Whereas before you did not seem too concerned to stay in touch (my email address was the same until about a week ago, my phone number has remained unchanged, and I know I gave you these things before leaving…then you try to guilt me by implying that I had not been thoughtful enough to notice your problems, that I am trying to push you away, that I am throwing fits and getting mad at you…), you suddenly stay up late and worry about me until I contact you?
What’s going on? Something must have happened or you must have come to some conclusions that have changed the way you view me and your relationship with me. So… do you want to talk about it? Call me or write me – I’d kinda prefer a call, if only to wake me up. I have a terrible habit of sleeping in until the evening on my days off.
[No such call came.]