Leapdragon 2016 - Aron Hsiao Was Here

Another day…  §

…another missed opportunity.

These days, they all somehow feel like missed opportunities. Every day begins as an empty book, open to the first page. Sounds great.

But every day also ends as an empty book, now shut.

— § —

Sure, I know all the stuff.

Zen Habits.
Habits of Highly Effective People.
18 Minutes.

And so on.

The problem with all of these isn’t the general concept; the concept is fine in the abstract. The problem is that in real, concrete terms, what they simply describe as “making sacrifices, and yes, it will be hard,” often amounts to things that will leave a person in jail, or in an early grave:

– Not being able to pay your bills
– Not being able to afford medical care
– Not keeping your family as a result of not doing right by them

And so on.

In short, they’re lifestyle and priorities training for rich folk.

Most of us don’t have the luxury of just “making sacrifices.” No doubt the gurus would call this a “choice.” I suppose they’d be right. But it’s a different sort of choice than the ones they’re making.

— § —

I used to know things that I’ve forgotten.

I keep having this sense.

It overwhelms me, in fact, much of the time.

I can’t articulate what these things are, or even what their nature is. I don’t know where the sense comes from, or how to talk about it with clarity.

Just that I’ve forgotten important things; very important things. Not facts, or a particular kind of “knowledge,” per se. More ways of being—being alive, being emplaced, being a body, being in the world, being busy, being a self.

In some ways, it feels like the conceptual version of phantom limb syndrome.

— § —

We race.

We race from one thing to the next.

That’s what we do; that’s the nature of our society.

We race toward death.

— § —

My forgetting wasn’t an accident. It was necessary. Required, even. There was no avoiding it; there was no other choice.

It was, however, a catastrophic loss made plausible only because the alternative was so much the more catastrophic.

And now, having forgotten, I’m like the dying traveller standing outside the city wall; all the world’s pleasures are just inside, but I stand in the desert, slowly sinking toward the hot sand and toward my death because I do not remember the password given to me at the start of my journey.

Those on the inside would love to help, but their advice and hints are pointless. Forgotten is forgotten.

The password is lying somewhere in the middle of the desert, half-buried and camouflaged in sand, between a vaguely recalled place of origin left behind countless footsteps ago and the wall through which none may pass without it.

— § —

I can’t articulate a purpose for most of what I do, other than that I do it to get paid.

That’s no way to be.

— § —

I am surrounded by camera bodies and writing tools and gadgets. I can’t seem to stop myself from acquiring them, configuring them, and putting them through their paces in the few minutes that I have before the end of the workday and the beginning of sleep.

Clearly, if I were able to make “sacrifices,” I know which things I would sacrifice *for*.

— § —

I suppose I’ll just have to be buried alongside them.

There is a poetry in that—the most valued tools, empty, but nonetheless there. Always kept in hopes of the discovery of an open moment—which never came.

The messiah arrived first; the words and pictures will simply have to wait.

— § —

I am repeating myself. This has become a space in which I say the same thing over and over again.

This is largely because I live the same days, same weeks, and same months over and over again.

Same days.
Same posts.
Same problems.

Groundhog Blog.