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day 103 - Fresno, CA - Greg and Oscar leave for Texas - 1/8/05
Shyne writes a letter to his friend:
Ever since I was a young boy, I have always been drawn to absurdity. Absurdity and failure -- two things, which you may or may not notice, are linked. Absurdity exists within or around an event, or an idea, which fails to make sense. Does this make sense to you? As a child, I always felt compelled to fail. Thus, failures, failure, frailty and absurdity were all on my side...after all, these things stem from the same idea -- ineptitude. I loved others who failed, and I considered successful, or even ambitious people, with contempt. To me, they were vulgar individuals...worse than animals. I'll give you an example:
(a story recently told to me about my childhood which I do not remember)
As a young boy, my father took me to a monster truck rally. One of the trucks was to make a jump over a row of cars. But first, the truck was to make four laps around the track, to get the crowd excited. "Look at how stupid this is!" announced my father, to which I said nothing. On the fourth lap around the track, the truck flipped over and landed on its back. My father stood up, with a loud guffaw: "Look at that!" He looked over at me to share his excitement, only to find me with tears in my eyes.
So there you have it-- I loved the truck-driver because he was a failure, and I wept for him. An interesting fact: if he had made the jump, I would have loathed him. And this stems to everything. I remember considering straight-A students with the same contempt that I held for bullies, and even successful athletes. To me, they were all part of the same vicious ensemble, and they were all my enemies. I only had love for those other students who simply didn't make sense...those absurd few.
So that is why, my friend, I may not laugh at the things you laugh at, and I may not consider profound those things you consider profound. I still love you, and I would not want you to take this the wrong way, but you are plagued by pragmatic thought. And while this so-called 'pragmatic thought' is useful for such realms as politics, public policy, judicial matters, and maybe even math...my brain will not allow it to infest such realms as humor, music, or art. In fact, this is the only way I can accept things from these realms -- that is: if they are absurd, if they come from nowhere but somehow hit you through the middle, if it is as though someone were speaking to you in tounges.
Always know that you are still my brother, and I will love you forever. A question you might have: "Friend, if you embrace failure and absurdity so much...how is it that you have come upon so much success in your life? Surely it is not accidental...and, does this mean you loathe yourself?" These are important questions, friend, and I shall answer those in my next letter. I hope everything is going well for you on the outside.