Middle Man

October 29, 2008

                My dad told me that, as a child, he went through a couple years of pretending he was in a movie.  Like every conversation was being watched on the big screen, or like there was an invisible film crew surrounding him at all times. It almost drove him insane he said.

                I feel like that a lot of times, except I’m my own film crew watching myself from the outside.  Any magical moment I have is ruined by my awareness of my experience.  I’m a step removed from the actual moment, experiencing myself experiencing something.  Annie Dillard talks about this in her book Pilgrim at Tinker Creek, she says that self-awareness is the destroyer of moments.

                I would like, for once, to experience something unadulterated.  I would like to be completely in a moment.  I can normally get away with about 5 seconds of pure experience before I become completely aware of myself and ruin everything, it’s quite frustrating if you want to know the truth.  I bet a lot of you never even thought about this, but now that I’ve said it you will be forever ruined.  Like that game where you try to forget that you’re playing a game (I just lost).

                Maybe that’s why Dugs and Alcohol are so appealing, because they remove self-awareness and allow you to actually experience something.  I guess the truth is that I would be happier without myself around.  I’m my own middle man.

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6 Responses to “Middle Man”

  1. Joel Says:

    Brilliant post. I would say that there are benefits to the meta-experience, too, though. But, yeah, some of us are especially burdened by it and need to learn to shake it off every now and then.


  2. I’m forever ruined! Seriously though I’ve experienced this, like I’ve started to realize that about 10% of my life spent being extrmelely happy, 10% is spent extremely sad, and 80% sort of waiting for on of these extremes to hit… so now whenever I’m really happy (Friday Nights 🙂 “I think hmmm enjoy it while it lasts, because it won’t.” How depressing is that?!

  3. Gabriel Says:

    Good post dude. I have a similar problem. I usually attribute my large self-centered-ness with my large self-awareness. However, I’ve never found any good ways to kill my self-awareness.

    I linked to you post. Here’s a pingback.

  4. missynagel Says:

    I think I’ve spent most of my life thinking that I’m in a movie. I also day dream a lot. It’s like I prefer my dream world to my reality. I’m glad I have you to keep me grounded!

  5. scott Says:

    well stated Mike! I really was tormented. I think that after going through some very tough times in my life, and losing some loved ones suddenly, I have conquered this problem. I have learned to soak up those amazing moments and turn off the self-awareness and enjoy the moment. So there is hope. It just took me 38 years to learn!

  6. Josh Tilford Says:

    Awesome post Mike! I recently had an experience where I went outside of it and viewed it alternatively, but it was okay! Because the 3rd person view was also AWESOME..

    Buuut I’ve also had conversations where I just can’t be myself, because I (think I) can see myself so clearly and get uncomfortable. That happens all the time.


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