Just Stop

Uplifting news is rarely reported “above the fold.” The role of the media is not to bring a smile to the faces of the public but, instead, to warn the public of circumstances that could endanger the public order and/or lead to tyranny or other such calamities. But we (including I) still complain about the lack of “good” news. We do not want to be reminded about the fundamental flaws in human nature; instead, we want to be lulled into happy complacency. I know that’s what I want: blissful ignorance. Tell me convincing lies about the certainty of universal comfort and the guaranteed absence of pain and hardship; I will sleep like a baby and awake refreshed and ready to celebrate the majestic beauty of humankind. That’s all I want: believable and purely positive illusion. What if that state of mind were to require regular consumption of psychedelic drugs? So be it. Whatever it takes. Just make me believe all’s right with the world. I am not serious, of course. At least not entirely serious. But having confidence in a positive future for humanity would be a nice respite from the pessimism that deserved extinction is just around the corner.


Once again, I woke with a headache. Presumably the same headache that accompanied me as I fell asleep last night. Two hours after I went to bed, the ache had not been vanquished by the acetaminophen that I took in the hope of calming the constant pain. The headache is not awful—not excruciating—but it is sufficiently painful to cast a pall on the morning. And its sidekick, a troubling crick in my neck, stayed with me overnight, as well. Damn it! I assumed all my tension and anxiety and minor aches and pains would slide off me like beads of water on freshly-waxed car after I had completed the PET-scan. Nope. They remained, even after a wonderful restaurant meal, a treat given to me by mi novia to celebrate the completion of the scan. Perhaps my tension, etc. remains, awaiting the visit with my oncologist early this afternoon, when I expect her to review the results of yesterday’s scan with me. Then, the tension will vaporize; or it may solidify. We shall see.


Once again, I find myself at a loss for creative thought or interesting ideas. I feel like my brain is clogged with cotton; my IQ has slipped well below 60. I want to sleep, again, for a long, long, long time. No dreams; just empty, blank, purely restful sleep. I had a dream last night. It involved learning that a hotel sales executive in New York City wanted to host a meeting for new members of an association I managed. The new members were joining in droves; they joined via illegible faxes, all sent by their leader, a Unitarian Universalist who did not want his people to join the association but who had no choice but to support their desire to join. I handed the situation over to the membership manager, who I did not trust to handle it appropriately. The dream was stressful; I slammed a former employee’s fingers in a car door and she knew it was intentional. I did not know it. But it was.


I sometimes wonder about those few anonymous people who surveil me as I behave like an exhibitionist, exposing private thoughts without regard to sensitivity or confidentiality. I mean, of course, my blog posts. I define exhibitionist, by the way, according to Merriam-Webster’s second definition, not the primary one that refers to one who obtains sexual gratification through indecent exposure of one’s genitals (as to a stranger). My definition is based entirely on calling nonsexual attention to oneself. Just to clarify. But, now, about those people… Is it that they find my convoluted thoughts interesting? Or do they find entertainment value in witnessing expressions of deviance/insanity? Or is it something else entirely? Curiosity? Fascination? Boredom?


Stop, John. Just stop.


About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Just Stop

  1. Barbara, Happy New Year to you, as well! I am glad to hear from you and I appreciate your generous comments about me; you are very kind. I would love to know more about your life during the years since we worked together. If ever you have the time and are inclined to do it, I would love to talk to you by phone to reminisce and for each of us to learn about our respective lives. I am fortunate to have someone with whom I can enjoy life; when Janine died, I fully expected to be alone from that point forward. If you are of a mind to talk, let me know a time that works (and a phone number) and I will call you. Or, if you prefer, I can give you my number and you can call me.

  2. Barbara says:

    Hi, John: I read your blog a few times a year, but wish I had time to read more. As you say, some of your discourse is very personal and revealing. However, you blend it with challenging and thought provoking insights that are universal. I read your blog to check in with an old coworker and friend who I admired and has remained in my thoughts for over 40 years. You were an interesting individual back then and remain so to this day, based upon your writings. I have to admit that I seem to choose either the right (or the wrong) time to read your blog as I seem to clue in when you are facing your biggest challenges. I am happy to know that you have your ‘mi novia’ and you are enjoying life together. Happy New Year to you both.

I wish you would tell me what you think about this post...

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.