Derry, Northern Ireland

Derry, Northern Ireland
A book I'm working on is set in this town.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

One size will never fit all...

One of my triggers smacked me up side the head, day before yesterday. One of those idiot memes along the lines of "You have no one but yourself to blame for your lack of success." It came just minutes after hearing a white, middle-aged woman who was chairing one of Trump's campaign headquarters tell the Guardian News, on camera, that there was no racism prior to Barack Obama's election and blacks "had only themselves to blame for their lack of success." The exact same phrase -- one meant to pump people up, the other meant to put a group of people down.

I'm not going to get  into the non-stop racism that's been part of this country since its inception. Millions of words have been written about that in ways far better than I could ever think of doing. Nor will I tear that stupid woman apart for being so deliberately blind to the reality of the world to people not like her. It would make no difference to her or those like her because they will not listen. If someone does not want to hear what is being said, they just plain won't and it's a waste of breath to say it.

No...this is all about me and my reaction to that fucking phrase.
-->It's a nice thing to think if you're lucky enough to have had a somewhat normal life that merely wasn't great...or if it did have adversity it was not of the kind that destroys a part of you. And it seems to make sense because there are people who can rebuild a new life after soul-destroying events -- like Alex Minsky, for example, and other veterans like him.  Men torn apart in a war they didn't want but still went to fight. But that phrase completely ignores how far too many get caught in events that are completely out of their control.
Like the girls stolen by Boko Haram in Africa, and gay men being thrown off buildings to their deaths by Daesch, and cops shooting black men who did exactly what they were told to do by the cop, and suicide bombers slaughtering men and woman and children in shopping bazaars or mosques, and actions like the fouling of water by fracking concerns who own legislators and congressmen or stupid politicians who ignore science in order to save a couple of pennies on the backs of people who can't fight back. The preferences and decisions of those affected by these actions did not factor into what happened; instead things no one would have wanted were forced onto them.

Some of my choices were made by others. I did not want them and would definitely have chosen differently had I been given the opportunity, but those choices have colored everything in my life, no matter how much I tried to take control of them and diminish them or redirect them. And hearing this simplistic kind of nonsense being presented as something meaningful really angers me, because it minimizes my scars and presents them as just another bump in life instead of a prison.

With me, it's like I have a leash on me that holds me back. I can get to a certain point and then I'm stopped. Like slamming into a brick wall. It's completely psychological and beyond my ability to correct...and I really have tried to get the damned thing off. I've done therapy. Taken seminars. Classes. Fought against it, tooth and nail...hell, even tried drinking. Nothing works. I get to a point in a situation and I stop. I will not move forward.

This has hurt me in film, because reality is -- you can't stop. You have to force people to appreciate your work or they won't even pay attention to it. They've got too much else going on. But I can't do that. I push more than I normally do, trying to get my scripts out there and get people to believe they're worth the attention and money to make them...but I still hit the wall. And it doesn't matter how many classes I take or seminars I am part of or what manner of promotion I attempt...I get to a certain point...which is always a slightly different one...and I stop. Freeze. Believe it's not worthwhile to continue.

And then I see this obnoxious meme that says it's all up to you as to how much you can succeed...and while I know it's bullshit, it sends me spiraling into despair and apathy. Which it did, again. And which I have to fight my way out I am, again. And then I rant about it on my blog or in my journal or in the fucking shower or something, and like a broken record, skip back to one to start my obnoxious music all over, again.

There are seven billion stories in this world, no two of them alike...and yet people still act like one size idea or plan or suggestion will fit all...and that's not only preposterous, it's impossible.

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