Archive for the Overthinking stuff Category

Why am I still alive.

Posted in complaining, Overthinking stuff on September 6, 2012 by cuttydarke

That’s the question I find myself asking.  How is it that I am still moving around when all my reasons for living are being taken from me?  There’s no help and no way to make anything better and everything is my fault.

Every morning I wake up and my first thought is something like “This again.”  For a moment I lie there, in pain but not wanting to get up yet, and I know that today, like every other day, everything I do will be wrong.

You, my imaginary reader, probably think I’m exaggerating.  Surely not everything you do is wrong.  Just random chance would suggest that you must do some things right.  I’m not exaggerating.  I don’t do everything wrong  but some things a re more wrong than others.

For example.  I almost never follow advice from my Mother because my instinct is that it wont help but every so often I think “well I’m wrong about everything else maybe I’m wrong about this and she’s right”  and then I follow some of her advice.  It never goes well.  Following her advice is always measurably worse than following my own instincts but my own instincts are still wrong.

I keep thinking that eventually things will get so bad that I’ll snap and slit my throat or step out into traffic and then I wont be asking this question any more but things keep getting worse and I’m still here.  And I think I’ve missed my chance.  My life has got so bad that i can’t even improve things by dying.  My death would just make things worse.

Now I sit and daydream and try to work out when I should have killed myself for the best outcome.  Currently I’m thinking about 4 years ago.


Why am I still here?  My continued existence is utterly pointless.


Something here sucks.

Posted in complaining, Overthinking stuff, writing with tags , , , on August 15, 2012 by cuttydarke

So I’ve written 17,649 words of fiction and published them as a serial novel online. It’s about half way through.  Some people like it and I think it’s pretty good but not enough people are reading it.

Which is leaving me with kind of a problem. I’ve written stuff online before but I never used to care much about who read it. In fact I often take measures to reduce the numbers of people reading it because most of what I’ve written up to now has been either for my pleasure or just to get the stuff out of my head.

So I’ve finally got round to writing in the hope that other people will read it and I don’t know what to do about that. I post something new every weekday. I try to keep the length in that sweet spot that’s long enough to satisfy without being too long to read on a screen but to be honest I have no idea what that is. I try to finish with a cliffhanger but I don’t really know how well they’re working.

So part of the problem is that I’m getting no feedback. Which is largely because no-one is reading the fucking thing. And I don’t know why that is. The few people who read it regularly, I know of 4, seem to like it quite a lot. Some of them donated money to keep me writing it when my laptop got damaged. Therefore some people like it quite a lot which is great. But if only 4 people in the entire world like my writing then I have no future as a writer.

My big question is this: Is the problem that my writing sucks or is the problem that I suck?

Is the reason that more people don’t read it that most of the people who read it once don’t come back? Or is it that most people never follow the link to the blog because no matter how many times I wave it in front of their faces they don’t care and they have no faith in any link I post?

Either way it’s not a comforting thought. Either my writing sucks or I do.

I don’t know what to do. Stopping would be really easy but at the moment it’s the only thing that gives my days any shape. I could just give up on posting the links and then I can pretend that no-one reads it because I’m not publicising it but then what’s the point at all.

Am I still a writer if no-one ever reads it?

Can you hear the silence?

Posted in complaining, Overthinking stuff, writing with tags , , , , , , , on February 7, 2010 by cuttydarke

On Thursday I had a breakdown.  Which sounds very melodramatic.  I am not myself now but I have to be back by Sunday night, or Monday morning.  Or Tuseday at the very latest.  I have to be well enough to pretend to cope.

And now it’s very quiet in my head most of the time.  Except for the screaming.

It’s not usually quiet in my head.  I don’t mean that I hear voices in the schizophrenic sense or that I have a head full of personalities struggling for control of my body.  I mean that there are always narratives and observations going on in there.   I’m always thinking about stuff.  And I can always hear that thinking and the other thinking about the thinking.

I suppose that means I really am a writer.  Weather I like it or not.

But at the moment things are different.  It’s very quiet in here.  There must be thinking going on but I don’t hear it.  If there’s a narrative then it’s hiding from me.  The only thing I do hear, and I don’t hear it all the time, is the screaming.  And the comentary on the screaming.  Because some things don’t change.

The screaming breaks out occasionally.  Most of the screaming isn’t words it’s just noise. It’s just an incoherent cry of rage and pain.  And a quiet voice talking over it telling me that a part of me is screaming.  The occasional words break through the scream but it’s mostly swearing and seems to be directed nowhere in particular.  I am angry at everyone and everything and especially myself.

Being angry with myself is nothing new.  I usually am and I have been for as long as I can remember.  Even as a small child with some adult screaming at me for some bullshit, as angry as I was with them, I was angrier at myself for my weakness.  I wanted to stand up for myself.  I wanted to be big.  I wanted to be big enough to talk back and make them stop.  But even then there was another voice.  The one that was angry with me for having got myself into whatever situation had led to the shouting.

Well I succeeded in making myself big.  But it didn’t really help.  Talking back only ever seemed to make things worse.  And I couldn’t stop making mistakes, doing things wrong, being the wrong person.

Because I was always the wrong person.  I was never who people thought I was.  I was never the person I was supposed to be and I was always coming up short and I didn’t understand why.  To me it seemed like I was only being myself.  Why did people keep expecting me to be someone else?

I still don’t really know the answer to that question.

I know that I was always a disappointment to my father.  Worse than that I was proof of his failure.  It was painful for him to look at me and it hurt me to see him feel that pain.  I’m not entirely sure what he wanted but it certainly wasn’t me.  I suppose he wanted me to have his work ethic.  He wanted me to be the way he thought women should be.  Maybe he wanted me to be more like my Mum.  Or his Mum.  Or just less me.

He wanted me to be thin.  He wanted me to be sane.  He wanted me to have a job, or a husband with a job.  He wanted me to be normal.

I don’t know what normal is.  I don’t know anyone normal.

My Dad’s dead now.  So I’ve lost my chance to make him proud.  I wish I could have told him that he wasn’t a failure.  He couldn’t make me the person he thought I should be in his lifetime but the fight goes on.  One of the voices in my head, which is currently strangely silent but I’m sure it will be back, was his.  So even now he’s dead there’s still a part of him pointing out to me how I’ve fallen short, or been selfish, or asked for too much, or been lazy.  And you can’t punch a dead man.  So I’ve lost my chance to do that too.  Sometimes I feel like digging him up to have a crack so it’s probably a good thing I can’t actually get to his grave.

Did I say that out loud?

I think my Mother’s voice was in there too but it always sounded more like me.  I only knew it was her because it was the one telling me that I’m my own worst enemy.  She always used to tell me that.  I’m sure she still thinks that thought it’s been years since she said it to my face.

It’s true enough though.  Almost all my problems are self inflicted.  Most of the ones that aren’t are exacerbated by my inability to withstand them properly.  She is sure that I am not my Mother’s daughter.  I am not enough like her.

Do I want to be like her?  I wish I felt certainty like she seems to.  I almost never feel certainty.  Doubt is far more my thing.  I do a good impression of certainty but then I do a lot of impressions.

What passes for my personality is really just a bundle of impressions.  It’s all just me pretending.  I pretend to be sure about things.  I pretend to cope.  I pretend to be organised.  I pretend to be competent.  I pretend to be interested and interesting.  About the only thing I don’t pretend about is writing.  I really do write.  All the time.  I have done for years.  Most of the time I don’t know what I think about something till I start to write it down.

So not only am I still not the right person, even according to my own standards, I’m not really a person at all.  I’m a bundle of voices suspended between a mobile phone, a netbook and a moleskin notepad.  I write therefore I am.  I’m just not sure what that is.  What was the question again?

Beware the Pigeons

Posted in Overthinking stuff with tags , , , on January 25, 2010 by cuttydarke

People think that intelligence must be some big thing imposed from on high and unique (on this planet at least) to humans.

It’s clearly not.  It’s practically a certainty.  Chaos theory suggests that intelligence, or at least intelligent behaviour, is everywhere and in everything.  Complexity arises spontainiously out of apparently simple rules and we would do well to keep an eye out for urban pigeons suddeenly developing a hive mind and taking over our cities.

Unless that’s already happened.

In our own case we like to think that intelligence is a huge big deal and that it’s what separates us from the rest of the animal kingdom but actually it’s just one of the adaptations that put us at the top of the tree.  And it wasn’t even first

Walking upright freed up our front paws to develop oposoble thumbs.  Sweating kept us cool on the plains and the two combined meant that we could loose most of our hair and still keep cool.

The sweating and the nakedness gave us great stamina and made it possible for a weak animal to hunt much stronger ones because we could just chase them till they dropped.  All that protein and that excellent cooling system meant our brains could grow large.

Walking upright was the biggie.  And it was walking upright that gave us our elevated point of view.  It was walking upright that let us think that we were somehow better than all the other kids in the playground.

And that’s why the pigeons are taking over.

I’m working, I’m working. Look at me type.

Posted in Kids, Overthinking stuff with tags , , , , , , on January 12, 2010 by cuttydarke

So here I am again in lew of proper work.  At least I’m still fulfilling my resolution.

Today I’m going to talk about death and ask why I am so crushingly, brain gnawingly terrified of it.  There’s not much that scares me these days.  I don’t care about embarrasment and I’ve largely made my peace with failure.  Pain is just a fact of life and physical injury comes and goes.

I have fears for my children, as does any parent but they’re fears that I need and I understand and I can deal with.  They are normal fears.

Death on the other hand scares me so much I can’t even think about how much it scares me.

I try to have faith in an afterlife but that doesn’t really help.  Partly because I am one of nature’s sceptics and partly because while it’s easy to believe that my Father went on somewhere and is still around somehow I find it hard to believe that I’ll be that lucky.

I try to do that mental magic trick of thinking of my death as being an event that doesn’t concern me since, by definition it is not an event in my life.  When it gets here I wont be here any more.  It doesn’t help.

So I’m stuck with a terrible phobia of an event which will certainly happen to me sooner or later and which is a natural part of life.  I have a duty to my children to face my fate bravely.  That’s my job as a Mother.  I just wish I knew how.