Secret Pop

May 17, 2005

Looking Back. Bad for the Neck.

And I've got to be careful about such things. Friday, I visited my orthopedic surgeon's office again and discovered by way of my MRI results that I have two discs herniated in my neck. Which explains the continuing pain I feel and the weird numbness in parts of my arm. I guess I'm a bit glad that it turns out I'm not just having phantom twinges. I'm often suspicious that I'm inadvertently faking my ailments. I don't like to be sick or to admit that I am. It's easier and less expensive to pretend it's all in my head.

I'm not one of those people who peaked early. The high school chapters were not my glory days. I was a great student, but I did not cry at my graduation. I was glad to be moving on. I was giddy and hopeful, dying to get off on my own and into college and my diamond-studded future. A future which, for the record, never came. At least not in any jewel-encrusted form. I'm not happy about that part so much. But I am glad to say that I don't feel as if it will never be as good as it was way back when. I have never ever felt that way. I have never thought that I had just crested the highest peak in the range and that everything else would be forever pale in comparison. Never ever. I don't know if it's pragmatism. Or if it's because I'm generally so sure that things aren't that great that I'm compelled to look forward to whatever might be coming next. I just know that some people were really happy in high school. And I was not one of them.

I was watching that Z Channel documentary the other night, and, first of all, watch it. It's awesome. I never saw Z Channel, but that film sure makes me wish I could have. Even if it had ever been available where I was living, my parents never paid for premium channels. They didn't even shell out for basic cable until after I'd left for college. But Z Channel. What a little bit of right up my alley that would have been. If you look at the DVDs and laserdiscs on my buckling bookshelves, it might appear that I take a lot of my own personal programming cues from Z Channel. I'm a little light in the European smut department, but the rest of the arty genres are well-represented. As are the films of John Cusack for some reason.

I can't figure me out sometimes. I live in the past in some respects. But always someone else's past. Always some sort of throwback. Some categorizable genre. A version of something that hits all the marks. The perfect 1962. The quintessential 1938. I like to daydream those times. I like to watch movies that take me there. I like to go to vintage stores. In my own life, I think about a lot of what has happened to me more often than anyone professes I should. But I also spend a lot of my synapse-firing on looking forward. Anticipation is the only thing that keeps me from sitting still on my couch for so long that my flesh grows over it. Wanting to be ready for what comes next. Gearing up. Planning. Pushing. Yearning for everything that is else. And oh how I have always loved stories about the future. Even boring ones about robots and morality and the slippery slope of man's hubris.

I guess I'm just unpleasable. And I don't think anyone will be surprised by that.

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