The lady next to me on the plane was quite adamant that journaling was useful and constructive and she would have been lost with hers. Being idealogically opposed to the idea of journals I argued with her, but it was completely hypocritical of me. It's self-indulgent rubbish and I am full of self-indulgent rubbish, which is why I was so compelled to start this.
And I can't sleep. But I've really got to stop using that as a blanket excuse for some of my more appalling ideas.
The same lady had also been 'an educator for my entire adult life'. I don't think I'm fond of the word 'educator' when it's spoken. There's something goddlike in the tone.
She is currently 'teaching adults to write their memoirs'. There's something in that idea that bothers me, but I can't really put my finger on it. Maybe it's the use of the word 'teaching'. I dunno.
Anyway, it's an interesting idea. Generally we're taught, and I agree, that truth isn't very interesting on it's own, it's merely the jumping off point for the good stuff. When I asked her what that entailed she talked about journaling, automatic writing, meditation (this is California, remember). I was skeptical at first but then she said, 'they're always so surprised at what they remember, what the things are that have stuck with them'. Which tied in perfectly with some of the stuff that I'd been thinking about Marquez's auto-biography (I won't go into the details of those connections, lest I completely alienate myself with utterly over-the-top self-indulgent rubbish). So now I'm feeling bad for making fun of the girl (Norwegian? German?) sitting on the steps writing so diligently in her little book.
There's also the conversation I had with Jacqueline last week. She said she threw a lot of hers away. She said 'they aren't relevant anymore'.
As much as I hate some of mine, the idea of throwing them away is appalling. How could they not be relevant? There's more than just me in those stupid journals – how many homeless people did I sit there and watch, how many conversations copied.
Yes, my problems were ridiculous and my thoughts were ridiculous but their cring-worthiness is precicely why they should be re-read. Call it a reality check.
I guess at the end of the day I don't scoff at journaling quite as much as I wish I did. Hence this stupid blog. I don't suppose the self-contradiction and self-irritation are going to fade with age.