Mike Burr - log

[Charlemagne] How about I write a nice one.

The reason that criticism comes towards you in bursts is because you do everything you possibly can, while maintaining deniability, to shut down dissent or topics you want to avoid. And so when a loved one tries to reach out to you and really communicate, you are in total control of the direction of the conversation. It's your conversation. If I want to talk about my stuff... well that's not as interesting as airplanes. Or politics.

From my perspective, it looks to me like you've got a circuit breaker in your mind that trips when someone brings the conversation around to things that get your ire up because, damnit, you're right, after all!

You push people away. Just because I can't convict you of saying "I think you are shit" doesn't mean you aren't clearly conveying that. Maybe you don't mean to. Maybe you're just generally angry and it feels good to jab someone in the ribs about something as a distraction.

I encourage you to do some introspection. Most of what I see you do seems to be all about avoidance. You furiously are overhauling the toaster out in "the shop" because... Well, we can't exactly say you are doing something bad, can we? You're being helpful, by overhauling the toaster. Meanwhile, maybe there are people who love you who want to just hang out and get to know you...?

I cannot express to you how bizarre I felt at you repeatedly engaging me in "deep conversations" about quantum mechanics or whatever. What? "Did you hear about that new particle?" Really, is that the kind of conversation we're going to have in your golden years? I have no idea why we gotta talk techno mumbojumbo all damn day. What? Is? Going? On? You go between talking to me about what the librils dun to talking about quantum chromodynamics. And then airplanes, and then guns, then librils, then QCD.

And when I ask you explicitly, "are you interested in what I've been up to?" ... I get an angry glare that lasts for a solid 7 seconds. What the fuck is that?

If I don't get that, I get "aw, shucks. I just don't know nuthin about that." Well, perhaps you should learn. I have been, looking at the whole bellcurve, pretty much killing it in the software sphere.

I mean, I really don't want to talk about that either. I want to know: how do you feel? Are you sad? Do you feel disappointed about something?

I feel like that is out-of-the-ballpark impossible for you to do. So, I don't know. What do we do now? I am sick and tired about talking about your favorite 7 things, and being shut down as a dummy with dum preferences if I talk about something off-list.

You have a lot of control over me. That's not by my choice. It's a feature of evolved hardware. I almost physically cannot make my mouth form certain words. Criticism is discouraged: you are likely to be shamed about something, so it's better to just nod and smile.

Meanwhile, I've spent my whole life trying to honestly, humbly understand the weird universe I was dumped into (again, without my consent.)

  1. At each fork in the road: make the best choice.
  2. GOTO #1

That's what's gotten me to where I am, where ever that is. That seems like a reasonable way to go about life, wouldn't you agree? Yet, you tell me, always via some in-direct, sarcastic way that what I think is shit.

There's the "correct" response "daggum right!", and I...well I refuse to say "yes you are right" about anything. I do think truth comes on a continuum. There may be absolute truths in the world, but our abilities as fallible humans to determine which are and which are not true, is weak at best.

Trying to influence what a dog thinks, requires a whack on the nose with a rolled up newspaper when the dog "thinks wrong". With most people, I think you need to resort to reason. "X is definitely true no matter what!" Will get us nowhere. It'll get us straight to church or temple, but it won't really move the ball forward any.

I'm sorry if you are ashamed of any of that.

I'm no longer going to be afraid of you. How about that. The insecure 12yo inside of me is afraid you're going to say something hurtful to me, any minute. But, I'm past that...enough.

I (we) are currently enjoying life. I no longer have any fucks to give. Not one.

I love you, Daddy.

My "ears are on".

Happy Juneteenth.

- 1 toast