Something about September

When in a city, it’s easy to feel like you live in a Lego set. Everything is hard lines and rigid angles. Even though people in suburbs spend about just as little, if not less, time outside as city folk do, they still get to see the trees, hear the wind outside their windows.

In the city, we wade in a sea of white noise, our eyes just peering over fog and static. We avoid the other heads popping above the sea of stimulation and rush, necks bowed, to our destination.

I always feel the urge to sit in the park. I rarely sat outside when I lived in a suburb. I think it’s just that here my window faces a brick wall and an air conditioning vent and there my window faced a forest. I saw birds in their nests under my porch and worms fell from my tree and onto my car in the morning. Fog coated the road on a cold night, the kind of whispy fog that looked like trapped smoke. Frogs belched, squirrels and woodpeckers clutched to the trees, spiders spun masterpieces on the windowframes.

Here, we see rats and roaches, pigeons and mosquitoes. The flowers seem too bright to be real and the people seem too real to be bright. Here, we lose our connections to nature and therefore to ourselves.

I keep a bamboo plant on my windowsill. I touch its leaves when I feel sucked dry of my humanness.

It’s something about September. It’s still warm enough to wear one light layer of cotton, but not for long. I remember the city in the winter. I remember the walls of grey and ceilings of white, the sludge-lined sidewalks and frozen toes in boots not made for such abuse. I feel I should suck in all the summer left in the city and keep it warm in my bones, radiating through me until next April when I can shed my winter coat.

Thoughts on The Catcher in the Rye

The Catcher in the Rye is a polarizing book–people either loved it or hated it, either thought Holden Caulfield was a genius or a crybaby.

I was one in the group who loved it. I felt like I was reading a transcript of my thoughts.

It has been a few years since my last re-reading, but Holden’s misanthropic musings seemed to describe things pretty well for little ol’ pessimistic me. While this isn’t so much about being an introvert, I do think the two connect.

Ignorance is bliss, and it’s a flaw in introverts to perceive many extroverts as ignorant. Because extroverts would rather small talk than have deep conversations (as with all my posts, these are broad generalizations) introverts often see them as shallow.

In cities like New York, where TCITR takes place, people are rushing, and rushing people don’t have time to think deeply. It’s not a bad thing. Even introverts find themselves pushing people to get in doors, getting frustrated at slow cars, etc. From an onlooker’s point of view, cities are a dismal place.

In my English class when we read this, a popular idea was that he was going crazy. Going crazy…I didn’t get that at all. When my teacher revealed that he was supposed to be in a mental hospital the whole time, it confused me. Sure, I got that he was depressed, but surely not crazy. But that was the phrase they kept throwing around…going crazy.

It’s hard not to go crazy if you think deeply about everything you see. If we thought deeply about all the bad things going on in the world, none of us would leave our bedsheets.