a beginning, hopefully.

[an image loosely made up to look like a title card from a '90s anime. it says, "A Beginning, Hopefully: Introductions and Insecurities."]

[an image loosely made up to look like a title card from a ’90s anime. it says, “A Beginning, Hopefully: Introductions and Insecurities.”]

“Let me find and use metaphors to help me understand the world around me, and give me the strength to get rid of them when it’s apparent they no longer work.” – Ze Frank, An Invocation for Beginnings.

question.

  • who am i?

answer.

  • good question.

I wish I could say something pithy and nice and just get to the point, but the fact is, I have a deep-seated personality disorder that leaves me chronically and pathologically unable to render any kind of functioning internal self-image.

I don’t know who I am in a dark room with no one looking at me, and I don’t just mean that in the vague, poetic, wistful way most people do when they say it.

I mean, day in, day out, and year after year, on a level that impairs my ability to function every single day I’m alive, it feels like there is literally nothing inside me but a swirling, solidified sea of scar tissue, a lot of howling, irrational, paranoid fear, and a mishmash of mismatched personality fragments I’ve slowly but surely stolen from a tiny handful of people who make me feel safe.

Those three things, and then, mostly, just a quiet, terrible emptiness.

Like, even right now, as I write this, the voice in my head crafting and shaping the length and the cadence of the sentences I’m typing as I type them isn’t mine or even a version of mine. It’s the voice of a YouTube movie critic I look up to, a guy whose soft, analytical, semi-comical lilt helps calm my brain down when it starts banging pots and pans together.

And part of that’s because I’m just not a very good or experienced writer, but, also, part of it’s because when you strip away the affectations, the imitations, and the expectations I’ve absorbed from other people, there is simply nothing left.

Not even just as a writer, but literally as a human being.

Take all those things away, and I’m just a scrambling, formless piece of nothing inside.

All this to say, I know that no one really knows who they “are” in the abstract, and even the core concept of some internally consistent “self” that persists from moment to moment is really just a convenient shorthand tool we use for lack of anything better.

It’s not a “real” thing.

For anyone.

But for borderlines, the question, “Who are you?” is maybe uniquely paralyzing, so I honestly can’t think of a way to introduce myself other than sitting here and blandly acknowledging what a hard time I’m having doing it.

I am not one post into this blog, and I have already devolved into meandering meta commentary.

To a certain extent, though, that’s a calculated move. It’s all I can think to do, but I also think it’s a good idea. I want to be upfront. I want to be naked about this from day one:

My struggle to express myself here is not just subtext or a background element you’re supposed to politely pretend not to notice. It’s core content. It is, in itself, at least a part of the point.

All I can be is myself, and “myself” is a deeply neurodivergent person who writes deeply neurodivergent things.

Which isn’t necessarily to say that I write deeply, or that I only write about neurodivergent things, but I am deeply neurodivergent, so anything that comes out of my brain is going to be, itself, a deeply neurodivergent thing.

Semantics. It is fun.

  • so, write about what?

About stories, mostly — and how they’re built, and how they’re told, and why we care, and why it matters.

It’s a review site, mainly, except I might not say “review” so much as I might say “critical essay” because the bottom line isn’t, “Is this good or is it bad?” so much as it is, “What is this, why is it that, what does that even mean to begin with, and then, so, what?”

In a lot of ways, I’m just going to be doing my own shallow, pale imitation of the people whose work I find soothing or insightful, and, hopefully, I’m pulling from a big enough pool that I won’t be stealing from any one of them more than I should be.

My readings are inexorably neurodivergent and also inexorably queer because, oh, hey, look, so am I. I’m an agoraphobic asexual enby with borderline personality disorder, major depression, and C-PTSD.

Those are a few things about myself I’ve joyously been able to claw back from inside the big, writhing Nothing inside of me, and I wear them. Loudly.

I do worry about turning my own personal mental illness into a gimmick or a brand, but the fact is, you can’t really avoid wearing your neuroses on your sleeves when your sleeves are made of neuroses, and everything I am is made of neuroses.

I can’t stop it, short of dying.

I can’t hide it for more than a little while.

And, ultimately, I don’t think I feel like I should have to.

And now I’m just going to close out this post with a list of a few things I believe because I think, when you’re in charge of a space, any space, it’s important to be clear, from the very first second it starts, who it’s for and who it’s not.

Put it this way:

Good creators don’t let TERFs and Neo-Nazis fester in their fan base just because the traffic is convenient.

So, let’s get this out there.

~ Black lives matter.

~ Trans women are women.

~ As in women. As in female. As in natural-born women.

~ Trans women are women unconditionally, in literally every way that a cis woman is a woman.

~ They are not lesser. They are not worse. They are not different. They are not women with an asterisk. They are not women with a qualifier. Trans women are women. Period.

~ Trans kids are trans, and the only reason, literally the only fucking reason, to keep a trans kid from being who they are is deliberate, sadistic, abusive, torturous goddamned cruelty.

~ Let me say this again: There is absolutely no scientifically defensible reason to keep trans kids away from puberty blockers. There is only violent fucking murderous hate.

~ The trans experience is not necessarily defined by dysphoria.

~ There have never been just two genders.

~ Sex work should be decriminalized.

~ Same for at least most drugs.

~ Records wiped in both cases.

~ Jewish people are good.

~ Muslim people are good.

~ Immigration is good.

~ Immigrants are good.

~ There are no good cops.

~ There are no good Presidents.

~ There are no good Congresspeople.

~ The fundamental challenge of civic participation is actively knowing and feeling both those last two things without just giving up entirely because good people disengaging only helps the most ravenous, bloodthirsty, murderous assholes in town.

~ The prison system is slavery, and that’s something literally enshrined in the explicit text of the Thirteenth Amendment of American Constitution, which says a lot about America.

~ The genocidal settler state of America fundamentally does not deserve to exist.

~ The entire social construct of whiteness was built specifically as a tool of murder, subjugation, and violent exploitation. Whiteness is a death machine.

~ Every single white person living in a culture like ours, built on white supremacy, benefits from institutionalized white supremacy every single fucking day — and we absorb it as we marinate in it. Literally no one is immune. That’s why we have to be aware.

~ Disabled people, not able-bodied doctors, are the experts on their illnesses.

~ Dehumanizing words like “dumb,” “stupid,” “idiot,” and “moron” can’t be divorced from their history in the eugenics movement (so this is the first and last time you’ll see them on this site).

~ There should be no such thing as a millionaire.

~ There should be no such thing as a billionaire.

~ Nothing Elon Musk ever does will ever benefit “humanity.”

~ Nothing any billionaire does will ever benefit humanity.

~ There are fifteen hundred billionaires in the world. And a hell of a lot of starving children.

~ Billionaires are not the answer. Billionaires will not provide the answer. Billionaires are the problem. Almost the entire problem.

~ Capitalism is intentionally a wood chipper made to pulp up “undesirable” people.

~ Every single human being alive deserves, unconditionally, warm food, clean water, clothes, shelter, Internet, higher education, and all the goddamned healthcare they want. Not “need,” but want.

And there we go.

Obviously, none of these are very deep or unique thoughts, and there’s definitely a kind of a cheapness involved in just running through all this in just, like…

A list.

But I feel like it works ’cause if you got turned off, then good-bye. If you didn’t, well, now we have a set of agreed-upon standards you can hold me to, and if you’re skeptical because who the fuck is this asshole and why do they think they can win me over with some out-of-context list, then, you know, uh… Good? I feel like that’s not a bad place for an audience to be in the beginning.

I have no idea what my posting schedule is going to be from here on out.

Hopefully often.

But, then, I promised myself this post would be out in the first week of the year, and it is now…

The end of March.

Because my life keeps collapsing around me.

And because I keep rewriting this.

So.

I’m going to have a lot to work out in terms of finding a workable intersection between “not holding myself to an excruciating, impossible standard” and “also not letting myself get stuck in a self-destructive death spiral of self-doubt and procrastination,” and that’s going to be a little bit touch-and-go to begin with.

It is…

A process.

When things really get rolling, I’m going to have a Patreon here. I have a Tumblr here. Twitter here. Thank you for reading. Have a nice night. Be kind to yourself. Remember to take your meds. Be ugly. Be weird. And refuse to make yourself digestible.

Hopefully, I’ll see you here in a new piece soon.

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