Something strange is happening.
Well, I suppose all things considered it’s not THAT strange.
So come here to the cigar lounge at least two days a week, sometimes three. I sit here (today’s adventures excepted) from about 11:30 until closing at 8:00. I generally put out a post of about 1500 or so words on iwilson.net (which you MAY be reading now. I’m never sure if I’m going to post something when I start writing. But of course I kinda always do)
I blast into this fun little word processor for a bit then hit ‘post’ and lean back for a few minutes, dick around on twitter and reddit for maybe 15-30 minutes, then set in again and just start typing on a new document. Or I’ll write some code. Or…whatever. Well, no. There’s only two. I don’t generally waste the rest of the day. I’m at SOMEthing.
In The Beginning, back in September 2020, when I started coming here somewhat cough religiously, I would just agonize over just about every word. I’d keep my eyes on the clock and on my wordcount.
A 500 word hour was an absolute triumph.
Eventually a 1000 word hour was trivial, getting to the point where I’d clock in at about 1200-1500 without breaking a sweat, as long as I had a topic at hand and didn’t spend an hour whining about having nothing to write.
But I’ve started noticing something, now most of the way through February.
Time is absolutely vaporizing. I can sit here for 8-9 hours and the day just…disappears. I absolutely lack the words for the feeling of it all.
Today, for instance.
I didn’t get here until about 2:30, which of course exhaserbated the issue. But I wrote that “Gratitude for a Purple Duck” post, hit ‘publish’ and it was 4:45.
I’m generally used to time doing things like that and I didn’t really think about it much at all at first. But I kept blinking at the screen, wondering what the hell felt wrong.
Hours. HOURS had passed. Like something out of a science fiction movie there was a blur and it was almost 5:00 and I was done with it.
I made a quick joke on twitter about wondering where the time went, chuckled to myself and wrote “It’s just a jump to the left…”, opened Q10 and hit control-n for a new document.
And now…410 words in I’m finding the absolute reverse is true. I’m typing at my normal speed and only about 10 minutes has elapsed.
The way time is moving when I engage in this kind of task is really quite something. Seeing as how the result of the time spent is actually of pretty high quality, all things considered. My writing is growing a bit more cohesive and I find it flows an awful lot better as time goes on.
Indeed I’ve been gathering, as I’ve mentioned, everything I’ve ever written into a single repository that I’m going to mine for a pretty big project I’ve got coming up and, in re-reading some of the pieces that stick out in my memory I’m finding myself cringing more than a little, for a couple reasons really:
First, my writing was, by my current estimation (not a fair comparison, I’ll grant) fucking abysmal. Just a giant stuttering mess. I’m actually not sure, when push comes to shove, if I’m going to be able to use any of it at all without complete rewrites. That would even be okay if…
Second, I used to be a holy shit gold plated asshole. My observational bar notes are just some of the most snarky rude horseshit I could imagine. It’s positively embarrassing. I’m going to have to come to some kind of decision about whether I can take those old stories and vignettes and rip them out of emotional context and rewrite them from my current perspective or not.
Hell maybe there’s some way I can include them with my old attitude and actually use them to demonstrate a prior way of thinking.
That might actually be interesting, assuming I can come to some kind of understanding about what…changed, when and why.
Because that all eludes me, at first blush at least.
The past 15 years has flown by at a truly extrordinary rate, much like the macrocosm of the cigar lounge writing periods of the last four or five months.
I didn’t notice myself changing all that much. Learning, sure. But did my time in New York eventually temper me? Is it just age? Tough to tell.
I’m going to have to figure out how the hell this all happened or is continuing to happen. After all, I’ve no reason at all other that the myopia granted by the illusory perception of the current moment as eternity to think that it’s not an ongoing process, rather than some pivotal event in my past at some point.
It’s 5:30 and time for me to close up and head to the back room for the more interesting couple hours of my cigar lounge day.
It’s just a jump to the left…