"this is what someone does when they are afraid to act." he thought to himself as he was in the middle of action.
what counts as action? what counts as "doing something"? what is the value of contemplation? of conversation? of organization? writing? reading? moving? what counts as action?
he imagined a world that was self-organized. there were no leaders. there were contributors who were givers and receivers. jobs didn't exist. not in the sense that we have now, where you rent yourself out to someone else. jobs were functions of the community. we live in boxes. boxes stacked on other boxes. what is the use of knowledge in one area if it's applied poorly in another, more important area? importance may be determined by how much you jeopardize human life. (i compulsively opened espn in a new tab while writing this and saw how fans rushed the field after the notre dame win against clemson).
judgment. judgment. judgment.
but i have to wonder what i would do in a world without jobs. without the incentive of paying to live, what would i be incentivized by? living in the bay area has made me paranoid about money, and living in portland has moved me away from that edge. what is the purpose of music? art? what is the purpose of writing?
he saw two doors in front of him:
entering each door again presented him the same two doors.
he did find an elevator around the corner, thankfully, and went down a couple floors, stepping out to these two gems:
CREATING WHAT YOU ENJOY.
FIXING WHAT YOU DON'T.
"nope." maybe a few more floors down will do the trick. he steps in, goes down, and steps out of the elevator.
HIDING BEHIND LIES.
PARALYZED BY TRUTH.
*siiiiiiigh*. this building sucks. he enters the elevator again and scans the buttons available. he pushes *G*.
there was, fortunately, an exit to this building. he pushed the door with gusto and felt the crisp fall air wash over his face. this felt like the point. this was what it was all about. this felt right, good, etc. he walked a few blocks down and entered another building. "it's made of stone so it's more humane", he thought to himself as he was greeted by the warmth of yellow light in a room constructed of mahogany, brick, and marble. the spiral staircase blurred past him as he ran to the second floor, his body hugging the wall. he didn't notice the cracks in the plastered wallpaper on the landing. he felt honored by this building. he felt the weight of it's legacy. is this what destiny feels like? he came to a stop in front of two large oak doors:
obviously new systems. he threw his weight against the door. it did not budge. maybe it needed to be pulled? there was no handle. his fingers wedged in the crevice, he tries to pull the door open. he steps back and inspects this mechanism. there were hinges, and dust had gathered on the floor. he stepped to his left and pulled open the other door to peek inside. it was a library room. a few windows let in a dull glow from the outside. he peered into the room. the books were heavy, thick leather covers, red and green with gold stripes bound across the spines. he was pulled by their gravity. he would come back to them. he stepped back out again and let the door close on its own.
he walked down the hallway, calmed by the sound of his own footsteps on the mosaic tiled floor. red, green and black squares formed in patterns of geometric order, but no recognizable entities. a man was stationed at the end of the hallway, sitting with his chin resting on his chest, slouched in a tall chair next to an opening to a staircase. he was asleep.
"uh, excuse me." a bit louder
the man opened his eyes and looked up.
"how do i open the NEW SYSTEMS door?"
the man shrugged, but then pointed to another room down the hallway.
"thanks." he left the man to his rest.
the other room down the hallway was small, and could have been a classroom at some point in this building's history. there were some notebooks on the tables, and a few open pens lay scattered on the carpet. he sat down at one of these tables and flipped through a notebook full of doodles and scribbles in another language, it looked like something from southeast asia. or maybe south india? it didn't matter. a dullness hit his consciousness and he sat back in the chair, a bit stunned. he glanced to his left and saw a few unopened pens. that gave him a spark. he got up and retrieved them and sat back down. he found an empty page and started to write
i can open the doors that i don't want to enter, but not the ones i do. he looked up and wondered what that meant. nothing helpful came to mind. perhaps there is meaning in this. he dropped his pen and got up again and hastily walked out of the room and back toward the two oak doors. the man was no longer in the tall chair, he must have gone out for lunch. maybe there was no man in the first place. maybe he was using the bathroom.
he entered the library room and walked up to the bookshelves. he slowly started scanning the titles.
ESTIMATING MARKET FLUCTUATIONS
THE FORGOTTEN ART OF SUBTLETY
CRYING ABOUT MY FATHER'S PAST
it would be really helpful if there was a book on
HOW TO OPEN THE NEW SYSTEMS DOOR
he gasped and grabbed the book off the shelf. there was a large sofa chair by the window. he sat down and crossed his legs, opening the book in his lap. he flipped to the table of contents.
CHAPTER 1: Door Construction Methods and Material Acquisition (1)
CHAPTER 2: The Bidding Process and Project Management (42)
what was it going to take to open this fucking door? he flipped past a couple pages to see if things improve later on in the book
CHAPTER 24: How To Open A NEW SYSTEMS Door (576)
a pang of excitement rushed through his body. he frantically flipped through the pages in search of 576. "i think 576 is a perfect square". it was, of 24 of course. the chapter started with excitement:
many have questioned whether these doors can even be opened, let alone have chapters and books written about their opening. it is not our intention to prove them wrong, that is simply a by product of our work. our intention is for you, reader, to open a door that you desire so much to open. he felt heard. he loved when authors explicitly acknowledged the reader. the chapter went to explain how there were certain markings on the door panels which served as instructions (other marking were decorative) and that these markings were region-specific glyphs that required some study to interpret. there were four main types of glyphs that were used globally: heridian which were usually marked in blue ink, and had tall, sharp features, encillian, which were more rounded, and fatter, commodira, a set of cursive-looking characters and blasthinthe, which were the most organic, random looking ones of the four. there were a few tables for each defining the most commonly used markings, and their meaning. for example, the encillian glyph made of three straight vertical lines inside a half moon shape indicated that the door could be opened three days before the half moon, since the air pressure was just right at that time to allow it's motion, or the heridian glyph constructed by two tall rectangles meant that two people, both who were tall enough to reach the top of the door, would have to place their hands above it and press on the moulding to unlock the topmost hinge. the list went on and on with curious shapes and even more curious definitions. he was fascinated by it all. he looked around the room for something to write with but his eyes did not land on anything. he should have brought that notebook from the old classroom.