Sunday, August 13, 2006

Escaping events out of doors

The sun is up on a bright and pleasant morning. I've washed a load of laundry, set my fantasy baseball team lineup, and finished my obligatory Internet reading. Now, studying and writing remain the only trivial things left undone. But we'll see. You never know what might happen for a certainty.

World events disorient and alienate me more each day. I immerse myself in entirely selfish and hedonistic activities to escape those feelings. For me, studying mathematics and reading, in general, work that way. Both activities shut the door on society, events out of doors, and destructive interior monologues. Fortunately, escape into reading and study is not entirely wasted, for you never know when what you learn might be useful.

I wrote a geometry book over ten years ago. The manuscript lies buried somewhere in the back of a closet. The book was not a textbook. It played a rift inspired by Euclid. As the poet says, it contained things seen that I liked. I might revisit it one day. I would add things I like to it and feel less self conscious about its scholarship. I might even print a few vanity copies of it for posterity. When I'm dead, people who knew me can say, "yes, he was an odd duck. He left behind a few vanity copies of a geometry book he wrote. Have you seen it?" However, I won't mess with it again unless I feel it has some merit for somebody other than me.

Vanity, too, provides a way to escape a world that does not fit my conceptions and expectations of it.


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