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The Session

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“I just do things. I don’t have a reasonable explanation for them. And I don’t feel the need to explain myself to others. I wish to preserve my solitude. And the only way I can do it is by avoiding contact with the world. It seems rational to an extent, don’t you think? I am not here to explore or reveal my psyche to you. My parents did not force me to come to you. They simple suggested and I followed because it seemed like a rational thing to do. Too much of anything is bad. In my case, it’s too much of solitude. But I lose equanimity with solitude. At this moment, my mind is not in the state of equanimity. How could it be? It is being probed by a keen listener who is making a concise judgment about my psyche with every new word I utter. Then I don’t have any justification from myself for being here. I hope I am not talking too fast. These things I told you were already aligned in my head and I simply yelled them at you. Wait, now I really have to think about what I say. Let me think. Let me align my thoughts. Oh yes, I didn’t sleep last night or the day because I was reading this novel. The novel is just incredible. It’s filled with so many bits of information that I have to wait a second or so after reading a sentence in order to properly process what I read. I have a keen interest in lexicography and that is why I chose this novel. If I had time, I would memorize the derivations and the origin of every A-Z word from the obscure The Nelson Contemporary English Dictionary I own which is circa 1977. But I can’t because I don’t have time. School takes much of it. I can carry on with my opinions about the Bartish ideologies or Kafkaish parables which I have meticulously analyzed during my calculus class. It might seem perverse to you but I don’t do much calculus during the time reserved for doing calculus in school. The teacher warded off my interest from calculus and physics as a result. He is a solipsist who teaches differential calculus. He has no other characteristic to be a teacher except for the qualifications. The school board and the district board as a result have a superficial criterion for hiring teachers. Teachers most of whom I know have much expertise in their respective subjects but have none in how to teach their respective subjects. The laconic term is pedagogy. Most teachers lack pedagogy and that is why I call them teachers and not educators. Yes, there is a difference. I would not be illogical if I say that educators like the one I know are just like profligate rich men who have enough wealth that even if they lacked every skill set required to live in a society, society will still be forced to embrace them. I know there are certain ethics I have violated by comparing monetary wealth evaluated in US of A dollars to education evaluated in the degrees one acquired and like to boast about. But, I think we deserve it. By “we” I address the students sitting in their respective seats and staring at the educator with a high degree of fructose running in their bloodstreams being represented by the faces they make. Faces like I-need-Midol-to-recover-from-the-severe-yet-emendable-breakup-I-just-had-after-he-dumped-me or I-don’t-have-to-learn-this-it-has-no-real-life-application or The-girl-sitting-in-front-of-me-has-a-nice-***-during-the-full-moon-which-is-today. And the educators often have faces which are exformatively represented as How-did-I-end-up-teaching-these-prepubescents-? or Is-that-jack-***-sitting-over-there-gonna-ask-me-another-one-of-his-jack-***ish-questions-? I was reading Dostoevsky’s ‘The dream of a Ridiculous Man.’ I believe Dostoevsky does one thing better than anyone else and that is exposition. He writes hackneyed concepts like suicide in such a way that it is avant-garde. But I don’t believe this avant-gardeish desire to be avant-garde was an ‘Intentional Fallacy’ the definition of which is taught in every freshmen college lit. class. If it was then Dostoevsky would just sound pretentious but pretentious is not in any remote possibility the word which comes to mind when describing Dostoevsky. I hope —based on what I have spoken—you have not mistaken me for an idealist or much worse a solipsist. It will be just to say that I am a demarcation line between those two philosophical dicta. If I emulate, I do Edgar Allan Poe, if I idealize I idealize David Foster Wallace and if I like to have the gravitas of a wisecrack I pronounce Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche whose David Foster Wallace said we all are ‘ideological heirs.’ Acutely conscious of time, I will commence the end of this session: The end.”
“Mr. Normal, you did not answer my question: How are you?”
A long silence waited to be broken with a response.
“I thought a professional like you would have the perspicacity to decipher the answer to such a bleak question with the existential response I gave you.”
The professional conversationalist looked at Mr. Normal with the same catatonic eyes pointing at him from the past thirty minutes. There was no irony in Mr. Normal’s name but the conversationalist who had the gravitas of a professional with the framed certificates and honorary doctorate hanging on the wall thought otherwise.





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