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October 8th, 2005


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02:46 pm - I've been MIA for a while. Sorry about that.
I'm working my way through a pair of oracles that I'll be posting here and on ADF-Seers when I get them uploaded. One's an ancient Christian oracle, and the other is the Homeric Oracle from the PGM. Both are well suited to being placed on the web.

Edit: Both the Homeric and Christian oracles are now online, and I'm still too sick to go do anything, really, though I'll be watching the game tonight at a friend's.

I'm also listening to a country song called "I'm Tired of Pretending I Don't Love You Anymore" by Travis Tritt. It's amusing how true country songs can sometimes be.

I started writing this entry yesterday (Thursday), and today (Friday) I wrote some as well. I don't know when it'll get posted, as I'm home sick from work, and posting isn't always an option. On the bright side, I got to spend a lot of time on magic, read a lot, and did my best to avoid daytime TV. Frighteningly, I'm watching Jerry Springer at the moment, though. "Are you having an affair but feel like it's your lover's fault you're cheating?" Geez, who answers "yes" to that question?

In the time that I was dating Tina, I had very, very rare thoughts about women other than Tina. Sometimes I wonder if I'm an exception or the rule. In fact, for long periods of time, I wouldn't even begin to fantasize about other women. While I still enjoyed looking, I'd look at a beautiful woman the same way that I would look at beautiful jewelry or watch a well-made movie. While they're entrancing, the thought of trying on the jewelry never crosses my mind, nor does acting in the movie.

I worked very hard to be honest. Any crush or fantasy I did have I talked to her about. Well, I did that once. Tina took that very poorly, though, so I simply stopped saying anything, and she never asked. In the end, it wasn't important to tell her the rare, odd fantasy because she took it so poorly the one time. I ended up feeling so guilty about the honesty, that I couldn't bring myself to say anything again.

Fortunately for me, the frequency of fantasies was incredibly rare to begin with, so it wasn't an issue of dishonesty to me, but more of a feeling of, "Mentioning this is going to cause problems, and when I'm honest with myself, fantasies don't affect my relationship at all." After the first one I told Tina about (I actually mentioned two or three that were running through my head at the time), they dropped off to almost nothing. The fantasies I did have about those particular women ended entirely. I still admired, but again, there was no desire to do more than look, nothing you could call a "fantasy" and be proper about.

In the end, I don't understand cheating. I can barely comprehend extensive fantasizing about someone who isn't your significant other because it's been so damn rare for me.

This has, of course, caused issues now that I'm single. I no longer have a single person to focus on, and interest in more than one person at a time is something I don't know how to deal with. Not everyone realizes that I spent 30% of my entire life with Tina, including my entire adult life (from 18 to 25). For that portion of my life, there wasn't any possibility that any other person might be something more than a friend. The possibilities today are mind-blowing to me, and they're also often terrifying.

Of course, this terror is tempered by the absolutely secure knowledge that I have friends I can talk to and trust. It amazes me how I see women now (I was shocked at how, when I went out with Brian the night Tina broke up with me, I could see far more beauty than I ever had before, beauty that had previously been totally eclipsed by Tina), and in particular how I see my closest female friends. I'm constantly astounded at the depths I see in them, things I could never access before. Perhaps I was just blind to how wonderful they are and can be because I didn't need the level of trust, safety, and love that I've received in the past five months. That's not to say that I was only seeing the surface of beauty or that I was basing my friendship or trust on a false sense of who the person was. . . But instead of believing that these women are deep, wonderful women, I now see that they're bottomless in their depth, and I'll never see the end of their concern for me.

My friends have been there more than I ever thought anyone could. I was astounded when one burst into tears when one found out that Tina had broken up with me. One talked with me extensively the day of, and for weeks afterwards, discussing options, other women, and how I was holding up. One just smiled and helped me weed my garden, knowing I'd talk about it when I was ready.

So a thank you to all those who have been there for me. Some have heard more than others, and no one really knows what the full story of my feelings is (heck, even I don't), but everyone who has been reading silently and who has chatted with me in person or over IM or over the phone has been helpful. Some of you have helped keep me from slipping into depression (laughter hasn't been banishing as well as it used to), some of you have rebuilt my confidence from the shattered fragments, and some of you have reminded me what it's like to be safe again. You've all stuck with me through the hardest time of my life, and I cannot tell you how much that means to me, but this is a start.

I'm the guy you know today because I've had such skilled gardeners tending me. I'm growing thanks to you, where others might have been stunted or died. I have good friends, and I don't thank them enough.

Well, that was a bit more verbose than I intended that aside to be, so back to Jerry.

I admit, it's fun to watch Jerry's expression during the show. I don't think that the former mayor of Cincinnati ever really expected to be here. Often, it's like he's watching a train-wreck. He's been doing this for fifteen years, and I think he's still completely at a loss for words. It's obvious that words simply fail to express what goes on when the cameras start rolling.

Here's hoping he can run for Governor of Ohio and bring some integrity back to our government.
Current Mood: accomplished
Current Music: "Tonight I Just Need My Guitar", -JB

(33 comments Leave a comment)

Comments:


From:ex_acousticd43
Date:October 8th, 2005 07:06 pm (UTC)
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You know, when I read things like this, it gives me hope that just maybe all guys aren't bad. Course I know that deep down but, it's still nice to see.

I'm glad you are doing well.
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From:chronarchy
Date:October 9th, 2005 04:43 am (UTC)
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Well, I'm going to stand by my original opinion that all guys are assholes, m'self included.

However, we all know that there is an exception to every rule. I tend to think that everyone will find their own exception eventually. Just gotta be careful about finding him/her. . . because a lot of people look like exceptions but aren't.
From:bloodlikerain
Date:October 8th, 2005 07:31 pm (UTC)
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:) sometimes when things are bleak, it's hard to remebr that people stil care, I'm relaly glad they everyone keeps reminding you that they do. You're an excellent human being, and you deserve each friend you have.
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From:chronarchy
Date:October 9th, 2005 04:45 am (UTC)
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I know they care. :)
(Deleted comment)
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From:chronarchy
Date:October 9th, 2005 04:48 am (UTC)

Re: On the cheating thing

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I've always firmly believed that I'm pretty good at choosing. I don't settle for second best, ever.

Fantasies were never actively disallowed, I wouldn't say. I just generally stopped having them. Then, of course, a rare one popped up, which I attempted to explain, and that caused problems. But hey, I really just learned to keep 'em to myself, rather than share them.

With any luck, those rare fantasies will be more entertaining to my next partner, rather than threatening.
From:weavingfire
Date:October 8th, 2005 07:50 pm (UTC)

friends

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Friends are so important, I would have never survived my divorce without them.

Don't ever forget that you are surrounded by people who care about you. ;-)
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From:chronarchy
Date:October 9th, 2005 04:50 am (UTC)

Re: friends

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I've no plans to forget those people. I'm not sure I could.
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From:zylch
Date:October 8th, 2005 08:18 pm (UTC)

Homeric oracle

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So, what did you do with the blank and repeated lines? Skip them entirely or fill them in through some other method?

My typical method for consulting this oracle is to go to random.org and request the equivalent of a certain number of dice rolls (eg, 12 numbers formatted in cloumns of 3 for a 4-line oracle). It's pretty effective, actually. Even if I do have to go back to the Greek for it to make sense sometimes.
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From:chronarchy
Date:October 9th, 2005 04:41 am (UTC)

Re: Homeric oracle

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I left the repeated ones in. Only two stuck out at me as repeats, but I admit to being horribly sick at the time.

I merely left the ". . ." as the answer for any that were missing. I could have put "roll again," which is one obvious interpretation, or I could have said, "Well, today you got the Ralph Blum Homeric Oracle: blank answers included.

I ought to make a suggestion for them on the page.

For the Christian oracle, that wasn't really a problem, as the damn thing skipped so many lines it was easier just to ignore them. Out of at least 240 or something lines, I think there were only about 60 or so intact. And some of those were translated in the book as ". . .". Any that were translated as ". . ." I just left intact as ". . .".

I admit to having spiced up the translations a bit, though. The Oxford translations translate "Eris" as "Strife." I put the Eris back in Homer.
From:fred_smith
Date:October 8th, 2005 11:00 pm (UTC)
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You, sir, are awesome. But you knew that. I wish I had anything to say more than that. Jerry Springer is wise. Trust in Springer.
From:ceolnamara
Date:October 9th, 2005 03:28 am (UTC)
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I'll just second that and save myself the trouble of trying to use words and make sense. Well, save you the trouble, really.
From:red_sput
Date:October 9th, 2005 05:08 am (UTC)
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It must be nice to have a group of non-family members that really do care.
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From:smithing_chick
Date:October 9th, 2005 05:20 am (UTC)
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Dude, every time you post something here, I want to give you a huge hug. So here it is.

{HUG}



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From:smithing_chick
Date:October 9th, 2005 08:23 am (UTC)
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It's amusing how true country songs can sometimes be.

To a point. I find they're never angry enough for me.

Anyways- I did realize you've spent a long, long time with Tina. You were with her almost as long as I was married. I've been suspecting for a while that you might have done something like what I did- for the first few months when Randy & I split, everyone thought I was perfectly fine & he was the one who was a mess. Truth was, I couldn't even admit to myself how much I was hurting. That didn't happen for about 6 months.

On looking at others & cheating--
I didn't look at anyone for a long time. I didn't even flirt much, if you can imagine that. There were a couple of guys that I thought would be a temptation for me so I simply didn't hang aorund with them at all. (Hard to explain that, really. It wasn't so much that I was attracted a much as I knew I would be attracted if I were single) When I did start looking at others, it was because I was lonely. One thing I discussed with almost no one at the time was that certain aspects of my relationship with Randy had gone really wrong. We didn't fight about money- we fought about sex & the fact that he didn't want to have it. (how's that for breaking a steriotype?) It was to the point where a lot of nights I was crying myself to sleep while lying next to him in bed & he either didn't notice or ignored it. When the idea of cheating eventually entered my head, it was mostly as a way to get him to understand how hurt I was by his lack of interest& because I thought it was unfair for him to decide that I couldn't have sex at all because he didn't want it. Instead of acting on the idea, after a while I told him what was going on in my head. Which did not go over well. Instead of seeing that his behavior had any relation to it at all, he ranted about what a betrayal that would be. (later, a good friend of mine did cheat on her husband for what turned out to be the same reasons. Everyone was shocked when I did not join the rest- including Randy- in denouncing her as a faithless whore. Instead, I understood completely why she did it. Actual fight between myself & Randy at the time- "She fucked someone else!" "I don't blame her! I'd certainly feel better about the world if someone would fuck me since you aren't much inclined." Of course, even if I hadn't understood, I wouldn't have been so judgemental, but somehow that didn't register with anyone, either.)

So I guess my point here in this rambling tale of woe is that I'd guess you didn't look because you were happy with what you had. And like I didn't get to know guys that I thought could be a problem, you just didn't let yourself see some things in your women friends. Now, you can look all you want & you can let yourself see everything that's there because you're allowed to be tempted.

However, if you want to consider yourself an asshole, there's more ways to be an asshole then whether or not you look at other girls. :)

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From:chronarchy
Date:October 9th, 2005 01:41 pm (UTC)
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Well, anger doesn't have a place in my life. Even being angry at the self is so fleeting as to be entirely ignored. It generally seems to be a completely useless emotion.

While Tina had always made it clear that cheating was entirely inexcusable, I never felt like it was ever something I thought would be a problem. Rather, I simply saw no reason to waste my time on most women. They simply didn't compare. Had Tina told me that sleeping around was fine, I still wouldn't have done it. Quite simply, other women were not interesting to me. While I like to flirt, there's no intent behind it (other than perhaps to get the girl to blush). It was fun and games and no temptation whatsoever.

The first fantasies confused the hell out of me, because there was no actual desire, and I never had a problem saying "no". In fact, it was quite easy. Attraction occurred, but it was still like the jewelry. . . sure it's pretty, but who buys that stuff? It's for looking and not touching. I generally couldn't find a fantasy involving a woman other than Tina to be something that would intrigue me more than once. It was extremely rare that I'd have fantasies that would recur over time.

Actually, even now, I pretend to have more fantasies than I do. In the end, all I want is one woman.

The problem is that right now, I don't know which one is that one :)
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From:lisbet
Date:October 9th, 2005 07:43 pm (UTC)
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I kind of envied the relationship you and Tina had for a while, the way you were surrounded by hotties and could flirt, and it didn't seem to cause any rift between the two of you, and you were so sweetly outspoken in your devotion to her. I thought, "What a lucky girl!" Even though I didn't know her at all and didn't know you well, it still touched me. Of course, this was all my image. Your reality may have varied:) But it was refreshing in the face of similar issues I was having but not dealing with them as well. I don't do well when Rod flirts, or when people flirt and make overtures to him. Especially when I'm right there. It's like, he obviously doesn't need a "festival wife" because he's already got one...me! Oh well, those are just my own issues...but I wanted you to know that you were, and still are, a bit of an inspiration to me when things look bleak.

On being single:
Usually when I've found myself suddenly single after being in a long-term relationship, I'll go a couple years without anyone. I like to take my time, get my feet back on the ground, get to know myself again, before I hook up with anyone else.

P.S. Just a note about relationships: a lot of women will probably take it poorly if you tell them you prefer someone else. Or even if you desire someone else over them temporarily, as in a fantasy, if those people in the fantasy are actually accessible in real life. Especially if! For instance, I don't mind Rod's fantasies about the actress Keira Knightley. But I would get upset if/when he exchanged intimate e-mail with other ADF members, or became intimate with them at festivals. I think because it stops being fantasy and becomes REAL all of a sudden, and then I feel threatened. Again, just my own issues. I realize am in the minority with this a lot of the time, due to the high prevalence of open and poly relationships in ADF and other pagan groups. I'm not against it, but I'm not comfy with it for my own relationships either. To each his/her own.
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From:chronarchy
Date:October 10th, 2005 04:30 am (UTC)
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*nods* "To each his/her own" is very right. It's crazy how many "owns" there are out there, though :) Enough to make anyone uncomfortable.

The flirting itself never caused any rift. Tina never, ever made a comment or said anything about it, and, in fact, joked about it quite readily several times (and not in that "laugh and hope it goes away" way). She never brought it up in a fight (and she was always damn good at bringing things up in fights that she thought were of use, no matter how insignificant). I wouldn't say that she approved of it, but it never seemed to manifest in a way that it could have damaged our relationship.

And my devotion to her, while entirely real and credible, was also my primary defense mechanism. I had to mention my girlfriend more than once at a festival, and start going on and on and on about her for quite a while to make certain things clear to certain women.

Devoted I was. I still am, to some extent. I've been doing my best to help her when she's been sick recently, and to clean up around the house to help there. I do a lot of things because I still care about her, but the devotion is very much a "We're just best friends" sort of devotion, which is still extremely strong.

Hell, I just used my last bit of spare change, enough for a nice dinner, to take her out to eat today. I chose to take her out instead of take another woman out to dinner on a date. We sat and talked and chatted (though I was a bit distant for other reasons), and it was good. So my last good dinner date for a while is going to be Tina. I got no problem with that.

And I totally understand being in the minority when it comes to those open, poly relationships. Actually, I don't think we're in the minority. . . I just think that it looks like they're more prevalent. Still, it's enough to make one uncomfortable.

As for "festival wives". . . Never got that. I mean, can't you wait until you get home? *laughs*
From:healing_coyote
Date:October 10th, 2005 02:32 am (UTC)
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you are one of my best friends, and I know I can talk to you about anything.

It's funny, cause I never really think before I speak when I'm with you, so I'm sure sometimes things come out weird, but on the good side, you never have to worry about me manipulating any situations, cause that thought doesn't even CROSS my mind...

ha ha ha, that was a rambly sentence. Call me sometime, cause I miss ya and I have lots to speak about...
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From:chronarchy
Date:October 10th, 2005 04:16 am (UTC)
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*grins* I was going to let this surprise you, but what the hell.

There's a letter on it's way to you. A real, honest to goodness letter. Like, hand-written.

Call you tomorrow. . . er, tonight? Monday? If I don't give you a call, drop me a line. Doesn't mean I'm busy, but just have a lot to deal with. But I'll drop anything to chat with ya any day.

And I've never worried about you manipulating me. Could be fun. *winks*

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