Sunday, March 8, 2009

The Fall of the Wall

"How do you keep the experience?"

- from Six Degrees of Separation

Louise Kittredge, played by Stockard Channing, asks this question near the end of the movie, as she recounts the story of the imposter, Paul, played by Will Smith, and how he affected their lives. How do you keep the experience without turning it into an anecdote, an amusing story to dine out on? Especially if that experience meant something and had impact.

That's something I've considered often. For something to be categorized as An Experience, there needs to be something affecting about it. Maybe even profound and/or passionate - regardless of whether the passion is positive or negative. Human nature is resilient. We get over things, whether sooner or later. Assuming a certain degree of emotional health, we move on. I've always considered that to be both a blessing and a tragedy. The blessing part is obvious. But even if it is negative passion - let's say, a broken heart - shouldn't that be REMEMBERED? If it meant that much once, shouldn't it be more than just a bloodless memory?

But the point of this post isn't to muse on how to keep An Experience, but rather, how to have them in the first place.

I wrote a few months ago that the walls I had put up several years back are still up. They are now thinner and more transparent, but still there - and in a way that goes far beyond sensible caution.

But in order to have "Experiences", the walls need to come down.

Anyone have a sledgehammer?

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