Pete's Log: in tune with the universe

Entry #1459, Fri, April 27, 2007, 11:50 CEST (Random Crap)
(posted when I was 28 years old.)

I wrote this last night. The examples used don't properly convey the point I'm trying to make, but do embody a certain sense of the immediate now. It's a silly little essay, but I kinda like it. Just don't take it too seriously.

I'm sitting on an ICE from Düsseldorf to München, and I can't help but think that I'm a complete fraud.

Because the thing is, things always work out for me, and I don't understand why.

I'm at a point in my life, even, where I just assume things will work out.

Like how I was going to get to my hotel in Essen. I brought the address and phone number, and looked up on the hotel website what stop on the local public transit was closest. Saalbau. But when I arrived at Essen Hauptbahnhof at 21:30, I was shocked to discover that the next U-Bahn didn't run for another 30 minutes. Preposterous. The U-Bahns in Munich run every ten minutes till at least Midnight or something.

But I noticed that my desired stop was the next stop from where I was. So I looked at the little surrounding area map, found the name of the street the hotel was on, and headed off.

I did not peruse this map. I did not memorize turns I should take. I was not even sure if I was leaving the train station headed in the proper direction. But that didn't matter. The first few streets I walked down did not have names I recognized from the map, but after 10 minutes of walking, I saw a sign with the name of my hotel down a side street. How did that happen? It happened because I am in tune with the universe.

And yet, I'm a worrier. On the train to Essen yesterday, there was a personnel change along the way. Usually when this happens, the new personnel will look at my ticket, see that it's been stamped, and move along. Yesterday, the new woman restamped my ticket. It's a return ticket. I started worrying. On and off for the next 24 hours, I wondered if I'd be given any trouble on the return trip because my ticket already had two stamps on it. I started formulating my response (in German) in my head as soon as I had boarded the train. I watched the conductor walk down the aisle, listened to him explain to a young couple why their ticket was invalid, heard them argue with him but give in and pay for new tickets. All the while, I was practicing my explanation in my head. What's the German phrase for "Over-zealous colleague?"

The man stamped my ticket with little more than a second's glance at it.

Maybe it's because I'm a white heterosexual male.

Or maybe it's because I'm a fraud and don't quite belong to this world.

In Düsseldorf, with no cash and thirty minutes until my train left, I sat down in a restaurant for dinner. The atmosphere immediately told me this was a typical German place and the service would be slow. I waited ten minutes before I was even acknowledged. And yet, I somehow made it through a Caesar Salad and two Weißbier before my train, and was able to pay by credit card.

Every test I've aced without studying, every praise I've felt was undeserved, every advantage I've had in life has somehow contributed to my feeling that I'm a fraud.

And consider, especially, how I best accomplish things. I turn my brain off or distract it. This works best if I've hyped it with drugs first. My most productive days all look like this: have slept well the night before, drink lots of caffeine (nicotine optional), put catchy music in my ears, and let my unconscious brain interface with the keyboard. It's the honest-to-God truth that I'm at my best when I just let intuition take over. Who am I then, if I can't be as productive when I can't let my conscious self get out of the way of my productive self?

Consider this: I am not unaccustomed to solving difficult problems in my sleep. If I spend hours or more trying to solve a problem with no progress, the best thing for me to do is to forget about it, and sleep. It's still an incredible feeling, but I am entirely accustomed to waking up suddenly with an answer to a question that's bothered me.

So why even bother having a conscious me?

Because, I suppose, there's got to be somebody around to enjoy the beer.

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Comments for this log entry

In Tune by Nairubi (Sat, April 28, 2007, 09:04)
Maybe the reason you have to turn off your brain or distract it is because you know about the connection with the universe but you don't believe in it or trust it so you can't consciously allow yourself to float in the universe. One day when you can consciously connect because you believe, you may be blown away and not only enjoy the beer but the unfolding of the universe around you.