‘The thinking mind must be challenged.’ I roared, my face red and sweaty, ‘it must be must be pushed to its very limit and then pushed some more! It must be pushed to the very edge of what it can endure, so that it is teetering on that edge, and then you must give it a kick squarely in the pants, making sure that you have your size 11 Doc Martens on as you do so. You must put your full weight into that kick, it must be a kick like no other, it must be a kick to end all kicks. And then – when you have delivered that mighty kick in the arse – we will see what happens to the thinking mind then…’
I was spooning up the rich, meaty broth as fast as I could. Spooning it up, spooning it up. So rich, so meaty; so rich, so meaty. ‘The food you love delivered right to your door’, the sign said. The food you love, the food you love. What I love is rich meaty broth, I said to myself between mouthfuls, and as I said it I nodded my head so as to agree with myself. So vigorously did I nod my head that small droplets of gravy flew from my lips and spattered my tee-shirt. ‘So rich, so meaty’, I murmured appreciatively, ‘so rich and so meaty…’
I often agree with myself, of course. I find this to be a good policy. Possibly the best policy. Quite possibly the best policy. There is no sense in falling out with yourself, after all – what good would that do? Where would that get you? Am I right to agree with myself though? Could this have been an error in judgement on my part? Was I in trouble now? I was afraid really, of course. Beneath all my bravado I was afraid. I’m always afraid – afraid that I’ll be found out, afraid that people won’t like me when they find out what I’m really like. What does it mean when absolutely everyone you meet hates and despises you, and when the universe itself seems determined to do away with you? Answer me that, if you would. Be honest with me now – I don’t want you to humour me. I need to hear it straight; I need to hear it straight from the horse’s mouth.
You know what it means when someone tells you that you blotted your copybook, I’m sure. We all know what that means. Well I’ve blotted my copybook. I’ve blotted my copybook good and proper. I’ve done a right job on it. I’ve dropped my copybook into an ocean of ink. An ocean of the blackest, inkiest ink that you ever will see. ‘Is there anything that can be done?’ you ask, in concerned tones. ‘Is there anything that can be done to put it right again?’ You’re mocking me, of course. You’re mocking me in my misery. You’re rubbing it in and why wouldn’t you? You’re rubbing salt into an open wound. Every moment stands alone, that’s what I need to remember. Don’t impose a schema. Have you any idea of how hard it is not to impose a schema? It’s brutally hard, impossibly hard. The mind works by imposing schemas and yet you mustn’t do that. You’re finished if you do that.
The ordeal continues interminably. It’s an interminable ordeal – it’s an ordeal that shows no signs of ever ending. It’s an intolerable ordeal, but you have no choice but to stick with it. There’s no place else to go – there is only the ordeal. I was all too aware of this of course; I was only too aware that there was only the ordeal. There is nowhere else to go but the ordeal. All roads lead back to the ordeal. You will of course look for a way out – you will start to see mirages, you will start to see hallucinatory escape-routes, not realising that false escaping only serves to make the ordeal worse. There’s nothing worse than the unendurable ordeal, as we all know. Only this isn’t entirely true, what we SHOULD say is that there is nothing worse than the unendurable ordeal apart from when we allow ourselves to believe that there is an escape from it.
Being intelligent, successful and good-looking isn’t an end in itself you see. It’s only a means to the end. It’s only a means to an end but the big question is, what is that end? This is what has us all racking our brains, of course. This is what has us all driven mad with wild speculation. We are trying to work out what the point is in being so intelligent, in being so successful and good-looking. That’s a mystery to us therefore and so we don’t know why we doing what we doing. We’re in the dark. That’s a mystery for sure, but on the other hand we have to admit that no one really cares either…