?

Log in

No account? Create an account
bear by san

March 2017

S M T W T F S
   1234
567891011
12131415161718
19202122232425
262728293031 

Tags

Powered by LiveJournal.com
bear by san

so you place your final burden on your half-dressed next-of-kin

I only got 500 words on Sunday, because of climbing at Ragged Mountain and personal obligations. Still, it's 500 words I didn't have before.

The climbing didn't go so well. We were having an extraordinarily bad rigging day, and only managed to get one route set up properly over the course of pretty much the whole afternoon. (Don't ask. *g*) Anyway, I did about thirty feet of it (a 5.8) before I hit a patch I couldn't get over. Or, I might have been able to get over it if I were stronger and less terrified. Which is the same as saying I couldn't get over it.

It shames me to admit it, but I am discovering that, so far (and unlike everybody else I know, real and fictional) I don't really like climbing outdoors. This may change as I get more confidence, but I currently find it entirely too scary to be fun. It's physically much easier than climbing indoors, but the adrenal response kicks my ass, and I find it very, very frustrating. (I'm not big on adrenaline, honestly: a little bit is okay, but large quantities make me feel like crap for days afterwards.) And then afterwards I'm very ashamed of being so scared of the whole production. Also, I'm a bug magnet, which I don't mind so much while hiking, but there's a lot of sitting around in this endeavor.

So today I'm tired and don't want to work and I didn't even accomplish much of anything yesterday.

Also, because the Yellow Face Burns Us, I picked up a sunburn, and today I have a sun headache. Because we were hiking up and down the damned rocks to try to rig and re-rig the ropes, though, I did get about 3.5 miles closer to Lothlorien.

If the weather isn't completely terrible, I'm going to try some indoor climbing tonight. Which means I should dose up on naproxen now, and hopefully the headache and neckache will go away and leave me be. And I'll keep plugging away at the outdoor thing, though it's mostly a time-eating pain in the ass right now. And you know, a thoroughly humbling experience, but pretty much everything in my life (guitar, work, relationships, the self-education of the writer) is that.

Art.

Man. Is there anything in the world, this side of raising children, that's a more humbling experience than making your living as an artist? It's so amazing to watch people respond so very differently to the exact same piece of work. One will call it cold and distant, another emotionally manipulative, a third sentimental, and the fourth will write to tell you that you have captured their experience exactly, and rain blessings upon your head for putting that in words upon the page.

It's enough to make you shrug your shoulders and write to please yourself, I tell ya. And yet, when I think about it, I have a pretty nice life. I get to spend my workdays in front of a picture window and eat garlic for lunch without my cubemate complaining. (She complains about everything else, but not my garlic breath.) And it's a nice job, making things. It feels like contributing, a little.

And now, I have to make bread and cook this pork roast before it goes bad, and also go write some pages.

Comments

FWIW, I know at least one person who prefers climbing indoors. I may turn out to be another, although I haven't tried it enough to tell yet. There's a lot more stuff before you get to the actual climbing, for one thing.

What sort of rock was it?
Basalt. It's what we have here.
Gritstone here. Good friction, but on the other hand, good friction (ow).
That's a "me-three" as well. I'm thinking about taking it up, not so much for outdoors stuff as for something to help me with upper body strength (funny, I work out better when I have something fun to do).
it's mostly a time-eating pain in the ass right now. And you know, a thoroughly humbling experience, but pretty much everything in my life (guitar, work, relationships, the self-education of the writer) is that.

*sigh/nod*

Life experience. Don't you just love it? :)
You contribute a lot.

Case in point; me. I;m on the other side of the planet but as a direct result of your work, two things have happened recently:

1-Tideline ran on Escape Pod, whose sister show, Pseudopod, I work for. Phenomenal story, loved it very, very much. Reminded me both of growing up on the Isle of Man (A small geographical apostrophe in the middle of the Irish sea) and how good character driven SF can be.

2-Shadow Unit came along at the perfect time for me. A low level frustration with work means I've taken the initiative and I'm working on a podcast serial which will go live shortly. Shadow Unit's a glorious idea, beautifully executed and it actually helped me have the courage to go over the top and push for this idea.

So it's all you, basically.

Thanks:)
*g* Glad to be of service.
Man. Is there anything in the world, this side of raising children, that's a more humbling experience than making your living as an artist? It's so amazing to watch people respond so very differently to the exact same piece of work. One will call it cold and distant, another emotionally manipulative, a third sentimental, and the fourth will write to tell you that you have captured their experience exactly, and rain blessings upon your head for putting that in words upon the page.

Yup. Humbling, infuriating, rewarding, awful and awe-ful.

Pork roast? Mmm.
There's the guy who calls your prose workmanlike and the guy who calls it measured and the guy who calls it dense and the guy who calls it fussy and the guy who says its purple and overwritten and the one who calls it sublime...

I mean really. *g*
Enough to make you throw your hands up and say, "Oh yeah? YOU write it and see what happens." (Except not really, because oy.)

Proof positive that reading is a very subjective experience.
that's what you get for trying to please people. Skroom. My motto.
There's no shame in discovering what you like. Climbing indoors and climbing outdoors are very different experiences. People are going to prefer one over the other. (While lots of people genuinely prefer outdoors over indoors, I suspect there are also more people who posture about outdoors vs. indoors.)

My best climbing experiences have all been outdoors so far. Indoors is fun too, though. I'd never count it out.

As for adrenaline responses, I've started bouldering recently, only indoors though. So far, the adrenaline response from being 10+ feet off the ground with no rope or harness is really getting in the way. When I keep my wits about me though, bouldering's a real kick.
Before I injured myself out of climbing, I had converted almost entirely to bouldering. More zen for me, just you and the rock, no gear, and you don't have to climb half a pitch to get to the crux.
Personally, I would love to climb outdoors. But first I'd need to learn to climb alltogether. ;) And right now much physical activity is out of the question. I would love to build the strength you get climbing. Keep at it whichever setting you prefer either way you are getting awesome exercise! And as for the writing, there will always be people who do not like your work, it happens. If everyone were the same, and liked the same things this world would be boring. As a photographer I see it too. People who love the angle I used for a picture, and others who don't like the subject matter entirely. To me, the one opinion that matters is mine. If I am happy with it then everyone else can be damned.
That whole "different people like different things, and will respond to the same piece in different ways" thing was the hardest for me to accept. I'm not sure I'm even going to read the reviews, when they come out.
I used to free climb quite a bit before I messed up my knees, but I had sort of a cattish attitude toward climbing. that is, I would see an easy way up, scramble up quickly, hit a hard patch, look down, realize just how high I was, and panic slightly at the thought of trying to get down..

of course going up was much easier than going down. I discovered some interesting new areas of the Santa Barbara mountains, simply because I got to points where I couldn't back down, and had to keep going up.
Am I the only one who's so completely intrigued by the mention of pork roast that it's pushed all the rest of what's written here out of mind?

Hooray 500!

Terrific blog, great post. I've lurked, reading the entries for a long time, but now I'd like to just say, good job. And good books, too. I just blogged about the conflict between life and writing (and word counts) at my blog at http://cesartorres.net/blog/. It's a very appropo week for thinking about this stuff. Anyway, thanks so much for your words!

Re: Hooray 500!

Thank you! And welcome to the community.
I hope someone's mentioned to you that outdoors is at least a grade harder than in the gym, and the Northeast usually carries at least another one grade penalty? So if you're ripping off 5.8's in the gym, a 5.6 outdoors could be a challenge.

If you feel like blowing a lot of time and money on a pursuit that you're not sure is worthwhile, you might drive up to Quincy some Wednesday evening for the AMC group. That would give you experience on a different sort of rock with a different sense of exposure (the walls at the Quarries rise straight up out of a nice flat grassy lawn, instead of the high jumble of boulders you need to climb to get to the base of most crags.)

But mostly keep on with what you enjoy. I don't know what percentage of people who buy a pair of rock shoes wind up climing the Eiger, but somehow I suspect it's very small.
I've noticed that people tend to prefer what they learned with. Most indoor climbers don't care to much for outdoor climbing, and vice versa. I started with sport and trad climbing outdoors, and gym climbing doesn't do much for me. *shrugs* Alot also depends on the terrain too, if Joshua Tree didn't have such an abundance of routes, I don't know that anyone would climb there, as the rock is absolutely brutal.
The first climbing I did was outdoors, and I've done some bouldering--but I find I'm too busy being scared and tired and in pain on these hundred-foot walls to actually enjoy the climbing, or want to do it. Whereas in the gym, it's much less scary, even on a forty-foot wall.

Bouldering is too much hard with too little reward for me, so far. But then, my attitude seems to be that the crux is the annoying thing I have to get past so I can enjoy the rest of the climb. *g*
t's enough to make you shrug your shoulders and write to please yourself, I tell ya.

Wisdom. This is one of those truths that's in every self-help and "be an artist" books on the market - but I really think only life experience can TEACH you to understand what those words mean.
Hope you don't mind me lurking, stepping up to introduce myself. (Hi. Hello!)

Wow! Can I just say how brave all you climbers are? I used to think I was brave about this kind of thing, but found out I'm a chicken in a 60' ropes course. Talk about butt kicked!

My assigned partner had a major, major freak out and my jitters turned into a full on sympathy rush of terror. Went home so exhausted I couldn't move for 24 hours. So, nodding at the discomfort and the chagrin. No shame in being human.

Never had the urge to climb again, although I had done my share of scaling limestone canyon walls as a kid (who hadn't yet grown a brain or a sense of mortality). Boy, if my mother had ever known...she probably would have locked me in the basement till I was 30.

Adrenaline...nature's way to remind you of mortality. Mmmm. Pork roast...a tastier way to savor your own humanity.

I admire you all for climbing, and will stick to humiliating myself with things like bad guitar and crappy writing. Courage!
Well, my strength/weight ration sucks. (I'm actually pretty fit, but I also weigh around 230 pounds.)

So.

If I can do it....
Try the slab wall. It's less about upper body strength. *g*
Is there anything in the world, this side of raising children, that's a more humbling experience than making your living as an artist?

You should try doing both simultaneously. Drive you to drink, it will, or just cease giving a hoot what other folks say.
Fortunately, I'm not interested in raising children.

I have a godson, and whatever I can do to enrich his upbringing I consider my contribution to the future. Kids of my own? Not just no, but hell no.