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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in Matthew Harris' LiveJournal:

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    Thursday, August 21st, 2014
    12:36 am
    I had my job interview
    I had my job interview. It was actually confused, they called me a day early and I thought I had missed it until they told me that they had maybe messed it up, but we rescheduled and we talked for 45 minutes. I don't know how it went, there wasn't a lot of back-and-forth, they asked the questions and I gave my answers. I don't know if that means anything, or if they were just being poker-faced.

    If I do get it, it will still be kind of a struggle because the hours won't be very much, and finding an apartment is work. Also, just the process of moving there and starting again and just scraping by for a year. Its exhausting to think about everything that needs to be done. But if I don't do it now, I don't know what will happen next.

    Besides, we do have a Plan B. Plan B involves two things: seriously getting ready to move out of this house, but also me taking a train trip around the United States because WHY NOT? I think that doing that will kind of help the myopia I've boxed myself into.

    I do feel like just going through the process of this interview was somewhat of a watershed.
    Tuesday, August 19th, 2014
    5:59 am
    It is 6 AM
    And I am still up!
    After six hours of productive worrying, I've moved on to trying to read Goethe, which isn't quite as productive.

    ...I am also seeing Jupiter and Venus in syzygy.
    Monday, August 18th, 2014
    2:44 am
    Thinking about this job, and also about what will happen if it doesn't happen
    I've done a lot of research on this possible job, and am already planning my bike rides. Because that is the thing I should be thinking of...all the places I want to ride my bicycle, of course. It seems doable, as far as money goes, because the housing in this town is cheap! And it is something. Above all, it is something.

    But now I have to think about what to do if it doesn't materialize. There were six people contacted, I don't know if all of them will interview, but even if only half do...the odds don't favor me. I meet the preferred rather than the required qualifications for the job. But still, its hardly something where I am cashing in my savings.

    But it is something, and I guess I feel that if I go through the process, and it doesn't work out, I am free to do whatever comes next. And what WILL come next? Well, I don't know, exactly. I am thinking some variation on my train trip idea. But I've fired my three arrows into the air, and it is time to go on.

    In other news...a lot of energy, not much to do with it, waiting for something to happen, and my bicycle's brakes keep sticking.
    Thursday, August 14th, 2014
    10:38 am
    I have a job interview.
    I have a job interview for next week.

    As could be expected, it is for a part time job in a distant location, but...

    It certainly does make me feel better about things. :)
    Tuesday, August 12th, 2014
    8:09 pm
    1:56 am
    Mostly a daydream, but...
    I spent today daydreaming and looking at Amtrak schedules.
    (well, not all of today, I also got a haircut)
    Not that I am asking for a commitment, but say I did take a gigantic trip on Amtrak using their one month pass: who here would be interested in having me visit and stay with them?
    Monday, August 11th, 2014
    1:23 am
    Other ideas:
    So here is a brief list of "Other Ideas" I have for movin' on, since conventional ideas aren't working.

    1. Go overseas to teach English
    2. Enter doctoral school
    3. Get a bike trailer and go and be a bike hobo
    4. Take a month long train trip where I visit the remaining members of the 48 states in a whirlwind of activity

    ...those ideas all address different issues, with some of them being seriously life changing but waaaay too much commitment, while others don't fix the underlying problem but at least would be fun.

    I've been turning these ideas over in my mind, but I really can't do any of them until we clean out the garage, etcetera.

    I wanted to add more detail to this but it is late and my wrist hurts, etc. etc.

    Maybe I should get a haircut tomorrow and see if that makes me happy.
    Sunday, August 10th, 2014
    1:56 am
    So I am feeling better, but still caught-22.
    As I might have mentioned, the two weeks or so I came back from Vancouver were a pretty bad time for me. I am starting to feel better, but:

    it is August, the year has mostly gone by, and nothing I have tried has worked. I have been here a year, and I can't imagine doing this another year. And another, and another...

    But I also don't know how to get out of here.

    Currently, I don't think it is very likely that a college will hire me, as it is now. Based on making at least two dozen job applications to colleges in four states, and not getting much interest back, it doesn't seem I will get very far with my current plans. I am guessing that to get a job, I need more volunteer experience, more CEUs, or at least networking. All of this involve moving to a larger city, so I can start getting the wheels working.

    The problem with moving to a larger city is that it takes MONEY. In fact, quite a bit of money. The first time I moved into Portland, I got a 400 dollar a month apartment with minimal utilities on top of that. I think I did live on 700 dollars a month. That type of stuff doesn't happen anymore. Apart from the money itself, the money is much more formal: it needs to be verified and proven.

    The same goes for why I can't just move somewhere and get an unrelated job. The entire idea that I can just have a firm handshake with the property manager and say I will be looking for work and have something in a few weeks, and then "pound the pavement" and get a retail job...well, it is just like having a doctor who makes housecalls, and accepts payments of apples in lieu of cash. It just don't happen that way no more.

    I am not saying that the situation is hopeless, just that the more facile answers that people have given me don't seem to take into account current conditions.

    Tomorrow I will talk about my other "out there" ideas for getting out of this rut.
    Saturday, August 9th, 2014
    2:14 am
    For various reasons, things have perked up a bit
    For various reasons, things have perked up a bit.

    But now it is past 2 AM and I don't have time to go into all the details of how things have changed. Maybe next entry I will, and talk about all the things that still need to be done.
    Tuesday, July 29th, 2014
    2:03 am
    When I was gone, running around
    In the 10 days when I was running around so much, I thought to myself
    "When I get home, I will use this energy, so frenetic and wasted here, to concentrate on my own life, and achieve my own goals"
    ...that didn't happen. Since I've been back, I've been either numb or depressed, and have done so very little.
    I'm sorry.
    Wednesday, July 23rd, 2014
    5:47 pm
    Home so what next?
    After the last few posts, the rest of my trip went quickly enough. I actually had some fun in Whitefish: it was the first time in many years that I managed to be in Whitefish unencumbered by luggage, and with the ability to take a shower, so I walked around the town feeling light and not like a big stinky buffalo bludgeoning tourists with my backpack. That was nice.

    Then it was...Monday I come home. Today is Wednesday. Monday, when I came home, I had a brief feeling of "what is this place I have returned to? this is my life?" which was replaced with...well, my routine. A very routine routine.

    Obviously my time in Portland was very emotionally dense. When I got back here, it was incredible for me when I realized I had only been gone 10 days. Those 10 days involved more activity and feeling than 2 or 3 normal months. I forgot about my own life while I was there, and now that I have come is time to think about my life again. Only I don't know what that means or how I will do that.
    Sunday, July 20th, 2014
    7:48 pm
    Sleeping did help
    Sleeping did help
    Wednesday, July 16th, 2014
    3:27 pm
    Okay, right now I am at the library.
    As far as the situation goes, it is...well, it is what it is?
    Right now the part that is getting to me is that I am living too much of The Couve/Fast-Food lifestyle, which tends to be financially draining as well as not good for my health. I am bouncing around from place to place, I don't have everything I usually have. Running around like a man late for an appointment. Too hot too cook. Etcetera. Looking for fixes for that. Also, no regular internet. At the library. Probably should go get food now. It is 3:26 and my eating for the day has been: a quesadilla and a snickerdoodle. Also, its hot.

    But yesterday I decided to just go for a walk, and walked along Burnt Bridge Creek Trail to where it ended, which was the first time I have done that.

    ...and I lost my hat. And sunglasses. Need to replace them.

    Okay zoom zoom zoom I will think later. :)
    Thursday, July 10th, 2014
    1:26 pm
    Brief update:
    I know everyone here was waiting for a big impressionistic description of my situation, but:

    1. I took a train ride, and it was okay.
    2. It feels good to be here and to actually be doing things instead of worrying.
    3. We've identified several different concrete solutions to small problems.
    4. My father is still recovering. He is awake now. I will be visiting him soon.
    5. The big issues going forward are still under discussion, but several people I know seem to be on the same page, at least.

    More later!
    Tuesday, July 8th, 2014
    9:11 pm
    When did I stop feeling part of things?
    I am in Whitefish, posting on my phone. Whitefish is a nice place to be, especially now that things have cooled off. The depot doesn't open until 9:30, so I have been walking from one park to another. Had some pizza. Told an old woman my life's story.

    There was also a Farmers Market. Farmers Market in Whitefish at the peak of tourist season is quite a thing to see. All these happy, athletic people milling around and having fun. Quite a few of whom are attractive young women. And even considering the fact that I was lugging luggage and feeling less than perky, I didn't feel a part of it at all. How and why are these people so happy? How would I even share in their improbable smile world? What do these people converse with each other about? Do they feel sympathy for each other without struggle? I don't even know. I don't know when I stopped knowing.

    Posted via

    1:26 am
    And what I remember is the Valentine's Day candy
    What I remember is the Valentine's Day candy, bought in big bunches from clearence racks at nearby stores, tinfoil wrapped globs of melted and scrunched sugar and chocolate and peanut butter that gave me a neatly packaged way of making the world okay for another five minutes. But that would have been a false memory, because this happened as late night of the 13th rolled over into early morning of the 14th, so there would have been no discount candy. Maybe it was the leftovers of Christmas candy, six weeks past due and still chugging along providing me with a substitute for mental health. Or maybe I am pushing the Valentine's Day candy back later. But that is what I remember, in that room that was on the edge between artfully, "lived-in" messy and "I have lost control of my life" messy.

    And I remember sitting at my computer (oh, and for this I could find a google chat log), and having a conversation that was just as artfully messy as my room. Purposely "random" in a way that harkened back to earlier internets: coy and cute and twee. And sometime in the middle of that, or actually towards the end, she said "I like you". I've been told many times that I was loved and that someone's life centered around me, that I was indispensable. And none of those meant much to me because they have gone, and love for a role rather than for a person isn't real. But this: it literally made my head swim, I felt like I was about to fall out of my chair. That simple "I like you" seemingly the most vanilla of sentiments, seemed to be a secret message on the level of the most tawdry and long-buried of secrets. And I remembered how good that moment felt, through the coming weeks, which were going to be some of the worst weeks of my life.
    12:31 am
    Leaving tomorrow, and also, where do I even start?
    Tomorrow I am leaving for Vancouver, a trip that will take me up to Whitefish, to Seattle, and then down to Vancouver. In all, it will take me 24 hours to make the trip. My mom got me a sleeper car between Whitefish and Seattle, at least. I don't know how long I will stay once I get there: I am thinking not as long as in past trips, given the high pressure atmosphere and also the amount of people coming and going, perhaps not that long. I don't even know if my father will be awake enough to know I am there. I am hoping/thinking that maybe once I get there things will be more apparent, whatever direction they take.

    I guess the thing for me is:

    Over the past week, I've woken up in the morning and spent a lot of time to get started. Which isn't unusual. But I've felt really tired. And I keep on trying to steel myself for the task ahead, but I keep on thinking: when will this end? When will I feel good? When will I feel like what I do matters, and isn't just a trap laid out for me? Will there ever be a time in my life when someone will proactively treat me like I am valuable? Or will I always be standing in the shadow of other people's problems? What do I have to look forward to?

    And that is how I feel right now, and why this entire thing is so hard to do.
    Sunday, July 6th, 2014
    1:13 am
    Ups and downs, plans and...not plans
    For obvious reasons, the last four or five days has had lots of ups and downs emotionally for me.

    And my concrete plans have also changed around a lot.

    My mom bought me a hat today. And two t-shirts.

    More updates as they become...available...
    Wednesday, July 2nd, 2014
    2:51 am
    A picture, before the real update.

    Today was hot, but I still bicycled up Sleeping Child Road. The snowmelt on Sleeping Child Creek has gone down, so the water is high but not roaring. I left my bicycle to go wade in the creek, and took this picture. I bicycled 30 miles today, which is good considering how hot it is.

    One thing about Montana and my bicycling is that even though I've been many places, I haven't been in every place in every season. This might be the first time that I've been to this location in July, for example. And it is very different in July than in June.
    Tuesday, July 1st, 2014
    2:24 am
    Super Mario World hacks
    Did I ever mention:

    I love watching videos on youtube of people playing Super Mario World hacks.
    This is what I do often when I am trying to get to sleep, but am not quite there.

    More substantive update tomorrow.
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