continued from part I, wherein andrew compares not sleeping to digestion, part II, wherein andrew recites shampoo instructions and says strange things about death scenes, part III, wherein andrew reviews the film phoebe's wonderland, and part IV, wherein andrew confesses to nudity and happiness
if at this moment you burst through my bedroom door, took four steps, and sat yourself down on the foot of my bed--sorry, there's no chair in my room--and attempted to have a normal conversation with me, things would start off a little strange. i'd be shocked at your incorrigibility, barging in unannounced like that, and curious about how you managed to break through our locked front door so quietly. i might jump up in protest or surprise, which would be awkward for both of us and disastrous for my laptop. after settling back down under my covers, i might be happy for the company on this godforsaken, sleepless morning but nervous about the odd relational dynamic, given the presumable difference in our state of dress.
however, if we somehow managed to bypass these rational responses of incredulity, if, perhaps, i were accustomed to you crashing through my bedroom door on random mornings at six o'clock, i think you would come away from our normal conversation with a sense that i revealed a normal amount of information about myself. even if our conversation meandered into more personal matters, it's unlikely you would later think, "wow, i can't believe he told me that."
in fact, given my proclivity for question asking or my general sense that other people prefer talking about themselves to hearing me talk about myself (and the fact that i'm often perfectly happy with this arrangement), you might later think, "gee, i told andrew all about my personal life, and he hardly said a thing about himself--what a private fellow."
then you might absentmindedly pull out your iphone and open the facebook app to my online profile--you know you're always doing that. you'd scroll down through some literary links and funny youtube clips, past some obscure status updates that you couldn't decipher, and then arrive at a note from this blog series or a status update that seemed particularly revelatory.
and then what? would you think the material andrew was too closed off? would you think the virtual andrew was too open? would you think these two shades of my self were inconsistent?
i think i'm going to leave it there, in this hypothetical, questiony space. i'm not going to attempt an amazing last-minute web of connections between the various posts in this series. i had trouble sleeping and thought some thoughts--that's the plot.
and the conclusion? there isn't much of one. i know there's a lot i don't know--how to sleep, what it's like to have tourette's, or how to balance intimacy, art, and revelation. and more particularly to the theme of this post, should i value and enact openness or privacy? or should i see the two characteristics riding a seesaw of context that sometimes tips one way and then the other?
i do not know.
PS incidentally, i'm only speaking of openness or revelation in the context of my life and my issues. i feel very strongly that the lives and issues of my friends and family are their business, and i actually think i'm pretty adept at not sharing about their lives or issues. just ask my roommate.