I’m eating a kiwi as I type this. What a strange little fruit. I can’t decide what it is about kiwi that makes me buy them every time I see them. Are they good? Yes, though this one is definitely on the sour side—my tongue is stinging from the acid. But I have to be honest, as much as I like kiwi I don’t think that flavor is why I buy them. I think I buy them because they are so damn strange. Kiwi are strange-looking fruit. I can’t think of any other fruit that comes clothed in a fur coat. And the inside—that bright green and the black seeds. It’s alien. Kiwi are alien life. I think I buy them because of that. I think I buy kiwi as a dedication to the strange.
I’ve yet to buy a dragon fruit but it’s really only a matter of time.
I’m trying to think of other strange fruit that I love:
- Prickly pear, which are actually kind of similar to kiwi though the spines on the outside are ticker and the inside is magenta.
- Durian, I’ve only had it once in popsicle form but I liked it despite being told it would taste like gym socks
- Lychee, once peeled they look like pupil-less eyeballs but taste like heaven. I was at a Korean BBQ once and they had lychee at the salad bar. I must have eaten at least 20 of them.
- Loquats, they look a lot like small apricots until you cut them open and see that dark brown double pit. I grew up with these around.
- Figs, definitely more on the common side but figs are weird. A fig is like a scrotum filled with the strangest texture. When you get a good one, it tastes like honey. Grew up on these too.
- Pomegranates. also grew up on these. Lower on the weird scale than the others but how many fruits do you peel to find hundreds of individual pieces inside. And how many leave you with Lady Macbeth hands when you’re done?
I’ve just written almost 400 words on strange fruit. This is the power of daily journaling and its ability to turn off the censor in your head. That little asshole would have told me not to waste my time before but now after 56 consecutive days of freewriting for an hour a day, the censor knows to stay out of the way.
I can’t believe it’s been 56 days! 66 days to build a habit is actually a much larger commitment than I could have realized. There have been so many ebbs and flows to this. So many days where I think I have the habit nailed and it’s easy, and almost as many days where it has been a push. I can see why all of these 10 days, 14 days, even 30 days to-build-a-habit templates fail. The commitment has to be huge. I still have two more weeks to go and I’m not convinced that it will even be concrete at that point. When I began I was positive that 66 days was enough, but after the tides of the past two months, I see how easy it would be to derail a habit.
I’m glad I did this because I think I understand habit-building from a different perspective now (as well as habit breaking.) When you observe one habit over a long period of time you start to really understand how fragile they are as well as how resistant we are to accept them even if we tell ourselves that we want them or even need them. It also becomes incredibly clear why you shouldn’t habit stack. I can barely hold on to one thing. No wonder all the times I tried to stack like 6 or 7 habits into my day always ended in disaster.
Now that I know how much of a dedication 66 days is, I’m having a difficult time decided which to build next after I reach the threshold for journaling.
- a 16-8 daily eating schedule
- a daily exercise routine
- a meditation routine
- daily compositional writing
- learning slide guitar
These are all strong contenders. All of them good from an outside perspective. And I would say to some degree I want them all, but after experiencing the bulk of a 66-day dedication there is also a voice in my head that says “which one is worth the work?” Funny how that happens. All the candy looks good when it’s free, but when you have to pay that’s when discernment kicks in. I think I’ve found a good use for the censor after all!
I just had a strange moment where I was drinking water and telling myself that the next thing I wanted to type about was how Amanda Palmer is inspiring me to post things from my actual journal onto my blog. But wait. I wrote about yesterday…but in a different way. I suddenly realized that Amanda Palmer is a double influence on this. She is the mother and the father. Her book inspired me to confront my lack of openness. That’s what I already wrote about. But I realize now that her Patreon inspires me——how do I say this? Her Patreon reminds me that the river in my head never runs dry.
The tendency when posting online is to play conservatively. Guard the base. Hold back. Not hold back for privacy but hold back so that you don’t run out of things to say. What if I say everything and then there is nothing left to say. I had this on my mind regarding sharing my journal. If I share everything in the journal then what the hell and I going to talk about on the podcast every week? And then that same day that I was running all this around in my head, I got an email. New post from Amanda on Patreon. It epically long. I haven’t even finished reading all of it. All of her posts are like this. She just pours herself out into them every time. And I ask myself how does she keep this up? How does she find more? But that’s it, isn’t it? There’s always more. My mind is always thinking. I’d fallen prey to the censor again in a different way. I wasn’t afraid of running out of things to say, I was afraid of running out of good shit to say? What if I start writing petty things. What if I start writing inane things? What if I start writing stupid things?
That’s the point.
I know I won’t run out of things to say. For 56 days I’ve yet to run dry. And every time I think I’m dry I find that I’m just being judgemental again. I’m just telling myself what is and what isn’t worth putting on the page or the screen.
For god’s sake, I wrote about strange fruit today—and not the heartbreaking Billie Holiday song that Nina Simone somehow made more heartbreaking. Just fruit.
My mind is not a cup that only holds and pours so much. It is an ocean. It is vast. It is like space. It is endless. And it is filled with stars—burning distant stars.