- the short version
and so it is this.
he basically went mad. he had always been mad. it is quite possible that he was born mad. his family believed he was mad. most of his friends, what few he had, and the other kids in school and his teachers thought he was mad. the doctors he was sent to thought he was mad. his bosses and co-workers thought he was mad. his wife thought he was mad. his children thought he was mad. so, he probably is mad.
what else is there to think?
so, that is how maybe this all ought to be read - or whatever part or parts one might decide to read. it may be nothing more than that. though he had been mad the whole while, he specifically went insane type mad in the summer of 1989. these notebooks begin just before then and continue during and after - though exactly when is after is maybe not so clear. is it still continuing?
this was his breakdown. this was when he could no longer fake it. he lost his family. he lost his job. he lost his house. he was on the street. on the street he met others who were mad. they taught him the ways of madness he did not already know. at the end of the summer he ended up in a mental health shelter in an old hotel. from there he got on social security and now has his own apartment. that's about it. he still has a few friends who he collected in cafes where he would hang out writing all this business. none of them seem to mind that he is mad.
as for all else, it is entirely in his imagination. that is what he primarily writes about. whether this is delusion or insight we let the reader decide. he doesn't know. he realizes it could be either or both - or neither. he trusts very little - including himself. maybe especially himself.
one should not take what he has to write too seriously. one should not take what he has to write too literally. it is all one big fat symbolic metaphor thing of whatever was going on in his head at the time. he has moments of depression and anger. he has moments of ecstasy and joy. he has moments of megalomaniac fantasy. he has moments when he barely exists as anything at all. it is all part of the mix. there are other worlds other than the one he is in - that we all occupy supposedly. there is the island. there is the machine. there is us and them. there is the dada-ananda. there is the burning theater. there is the fool and the mystic. there is god and gods. there is it and this and that. there is kottog and gottok. there is truth and there are lies. there are all sorts of other things as well. believe them or not as one will.
it is just a story - a story of madness.
and through it all is the explanation and irrationalogical reasoning of his madness itself - metaschizophrenic science. this twists and turns all sorts of ways. he tries to get into it. he tries to get out of it. he tries to understand it and why it is and why it is happening. what is madness? is it a product of oneself? is it a product of the others? is he himself mad or is it the others who are mad? is it a blessing or curse from god or the gods? is god or the gods themselves mad? is that the origin of the universe and the world? he asks all these questions and more. whether he comes up with any answers or not we will let the reader decide this as well.
the notebooks are ordered here at random though they do also follow an order as they were chosen and typed to be put online. he doesn't know if these are all the notebooks from said time but they're the only ones he's got now. they are almost all typed out entirely as they were written word for word originally with some of the more stupid and pissed off parts edited out - there are still enough left in. the only major change is dropping 1st person for 3rd in some of the earlier ones and other various minor changes and cutting some of it up so it makes more sense. he did not start writing in 3rd person until after his breakdown. he does not want to admit to any of this by using i. would you want to?
they can be read any way one wants. one may start anywhere one wants. one may jump around anyway one wants. it doesn't matter - though some things may be explained in the first ones that are not explained in the later ones. or something like that. you can figure it out however way you want.
- the long version
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