For the past few weeks, I've been on an emotional roller coaster, and have probably hurt the feelings of several people; here on LJ, at work, and at home.
Although I don't really have to explain, I want to, more for the sake of clearing it up in my own head. You are welcome to read, but don't have to.
I'm going to start off from about a year ago.
Last year, after I returned from Burning Man, I had decided that I wasn't going to go this year.
I let a girl who I met at last year's Burn change my mind.
About a week before taking off, I was both excited to go out to the desert again, and yet also regretting that I had decided to do so. As each day approached, I became resentful and dishearted.
During my drive up, I kept thinking to myself, "why in the hell am I doing this?"
One of my biggest concerns was knowing that a week after I had everything set up, I'd just be tearing it down again. Looking back, I feel that this was an unwarrented reason for not wanting to go.
As I was leaving, between switching CDs, I'd hear news reports of the call to evacuate New Orleans. Katrina was expected to hit hard. I didn't think much of it at the time; having been to New Orleans and seeing their evacuation strategy, I figured they'd be okay.
Even when I finally arrived on the Playa, negative energy still surrounded me. I ended up in a closed lane, and I got shit for it from the Gate Staff. Instead of telling me to back up and get back in line, the guy made a big stink and started telling everyone in line that I was trying to cut, etc. Just for the record, I can back up my truck with a trailer better than most people can parallel park, so if he would have told me to do that, I wouldn't have had a problem.
So, for that week leading up to Burning Man, I was in my emotional valley.
Once out there and set up, I began to have a good time. I met up with all sorts of people, including many LJers who I didn't think were going. Most of you I ran into completely on accident, and it was a wonderful surprise.
Oh, sure, there were some rumblings about what was going on in New Orleans, but they were typically bits of false information that had spread and changed from person to person. We did hear the New Orleans was under martial law at one point, due to looting. That one sounded credible, but that gas had raised to over $7.00 a gallon, I instantly waved that off as crap.
So, during the week of Burning Man, I was at my emotional peak, having a wonderful time, and meeting new friends.
But then I get back home. I don't watch TV much, very rarely, in fact.
All I ever heard in the news reports was that some Democrats ware blaming Republicans and that the Republicans were blaming the Democrats about helping people in New Orleans. All I kept thinking was, "stop fucking blaming someone else and do something, then, you idiots!" This thought became stuck in my head when one of the e-mails to the local TV stations said something similar to what I was thinking, except for one small thing. The guy who had written the e-mail was also trying to make it sound like someone else should be helping, as long as he didn't have to get out of his chair from in front of the TV. While I agreed with him that the polititcians need to stop playing their games, I didn't like the way it had sounded that it wasn't his responsibility to help, just theirs.
Another for the record: As we were leaving Burning Man, the Gate Keepers had set up donation boxes for cash to go to the Red Cross. I stuffed a wad of bills in one on my way out... not sure exactly how much, but I'm guessing about $80 or so. It's not much, but I felt better knowing that I had done something, even if it was just a small token.
Now, who knows, maybe this guy had sent in money or something as well. It didn't sound like it, but one never knows.
So this was my emotional state dropping into another valley, another deeper valley.
When I finally did see images of New Orleans (instead of just politicians blaming one another), I sank further still. The anniversary of 9/11 came up, and seeing those images again didn't help.
There was also the fact that I had agreed to return to work early after my vacation, so I had gone into work completely not ready. I'm not doing that again. I need to be well rested and completely unpacked and cleaned up.
I had written some comments both here and in a couple of communities, where I just got hammered by people. I guess most didn't realize that I was out of touch with news events while away at Burning Man. I probably also sounded like that guy who had written e-mail to the local news.
I really didn't feel like arguing any of my points. But I should say that some comments were hurtful, and in the state of depression I was in, I did not take to it very well.
But I'm a grown-up, and I've dealt with depression before.
I gave myself a few days to recover, and that's exactly what I'm doing.
My emotional valley is behind me, and I'm getting to the point where it's flattening out to a comfortable level again.
aryx should be back to his normal self within a day or two.