Growing up in a vacuum, Ive never been too interested in emptiness. Where the infinite sky meets the eternal glad-hand, snuffing out desire, uncoupling attachments, about the last thing comes to mind. Whistling Dixie from the void, suffocating winds blow forever. Nothing much matters. Dryness shrivels the soul before puberty. Indians ask spare change, homeless push shopping carts, suburbs enjoy seamless malls: Gap, dental hygiene, introverted conformity. Torn-down beer parlors had character, trays loaded with lager, two bits a glass. Theres too much space. Time moves too slowly. Grocery shopping, cutting the grass, going to church. Everybodys nervous, constipated, hoping Heavens more interesting. I still dont know why my parents moved us here when I was eight. Vancouver has character. People live real lives. Who cares if your lawn has dandelions or you go to the wrong church? Emotional highs bulldozed down to cold silent resentment. Watching hockey, drinking coffee, burning steaks in the back yard. The Safeway trim. Hysteria happens. Poisons the brain. Lawyers suddenly shouting in cowboy hats, petroleum engineers howling at the moon. But mostly its a quiet madness, something in the eyes, unsatisfactory bowel movements, the politics. World class sewage system, first-rate garbage collection. Anxiety to be like everybody else isnt actual desire. Stuck in a rut isnt genuine attachment. Real lifes out there somewhere. But not here. Tokyo, Monday, 03/12/07