Posts Tagged ‘confrontation’


26 Mar


Gabriel the Bulldozer


Date: Mon, 22 Mar 1999, PBurris wrote:

I UTTERLY neglected my social graces and took off for my friend Lena's this week without mentioning to either one of you where I was going, or even that I was going. I apologize. Tim mentioned that you had asked him if he knew where I was...This was rude and accidental, not malicious and deceitful. ps, be home later this evening after class. phb

Date: Thu Mar 25, 1999, Gabriel writes:

I don't know what exactly crashed. Windows? Netscape? The cursor hung up. First time on a PC anything could happen if I let my fingers do the walkin' and the velvet rubble the talkin'. But seriously I hit the reset button only to realize in a second or two the overkill I had probably enacted. At one point there was a password issue, but I did not wish to stumble through several layers of an environment I know nothing about on someone else's machine, at this late date.

Your penchant for avoiding us the past 18 months has me pinched. Skip Henderson has now done the same thing. On three separate occasions he boasted he had a useless NT box just sitting there, wherever, nearby doing nothing, and he would exchange it to me for services rendered. As soon as I ask for it, like a charm, the box is unavailable for whatever reasons. I will go out this afternoon or tonight and buy a frippin' PC, and stop this BS of depending on people with mouthpieces which don't seem to respond to what comes out of them.

For weeks, nah, for months, nah, for a year now I have been trying to expand our relationship to something more than a passing freighter in the night. But let's face it. You ain't interested. Your proven track record galloping about as a fleet tested phantom around us while playing up the social butterfly role everywhere but here betrays any other ambitions you spout in this area. I no longer believe your words are as important as your compulsion in saying them. You seem to have every five minutes of your 24-7 planned down to a nub. Zero percent of that time includes us, except to pass by in a rush or a dead state of tired. That's a very shallow approach to take with me Peter, and time has about run out on your excuses. Your time is certainly your own business. You OWE us nothing in that regard. And the GSI buffoonery isn't your problem. But you can stop with that tired old song and dance of friendship. I am no longer interested in hearing it.

Meanwhile, we've got some serious talking to do.

On Fri, 26 Mar 1999, Peter Burris wrote:

A very gracious missive, which resonates strongly with my own lasting goodwill towards you and Sue. This has been the best living circumstance of my adult, perhaps all, my life, and I have both of you to thank for this. Without seeming to rehash the conflicts which came to the fore last night, I suppose it’s my delight with the consideration, the efforts, and the freedom, and generosity you have extended me that I was oblivious to the strain my aloofness created. For that and the rudeness manifest in my behavior, I sincerely apologize. For the opportunity to learn, to share dreams, and discuss the music, books, and words that we have, I thank you.

I also want to thank you for your offer to ease the moving process. While I don’t know what in particular I could ask along these lines, I am heartened to know that we will not be treading tentatively in a battlezone, but cooperating in the coda to a chapter that has benefitted me greatly, even as, sadly, it has harvested you fewer delights.

Peter, I'm sorry things turned out the way they have, that my tone last night was pitched and angry, but please be assured that I will in no way lodge any lasting anger or resentment against you on any matter whatsoever. I certainly did not intend to belittle, mock, or besmudge your integrity or person. So let me repeat that I have the greatest respect for you despite what you may feel to the contrary at the moment.

While I believe I touched on most of the details of this rather simple matrix of issues presently defining me, I don't think I emphasized the most important detail.

The primary issue at stake is that I have had to look realistically at what I am chewing off in the way of conflicting ambitions. Building a bonafide business with an appropriate growth rate doesn't seem within my grasp anymore. I am much too neurotic to play the requisite guessing game, and as a result I am forced to scale back and refocus to reassert my center. I can no longer fool myself into thinking others will be there for me when I call on them. We are indeed two forces of a selfish and self-pitying generation.

I regret that we failed to accomplish many of the shared dreams we had articulated to you. But recently I have felt like I was riding a crashwave. Saying no to Bob meant saying no to you. But my anxiety in disappointing myself and the others involved amplified for your benefit last night the petty but accumulative grudges I had been building up as a result of MY OWN TAKE on matters. I do not plea objectivity or any moral high ground on the issues I brought up. You need to realize however that you are not the only one in this house who suffered through a maternal hellfire, and my psychology is as warped in general terms as your own might be. You claim to despise confrontation as do I, but we do seem to handle this fear and trepidation a bit differently.

My point here is not to rehash old news, but to emphasize that if there is anything we can do to help you resettle, we will do what we can to oblige you. If you wish to discuss anything, please feel free to approach.

Well, here you are, so I will close this.

Gabriel the Bulldozer


"Ignorance and virtue suck on the same straw. Souls grow on bones, but die beneath bankers' hours.""