Learned State

1979 w100 classic mercdes

There is a concept that I had never heard about until recently sometimes called a“Learned State”. At its core think of a train wreck addicted artist, musician, stock broker or whatever who works brilliantly in an altered if not intoxicated state. Odds are they learned their craft, honed it and perfected it in that very state. Therefore it’s their operational norm. Anything else might be fine on occasion but they work best in a condition that kills most people who try to emulate them. And sure it may eventually kill them too. Many may function in that learned state without even being aware of what it is, I am one of those people in a way.


Ii used to think wow think how great those great artists and musicians would be sober but the reality is they may not be. In fact they could totally suck technically or creatively because they learned to function in a fucked up state. It’s concept that struck me and while my only chemical addition if Caffeine (unless good sour dough bread and pizza count as chemicals) in a lot of ways it seems to fit almost all areas of my life.


Work – For 27 years I have been going faster and faster. I literally started as no one. Along the way I’ve have watched countless others who tried to keep up or be like me destroy their lives, relationships and as I’ll detail in another post their health. Like a good addict I would warn them not to be me, that it is never what it seems. A Warning that has grown more dire and stern as time passes. Then let them decide to get on the ride or not.


Don’t get me wrong it’s a fun ride for a while and for me the only thing I know. So as marriages all around me crumble, ending in ugly divorces, world class battles over meaningless things and a few important ones, and a line of sad broken hearts my pitch black soul and I keep on trucking. My own marriage as flawed as it is started with me as a working musician. Not a normal or easy life. That was the begining of the learned state of chaos is exists in. I’d then moved into company barely past start up, to high growth to the peak of the wave. Then into the version of S&M known and Mergers and Acquisitions, and corporate integration; rinse and repeat. Like the marriages and other relationships I would watch addiction and / or drive take over, Sometimes we’d soar. Sometimes we would lose it all. Looking back at the hundreds who washed out, stepped aside, let the game pass them by or simply weren’t good enough to make it in the long term. It is a thick stack of resumes.


Then again maybe they are happier. Have what they want from life. If so good for them! No really I mean it. But their failures and demise keep me driven, wake me from my sleep, and lurk in the back of my mind all the while going faster and harder and looking at everything as a way to get further from the beginning and most of all to not end up like them.


And from the humble beginnings the hotels got nicer, the meals got fancier, the strippers hotter and more abundant (ironic since I don’t really like strip clubs), and the parties more over-priced. None of it is a “normal existence”. I don’t have any normal relationships, all of them except for the one with my parents were formed in this “learned state” of chaos, pressure, and relentless pace.


This post is the first of a four part subset of the “The Last Incantations” I’ve dubbed “My Dark Odyssey”. I have written this type of post before but am trying to be more open about a number of things. Hopefully that will come to light in the subsequent posts “Circling the Drain”, “Self-Imposed Exile”, and the still to be named ast installment

About Malflic

Minor Demon, life long hedonist, sadist and general nerd. Women are my weakness and greatest addiction of choice followed by torrid love affair with coffee and caffeine. When not committing sins of the flesh I'm an unrepentant capitalist, avid reader, Star Wars, and B rate comedy movie geek.

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