Author: Yes, I wasted years, playing along with the whole myth of 'being a writer.'
Buddhist monk: Perhaps there is something flawed, in the end, about putting the reality of life into terms. Nirvana cannot be grasped by words, by thoughts, by the mind, but only through the clear consciousness beyond self. Spiritual insight.
I'm sure it's tempting, maybe a fundamental need, to put things into words. Maybe it is even a good exercise. Used in the right way. But 'writing,' to put a term on it, is part of the heaps, the skandhas that would lead us to believe we are a self of independent thoughts and senses and apparent form. It is through these forms that we come to realize the teaching of Buddha at its most basic, dukkha, suffering, the unsatisfactory quality of existence, and then freedom from it. But until we are able to reach that, there is, as I'm sure you know, self-medication against the continual vacillations of mood.
Author: That I am familiar with. But the one thing I will say is that, yes, at gut level I found this to be the human condition, in general, behind the make-up and the show, and I guess that's why, if I could rationalize a reason out of it, why I fell in with restaurants and bars, with service people, with customers, people in need of company. And it was all quite a show, quite an ant farm, you know, those glassed in little colonies of ants that tunnel through the sand, they don't make them anymore, sparing ants such a life. But oh god, the years I tossed away. What a great great shame. I'll never be able to make anything of my life now.
BM: Well, you were learning what we all must learn, in order to evolve. Take refuge in the Buddha, the Dharma, the Sangha, as you can, but, become a Buddhist, meditate, take a step back.
A: Evolution is in order, I'm sure.
BM: Yes, it's natural, where a thoughtful person ends up. Otherwise...
A: You're just making matters worse. Yes, believe me, I know that. Somehow I didn't see it, you know, caught up in it all, trying to solve my problems... I could cry.
BM: That's probably what Siddhartha probably said to himself at some point.