I turned in my last (!) paper at the art history office yesterday afternoon. I don't study art history, but there we were. It was a stealth operation, compromised when my professor (talking to another teacher I had for just part of a semester two years back) caught me on my way out of the building thanks to an unanticipated staircase-hallway intersection.
All this time, I've thought I was an analytical person, committed to breaking things down (lysis, dissolution, there's no meaning but there is definitely structure). Talking to my professor about the topic of my paper, though, rubbed my face in the very real problems I have with concentrating on a single thesis. I collect, I vacillate, I depart constantly from the paths I set, I feel more strongly for metaphor than I do analogy. I feel a lot, and the parts of things I feel something for assume monstrous proportion. My analysis is the textual equivalent of the appearance of a cortical homunculus - accurate but adhering to some crucially wrong priority.
He said none of these things, they came from me. I told him it is my belief that crazy people make good art, but whether or to what extent you are crazy is of no concern. I convinced myself right then that I am not a scientist, at least not right now, and that maybe I should respect my art a little bit more because I may or may not be to some extent crazy, and there is a considerable historical precedent to all of this.