Friday, 1 August 2014

Honestly


I left some of my old life behind, but not all of it.

This is very important to note. I think. Maybe. I have to say a lot of things in this world have become difficult for me to assess in any way, shape or form.

I wish the people closest to me would tell me in my face that what I do is not good enough. I wish they would tell me I'm wasting my time so I can find a reason to leave it all behind.

All as in... reality as society shapes it, you know. Those STUPID rules between people - seriously, why do they exist? Just tonight I got it wrong again "with people"... I went out to meet a few acquaintances I'd met while on a course a few months ago and we'd finally managed to pin down an evening. So far so good, right? Well, except that it felt awkward for the most part, with me finding it really hard to know what to talk about with them. At some point I turned to the woman who had been talking to me about her new business only moments earlier- I thought I could ask her more about that for 'conversation' - but she just snapped at me, saying: "I'd rather not talk about work." And then she looked away, and I was left to look like a moron with only my drink to look down at to pretend I hadn't just been snubbed.

After another moment, I found myself in yet another dreadful social situation where everyone was engrossed in a conversation with their immediate neighbours - except me. I sat there for a split second, just enough time for me to register the fact that I was being left out while the others were in deep conversation that left no room to butt in, and without thinking I got up and walked off to the bar to get another drink (because by then my glass of gin and tonic was empty and I refuse to pretend to be busy by looking at my phone). As I walked off to the bar I suddenly had this strange, slow-motion feeling that I was committing some kind of social faux-pas. By the time I reached the bar my brain told me "Hey, Sarah, you're being really rude by English standards... According to English social rules, you should have bought a round." That meant the socially accepted rule was to ask who else wanted a drink and then buy it for them since I got up first to go back to the bar.

Well. It was too late. I was already at the bar so I got my drink and went back to my seat hoping no one had noticed... after all, they were all engrossed in their own conversations, right? Guess again. As soon as I sat back down with my drink, the woman sitting opposite me got up and made a point to ask everyone at the table (except me, obviously) what they would like to drink before walking off to buy them drinks.

To be absolutely honest about it, I just followed my own logic rather than social expectations:

1) I wasn't really getting on with the people there. They ignored me for the most part and I felt terribly awkward.

2) The only reason people buy other people drinks is because 1) They are rich and they don't care how much they spend, OR 2 ) They are good friends, OR 3) It's for networking purposes

3) None of the options above applied in my case (as far as I can tell anyway) so why should I bother?

So I decided not to care about the faux-pas. I tried to be social despite the gulf that was created between me and the rest of the group after that, and by the time I went to the toilets I saw that one of them had even moved to take my place while I was momentarily away, and that was my cue to leave.

I forget how many social rules I've broken... I keep breaking them and most of the time I don't even mean to. Plight of my life... I'm exactly like the dancer with two left feet, except it's always cute if you're a guy but never so if you're a woman.

For what it's worth, I think social rules only work on people that aren't too logically wired. It's either that or I'm an alien. I don't mind being an alien, but I wish I could find my spaceship and get back home then.







Monday, 9 June 2014

Sine Qua Non



“Men! They are the enemies of our innocence and our peace – they drag us away from our parents’ love and our sisters’ friendship – they take us body and soul to themselves, and fasten our helpless lives to theirs as they chain up a dog to his kennel. And what does the best of them give us in return?” – The Woman in White, by Wilkie Collins, Marian’s speech.

"And when I was in the delivery room, waking up from the ether, I asked the nurse whether it was a boy or a girl. She said it was a girl - and I turned my head to the side and cried. And then I said, I hope she grows up to be a pretty little fool. That's about the best a girl can hope for these days, to be a pretty little fool."  – Daisy Buchanan in The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald.

-----

It's a hot, clammy day in June and the sky is heavy with clouds that hang low on the horizon, ready to burst. I sit at my desk sipping tea while I try to gather my notes. The weight of procrastination is almost as suffocating as this damp heat that clings to the skin through the film of sweat it forces the body to produce just sitting there doing nothing.

I think about the human condition... when am I not thinking about it?! My condition, your condition, their condition... our condition. Men, women. Ah, women. Above are two quotes that resonate deeply with me, and I suspect they would resonate with a lot of women out there. In rather few words, these quotes manage to encapsulate so much of the female plight in general... no wasted word or expression - no excessive sorrow or self-pity, here: only sober observations of their time. Irony would have it that the people who created these female characters who spoke such enlightened words were men.


People often like to break
The gentle and fragile things
To see how far their strength
And hubris will stretch.

In their haste sadly they forget
That once damaged and ruined
The gentle little things they miss
Can seldom be mended again.



Friday, 20 December 2013

Upon leaving behind a whole chapter of my life to start a new one I know nothing about but can only embrace in all its scary uncertainties and unknown factors, this is what came to me as the only explication needed:

"All I know is that it just wasn’t for me, and I couldn’t be whatever it is they wanted me to be."

Saturday, 30 November 2013

What use is reason, logic or even wisdom in a world that lacks all three most of the time? You can’t rationalise what makes no sense, and you can’t make sense of people who follow random patterns that lead them nowhere.

“Some birds are not meant to be caged, that's all. Their feathers are too bright, their songs too sweet and wild. So you let them go, or when you open the cage to feed them they somehow fly out past you. And the part of you that knows it was wrong to imprison them in the first place rejoices, but still, the place where you live is that much more drab and empty for their departure.” – Stephen King

Friday, 29 November 2013

Game over



She, who once was,
Now lies dead in a pool
Of her own blood, 
Killed of her own volition. 

She, who is dead,
Ripped her own heart 
Out of the golden cage 
The world had created for her. 

She died a slow, agonizing death, 
Watching the lifeblood spilled 
Onto the fertile ground, a deathly cradle
From within which she must rise anew.

Dead.
Dead.
Dead.

Sunday, 3 November 2013

Ties

"What does that mean—tame?"
"It's an act too often neglected," said the fox. "It means to establish ties."
"To establish ties?"
"Just that," said the fox. "to me, you're still nothing more than a little boy who's just like a hundred thousand other little boys. And I have no need of you. And you, on your part, have no need of me. To you I'm nothing more than a fox like a hundred thousand other foxes. But if you tame me, then we shall need each other. To me, you'll be unique in all the world. To you, I shall be unique in all the world …"

[...]
So the little prince tamed the fox. And when the hour of his departure drew near—
"Ah," said the fox, "I shall cry."
"It's your own fault," said the little prince. "I never wished you any sort of harm; but you wanted me to tame you…"
"Yes that is so", said the fox.
"But now you're going to cry!" said the little prince.
"Yes that is so" said the fox.
"Then it has done you no good at all!"
"It has done me good," said the fox, "because of the colour of the wheat fields."
~ From "The Little Prince" by Antoine de St. Exupery

Saturday, 26 October 2013

nox animae



I feel like… I feel like Neo when he was still trapped in the Matrix, having to go to work in an office full of drones who always knew he didn’t belong and he was the only one who seemed oblivious to it. The film may not have shown it on screen, but I wonder if Neo as a character would have lied in bed at night, eyes wide open to the ceiling in the dark as he pondered endlessly why he never seemed to fit in anywhere he went. Yet while he spent his time wondering what it was that made him feel like a leper among others, all the others always saw that he simply never belonged and they, themselves, kept him at a distance exactly because they could feel that difference and could not understand why he was acting as though he did not see it for himself. 

“Can’t you see what we see?” the people that form the matrix would probably ask in defiant wonder. “You don’t belong here and yet here you are always pretending that you do, but you can’t fool us. You can’t fool us, though you may have managed to fool yourself.”

Perhaps after another long while spent staring at the ceiling in the dark, asking himself pointless questions pertaining to his sense of alienation within the context he so desperately tried to fit into, he finally came to his senses by starting to look outside the box. By walking away from all that is mainstream and obvious to focus on the in-betweens and all that is overlooked.
In other words, instead of looking at the chair, bed, sofa and desk in the room, he started looking at the space between all these obvious objects we deem part of our reality, wondering: what if, in truth, reality was what lay in the apparent void between all that can be seen? 

But I am not Neo, and I'm falling apart.