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Monthly Archives: September 2011

Teenage girls, please don’t worry about being super popular in high school, or being the best actress in high school, or the best athlete. Not only do people not care about any of that the second you graduate, but when you get older, if you reference your successes in high school too much, it actually makes you look kind of pitiful, like some babbling old Tennessee Williams character with nothing going on in their current life. What I’ve noticed is that no one who was a big star in high school is also a big star later in life, except athletes. For us overlooked kids, it’s so wonderfully fair.

I was never the lead in the play. I don’t think I went to a single party with alcohol at it. No one shared pot with me. It wasn’t until I was sixteen that I even knew marijuana and pot were the same thing.

Because I was largely ignored at school, I watched everyone like an observant weirdo, not unlike Eugene Levy’s character Dr. Allan Pearl, from Waiting for Guffman, who famously “sat next tothe class clown, and studied him. But I did that with everyone. It has helped me so much as a writer you have no idea.

I just want ambitious teenagers to know it is totally fine to be quiet, observant kids. Besides being a delight to your parents, you will find you have plenty of time later to catch up . . . Sit next to the class clown and study him. Then grow up, take everything you learn, and get paid to be a real-life clown, unlike whatever unexciting thing the actual high school class clown is doing now. I think our class clown is doing marketing in Warwick, Connecticut.

Mindy Kaling, “Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns)”

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You have stood before some landscape, which seems to embody what you have been looking for all your life; and then turned to the friend at your side who appears to be seeing what you saw—but at the first words a gulf yawns between you, and you realise that this landscape means something totally different to him, that he is pursuing an alien vision and cares nothing for the ineffable suggestion by which you are transported . . . All the things that have deeply possessed your soul have been but hints of it—tantalising glimpses, promises never quite fulfilled, echoes that died away just as they caught your ear. But if it should really become manifest—if there ever came an echo that did not die away but swelled into the sound itself—you would know it. Beyond all possibility of doubt you would say ‘Here at last is the thing I was made for.’ We cannot tell each other about it. It is the secret signature of each soul, the incommunicable and unappeasable want . . . which we shall still desire on our deathbeds . . . Your place in heaven will seem to be made for you and you alone, because you were made for it—made for it stitch by stitch as a glove is made for a hand.
CS Lewis, The Problem of Pain.

today i channeled my anxiety into my legs: i ran too far and too fast in the rain.

i imagine this is what the hulk would’ve done, too, assuming rage was substituted with anxiety in this instance.

 

 

 

…incidentally, many boys in my high school physics class used to liken me to the hulk.

ONCE I LIVED MY LIFE IN CAPITALS
MY LIFE INTENSELY PHALLIC

but now i am sadly lowercase
with the occasional italic

Roger McGough

this morning, i woke up with a heavy heart. the air outside was – and still is – hazy as though some wretched god had intended to trap us in this asphyxiating hell hole. this god is pissed as fuck, i gathered. my eyes were red, corneas scratched from the night before due to a sudden bout of eyeball dryness. my eyes were also red for another reason: i was sad the night before.

the night before, i watched kal ho naa ho, one of those movies with the godlike shah rukh khan (henceforth abbreviated to SRK) with all his chiseled features and big albeit unique nose. the movie is as any big budget bollywood film set in new york city would be: there’s this pretty girl who has childhood issues who prays for an angel to save her and her constantly bickering family. an angel in the form of who else but the great SRK arrives at her doorstep all the way from new delhi. the girl has a terribly handsome but obnoxious best boy friend who is not a boyfriend but just a friend. just a friend, and then you know how it goes. turns out SRK came to the united states for treatment of his unknown heart condition which leaves him with little time left to spare. he’s fallen in love with the pretty girl, but….so has pretty girl’s good looking boy friend. mr khan lies to the girl, tells her that he’s married because he doesn’t want her to fall in love with a dying man. at the same time, he uses his SRK powers to make the boy friend confess to the girl that he loves her. so, the two besties get married in a very elaborate shaadi in a very expensive looking mansion somewhere in suburban america. but alas, by some ill stroke of luck after the shaadi, the girl finds out that SRK has been lying to her all this while and that he is dying and that he set her up with rohit her bestie so that they will continue to make each other happy. SRK does die. i didn’t expect him to, but he did and i felt terrible and i didn’t know why.

this movie is the bollywood version of memento mori, crafted specially to lull old aunties and young girls into thinking they’re watching a boy-meets-girl 3 hour long picture. it is, i guess, sort of, but it is also rather sad. like, you’d seen the death and the betrayal and the despair coming, but still it makes you sad. and then when a girl’s brain is sad and vulnerable and all sorts of messed up, it immediately goes into hyperdrive and begins to extrapolate the future and imagining everything in the mind to be true. every seemingly harrowing episode from the past both real and imaginary plays repeatedly like a telepathic torture device at the hands of an evil insane scientist. everything from the future too comes crashing down like wave upon wave upon wave: where is he now is he safe when will i see him again why isn’t he here with me what if everything’s not ok this is not my damn life oh god

silence!

somewhere amid the chaos and the rubble, i keep telling myself it’ll be all right in the end.

i remember the reason why i bought every article in my wardrobe. when i take out certain blouses and t-shirts from the cavernous underbelly of my horribly designed wardrobe, i am brought back to a hazy place and time; the first time i acquired this t-shirt i held in my hand. so, in order to forget, i throw many of these things out. the mind can behave like a magnificent filter if you want it to. there is no such thing as “i forgot”.  every memory is gingerly shelved away, like delicate fragments of some space-time continuum, borne as signals in the brain. i remember most things that have happened in the past two and a half years, but i don’t remember anything before that, but i do remember things that occurred before 2005.

it’s funny how the both of us are into memory storage in the brain, and yet we forget how time ravages both mind and body. i like to think that we are impervious to the effects of Time’s Arrow. when he is around i forget that time moves forward, always accelerating forward at some warp speed towards zero hour, the hour in which one of us must pack our bags and leave. i’d forgotten for a while now how painful leaving could be, but i hadn’t forgotten on purpose; it was just replaced by some transient moment of unsullied happiness, probably in that instance when i was just riding around on a rented bicycle on the beach one evening with him.

i spent this weekend milling about at home, in my own room that somehow changes every time i come back every month, most probably modified by some visiting family member who opts to stay in my room instead of the guest room. i bought two pairs of shoes to replace some old flats. last night, we celebrated my grandparents’ 55th wedding anniversary and i got a polaroid picture to pin to my cork board in my other room. god bless them for they have been very kind to me.

and now, i must leave.