dilatingtime

If the clinically depressed robot Marvin blogged, this would be it.

Some Acedemic Consideration

So this year I finished my degree. I’m really proud of the work I’ve done this year. It’s been difficult, but I got through in the end. Now I’m officially a postgraduate and I’ll be starting with my masters in February.

One thing I’m very proud of is my thesis. The title (in English) is ‘The influence of power on the position of the Other: A philosophical-ecclesiastical perspective’. Which is a mouthful, but it’s basically about how society marginalizes  the Other. Wherein the Other could be anybody outside society’s idea of what’s right or normal.  I relied heavily on the ideas of Foucault, Levinas and Derrida.

I guess, if I’m really honest, the reason I chose this topic is because I’ve always felt like an outsider. I’ve never felt particularly normal or considered myself the epitome of society’s expectations.

Hypochondria or: How I take something and totally blow it out of preportion

Say I discover I have an odd looking rash on my arm. What I would usually proceed to do is jump to the terrifying and absurd conclusion that I have cancer– or something to that effect. Throbbing pain in my head, would of course mean I’m experiencing a brain hemorrhage. I am a self diagnosed hypochondriac (which in itself is problematic). Hypochondria (if you don’t know) refers to “excessive preoccupation or worry about having a serious illness”.

Even though I know this about myself,  I still keep on doing it.

Right now I’m in the midst of obsessing about going to a gynecologist. I think this specific hypochondriac episode is a symptom of my underlying guilt and feeling of shame about having partaken in “pleasures of the flesh” and finding it uh pleasurable…

If there’s one thing I can do really well it’s worry and obsess. People have told me this before, but I really think I need start seeing a therapist or something.

Patterns

Dear reader who’s accidentally stumbled across this dust ridden part of the blogosphere,

Sorry in advance.

It has occurred to me that there is a pattern. My last blog post is dated a year back. I write on this very sad blog only when I’m home for Christmas. Naturally I have realized I’m not one of those Christmas-y people. Or maybe I just don’t like it here and Christmas is the only time I’m actually here because the rest of the year I avoid this place like the plague. (Congrats if you were able to follow that sentence.)

Before I get on this bandwagon again, I’ll just stop myself right here. The internet doesn’t need anymore people being whiny bitches– or does it? One could argue this blog gets so little internet-traffic it makes no actual difference. I’d write anything if it wasn’t for my irrational fear of someone I know reading this. God. Imagine…Or rather not.

I guess one of the reasons I hate being home for Christmas is the fact that there is so little to do here, that I’m driven to introspection and self-examination. This is usually the time of year I reflect on this year fuck ups. And Oh-dear-Lorde has 2013 been the year of fuck ups. Though, it’s also been an amazing year. I went to Europe. Actually did pretty well in my studies. Made new friends. Finished my first degree. I have more money.

The fuck-ups are more people related. I screwed people over. People screwed me over (literally and figuratively). My grandfather died. I lost friends. I embarrassed myself.

I’ll rather keep things general for fear of anything resembling actual persons or situations.

The good thing about being human is that even though I fuck up, and fuck up badly, I can learn out of my mistakes. I have the ability to recognize the patterns. I, for example know now that if I imbibe to many Long Island Ice Teas it will inevitably lead to poor life choices. I can’t stress how poor. Maybe that’s growing up. Maybe that’s finally using common sense. I don’t know.

A crossing

A new year awaits. The wind is howling outside, the sky is filling up with blue grey clouds that blot out the sun and now and then the air shivers with the rolling boom of distant thunder. Rather ominous.

It’s my mom’s birthday today. Also– my grandfather had a stroke and isn’t doing to well. My parents keep on talking about the moments we have with my gran-dad is “borrowed time”. Fuck. That sounds so melodramatic. Yesterday my mom asked to help put my grandfather to bed (he’s in a wheelchair now, and very weak) I couldn’t so I just fled the room. They understand that though, I think. Relationships with people are messy. And needless to say- things are very messy at the moment.

I have this need to be anywhere else but here at home, at the same time I am compelled to stay. A man I have known my entire life is dying. Just as he saw my coming into this world, I owe it to him to see his exit, I guess. There is a kind of sick symmetry in that.

My friend: the person I expected it from the least– blogs!

A good friend of mine sent me a link to his blog. It was good. So good that I felt compelled to write about it.

In his blog he tries to find the answers for the things he is struggling with. It’s a humble, sincere blog. Not like the pretentious shit you get (I’m not innocent in this).  I feel as if I need to start writing for some cause. Not just about my feelings and my average life.

Maybe that’s were the difference comes in. I actually lead a mediocre life, while my friend does the exact opposite.

You write what you know, I guess.

Family gatherings

One year we had all the family at our house for Christmas. The “family” consisted mostly out of the sorry, knifing bunch on my father’s side. Though that year my maternal grandmother was also present, Ouma Issie. She was my favourite and ,though it’s probably wrong, I think I was hers too. She died a few years back in an horrible car accident…

To me she was the only redeeming person present. Maybe it’s just because she actually gave me the time of day. The other family members did not– to them kids, and in particular myself, was a nuisance. We always got in the way and bothered the grownups who were busy doing grownup stuff.

That particular christmas they made an exception and I was allowed to sit very quietly in the lounge and hear the grownups talk. I felt so wonderfully mature! Only in hindsight do I see how foolish I was. Only had I stayed outside and climbed a tree or something. Anything to keep my impending puberty at bay…

Grownups aren’t any better than children. Only, grown-ps do not realise this because their worlds are devoid of innocence and magic.

Whilst sitting in the corner, the adult conversation was seeing the effects of the merry intake of food and drink. They began to reminisce about the old times. You know, the old times when everything was better. And you were happier and life was simpler and all the shit of the world had not yet hit the fan. People tend to idolize and romanticize over the past.

Somebody was relating an humorous anecdote when my grandmother, who like myself, had also been sitting quietly, suddenly speaks.

Once her husband, when he was a boy, had been sent by his father to the neigbouring farm on an urgent errand. While taking a shortcut through a veld, he came upon a lamb. It was newly born, but the lamb was dying. The boy, who was no stranger to the death of animals on a farm, suddenly felt such great heartache and love for this poor forsaken lamb. He gingerly picked up the lamb and took it back to the farm.

His father saw him coming up the dirt road with the lamb cradled in his arms. Greatgrandfather was a hard man. He took the whip he had with him and walked up to his son. “What’s this. Tommie?”

“Pa, he’s dying.”

“Where’s the stuff I sent you for?”

Silence. Tommie looked up at his father just when the whip came down on his shoulder. He dropped the lamb. Young Tommie cried out, fell to the ground and covered the lamb with his body while the whip came raining down upon him.

Silence. The party in the lounge feel a bit uncomfortable and most of them wonder why, oh why, some people just gotta be such downers?

Slowely conversation springs up again and it’s just my Ouma and I who sit silently.  While under the glare of a vulture like aunt, I go sit next to my gran.

“Did the lamb surive, Ouma?”

Conspiraterly she winks and gives me a little smile.

Shelf-life and how sometimes it really just is too late.

I am livid.

Quite nonchalantly my mother told me some mysterious people emailed my father congratulating him on winning two million pounds. I smirked sceptically. Firstly I live in South Africa, so pounds? Really? But it got worse, I don’t want go in to details because it’s painful. Why is it painful? My dad seems to be falling for this scam. So I tried to do the logical thing and disprove “Fifa Canada International Lottery”  promises of riches. I googled it, and guess what, it’s bogus– like I knew it was… But my dad, though, seems hell bent on believing they are honest people who are actually giving away free money.

I tried to talk calmly. Then I tried an authoritative voice. Then a meek voice. And then I begged. Didn’t  work. I actually think I made it worse by meddling…

The relationship my dad and I have is not a good one. Normally just exchanging pleasantries is trying. So when I say I actually tried and talk with him- that’s a big thing. The other day a friend, who’s always been a bit worried about my daddy-issues, told me to just try and talk to my dad. I told him that it would’t help. His corny response was,” It’s never too late.”

Well, now I tried and it just reaffirmed what I already knew– sometimes it can be too late.

Alternative treatment

It seems it has become customary for me to be dissapointed in regards to potential ‘love-interests’. I do not want to commit suicide… But I do feel like standing under a blistering hot shower en sobbing. There will be none of that. Instead I will immerse myself in wonderous dark art.

plaid by ~igorska

Image

The Self

The moment I decide to take on more responsibility because I have time- then WHAM!-  even more responsibilities sprout up like STD’s. Lord have mercy. Luckily, my social life’s also mutitated into something alive and oscillating. I’m happy about that though. It keeps me busy and that way I don’t think about my shitty personal life. Like I’m doing now….Moving on.

Times change and life goes on. Can a person’s essence stay the same while growth and change occurs? I am still me, though I’m different now from when I was 10 ears old. Is memory the only thing connecting my ten year old and present ?

Thank goodness we change.Everytime I reflect on my previous actions/convictions/ words- the fact that I was an idiot strikes me repeatedly.  Will I ever be happy with the person that I am?

In hindsight.

I feel just as restless and trapped like when I was a teenager. This will be last time ever I torture myself by going to my hometown for the whole holiday. Brief visits will be the rule.

I hate it here, and being here makes me hate myself.