Yup, long time, no writing. Because of bad times and good times.
What determined me to write again was this thing I saw one of these days: a lady dragging a dog in a leash and a guy walking side by side with his dog, leash being mostly ornamental.
I encourage every person to keep his or her dog on a leash, for safety reasons. Even the most well behaved dog can jump startled by a car horn or a sudden noise, an unexpected association of a color or a shape with a potential danger.
Hence all the lost dogs posted on Facebook.
Yet this post is not about dogs basically. It was just a strong visual that generated the thought. The lady dragging the leash was obviously in a dysfunctional relationship with her dog, miscommunication, lack of patience and skill from the human, bewilderment and stress from the dog. The other couple, the guy and the dog walking side by side – perfect match, harmony, balance, patience and understanding.
Human relationships are much the same. Abuse can have many manifestations, some not so obvious as beating or other forms of trauma. Taking a person for granted, expecting them to behave in a certain way, without ever ever ever enunciating your rules of engagement, and being frustrated “they just don’t get it.”
This applies in all sorts of interactions: lovers, friends, workmates, parents – children, store clerk – client.
Speak up, be sincere, be clear, ask for what you want. Listen, understand, try to meet the requests.
BUT it’s not that easy. Sometimes you think you know what you want and you ask for what you want and yet… Maybe you don’t know what you want, maybe you’re scared to speak up, maybe the truth hurts. Maybe you don’t want to admit what you want.
So everything goes sour. Dysfunctional relationships core.
So every step of the way, know thyself, don’t torment your close ones because YOU have issues. Fight your own battles by yourself, don’t make innocent victims on the way.
Don’t abuse your partner, your best friend, your parent / child because you are unhappy with yourself.
Don’t blame anyone for your failures, learn to say “it’s MY fault”. It hurts like hell, but it heals faster.
Wow, a lot of don’ts in this piece, let’s try some dos:
Do appreciate what you have, cherish the people that cherish you, thank God for your qualities, your good health (when applied), your lucky breaks, your successes, pets, sunrises, music, whatever can make you happy.
Have an innocent crush, have a hot affair, have a fling, have a passion, have a shitload of passions, live, LIVE. No regrets for the past, no worries for the future.
The fatalist predictions called 2013 the Year of Change. All the New Age theories were forecasting sort of a “selection” of humanity.
You must understand, I’m not a fan of new age, conspiracy theories, predictions, any kind of mass manipulation systems, but bear with me.
It was supposed to be a cataclysm of sort – a natural disaster or a nuclear holocaust by the end of 2012.
Well, nothing happened. Yet Change is obvious, I agree. And it’s like this. As economic climate is tragic, people are supposed to ADAPT. You succeed or you fail.
And failure is NOT loosing your job, but coping with it. Finding a new path, finding a new purpose. Enjoying what you have, when you lost more or less the material comfort.
Staying sane. I’ve seen people going completely out of their minds, becoming mean and filled with vile, hurting both others and themselves. These are the people who didn’t make it.
And there are the ones who found valves to vent. They turned towards charitable causes, art, family, friends. They found new hobbies, passions and reasons for joy and peace.
Some seem weird, some are benign. But they are GOOD. They are the fuel that keeps one sane.
I read again American Gods by Neil Gaiman. It has new meanings now. It’s about forgotten Gods, recent Gods that are already obsolete and Gods that are scared they will become forgotten and replaced.
From all over the world, from every age of humanity. By the way, have you ever thought how come everywhere and anytime people believed in something they couldn’t see or touch? And they relied on miracles and prayers and sacrifices of some sort?
Now it’s the time to find new Gods or to turn ourselves toward the ones we new. Whatever you choose, believe. Believe with all your might. Believe in Good, in Kindness, Patience, Laughter, Joy, Sun, Moon, Night, Rain, Flower, Cat… whatever makes you tick.
You’re not supposed to have imaginary friends after a certain age, or you might get diagnosed with some kind of mental illness.
I have an imaginary assistant. She lives in my brain. I can describe her rather thoroughly: she has a small face with pleasant yet common features, she has a shiny straight hair with bangs. Her bangs are cut straight and are supposed to fall like a curtain, but because she removes it with her hand often, is a mess. She has a plain blouse, I think it’s a grey twinset and a plaid midi skirt. I don’t know why.
Her work place (my memory) looks like the waiting room of a private detective from a 40s Hollywood movie. The ones with Humphrey Bogart and James Cagney. Think Maltese Falcon and similar.
It’s all wood – old and dusty, almost colorless with time. It has filing cabinets from floor to ceiling FILLED with files. I put the files in there. For decades now. I had no system, so it’s very hard to find a specific file.
Files on movies, books, songs, personal memories about lost lovers or friends, places I’ve visited or things I did. Some are bright pink and tied with a pretty bow. Some are dark and gloomy, like a November sky. Ranging from my first pair of heels to long-term relationships. Cats. Dogs. People. Beaches. Quotes. Jokes. Rumors. Some are a few days old, yet they are thrown in the back of a drawer out of reach, some are 30 years old, yet they are close and handy.
My poor assistant is very efficient. She moves fast among the drawers stuffed with files and she finds what I’m looking for. She’s quiet like a mouse, she’s my personal female version of Radar from M.A.S.H.
When I have a lapse, it means that she searched for the file all night long. I wake up and suddenly remember, but she’s exhausted, sleeping with her head on her heavy wooden desk.
Sometimes she’s out to lunch. Or she’s in love with a boy and she forgets herself walking hand in hand with him in the park during working hours.
As time goes by, she’s less helpful. Maybe she’s getting old too, maybe she’s bored and blasé with her routine job. True, I replaced some of her workload with Google search, but still, she has a heavy-duty job.
I just sit in my office and shout for various files:
“Hey, what’s the name of the guy who plays Sid in Ice Age? The Colombian very talented guy?”
“Who’s this lady talking to me? What’s her name and where do I know her from?!”
I need her more and more often and she’s growing more and more tired. I should grant her a leave. Maybe give her an all expenses paid holiday in a posh resort. Or at least a gym subscription.
Or a retirement plan.
Farewell 2012 and good riddance! It was probably the worst year of my life or at least this is how it seems.
Beside personal troubles, sorrows and mere disappointments, it was sound proof that this world should come to an end.
Instead of less commercial vs more spiritual, it was exactly the opposite.
First, the most watched video of the year, a South Korean who struck gold. Nobody understands this humongous success.
What people don’t consider is the strength of social networks. This is the only secret. It’s NOT the most stupid song on earth, nor the worst dance.
Almost every year humanity was blessed with a stupid song: ai se eu te pego, ketchup song, el meneaito, the penguin dance, dragostea din tei, macarena, lambada…
Just that at the time they were reaching people on TV and radio, on videocassettes or God knows what.
It wasn’t measurable, that’s all. So here’s your “CHANGE”: now you can count how many stupid people fall for a stupid song.
Adele – that overinflated Celine Dion with her lame music. As far as I can tell, it’s a one album wonder, I don’t think we’ll hear from her soon. She’ll be rolling in such deep, I don’t think she’ll ever come out again.
She’s not the first Brit with a short story. Long before she died, Amy Winehouse vanished. Where’s Duffy? And probably many more I didn’t even bother to notice.
Talking of Brit – they had a glorious year – with the Olympic Games directed like a Hollywood blockbuster and the glamorous Jubilee celebration.
Over the pond, Obama was reelected. Not as spectacular as 4 years ago and somehow predictable, but anyhow, cheers!
And last, but not least, the munchkin that took the web by a storm, the most famous meme, so ugly that she’s adorable, the little kitty named Tardar Sauce.
Over 25 years ago, Garfield was born, but he’s just a drawing and far less of a bitch. Times have changed, it’s so much harder to be a genuine hater, as so many bloggers and artists adhered to this trend.
And here comes this ugly puss and makes us all laugh and forget what a miserable year this was.
God bless Grumpy Cat, she saved us all from the Aztec Apocalypse and incurable stupidity.
Have a smarter 2013!
In this time of harsh economic and moral failure it seems artists try to lure us in a better world. Music seeks refuge in the 50s, movies rediscover superheroes and fashion… ah, fashion transports us in a better era.
More than ever, fashion turns into a fantasy realm, with fabulous creatures that don’t belong anywhere in an unemployment line or a discount store.
Leading the pack are Miuccia Prada and Marc Jacobs with their interpretation of Edwardian outfits and surreal hats.
But there are others, an entire pack of story tellers that wrap us in yards and yards of silk, velvet, brocade, cashmere, precious leathers, feathers, furs, sparkling sheer deceiving fairy dust…
Oh, and the jewels… More opulent and spectacular than ever to match such high fashion.
It’s like a luxury denial. The oversize replaced the tight, skinny and tiny. Generous coats, large pants, sheer flowing and billowing shirts. The tall boot replaced the bootie. Bags grew in size, gloves, hats, sunglasses, everything, from the everyday clothing to each and every accessory.
Like stage costumes – opulent, visible, loud, dramatic.
Now… what I DON’T get is who the fuck is buying more expensive clothing during recession?! I completely admire the endeavor. But to what end?
I mean… are we supposed to watch it simply as art and entertainment and carry on hunting for bargains? Most likely.
There’s an entire half of planet not affected by financial disaster. Arab countries soaked in oil, Asian markets filled with new and old money.
What we can learn from this amazing display is that sometimes is fine to dream. Nobody expects us to walk the streets in turn-of-the-century costumes and hats the size of my car. Just to allow ourselves an escape from mundane, bleak pessimism.
And yes, buy a hat. Listen to some jazz. Watch a superheroes movie. It can’t hurt.
Sometimes you should have champagne, though you’re on a soda budget. Fuck it, long live decadence!
… a perfect hour in the morning, when it’s still a bearable temperature.
While sipping my creamy exquisite espresso, I leaf through pages of design and style, and I recollect the Italian film that charmed me as a teenager, when I didn’t have my own love stories and I craved on fictional ones, even sad ones, when love dies and Venice crumbles.
And life happens to be absolutely completely flawless.
For an hour. In the morning.