Being

Sometimes when I look as if I’m very far away, I am in fact trying really hard to be present.

Being present has never been harder than it is right now. Sometimes when I open my eyes, I feel like the apocalypse is upon me. But then all that’s before me, in reality, is merely a plastic bag and some kids running around in a park.

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Dispatches from Toytown

Finally on the edge of finishing a shit-tonne of work. I forgot that it’s actually rather pleasant to work hard, provided that my brain can function moderately and that said work is not so challenging as to be crushing. Ah, one more day and freedom will be mine again! If only for a week or so.

A lot of unpleasant characters at work, but what can I say. I am somewhat reminded of the time my friend delivered this verdict on one of my oldest, bestest friends: ‘She’s not a bad person, but that doesn’t mean she’s a good person either.’ I suppose that’s where most people lie, in those morally grey areas of shade. Continue reading

Minutiae

Too busy to think these days. Even forgot the lipstick yesterday and felt really shitty and somewhat naked as I sat through the morning MTR rush of pretty ladies and doddering old men, thinking to myself: My, there was a time when to go out fresh-faced and make-up-free was a viable option.

Am very annoyed with several things in my life, but don’t feel particularly compelled to correct them right now as 1. Feel enslaved to somewhat shitty job + shitty freelance and 2. Pride’s getting in the way. One day I will potentially feel sad and ashamed instead of annoyed but right now all I feel is a profound sense of irritation, with myself, with other people – both close and not-so-close.

To sum up:

As the heart grows older/It will come to such sights colder

(I had this pinned up above my bed when I was at uni, which says a lot about my mental health I daresay)

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A little visual pick-me-up:

Bunny Maira Kalman

Wish I could be more like the bunny in question and less like the current slothful, lethargic me.

Need to find find viable ways of ‘meaningful distraction’ – be it long walks or non-fiction books or new video games.

It’s a beautiful Sunday morning, joggers are whizzing through the neighbourhood, the trees are filled with birdsong – but here I’m curled up on the couch, staring into space…

I wish words like ‘spring’ and ‘action’ could yet apply to me.

Late Summer Musings

paula rego

      Picture by Paula Rego

When I get depressed, the ambition and the spikiness gets pushed back to a very deep place. Rough edges get blurred out by tears. Somehow, I always come off as nice and chill and more beta than usual when it’s heartbreak season. My feelings of defeat gets misconstrued as softness. Which is misleading, perhaps most of all to myself, because I start to doubt what sort of person I really am. Even more confusing when I look back at history!

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Confessions of a budding hermit

The girl who had everything - Cecily Brown

The Girl Who Had Everything by Cecily Brown

And the wall is made of light – that entirely credible yet unreal Vermeer light…light like that does not exist, but we wish it did. We wish the sun could make us young and beautiful, we wish our clothes could glisten against our skins, most of all, we wish everyone we knew could be brightened simply by our looking at them, as are the maid with the letter and the soldier with the hat.

 

The girl with the music sits in another sort of light, the fitful, overcast light of life, by which we see ourselves and others only imperfectly, and seldom.

 

From Girl Interrupted, by Susanna Kaysen

I sometimes think to myself what a glorious and traitorous thing the body is. It’s all you have, this bag of skin and bones you live in, yet so often it betrays you with diseases large and small, by sprouting hairs in unlikely places, by drying up when you need it to be wet, by building up layers of blubber when you want to whittle it down to the bone.

Key words of the day: beauty, shame. Continue reading

The anthropology of gemstones

There comes a time, in every little girl’s life, when the only kind of gem that makes sense is a diamond.

It’s called growing older, more materialistic, more desperate and more cynical.

It seems a mighty shame though, to throw away all those rhinestone rings and teenage baubles….nothing would ever quite match their cheap sparkle against sweaty teenage skin. Continue reading

Singleton seeks to be alone

Much as I like to moan about how I can’t keep up with the circle of lovely marrieds surrounding me, deep down I guess I like being single, up to a point. Can’t quite conceive of a life of shared intimacy, however happy…except maybe in separate flats, in small doses and at scheduled hours.

Even back when things were going swimmingly and I have a more, um, varied pick of suitors, I was the type of person who thinks Valentine’s Day is a joke and would rather get a new piercing than get into a long-term relationship with someone. My periodic bouts of sociability back then was already stretched to the limit by those crazy intense friendships with unattainable females. Oh, and did I mention I broke up with my first love via a typed ‘resignation letter’?  (granted, my handwriting had always been atrocious. Continue reading

The Sounds of Summer

SURF

Surf’s up on Repulse Bay

So it’s goodbye to blue skies and long days drinking in the summer; hello to a work desk and clocking in/out again. Yes, ’tis the season for work after a long hiatus away from employment. (Blame it on the recurring blues) This is make-or-break time, unfortunately…my last-gasp attempt at middle-class propriety. But I’m trying to convince myself that I should treat everything with the utmost lightness.

Until it gets so light that I cancel myself out.

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The Road Home

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Around the Neighbourhood, circa 2014 (Home is just round the corner, after the steep stretch)

“In the beginning there was a river.  The river became a road and the road branched out to the whole world. And because the road was once a river it was always hungry.”  The Famished Road, Ben Okri

It’s a long strange road back to the land of happy valleys and blue skies, full of detours, dead ends and monsters in the disguise of white knights, as well as a few good men (and women). I’m not sure I’m fully there yet, what with the sudden darkening of my mind even on a good day like this (matched by the capricious weather, all sudden showers and squirts of sunshine), but slowly, laboriously, I find myself rejoining the ranks of the sane. This is a strange feeling, happiness, and I am unable to savour it except with caution, for fear it might disappear in an instant.

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