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In this world, you must make your own bed - James

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June 7th, 2007

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11:55 pm - In this world, you must make your own bed
You may well have been wondering where I have been for the last 8 months or so. I am sure that before you tuck yourselves up in bed each night, it is the last question to rush through your head, and you worry that I may have died, or been eaten by a shark, or somesuch dismal fate.

But no, I assure you, I am well and truly alive, and occasionally kicking.

How then have I been occupying myself, you may ask. I shall proceed to fill in the blanks.

You may remember my great unrequited love for a girl of the name of Claire. Oh my heart which no longer feels pain to break. Oh that pretty face which drove me to the land of fantasy and despair...but perhaps I exaggerate. I think that the death of Laura left me dead also, dead in emotion and spirit, and I have been trying to find a way to drag myself up from that pit. In Claire I saw a hope...but the hope is gone.

I have been wandering my mind, I have been feeding off my imagination, and I have been writing. Yet I still do not know if my magical encounters were just a figment...or not. Yet I am inclined to believe they were real...I believe there is something more than drudgery to the world.

After my adventures in Australia, I still felt restless. I went home, to find Alex continuing to do nothing at home, getting up to go to uni, or go to work, then come home and drink, or go and stay at his girlfriend's house. I couldn't stand the opression of this routine, and even in Sydney it weighed me down. And so I left. I bought a ticket to Paris, and with a suitcase and my laptop I proceeded to cure myself.

To cure myself of heartache was one thing, but to cure myself of humanity, quite another. For there it was, everywhere I went, from England, to France, to Germany, Italy, Greece, Spain...society followed me. The society of centuries screamed to me from the stones of ancient cities, and the pages of crumbling books. Society wove itself in a never-ending loop of narrow-mindedness and conformity, alcohol, class and routine, and whilst feeling the elation of history lifting me, those burdens of humanity crushed me.

The need to fit within the societal norms, to live a life determined by the rules of others. To go through life, unquestioning, content with this routine, this one way of thinking...why do people do it? Why can they not think for themselves, question? Why do the ones with powers of free-thinking, free-speech become victimised in their conformist minds?

Perhaps it would be arrogant of me to say that they are too stupid to question. Or perhaps they were never bought up to think of possibilities.

I remember when I was a child, when I was in year 4 at my horrendously pompous school in Sydney, a child in my class got nits. He consequently had his head shaven to thwart the little pests. A couple of weeks later another boy in my class also got nits, and was away from school for a couple of days. In those days, imaginative little me said to my friends "maybe William will have to get his head shaved too!" to which they replied with "ooo's" and "ahhh's" and various little boy responses. I know I repeated this "maybe he will have his head shaven" a few times in those couple of days.
But, when William came back to school, he didn't have his head shaven. So what happened? The blame was put on me. "James said you had a shaved head. James is a liar." And as much as I insisted that I had only said "might", they didn't understand.

A year or so later, the same sort of thing happened. A boy threw a pencil at a teacher and got in trouble. The teacher took the boy out of the room. I whispered to everyone "it could have poked Ms Rudy's eye out! That is why he is in so much trouble!!"
When the teacher and the sorry-looking boy returned however, she had both her eyes, and he had a few tears in his. I was again, proclaimed a liar, even though I again insisted that I had been stating a possibility, the reasoning behind the outcome and the punishment.

So why did I recount these little stories? To show that people do not use their imagination. They ignore the 'could' they ignore the 'maybe' and go straight for the action. They don't stop to think about what they are doing, they don't stop to think about what other people tell them. They continue, happily unquestioning, and it is such as I who are left to ponder in misery.

So what did I do? I wrote about it yes. I travelled the continent with feelings of elation and despair. And I came home.

I was happier, I had forgotten the pain of love, and replaced it with a new woe. But this woe was one which was not about to go away. So I started an experiment.

I decided to be my best friend, for he seemed happy enough. I borrowed his motorcycle, I bought clothes like his. I got a job in an office, and danced to techno music. I even succumbed to the advances of one of those vapid skanks who tend to hover around me. I was, for all intents and purposes, a normal functioning member of society.

But was I happy? Could I ignore the pressure of thought? Could I cast my imagination aside now that I had obtained the dreams of the average man?

No. From the first day, I had never been more unhappy in my life. Sitting in an office, sorting through paper. Living through the menial conversations of my vapid girlfriend. Going to staff gatherings, where the whole conversation revolved around work.

I lasted a month and a half...somehow. Before I ran from the office, and sat in my suit beneath a tree in the botanic gardens, closing my eyes and breathing in the smell of the wild, itself contained within the confines of its creators. We are constructs of society, so what happens to us when we decide that we don't particularly like this society, nor the people in it?

This is what I am currently asking myself.

Yesterday I gave up my chance of a normal life, yesterday I spent all day beneath a tree, not even moving when it rained. Yesterday I went to my girlfriend's house and heard her speak to me without listening to a word.

This morning I came home and dressed in my old clothes, dusted off my MG, drove into the hills and wrote. I was sitting on a log, and it was quite cold, but not wet. I looked at my car, and my computer - those necessities for the life I am living. I thought it was ironic that they were bought with the money of my father the plastic surgeon, money that came to him through the desires of some to fit into the mould of others. Yet did I reject them? No. I used them, for my own gains, even as I continued to whien about these very instiutions and insecurities which had provided me with house, food, education.

We are constructs of society, and in the end all of our individual stories are forgotten by the overwhelming pressure of that mass of humanity.
Current Location: my house
Current Mood: blankblank
Current Music: Arvo Part

(3 comments | Leave a comment)


Date:June 9th, 2007 04:55 pm (UTC)
Thank you for thanking me :P
I wonder why your friends think there is problem with appreciating what you write… Well, anyway, I don't care.
And if you need attention, please note that I can be a loyal reader (first 3 months free, see terms of sale for details)

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