You know, I’ve made so many right choices in my life, and so many wrong, and in the end it hardly seemed to matter. Some of the very best choices I’ve made led to hell. It seemed like the right thing to do at the time, though. And there were times when I thought I was being foolish, irresponsible, maybe even just plain crazy, but I just couldn’t help myself, I had to do it… and in the end it led to wonderful things. And all of that, just the other way around.
Christ, how am I to find my way like that? No fucking system, just probabilities, possibilities… it’s enough to drive a man insane. Especially a man like me, an organized, systematic type who sees flaws in the system and wants to correct them. Correct it, for Christ’s sake, make it whole, make it make sense. As if I could correct the vagaries of life, as if life was a bloody fucking workflow. As if I could force it to be like it should.
Perhaps all that is normal, and most people just accept it and go on without a further thought. No pattern, no system, inherently flawed. Perhaps I am a stupid sick fuck because I think about it. Nevertheless I am still trying to understand it all.
It’s as if I had heard of the perfect poem in which lie all the answers I’ve been looking for. I’d always known that this poem must exist, and I climbed the hermit’s mountain to read it, only to find that some asshole has killed him and torn it to pieces. There they lie, flecked with blood, and I frantically collect them as they blow away in the wind, crying the while, because this can’t possibly be… God, the injustice of it! Blowing away in the wind! No!
What’s left is a collection of gibberish. little bits of paper with one or two words on them. Even if I manage to piece some of them together, they are incomplete. Even if I spend my entire life on it, I will never be able to make sense of it. I sit here, moving the pieces around, combining, rearranging, again and again, trying to find the right way, until I feel like dashing my head against the wall.
And all the while I have the sneaking suspicion that I am on a fool’s errand. That bastard inner voice is telling me that the man who killed the hermit was on the same mission as I am. Another crazy idiot looking for the answer. I just know that the hermit told him there is none. I just know that is why he killed him and tore it all to pieces, and that, in the end, the laugh is on me.
Gimme a drink.
The teenage years are long gone, but nevertheless your girlfriend, the woman you love above all, tells you is she ending the relationship by sending you an SMS to that effect. Nothing personal, right?
Then, crying, before you even have the chance to get miserably drunk, you spill your first glass of wine in a simple mishap, splashing it all over the table and wall. Of course, you are living in a furnished room, so neither the table nor the wall belong to you. You spend the next half an hour desperately trying to clean it up, thinking of the bill the landlord is going to present to you after he has had everything renovated. But of course there is no way to get red wine out of wallpaper, and it seems the table was never properly oiled… the stains will remain forever.
In the process of cleaning, or rather trying to clean, shortly before giving up, you tear a fingernail off on the corner of the table. You watch the blood oozing out, cursing in pain –I can’t fucking believe this!– knowing for sure that the wound will infect itself in the next days no matter how well you take care of it.
Fuck it, you say too yourself, I’ve got to get out of here. You go down to find that some fool has parked so close to the car that you can’t get in. So you have to crawl in from the passenger side, so angry that your coordination is affected. First you step in the deep puddle there, soaking your foot completely, then you slip and bang your head on the gear stick, allowing a beautiful welt to blossom across your brow.
By now you are barely in control of your rage… you are so furious that you’ve almost forgotten the sorrow that is weighing your heart down like a ton of bricks. Almost. She… she…! With a sigh that lies somewhere between relief and deadly misery you settle down in to the driver’s seat at last.
After having missed gears a couple of times, causing horrible grinding noises that make passers-by look at you curiously –how embarrassing, as if you hadn’t been driving a stick-shift for the last twenty years, for Christ’s sake– you back out of the parking space somewhat abruptly, grazing the car parked next to you. Not the car that was parked too close, which you were conscientiously trying to avoid, but of course the car on the other side. And you’re driving the car of your ex-father-in-law, a cantankerous old fellow who will simply freak when he sees the scratches on his car, the car your ex-wife kindly allowed you to use without his knowledge while he is away on vacation… this thought is stopped abruptly by you grinding the car in to the big rock behind you, the one that is so hard to avoid because it is just a bit too low for you to see it in the rear and side mirrors. The one you’ve watched others crashing in to from your balcony time and again, laughing and swearing it will never happen to you. Unconsciously you are also cursing the circumstances which force you to rely on the kindness of your ex-wife. Motherfucker! you scream, slamming your hands against the steering wheel again and again until the bandaid comes off and the blood from your finger drips on to your new pants, which had somehow remained unscathed up to this point. Startled, you jerk your hand to the side, causing little droplets of blood to spray all over the passenger seat.
It’s then that the landlord drives up in his Porsche convertible and parks in the spot you’ve just vacated, giving you a quizzical glance as he goes by. You’re reluctantly thinking about getting out and telling him of your little mishap with the wine when your cell-phone buzzes again. It’s another SMS… And it serves you right, you lazy bastard! she writes.
You get the picture? Some days are like that.
Give me an honest hypocrite any day. At least then I’ll know what I am dealing with. People who know they are hypocrites, who are up front about it, at least with themselves. They live with a sardonic grin on their faces. But please, oh please, save me from the hypocrites who truly believe in their own bullshit. Those are the dangerous ones.
It’s the little biddy telling me that we have to do something for the poor while she lives on the inheritance of her predecessors, an inheritance pressed out of people who worked sixteen hours a day for pennies. She pays her dues to various charities, and she feels very good about that. It’s the young urban professional telling me we really need to finally do something about the situation in Africa, though the company he works for is robbing resources from that very continent, and killing people in the process.
Dangerous. In such cases, the word honesty takes on a whole new meaning. The problem is that truth is on many levels, and people who believe in what they say are very convincing, though what they say may have nothing whatsoever to do with what they do. That yuppy wouldn’t give a cent to the corner bum. Nor would the biddy, most likely, for she has already paid to help poor people, hasn’t she now?
Either you live in the world as it is and you’re glad you’re not in the bottom half, and you know you’re glad and you look at the bum on the corner and say, tough tits; or you don’t think that’s right and you actually do something about it. I won’t tell you which direction I go with this, because that is not the point. I will say that either direction is okay with me, as long as you are honest with yourself.
There is no way to describe her. I’ve met her, now and again. I want her.
Inner worth. It has little to do with beauty in the general sense. I won’t say it has nothing to do with it, because that would be foolish. We all know the inherent attraction we find for certain people because of the way they look, but that is not what I am talking about. Yeah, she may have style, she may have looks, but that ain’t enough. She may even have an operative brain. That helps. A lot.
Maybe that’s the most important thing: an operative brain. A nice ass helps, though. Ahh… what shall I say? Both, please?
There are so many attractive women on this world, but there is something, something which makes some women not only attractive but beautiful. What is that? What makes a woman beautiful, and not just attractive? It’s love, straight and simple. Without love all women are the same. Why do I fall in love with certain women, and others not? I honestly can’t say.
You’d think I could, wouldn’t you, after all the years? But I still can’t. They still surprise me, these women, with their craziness and beauty. Often the craziness is part of the beauty. I sit next to it. I think: Jesus! She is so…! So! There is nothing that can replace those moments. Those are, for me, the moments where I’d give up everything. All she has to do is ask. Anything, I’d do it.
I know: I am a fool. At that moment, I am an utter fool. But what would life be without that foolishness? A worthless piece of shit. If I am not capable of loving her so much that I would do anything for her… then what is my life worth? If you can’t do it for love, for what then? For money, for fame, for power? Don’t make me laugh. For an ideal? But that is my ideal: love.
Of course, she has to smell good too.